- Notify the police if a crime is involved: Crimes such as theft, robbery, burglary, vandalism, etc., require an investigation and police report in order to file an insurance claim. Call the police FIRST.
- Report damage as soon as possible: A public adjuster will quickly survey the claim site and document damage, contact your insurance company, and begin the claim process. If you do not utilize a public adjuster, immediately call your insurance company.
- Keep your claim number: You will need this number throughout the process. Make copies of all e-mails and letters, make notes per each telephone call with the insurance company, and document names, dates, and times.
- Make temporary repairs: Remember, it is your responsibility to prevent further damage to your home or business. Insurance companies will usually reimburse for preventive measures with receipts. If efforts are not taken to prevent further damage, it is considered neglect and you could liable for any additional damage. This is a loophole for the insurance company.
- Begin the paperwork: Time is of the essence as there is a deadline for the claims forms to be returned. Your public adjuster will assume all such obligations.
- Prove the extent of your loss to the insurance company: Do not move or throw anything away until it has been documented.
- Negotiate: The insurance company will send an adjuster to your property. At this point, either you or your public adjuster will identify all liable damage/loss and negotiate for a fair claim settlement. It is against the law to have a roofer or any other construction worker negotiate on your behalf with the insurance company.
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