What is a loss adjuster?
If you’ve had to make an insurance claim for a sizeable amount, or if the circumstances of your claim are particularly complicated, you may find yourself dealing with a loss adjuster. These are professional investigators employed by insurance companies to assess claims that are complex, contentious or potentially involve a large pay-out.
There’s no need to worry or feel your insurer doesn’t believe what you’ve told them just because a loss adjuster is involved. This is a routine step to establish the facts of a claim if it is not obvious or straightforward.
When do loss adjusters get involved?
A loss adjuster might specialise in domestic household or commercial claims. A typical situation where a domestic loss adjuster could be called in is if you have had a serious flood at home, resulting in substantial damage to your property. In such a case it is normal for a loss adjuster to make an appointment to visit your home a few days after you make a claim. They will want to visit as soon as possible to be able to make an accurate assessment of the damage before clean-up and repairs begin.
What do loss adjusters look for?
A loss adjuster’s job is to make sure the damage is covered by your policy and that the amount being claimed is reasonable. Not all insurance policies are the same. There may be exemptions in your cover that preclude some items or stipulate certain circumstances when the cover does not apply. Equally, you may have purchased optional add-ons meaning that you have more comprehensive cover than most. The loss adjuster will take all this into account and will also need to ascertain exactly what happened and what damage was caused by the incident.
How do they assess a claim?
They will take photographs and gather evidence, including from CCTV footage and police reports if necessary. They will interview you and other witnesses and will gather information from specialists like builders and decorators about the cost of damage repair. They may also help arrange immediate repairs and advise you on what to do next. They will then file a report with the insurance company, which will be used to decide the validity of your claim and whether the amount you are claiming for is reasonable.
Are they impartial?
Loss adjusters have to abide by a strict code of conduct that requires them to be impartial. Nevertheless, it is true they are working for the insurance companies and hardly ever recommend that a claim is adjusted upwards. If you would like a similar professional to represent your interests, you can hire a loss assessor. This is a common move with complex or high-value claims. The loss adjuster and loss assessor will work together to resolve the claim as quickly as possible. Just remember that you will have to pay for a loss assessor yourself, but they will work on your behalf, whereas a loss adjuster is paid by, and working on behalf of, your insurer.
If you need to make a claim or have questions, give us a call on 01223 324233.