How to File a Disruption Claim after a Disaster

After your business suffers a loss that disrupted your operations you need to quickly take action. A few simple steps can get you back in business as quickly as possible.

1. Take inventory.

Get your employees working to inventory the damage to your building, vehicles, equipment, and stock. Calculate projected values, and replacement cost. If possible recover past receipts to verify the original cost of any item that may have been lost. Keep your business operations running if possibly with a few key employees, but put the rest in a recover operation. Don’t do any clean up, until you perform step # 2., unless the clean up is needed for safety reasons.

2. Photograph your loss.

Document your loss with both still photos, and if possible video footage. One photo will speak volumes with adjusters and to justify any dispute with your insurance carrier. Try to get a professional photographer that is familiar with insurance claims since they will provide an accurate portrayal of your damage.

3. Document statements.

Provide a journal of the loss, that will list dates, events, damage, and any parties involved. Get statements from employees or any eyewitness to events that are willing to testify before a court if required. Even the recovery process and the claims process should be recorded, with names, dates, and conversations you may of had with insurance employees.

4. Get the experts on your side.

Get your accountant, lawyer, insurance agent, and clean up teams, working toward your recovery. You need to hold periodic updates with your experts and get feedback from them, as you move step-by-step in the process.

You may also want to consider using a public adjuster to handle your claim. Your insurance carrier will send out an adjuster to process your claim and estimate damage, but that adjuster works for the insurance company. A public adjuster works for you and looks for ways to maximize your claim check.

Since a public adjuster does get paid, a percentage of the claim check, they will try every angle to get you the most they can from your insurance carrier. However, you need to keep in mind that their fee could be from 5 to 40 percent of the check from the insurance company.

The best suggestion is to always be prepared for any loss. Have a contingency plan set up, and keep a duplicate set of records off site. With proper planning you can quickly deal with any disaster, and prevent a complete shut down of your business operations. Insurance planning can protect you from economic loss, but having a contingency plan and a team of expert can preserve your business survival.