It's easy to get business insurance these days. However, without good advice from an insurance broker, your claim will fail when it comes to the crunch. Ultimately, a policy that doesn’t pay when you need it is worthless.
Most business insurance claims go wrong right at the start. If just one word in an application or policy is wrong your claim can be rejected.
People complain that insurance companies never pay out, yet we have very few problems with our claims. Why? Because we do a lot of fact-checking upfront and make sure everything in our client's application correct.
Successful business insurance claims
If you want to get a claim paid, having an expert insurance broker fighting for you will make all the difference. In one case, $78,000 worth of difference to be exact.
A client of ours in recycling had one of his machines break down. However, the insurer decided that he was not covered for breakdown and rejected his claim. We went through the assessor’s report and the business insurance policy with a fine-tooth comb. We were able to argue that it was a case of damage, not breakdown, as apiece of the motor had broken off inside the machine. This caused pieces to go through the machine and damage it. Ultimately, our happy client received a $78,000 payout.
Buyer beware: Applying for business insurance
Often people get their receptionist to call around to get quotes for a policy or search for policies themselves online. What they don't realise is how complicated the process actually is. It's so important to get all of the details right.
We ask you many questions that someone working at a call centre is simply not going to think to ask. For example, it’s essential that you correctly describe all of your business activities. If you neglect to include something, when it comes time to claim, the insurer may jump on this, say that you didn’t disclose. This can then be used as a reason to reject your claim.
Or, say that you tell us that your business property doesn't contain asbestos. Due to our experience in the industry, we will know off-hand that buildings of a certain age generally do contain this material and we will double and triple check.
Even a simple thing like not including all interrelated companies on the proposal could cause a problem at claim time.
Keeping your business insurance up-to-date
Another client of ours had a clothing shop. It wasn’t until Doug went to see him that he discovered that he was also now doing online sales all over the world. We talked to the insurer and made sure that he was properly covered for this new e-commerce side of his business.
Sometimes clients wonder why we ask them the same things and why they need to meet with us every year; this is why. Your business changes year to year and so should your policy. This ensures you’re always properly covered.
Why business insurance claims fail
Insurers can reject your claim if you don’t have the right policy wording or you have failed to disclose all of the necessary information.
Someone can also tell you on the phone that something is covered, but if it’s not in the actual policy it doesn’t mean anything.
Among the many things that can cause a business insurance claim to be rejected are:
- You haven’t disclosed previous claims.
- Your business turnover is incorrect or out of date.
- Your business description is inadequate or incomplete.
- You haven’t listed all of your business activities.
- You haven’t disclosed all your business entities on the proposal.
- You’ve failed to disclose something about the business property’s construction or maintenance.
- You’ve failed to disclose former bankruptcies on behalf of one of the business owners.
IAS will manage the application and claims process all the way through. We will advocate for you if there are any issues. Our partnership with Steadfast gives us the power of a big buying group, with access to a Claims Triage department of lawyers and solicitors who can help.
It comes down to experience and knowing the industry. Ultimately, we’re here to protect our clients and minimise their risk.
We help many clients with their business insurance needs. Please call us anytime for an obligation free chat on (02) 8268 2900.