Let’s be honest, most business owners would rather not have to contend with filing and managing insurance claims. Whether it’s a workers’ compensation claim, a large property loss claim or a sticky liability lawsuit, the process can be tedious to say the least.
Take workers’ compensation insurance claims, for example.
Between the paperwork requirements, medical treatment, work accommodations and legal issues, there are many pieces in the puzzle. Fortunately, a claims adjuster will look after most of the details. However, claims adjusters are typically tasked with managing 100 claims or more at any given time. With some carriers, the average adjuster caseload is closer to 175. So, it’s easy to see how adjusters can make mistakes that cost you money. They may overlook opportunities for subrogation, miss signs of fraud or fail to proactively manage medical treatment.
What about a large loss property claim?
Disasters can strike anytime, and the impact can cripple your business. No matter how sophisticated your risk management plan is, managing the financial impact of a large property and business interruption loss requires a team effort – your accounting, operations and legal departments, and maybe even outside help from consultants, brokers and attorneys. Again, the claims adjuster managing your claim is multi-tasking, so important details can easily slip through the cracks. There can be more at stake than just repairing the building if your business is interrupted. You need a plan to resume operation while the repair is underway.
How do you gain control and facilitate more successful outcomes for your business?
First, be proactive. As the policyholder, you own the claim. That means you need to be in the driver’s seat of the claims process. Don’t merely rely on the insurance company’s adjuster to look out for your best interests.
Second, work with an insurance broker that will be a dedicated and proactive claims advocate for you. A true claims advocate can provide the essential oversight of every aspect of your claims, from reporting losses to your insurance carrier all the way through to claim resolution. They can perform invaluable functions such as analyzing your claims history and helping identify trends and weak spots in your current risk management strategy. And they’ll ensure that:
- You understand your policy
- You get the full benefit of your policy
- The claim process is carried out in a timely and effective manner
- Disputes over coverage or measure of loss are resolved satisfactorily
- Assist with the coordination of restoration services and disaster recovery efforts
- Provide litigation management expertise in the event of lawsuits
- Ensure you receive reasonable and timely payment
- Advise if other insurers need to be put on notice
- Ensure subrogation opportunities are explored
- Assess reserves, action plans and push for closure
In short, having a dedicated and proactive claims advocate on your team can pull all the pieces of the puzzle together and help you control the claim process, rather than having it control you. And that’s good for your bottom line.