Whether you need to submit a claim on a homeowner’s, disability, life or another type of insurance policy, the process can be complex. As a result, many people make one or more mistakes, leading to a denial or delay of the claim.
Even a denial does not always mean the end of the road; rather than giving up, you may be able to file an effective appeal. However, you can increase your chances of getting your claim approved sooner by avoiding some common errors.
Not knowing what is on your policy
Before you submit your claim, it is important to figure out whether the terms of your policy cover the type of damage in question. You should also understand the nature of the coverage, including limits and exclusions. Policies often include dense verbiage and confusing terms, which can make this information difficult to glean. Having an attorney review your policy can help you understand its terms and know what information to include on your claim. Some policies may also contain requirements for supportive documentation or other specific instructions for submitting your claim.
Skimping on documentation
Generally, one should strive to include as much detail as possible in the claim. To the best of your ability, document the nature of the damage as well as its cause. Taking pictures and writing down as many details as you can as soon as possible after the event can help you bolster your claim. Insurance companies often deny claims, alleging the claimant did not provide enough information to show the damage was covered, or that the claimant misrepresented facts.
Listening to the wrong advice
You may encounter a great deal of information and advice about filing an insurance claim; however, much of it can be erroneous. What worked for your friend’s claim may not work for yours, even if the circumstances seem similar enough. Your best option is to obtain competent legal advice from an attorney with the relevant experience and knowledge.