Today, insurance has become a necessity more than a choice. It is the cornerstone of financial planning; insurance acts as a financial backup plan in case of a mishap. Insurance covers risks pertaining to life, health and property against the premiums paid.
While it's essential to know the provisions in your insurance document, it's equally important to know the claim procedure for you and your nominee. Here is a handy guide to the procedure of insurance claim settlement.
Contact your insurer
The first and foremost step of filing a claim is to contact your insurer and intimate about the claim. If you have purchased your insurance through an agent, get in touch with your agent ASAP.
Be it a life, health or property insurance claim; it's essential to get in touch with your insurer at the earliest. The deadline for making a claim is mentioned in an insurance policy. A delay in claim intimation will only make the process more time-consuming and cumbersome.
Fill your claim form and attach the relevant documents
Once intimated, the insurance company will send you a claim form. You can also log in to the insurer's website and download the form. Make sure you fill it with utmost accuracy. You need to attach certain documents along with the claim form.
For example, if you are in the process of making a home insurance claim after a burglary, make sure to list the stolen items and their value. In some cases, you may need to attach a copy of the FIR report. In medical insurance, submit the medical bills, discharge slip and doctor's report(s).
In case of claiming a life insurance policy after the policyholder's death, attach a copy of the death certificate. Note that insurers clearly outline the documents that need to accompany the claim form. In case of any doubt, contact your insurer. You need to submit the original policy bond with your claim form and a bank mandate for receiving the claim amount.
A surveyor conducts damage evaluation
In general insurance, the insurance company may send a surveyor to investigate the validity of your claim. The surveyor's job would be to establish the authenticity of your claim with due diligence.
The insurer starts processing the claim for life and health insurance on receiving the form and the relevant documents.
Acceptance of your claim
If everything is in order and the policy's terms and conditions haven't been violated, the claim is accepted and processed quickly. However, the claim may be rejected if the insurer finds that the policyholder has given incorrect information or has concealed any vital information.
Hence, it's essential to provide accurate information in the proposal form as concealing any information, however small it may be, will lead to a claim rejection and defeat the very purpose of insurance.
Receiving the claim amount
Insurance companies usually process claims within 10 to 30 days. The settlement amount comes mostly via NEFT into the account of the bank details provided. In some cases, the amount is sent via cheque. Today, most insurers allow online tracking of the claim status. Make sure to give the correct phone number and email ID to receive regular updates.
The process of filing claims is easy and convenient due to the dedicated claims departments in most insurance companies. Accurate information and providing the right documents make the claim settlement procedure seamless and hassle-free.
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