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If the worst does happen and you need to make an insurance claim. What next?

Don’t panic

Check to see if your insurance policy covers the damage which has occurred. All policies will spell out in simple terms what their policy does and does not cover.

Determine which policy you will need to make your claim under. Remember your building policy will only cover physical damage to property which cannot be moved from the building, whereas contents insurance covers your personal possessions.

It may be the case that you need to make claims from both policies. Your insurer will be able to advise you.

Contact your home insurer as soon as possible, in the event that you need to make a claim.

All home insurers have an emergency contact line, which will be your first port of call.

They will provide you with the appropriate insurance claim form, once you have described what has happened. This will be dispatched immediately.

Upon receipt of the insurance claim form, be sure to complete it as soon as possible with accurate estimates for the repair or replacement of damaged and stolen articles.

It may be difficult to get quotes for damage to property quickly, in this case, return the claims form with a note outlining that these details will follow.

Always quote your home insurance claim reference number unique to your property with all correspondence to your insurer.

If temporary repairs are required to prevent further damage to your property, be sure to retain all receipts and bills as you will need to reclaim these costs from your insurer.

Photograph any damage and/or evidence of a break in for your insurer’s records.

When making a claim, your insurer will probably also require proof of the value of the items you have insured, i.e. receipts, professional valuations and so on. It is a good idea to list all valuable properties and photograph these items.

Rarer more valuable items should be examined by a specialist insurance company who will be able to provide records of the value of the item in the event that you need to make a claim.

A record of the make and model number of electrical items should also be made.

Upon receipt of your claim, your insurers will proceed to either pay your claim, arrange for a claims inspector to investigate the incident or send a loss adjuster in to handle the claim.

A claims inspector from your home insurer will be used to arrange the settlement of your claim.

A loss adjuster there to work in both you and your insurance company’s interest. These are independent specialist advisers who recommend the best means to repair and reinstate your property and possessions. In short, they advise the insurance company on how to settle your claim.

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