It seems like having an insurance policy would be enough to protect your home, car, or other property, but filing a claim for a loss can be a very daunting task. Filing a claim includes a lot of complicated and time consuming processes that take experience and knowledge to do properly. Your insurance company is there to help you when life happens, but they can’t unless you can prove your losses in their language. This is where the public insurance adjuster comes in, as an aid to the policy holder.
What Is a Public Insurance Adjuster?
A public insurance adjuster is a professional licensed through the state’s Insurance Department. They work to assist both business and individuals to help prepare and negotiate their insurance claim. The public insurance adjuster is not employed by your insurance company, but can negotiate a claim with your insurance company on your behalf to ensure you get everything you are entitled to under your policy. Because a public adjuster is a neutral party, you know you’ll be getting a thorough and fair documentation of your loss. Besides filing your insurance claim, you can expect a public adjuster to:
• Arrange inspections by qualified professionals
• Negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf
• Work with contractors and cleanup companies during the restoration process
• Arrange for temporary housing and/or storage if applicable
Highly qualified public adjusters are well versed not only in loss adjustment, but in the entire process from inspection to restoration. They will work closely with you to help recover the full amount you are entitled to based on your insurance coverage.
Who is Qualified to be a Public Insurance Adjuster?
In New York, all public insurance adjusters must be licensed with the state insurance department. The requirements for licensing are quite extensive and include:
• Be 18 years old or older
• A clean record with the law
• Be bonded for at least $1000 for the duration of the two year licensing period
• Rigorous examinations
• Complete required, continued education throughout the course of their license term
The Public Adjuster examination is quite extensive and is specific to each area of insurance adjusting the applicant would like to work in, including automobile, casualty, fire, general, marine and worker’s compensation, among others. This is why it is so important to locate an insurance adjuster who is experienced in in your claim field.
What Does an Adjuster Do?
The public insurance adjuster is hired by the policyholder. The public insurance adjuster is focused on helping you prove your claim to the insurance company and getting you the maximum amount of compensation that is provided for under the terms of your policy.
One of the main jobs of the public insurance adjuster is to help the policyholder document the claim properly. This includes calculating things like actual cash value, depreciation and replacement costs in all areas. They help you account for and document every detail of your claim and then negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf.
The paperwork associated with many claims can be extremely complicated and overwhelming to many policy holder. A Public Insurance Adjuster can help you to understand this paperwork, organize it, and help you to cover and include all necessary supporting documents. There are times a single missing document or incomplete record could delay your process or even force your claim to be denied. By working with an experienced and licensed Public Adjuster you can be assured your claim will be filed properly and with the minimum amount of delays.
A public adjuster will also assist you in other areas such as claim negotiation. They become your voice when dealing with the insurance company. Once a public adjuster has been hired to represent you in a claim, the insurance company will be directed to speak with them exclusively. Giving you the peace of mind that your claim is being handled by a qualified, licensed professional. During the process, you can go about your life and concentrate on what’s important.
You wouldn’t go to court without a lawyer or entrust your health to anyone other than a licensed physician – Why file your insurance claim alone? Leave the process to a licensed expert.
How is the Public Insurance Adjuster Paid?
In general, the public insurance adjuster works for a percentage of the claim. This can be negotiated with the adjuster before hiring. However, for the amount of work the adjuster does and their success rate at getting the maximum recovery possible, the money spent for their services is usually well worth it.
Hiring a qualified, licensed public insurance adjuster in New York can be a vital step when a policy holder needs to file an insurance claim. They advocate for the policy holder and work to maximize your recovery and minimize your hassles as you work with the insurance company. In New York state, they must be licensed and bonded so be sure to check that your adjuster is before hiring.