When accidents or disasters occur, many consumers turn to their insurance carriers for reassurance. The unfortunate reality is the interest of the insurance claim representative and the consumer presenting a claim are often in opposition. To protect your rights, it is important for you to be familiar with your insurance policy and make a timely claim when the event occurs. In certain circumstances, your claim could be denied outright if you fail to provide timely notice or submit a Proof of Loss to the insurance company.
After providing notice of the initial claim, you should keep accurate notes and copies of all correspondence you have with your insurance carrier. Make sure to maintain accurate records of all your time and expenses associated with the triggering event and the processing of the claim. If you are unable to locate a copy of your policy, you should ask your claim adjuster for a certified copy of policy. Remember, regardless of the type of claim (personal injury, property damage, homeowner, health) you should not rush into a settlement or take the first offer from the insurance company. Often times, you are simply not in a position to know all of your expenses associated with the claim or you may be able to negotiate to get a fair settlement. If you have any questions regarding the fairness of your settlement, you should seek professional advice.
For more information regarding your rights when handling an insurance claim, you will find additional information provided by the Ohio Department of Insurance at www.ohioinsurance.gov.
Mark E. Godbey & Associates
708 Walnut Street, Suite 600
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202
(513) 241 – 6649 fax