8 Things You Need to File a Business Interruption Claim
Any kind of business interruption can be devastating to you and your employees. A business interruption insurance claim can be a welcome relief when you need it most. Whether Coronavirus COVID-19 is to blame, or your disruption occurs for some other reason, filing a claim for compensation can keep you in business and support your family. Of course, it’s essential to know what things you need to file your claim.
Our Colorado attorneys for business interruption explain what you need to file a business interruption insurance claim.
1. A Business Closure or Disruption
To file a business interruption insurance claim, you must have a business closure or disruption. The business may have closed because of a direct threat of Coronavirus, because of a government order or for some other reason. In all cases, there must be a reason that you can no longer do business. Remember, a business disruption may be derivative, which means it can occur because of a problem with a supplier or distributor. All business interruption insurance claims begin with a disruption to usual business.
2. Your Insurance Policy
It’s vital to locate and read your insurance policy before trying to file a claim. When you purchase your coverage, you have the option to choose basic coverage or extended coverage. The policy likely has a deductible and a waiting period for business interruption. It’s important to know your policy’s terms so that you know what to expect going forward. Locating your policy helps you understand what your rights are and ensures that you’re treated fairly throughout the process.
3. The Time and Date of Loss
The time and date of your losses are a crucial part of making a claim. To file, you need to identify when the interruption occurred. With an accurate date and time, you can prove the cause of the business interruption as well as begin to calculate your losses.
4. The Nature of the Loss
The insurance company needs to know why you’re unable to conduct business as usual. Your property may have become unusable because of the threat of Coronavirus. It may be necessary to make adjustments to your daily operations before you can reopen. There may be a stay-at-home order that prevents you from doing business.
Disruption can also occur when someone that you work with is unable to fulfill orders or distribute your product. Identifying the exact nature of the losses is a necessity for any business interruption insurance claim. An attorney for business interruption claims can help you investigate to make sure that you complete a report that clearly states your claim based on the terms of your policy.
5. Proof of Your Losses, Damages and Expenses
Of course, one of the most critical parts of any business interruption insurance claim is documentation of the amount of your claim. The compensation that you ask for can include all of your losses up to your policy limit. Losses, damages and expenses can all be a part of the case, but they are all slightly different. To prove the amount of compensation you’re asking for, you may use a combination of any of these records:
- Income and expense records
- Employee attendance and payroll records
- Receipts for expenses related to restoring your property
- Tax records
- Sales records
- Bank statements
- Forensic accounting
Expect the insurance company to apply some measure of scrutiny to your records. However, by having the documents that you need, you can substantiate your claim for faster processing.
6. Current Income Information
If you’re able to continue to earn some income, that amount gets deducted from your claim. It’s essential to take your current income into account when you file your claim. An attorney for business interruption insurance claims can help you understand how your current income may impact your case.
7. Records of Your Communications With the Insurance Company
As you proceed through the claims process, it’s important to keep records of contact that you have with the insurance company. Document the date of the communication, who you talk to and the context of the interaction. Keeping records allows you to track the progress of your case and be on the lookout for errors or deceptive tactics.
8. An Evaluation of the Applicable Laws
In any business interruption claim, your insurance contract and the laws that apply to the contract are both important. You need to know what the law has to say about business interruption insurance claims. Usually, state law is what applies to the claim, but there may be notable exceptions.
Knowing what the law has to say about business interruption cases helps make sure that you get what you deserve in payment. Here are some crucial points of the law that you should keep in mind:
- The coverage you have depends on the exact wording of your contract.
- Ambiguities in the contract are construed in favor of the insured party.
- States are still developing laws relating specifically to Coronavirus COVID-19 cases.
- You have the right to challenge an incorrect decision by the insurance company; if appropriate, you may even allege insurance bad faith.
Attorneys for Business Interruption Claims Accepting New Cases
Our attorneys for business interruption claims can ensure that you have what you need to file your business interruption claim. Let us help you with the details to ensure a smooth claims process. Our Colorado legal team helps hardworking business owners receive fair payment for their business interruption insurance claims. Call us today for your free and confidential case review.