How to File an Insurance Claim and What to Expect
Owning and operating a restaurant or bar can be a rewarding endeavor, but it also comes with its fair share of challenges. One of those challenges is dealing with unexpected events that can disrupt your business, such as accidents, natural disasters or unforeseen emergencies. In such cases, having the right insurance coverage is critical; however, filing an insurance claim can be a daunting process if you're not familiar with it. The following are a few steps to guide restaurant and bar owners through filing an insurance claim and what to expect throughout the process.
- Understand Your Policy: It’s important to understand your insurance policy before you need to file a claim. Restaurant and bar owners may have various types of insurance including general liability, property insurance and other specialized coverage like liquor liability. Review your policy documents to understand what is covered, the deductible amounts and any exclusions.
- Document Everything: In the event of an incident that may lead to an insurance claim, start documenting everything immediately. This includes taking photos, videos and notes of the damage, injuries and other relevant details. Surveillance video from the day of the incident should also be retained and provided to the insurance company upon filing a claim. Collect witness statements and any official reports, such as police reports or incident reports, if applicable.
- Contact Your Insurance Company: When somebody is injured or property gets damaged, it is of utmost importance to promptly file an insurance claim. The sooner a claim is filed, the sooner it can be resolved. Plus, early reporting makes for more accurate witness statements and evidence collection in the event of litigation. Many insurance companies can be reached by phone or online. When speaking to an insurance representative, be prepared to provide all the details of the incident and the documentation gathered.
- Follow Their Instructions: The insurance company will provide instructions on how to proceed with a claim. This may include completing specific claim forms, providing additional documentation or scheduling an inspection of the damage. It's crucial to follow their instructions promptly and accurately to ensure a smooth claims process.
- Keep Detailed Records: Throughout the claims process, maintain detailed records of all communications, including dates, times and the names of the individuals you speak with. This documentation can be valuable if any disputes or discrepancies arise.
- Understand the Settlement: If you have questions, don’t hesitate to discuss them with your insurance representative.
Insurance claims are a vital part of protecting your business when the unexpected happens. Understand your policy, document incidents and look to your insurance company to guide the claims process.
Society Insurance is recognized throughout the industry as a leader in providing superior restaurant and bar insurance, custom-tailored to fit each operation's unique needs. To learn more, visit societyinsurance.com/georgia.
This information is provided as a convenience for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. It is provided to assist you in recognizing potential unsafe work problems or conditions and not to establish compliance with any law, rule or regulation.