As a business owner, it is important to take steps to mitigate your losses in the event of a natural disaster, theft, or lawsuit. One way to do so is to purchase an insurance policy that helps alleviate the financial losses associated with an accidents or events that occur at your business. When it is time to make a business insurance claim, it is important to do your research so that you know what steps you have to take to make a strong claim.

1. Notify Both Your Insurance Company and the Police as Soon as Possible

When it comes to procuring timely payment from your insurance policy, time is of the essence. Call both your insurance company and the local authorities (if applicable) as soon as you incur or learn of the damage or loss. Since the claim process does take time, the sooner you can get the claim started, the better. Your insurance agent can process the paperwork and let you know what items you should provide to aid in the claim process.

Contacting the authorities helps demonstrate to the insurance company that you have suffered a valid loss. In fact, your insurance policy may require that you report theft or vandalism to the police. A speedy report also allows the authorities to begin an investigation to find the individuals who caused you to incur the loss.

2. Gather Evidence of the Damage or Loss

One way to strengthen your claim is to submit evidence of the damage or loss and submit it with your claim paperwork. For example, if someone illegally enters your place of business and steals some of your equipment, video footage or picture evidence from your surveillance system from the time before, during, and after attack helps you prove that the items were taken. 

Other items that you may want to include are proof of purchase forms (to show that you had purchased the stolen item) and other internal records that show you suffered a loss.

3. Don't Be Afraid to Call in an Expert

During the claim process, there may be a disagreement concerning the value of your stolen items or the true cost to make necessary repairs. A written quote or testimony from an expert can assist you in demonstrating the full amount of your loss.

For example, assume that a portion of your building is damaged during a storm. The exterior includes custom stonework that is more expensive to replace than other types of structures. A quote from a masonry expert who specializes in creating that kind of stonework is a terrific way to show the insurance adjuster the costs associated with repairing your building.