Understanding Insurance Claim Adjustments

Water damage from frozen pipes


Having an insurance policy for your personal property is the best way to protect your investment on those items. Insurance is something that we all need but hope to never have to use. For most people, filing an insurance claim can be confusing and stressful. Trying to understand why your claim is being adjusted, or why there is a claims adjuster calling you, can add to the unnecessary stress of having to deal with lost or damaged property.
In order to help you navigate your way through an insurance claim, we have outlined a few key points that are involved in the adjustment of a claim.
What is a Claims Adjuster?
Simply put, a claims adjuster is an insurance agent that reviews your claim and decides if the insurance company is liable for that claim. At times, they act as a type of investigator. They will look over and assess any damaged property, then try to come to a fair and just decision on how, and if, you should be compensated for your loss. 
If medical compensation is needed, they may interview you to get a better understanding of your injuries and even look at doctor and police statements. Based on the information that they receive, they will then make an educated decision on whether or not the insurance company is liable for your medical bills, and how much you should receive.

Adjusting a Claim
Having your claim adjusted is just another way of saying that the adjuster is conducting an investigation to determine how much liability the insurance company has, and what would be a fair settlement for your loss.
What Should I do if I Need to File a Claim?
If you have recently been in an accident or your property has been damaged and you believe it is covered by your policy, there are three things that you need to ensure that your claim is handled quickly and efficiently.
  1. Call your insurance provider and explain the situation. Make sure to tell them when the accident took place and let them know if any other property was damaged.
  2. Notify them of any injuries that were obtained by anybody at the scene and if anyone needed medical assistance.
  3. Meet with your assigned claims adjuster and see if they have a specific specialist or repair company that they want you to use from whom to get the estimate for repair. Some Insurance companies have a repair shop or company that they trust and may require that their customers only use those companies. 
When talking with your adjuster, make sure that you are able to give them as much information about your situation as possible. Having an informed and detailed picture of the events that led up to the accident will allow your adjuster to make a better-informed decision in a timely and efficient manner.
Your adjuster will be the one to decide if you need to file a total loss claim or a partial loss claim, and for how much of the repair cost the insurance company is liable. This usually doesn’t take too long. However, depending on the claim, it can take a few weeks for an adjuster to reach a decision. This is because the adjuster is making sure to look at every aspect of your claim thoroughly to ensure that you get a fair settlement.

Having an accident can be a stressful and traumatic experience. Your claims adjuster will work hard to adjust your claim as quickly as possible to help ease some of the burdens that the accident may have already caused. The adjusters are there to help you and work with you. Don’t be afraid to ask them questions if there is any part of the process that you don’t understand.
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