Burglary

3 Insurance Claim Mistakes Most People Make

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While the biggest mistake is not having insurance at all there are 3 Insurance Claim Mistakes Most People Make and therefore are best avoided. The first is not filing on time, the second is not providing adequate documentation or and the third is destroying evidence. You may be surprised at how often these occur; However, to be fair after a fire in your home the insurance company’s procedures are not at the forefront of anyone’s mind. 

 Although, claims do get rejected for these reasons and when that happens it is a big deal.

According to the Association of British Insurers only “79% of home insurance claims are successful” .

So there is a real risk of a claim being rejected. Considering that the average UK home contains assets worth around £35,000 and that the repair or replacement costs of the damaged property can often be higher than its value it is well worth it to know how to file a claim properly.

First Insurance Claim Mistakes Made Is Not Filing On Time.

Yes, contacting the insurer within a reasonable amount of time is a standard requirement of any policy. Most insurers have written procedures about what is considered a reasonable amount of time after an incident to file a claim. You can check your policy or contact your insurer to find this out. If the issue is gathering the needed documentation for a claim that is reasonable but do let your insurer know that is what you’re doing. 

 Filing on time is essential because the insurance company can deny your claim for an unreasonable delay and this is one of The First Insurance Claim Mistakes Most People Make. If the incident is a fire or burglary notifying authorities is also necessary and the insurance adjuster will require their report. Not filing on time is probably the most common mistake which causes claims to be rejected. So, if a fire or a burst pipe happens do not procrastinate – contact your insurance company as soon as possible.

Second Insurance Claim Mistake Made Is Generic Filing.

Proper record-keeping following an incident is probably the second most important thing when it comes to a claim being successful in order to avoid making an Insurance Claim Mistake. This includes photographs of the damage as well as any pre-damage photos, any receipts or proofs of purchase and any reports from authorities, such as the fire department’s report. 

Photograph all damage as soon as it is safe to do so and obtain surveillance videos if you have cameras installed. An adjuster will require proof of loss so have it ready when they ask. It is also always a good idea to keep records of all communication between you and the insurance company. 

You don’t have to wait for a disaster to strike to start keeping adequate records. You can prepare by having your home photographed and keeping the photos as well as any other documentation in a cloud-based platform such as Google Drive. It may give you peace of mind that in case any disaster strikes you know where to find what you need quickly.

Third Insurance Claim Mistakes Made Is Eliminating Evidence.

The Third Insurance Claim Mistakes Most People Make Is Eliminating Evidence. People who do this simply do not think of it that way. For instance, if your property is damaged by fire or water the natural tendency may be to throw a burnt or water damaged item away but that is the last thing you should do. Keep everything as is until all damage is documented, and your insurer has had time to verify the loss. There will always be time to clean up after your claim is already filed.

If you hire a Loss Assessor such as Oakleafe Claims they will guide you through all this. It is always helpful to have someone qualified who will pay attention to all those procedural details and who will make sure everything is done correctly with your claim so that you don’t have to worry about it. 

Insurance Claim Mistakes That Result In Rejection.

Refusing to cooperate with the insurer’s requests for information can be a reason to deny a claim. The adjuster needs proof of your loss and that means documentation such as photographs but also any receipts or proof of purchase of items claimed. If you do not have anything to submit as proof your claim is likely to be delayed in processing or denied and this is a pivotal Insurance Claim Mistake made by many. 

Claims are also likely to be rejected for not being filed on time and in cases of inadequate coverage. If you file for a damaged laptop but you do not have Portable Items insurance, you may not be reimbursed for that item even though your policy may cover other damage. It is important to know exactly what your policy covers so that this is not an unpleasant surprise when something happens, and you have a million other things to worry about.

Conclusion

It may seem like a no brainer to know your insurance policy but with the busy lives, we all lead these days people often do not read them after they purchase them. Your home is not just the sum of its market value and its contents but also where you and your family make your history. It’s important to know what you are covered for before anything happens.

Not filing on time, not keeping adequate documentation and eliminating evidence are the 3 Insurance Claim Mistakes Most People Make, but there are plenty of other mistakes you can make. Insurance companies are always on the lookout for any inconsistencies in a claim and they always look to minimize the settlement. One way to ensure that your claim is successful, that it is processed quickly and for its real value is to hire a Loss Assessor such as Oakleafe Claims. Having someone on your side is important when it is your home and your peace of mind at stake. Never mind looking incompetent – the bottom line is that you probably do not want to be a part of the 21% of claims that get rejected.

Families on Summer holiday leave homes at risk

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Office for National Statistics shows that 42% burglaries in England & Wales have taken place when the occupants were not in their household.  And M&S Bank revealed that on average holidaymakers leave their home unoccupied for 10 days during the summer. 

With the summer at its peak most of us would be on holiday or at least planning to go soon. The issue is that many homeowners have not planned any  security precautions and is often overlooked.

Does my Insurance policy cover burglary?

Your home insurance should be covered by burglary but often the case there is many scenarios which could lead to your Insurance Claim being rejected by insurers. 

Long holidays

Your policy states that long extensive holidays where your home is left unoccupied for more than 30 consecutive days can lead to a repudiation.

Security

Most policies state that homes should be protected by a minimum level of security. This generally includes deadlocks on external doors and locks on accessible windows. Having security systems like burglar alarms and CCTV can often lower your insurance cost and also provide you with the extra security to prevent burglars. In the event of a claim you will have a higher chance of being paid out as you have shown adequate effort to secure your home.

Our thoughts 

Our advice is to be accurate with your insurance provider. If you have mentioned to them that you have a burglar alarm and is required in policy. Not doing so may lead to a repudiation in your claim. Always forget to set the alarm every time you leave your home. Never use a dummy alarm as this will not reduce your insurance premium. 

Check your policy that you are covered for high-value items. For certain high-value items, additional cover may be required to protect them in case of an incident.


Top 6 things you can do to deter burglars while you are away.

  • Motion Lights - Install affordable motion-activated security lights in your garden or front entrance.
  • Keep all windows and doors locked
  • Pretend you are home -   Install Energy Saving bulbs and keep one on or install timers 
  • Keeping Tabs - Ask a friend ,neighbor or relative to keep an eye or check your home every once in a while.
  • Keys - Don't leave any spare/hidden key
  • Social Media - Beware of social media, your privacy on the internet and can be observed by anyone. Next time, think when posting a nice picture of you on the beach or at the airport.

If you have had a recent home burglary and are looking to claim. call us on 0333 2101 999. 

Click here for more info on Domestic Burglary Claims

Longer Nights Mean Increase In Break-ins

Longer Nights Mean Increase In Break-ins

Theft Insurance Claims As the clocks go back for daylight saving, the darker evenings will mean a sharp increase in burglaries and theft related crime. A major Insurer has reported that last year Theft Insurance claims notified to them at this time of year saw an increase of over a third.