How to Handle an Insurance Claim

Written by Wellington Ayugi

Despite your caution, you may be a victim of an unforeseen risk that results in loss. If you took out an insurance policy against the risk, you may have to make a claim to your service provider for compensation. Understanding the process and how it works can help you handle a claim effectively and therefore, understand the relationship with your insurance service provider.

What is an Insurance Claim?

This is the formal notification to an insurance provider from the insured that a loss covered under the policy has been suffered. 

How to Process your Claim

The Claims process can be straightforward, if one is able to provide the correct details. Below is a step by step process to making an effective insurance claim:

  1. Make a Report: If something of yours has been stolen or vandalized, report it immediately to the police before making a claim to your insurance provider. Many insurance policies have time limits for reports to be made to the authorities.
  1. Examine Your Policy: Ensure you are covered for the risk that has occurred. Some policies may have a procedure for you to follow when processing claims, so be on the lookout for that.
  1. Obtain all the documentation: The whole process will proceed smoothly if you have the relevant documents nearby. For instance you may require:
  • Receipts for items stolen or destroyed
  • The insurance policy document
  • Reference numbers, for any police report you filed.
  1. Remember the facts: Write down your story so you are able to factually state what happened without exaggerating or missing details. Details such as date and times, the amount you are claiming for and third party descriptions (in event of an accident), are very important.
  1. Contact your Broker: – This only applies if you purchased your policy through an insurance broker. They can provide assistance in your claim and work directly with the insurer to sort out the details.
  1. Call the Insurers: – Check your policy for the insurance company hotline and contact them with the information you have compiled from the previous steps.

Tips for Getting Claims Approved

Despite following the procedure above, that is no guarantee your claim will be accepted. There are simple tips you can follow to increase the chances of your claim being accepted. They are:

  • File the claim quickly: Some claims have time limits and therefore the sooner you make the claim, the better.
  • Give clear details: This works to expedite the process rather than slow it down when verifying information. 
  • Do not exaggerate: Do not overstate your claim. Insurers have ways of identifying the true value of a claim.
  • Record the damage: Take photos of accidents and losses you are making claims for as soon as they occur. The more evidence you have, the more efficient the the claims process will be.
  • Document the entire process: Store any correspondence between you and the insurance company. Note the date, time and place when you meet the company representatives.

The most crucial tip for your claim to be accepted is to always be prepared. This means you need to have the relevant documents and evidence of insured asset at all times. Keep your policy documents and receipts for insured items in a safe place.

Learn More:

  1. Guidelines on Claims Management in Kenya

About the author

Wellington Ayugi

Wellington Ayugi handles Business Development at Covered and has a passion for personal finance, microfinance, and developments in financial technology