The integration of new and exciting technology is the fastest growing trend of 2018 when it comes to casualty and property insurance, and this trend is impacting homeowners too. Documentation of loss is the most important part of a homeowner’s insurance claim because without it the insurance provider can dispute the claim. While some parts of the loss documentation process remain the same as in years past, the trend of embracing mobile and digital technology across the insurance industry makes it easier than ever for homeowners to prove damages.
Any time a homeowner or property owner makes a claim of loss due to fire, theft, or other emergency, an insurance adjuster is assigned to handle their case. The adjuster uses information they gather, along with anything provided by the homeowner, to create a document known as the scope of loss. This package of information is what is primarily used to approve or deny a claim, as well as determine the exact amount of compensation a homeowner is owed. The more you can contribute that is useful for including in the scope of loss package, the greater chance you have at having your entire claim approved without litigation or mediation to settle any disputes.
Insurance related apps designed for camera equipped smart phones are popping up every day, and the majority of them are designed to help property and homeowners make more accurate property claims by enhancing documentation. Some apps are even designed for the adjuster so preparing scope of loss documents are easier than ever. Consider at least using one secure photography app that automatically adds a date, time, and geolocation signature to each photo. This provides proof you are photographing the current state of a fire-damaged home or the broken glass caused by a break-in and not using photos from another time and place.
One of the best tools for improving property claim documentation requires some foresight and planning before you need to make a claim. Building a comprehensive home inventory that includes photos and purchase information for every item of major value in your home takes some work, but it clearly shows exactly what you’ve lost and what it will cost to replace it. Include every item that costs more than $100 or so to make sure your claim is approved in full value rather than a few thousand dollars lower due to a lack of proof of ownership of some costly items. Again, smart phone apps and other software packages make it easier than ever to document your belongings and keep the inventory updated when you get rid of an item or replace it.
Finally, consider using technological tools that keep you in close contact with your adjuster as they document your claim. Many insurance carriers offer exclusive apps for tracking every part of the claim process. Your adjuster can quickly get in touch to request a receipt, photograph, or other piece of evidence to add to your scope of loss document. If there’s a dispute or other issue, you’ll know right away so you can address it before the claim is denied.
Don’t be afraid to get involved in the documentation process for a property claim. While the adjuster is the one who must approve or deny each piece of evidence, you can still make their job much easier by providing as much useful information as possible along with your claim. Utilize some of the new trends in digital insurance management to make that process easier for everyone.
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