Are you having problems with your insurance claim?
When you inform your insurer that you need to make a claim the first thing they will do is appoint a loss adjuster from their panel. What is a loss adjuster? A loss adjuster is appointed by the insurance company to assess your claim on behalf of the insurer. They work for the insurance company and not you. The loss adjuster will either accept or repudiate your claim on behalf of the insurer.
If your fire, flood, storm or subsidence claim is accepted by the loss adjuster the loss adjuster will usually appoint one of their in-house surveyors to manage the repairs. To give the impression of impartiality the surveying arm of the loss adjuster’s firm may have a different name but they both are part of the same company. This keeps costs down for the insurance company and gives the loss adjusting firm another opportunity of making money from your claim through management fees.
Once the loss adjuster’s surveyor is on board the surveyor will then appoint a contractor from their contractor network. The contractor will have already signed up to subscribed set of rates. These rates are not market rates and are significantly lower so the contractor has to rely on quantity not quality in order to just break even. From firsthand experience, we know that due to the low rates the contractor usually passes the claim to cheap sub-contractors, which affects the quality of the work on site due to the sub-contractor having to cut corners to break even.
The loss adjuster and in-house surveyor are also usually under massive pressure due to their large claim numbers. From experience 150 to 200 is generally an average number of claims for one adjuster and surveyor, which is why they are hardly ever available to talk to the policyholder when they call and they only visit site when something goes seriously wrong. The repair contractor’s quality of workmanship is usually very poor and when the policyholder tries to complain the adjuster and the surveyor are usually too busy to respond.
How can you ensure you receive the service you are entitled to as part of your insurance claim?
The insurance company are within their rights to appoint a loss adjuster to assess your claim. However, you do not have to use their in-house surveyor or their network contractor. It is your claim not the loss adjusters. You are allowed to appoint a surveyor of your choice and if you check your policy it will usually state that the surveyor’s professional fees will be covered under the claim. If you appoint your own surveyor you can then feel confident that the works will be carried out to a high standard as the professional surveyor will not use one of the loss adjuster’s network contractors to undertake the works.
How can HSA Surveyors help you?
We are experts in handling fire, flood, storm and subsidence insurance claims with over 15 years experience in the surveying industry and having worked as loss adjusters in the past. We prefer to be appointed at the outset of a claim, although on occasions we have been asked by insurers and policyholders to assist on projects that have gone astray once the loss adjuster’s network contractor is on site. On these occasions we usually recommend the contract is terminated with the loss adjuster’s contractor so we can use one of our own tried and tested contractors to complete the works.
If you require any further advice in respect of your insurance claim or if you are experiencing difficulties with your current insurance claim we would be pleased to assist you. Our contact details are below.