If you are making an insurance claim, it is your responsibility to prove your losses. If you do not provide sufficient evidence, or follow the correct procedures, your claim may be rejected or partially rejected. This could leave you significantly out of pocket.
Insurance claim losses
No matter what kind of insurance claim you are making, it is likely that you are doing so because you have experienced some kind of loss. Perhaps a natural disaster has destroyed your home, or a fire has affected your business. Alternatively, maybe your property has been burgled and items of value have been stolen or damaged.
Whatever the circumstances, the onus is on you to prove your losses. To do this, you must notify your insurance company about the incident as soon as possible. If the damage is covered by your policy, you will be asked to complete a proof of loss form. Every insurance company has different requirements, but usually you will be asked to provide:
- An inventory of the damaged items
- Evidence of the damage
- The value of the damaged items, and evidence to prove it
- The current replacement value of the damaged items
It can be difficult to gather all this information, particularly when it comes to finding the necessary evidence to prove your losses. You might not have kept receipts and records, yet that does not mean that you cannot make a claim. To make matters more complicated, there are often strict time limits to adhere to, meaning you need to work quickly to submit your claim promptly.
There may be time limits contained in the language of your policy. You should read it to make sure. There is also the limitation period contained in the Limitation Act of BC which provides that a claim must not be commenced more than 2 years after the claim is discovered.
What happens next?
When you do submit your insurance claim, your insurer will review your proof of loss form and decide whether to accept, reject or partially reject your claim. What happens next really depends on the circumstances. Of course, if your insurer offers to recover your losses in full, there will be no issue – so long as you have accurately estimated your losses.
However, your insurer may decide to reject parts of your claim, or may reject it altogether. If you are offered a sum of money (but not the full amount) you have to consider whether or not to accept. If you accept, the payment will be processed and that is the end of the matter. Your other option is to dispute the settlement offer.
If you do dispute the settlement offer, there will be further paperwork to complete and negotiations to enter into. If you have not already instructed an insurance lawyer at this point, we recommend that you do so. Find out more about what to do if your insurance claim is denied.
Insurance lawyer Vancouver
To avoid potential disputes, and to ensure that you recover your losses in full, we advise contacting our insurance lawyers from the outset – as soon as the incident, disaster or damage occurs.
We can review the terms of your insurance policy to check what damage is covered. We can then complete the proof of loss form for you, ensuring all the necessary evidence is submitted and the time limits are met. If your insurance company tries to reject all or part of your claim, we can argue your position, helping you to recover your money.
To find out more about how we can help you, please do not hesitate to contact us now at North Shore Law LLP.