Claims Adjuster - Explained
What is a Claims Adjuster?
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Back To: INSURANCE & RISK MANAGEMENT
What is a Claims Adjuster?
An adjuster is a claim agent who is responsible for investigating and evaluating an insurance claim to determine the extent of the insurance company's liability. During the investigation process, the adjuster may interview the claimant and witnesses, inspect the damaged property or may review hospital records and police records to evaluate a claim.
What Does a Claims Adjuster Do?
There are broadly three types of adjusters who evaluate an insurance claim. An adjuster may represent an insurance company, they are known as Insurer adjusters. The adjusters who are hired by a claimant are known as public adjusters and there are independent adjusters who work on a freelance basis. Insurer adjusters work on behalf of the insurance company and are directly employed by the company. They investigate the claims to establish whether the company is liable to pay for the claim and if yes, the extension of the liability. It is their responsibility to ensure that the company does not have to pay an undue amount, while at the same time they confirm that the claimant is not cheated. Independent adjusters are also hired by the insurance companies and have the same responsibilities, but they are not an employee of an insurance company, they work on a freelance case to case basis. If a company has too many cases to handle or doesnt have an adjuster at its disposal to handle their cases, the company may hire an independent adjuster. During the times of natural calamity, the demand for such adjusters increases. A claimant may hire a public adjuster to ensure the highest possible settlement. Generally, when a claim is of a significant amount, the claimant tends to hire their adjuster. The public adjusters usually take a percentage of the claim amount as their commission. Thus, they try to secure the highest amount of settlement for the claimant as their income depends on that. Property claims and liability claims are two of the most investigated claims. It is the responsibility of the claimant to convince the insurer adjuster about a settlement. Thus, they need to take photographs of damaged property and get all the paper works done with precision. If a claimant receives a settlement amount which is significantly low, they must follow the appeal process before depositing the cheque. They may also consider hiring a public adjuster who will assess the claim and prepare a report. The claimant can submit this report during the appeal process to secure a higher amount. Hiring an efficient public adjuster is often crucial for getting a settlement amount which is deserved by the policy owner.
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