Filing Late and Other Ways to Have a Claim Rejected

One of the biggest mistakes you can make if you incur damage to your business premises is to wait too long before filing the claim with your insurer.

The owners of a hotel in Dallas learned this the hard way when a U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals held that the business had waited too long to file a claim with its insurer after suffering hail damage.

The court ruled that because the hotel had waited more than 19 months to file the claim, it was impossible for the insurer to ascertain exactly when the damage had occurred.

The hotel’s property policy required that the insured make “prompt notice” of any claims.

But the insurer rejected the claim when it received it for a hailstorm that had happened more than a year and a half earlier, on the grounds that it could not determine what had caused the damage or when the damage occurred. This was crucial since the policy had expired 17 months earlier – two months after the storm had allegedly damaged the hotel.

Believe it or not, filing late is a common problem and it is one of many mistakes business owners make when filing claims. The following are surefire ways to risk having your claim denied or disputed by your insurance company:

Not contacting your insurer immediately

While most insurance policies state that you must notify the company promptly of a loss, what counts as “prompt” may be a little vague. However, you can wreck your claim by reporting a loss so late that it “prejudices” the insurance company.

For the most part, you should take steps to notify your insurer as soon as possible after you become aware of a loss.

Failing to document the damage

Take pictures and itemize everything that was damaged. Often, you will have to make repairs immediately to prevent additional damage, or move machinery to a new location. If so, be sure to photograph the original scene to document how it was before you started your clean-up effort. Also take photos of any repairs you make.

Disposing of damaged goods

If your business clean-up includes removal of items such as water-damaged merchandise, flooring or insulation, keep it all, even if it has to pile up in the parking lot. The damaged materials are all evidence of the impact of the disaster on your business.

Not appealing an insurer’s low estimate

After the claims adjuster inspects the damage, the insurance company will give you a damage estimate. If you think it’s too low, you can appeal. We can help if you feel the estimate is too low.

But some businesses will hire an outside adjuster to make a second estimate, and then the claim will go to mediation for a final resolution.

Not reading your policy

You should understand exactly what your policy covers. For the most part, commercial property policies will not cover flooding or earthquake damage. That kind of coverage will often require a separate policy or rider.

Not being prepared

If your business suffers damage, you’ll be better off if you know what to do in advance. Some advance steps you can take are:

  • Reviewing your policy to make sure you have adequate coverage.
  • Knowing where your insurance policy is kept.
  • Keeping an extra copy of the policy off-premises or in a safety deposit box.
  • Having our telephone number and e-mail address in the contacts on your smartphone, so you can call us immediately if you suffer a claim.

A final word…

Filing a claim is usually not a difficult process, but you should be prepared in advance, like making sure you keep good records of all your assets, including receipts, payment schedules and more.

Finally, if you are unsure whether you should file a claim on any of your commercial policies, you can always give us a call to discuss the event and we can assist you.

BGES Group’s office, located in Larchmont, NY is a full service insurance agency offering, Property, Liability, Umbrella Liability, Business Auto, Bid & Performance Bonds, Inland Marine, Worker’s Compensation, New York State Disability, Group Health, Life insurance, Personal lines and Identity Theft.  

BGES Group are Worker’s Compensation Specialists for the States of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut – Issues we address: 1) Lowering pricing – we have specialty programs that can save you up to 40%; 2) Finding a new company; 3) Being cancelled or non renewed; 4) Audit disputes; 5) Company creating fictitious payroll at audit time; 6) Lowering high experience modifications factors; 7) Misclassification of payrolls; 8) Lowering or eliminating renewal deposits;   9) Getting coverage when you’ve been without for a few months; 10) Covering multiple states under one policy; 11) Eliminating 10% service or policy fees; 12) Timely issuance of certificates; 13) Always being able to get someone on the phone or by email when you need to.

Special Contractor Insurance Programs (NY, NJ, CT) – We we have 50+ insurance companies to market your general liability, umbrella liability, business auto, workers compensation, bid & performance bonds and group health coverages.  We help contractors set up proper risk transfer mechanisms.  If you’re a contractor we offer extensive information about insurance markets, coverages, risk transfer mechanisms, subcontractor screening, ways to lower your insurance costs that lower them.

Contractors Make More Sales – Close more sales with easy, affordable financing options for your customers.  Everything can be done from your phone.  Thirteen banks to get financing from.  No hidden fees. Click here to learn more. P.S.  FREE Email us for a FREE copy of The Contractor’s Handbook to Picking the Right Financing Option (ßClick Link and Request Copy)

Identity Theft – Over the past year hundreds of thousands of people have had to deal with identity theft.  This has become such a huge problem so we now offer Identity Theft Protection. We heard stories of kids going for car loans and learning they owe $200,000+ to companies they never heard of.  Under our program you can protect yourself, spouse and children.  Anyone you know can purchase this protection though our plan!  Click here to learn more or sign up.

Soon To Be The Best Artificial Intelligence Technology Marketing Platform In The World To Get You New CustomersSick and tired of paying social media experts thousands of dollars to do your marketing?  Paying Google, Facebook, Linkedin hundreds/thousands of dollars for lousy results?  How would you like to dominate your business niche?  How would you like get in on the ground floor and earn a massive new cash flow every month?   Click here to learn more.                  

If you would like to speak with us call Gary Wallach at 914-806-5853 or click here to email or click here to visit our website.

Company: BGES Group, 216A Larchmont Acres West, Larchmont, NY 10538



© – Copyright – 2020 – BGES Group

Posted in Uncategorized.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *