If you or your business are in the unfortunate position of needing to lodge an insurance claim, you might be feeling confused or apprehensive about the process — or maybe you just don’t know where to start. There’s documentation, requests for information, contacting third parties and more, which can all prove exceptionally time-consuming (not to mention, stressful)!
At Hunter Broking Group, we pride ourselves on our proactive claims management approach, meaning you can keep doing what you do best, while we do what we do best. Keep reading to find out how we differentiate ourselves from other insurance brokers, and how you can make a claim with confidence.
How does the claim process work?
The process of claiming is relatively straightforward at a high level: an event occurs (such as loss, damage or injury), you lodge a claim, the claim is assessed, and an outcome is provided. However, there is a hive of activity under the surface of an insurance claim that eventuates to either an acceptance or decline.
Let’s take a look at the four key stages in the claims process:
First Stage – Safety & Reporting
Before you can even think about insurance, you should think about the safety of yourself and others. This is particularly relevant in a property claim where it may be unsafe to access a building or piece of machinery (including cars). If safe to do so, move yourself, your family or your staff to safety. Secondly, it is imperative that you contact the police in incidents such as serious accidents (especially involving injury) or in the event of theft or burglary. Lastly, it could be handy to find some initial information that might help with lodging a claim, such as your insurance policy documents or product disclosure statement (PDS). Reading your PDS should disclose the terms and conditions should you experience an unforeseen event.
You might also like to collate additional information you think an insurer may need at claim time. In the example of a car accident, your insurance provider may ask you to provide details such as:
- Your Police Report Number.
- Details of the other driver, including registration number, license details, contact details and any car insurance (if known).
- Who the person driving was.
- Any other parties who may have witnessed the event.
Second Stage – Claiming
The next step in the claims process is to make a claim! This is where you will need to contact us as soon as possible to get the ball rolling. While you can absolutely call us to commence the claim, we make it simple and easy to get started by providing an online claim form. Simply complete the basic details and relevant information, and our experienced claim management team will be in touch as soon as possible! From here, we will ensure that we have all the necessary information to liaise with your insurance company to progress your claim.
Don’t worry if you can’t find a copy of your insurance contract laying around; we keep digital copies of your policy details for our own records.
Third Stage – Assessing
Before an insurer can decide on whether to approve your claim, they will rigorously assess all of the information provided, including what you were covered for under your insurance policy. This is called an assessment and may involve an insurance assessor who will examine the circumstances of the claim and then provide the insurer professional advice on how to proceed with your claim.
Throughout the assessment stage is where our dedicated Claim Management team really step into their own and handle the deluge of phone calls and emails between assessors, the insurer and third parties, such as inspectors, valuers or tradespeople.
Final State – Outcome
The final stage is where we learn the insurer’s decision on whether they will accept your claim or not. Thankfully, general insurers only decline around 3.6% of claims*, which means that approximately 96.4% of claims are accepted. Once approved, you can expect to receive payment of any cash settlement, repairs or replacement to commence.
* Code Governance Committee General Insurance In Australia Report (2016-17), p.20, Table 8. (https://www.fos.org.au/custom/files/docs/cgc-report-general-insurance-in-australia-201617.pdf)
How long does it take for an insurance company to process insurance claims?
Under the General Insurance Code of Practice, insurers are restricted to particular processing time limits. They have ten business days to inform us whether they can either accept or deny your claim, based on the information provided. This is why it pays to try and gather as much detailed information as possible at the start (but we understand it’s not always achievable in some circumstances, such as proof of ownership documents and receipts). If the insurer requires more detailed information, they will inform us within ten business days exactly what further information is required.
Hereafter, it is typical to receive updates on the progress of your claim every 20 business days, unless your case is particularly complex, in which case, an estimation will be provided by the insurer. It’s reassuring to know that our proactivity in claims management means you won’t be let in the dark.
What if I have suffered a financial loss?
If you have suffered financial hardship as a result of the claim event and are in urgent financial need, please inform us so that we can assist in fast-tracking your application and help, explore available options and help you access the best course of action.
How does an insurance broker help with the claims process?
Insurance brokers are fantastic at sourcing the most appropriate insurance policies, but at Hunter Broking Group, we also provide exemplary claim management services with benefits such as:
When you’ve got customers, staff and a business to get back on track after an unexpected setback, you can leave the claim making to the professionals. We can manage the process on your behalf so you can relax while we work closely with the insurance company and any third-parties, repairers or specialists. We can also keep you informed every step of the way.
Our support doesn’t stop once we’ve arranged your insurance policy. We support you throughout the claims process, and can advocate on your behalf with insurance companies, for no extra charge. This frees you up to focus on running your business – while we work to get your claim sorted as quickly and as favourably as possible.
With a Steadfast broker, you’ve got a qualified advisor who you can trust on your team, who can manage the claims process on your behalf, allowing you to focus on what really matters without needing to contact the insurer directly. We can follow your claim from start to finish; we don’t just lodge and forget.
We understand how important it is for you to have a positive claims outcome. As a Steadfast insurance broker, we leverage the support of our network so that you’ve got the added benefit of a large organisation that can help if an issues arise. We can support you to manage your claim, including submitting the required supporting evidence and championing it at the highest level with insurers if there happens to be an issue.
Our proactivity and expertise make us stand out from the crowd. It can pay to have Hunter Broking Group on your side. We’re here to help you make an insurance claim with confidence.