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To claim, or not to claim? That is the question.
You got into a fender bender or backed into a pole. There’s mold in your basement or the bathroom overflowed. No matter what your policy limits are – even if you’ve got plenty of coverage – you’re unsure if you should make a claim or just repair the damage yourself. Consider the following before making your decision:
What to do if you don’t claim: If you decide you don’t want to make an insurance claim, there are still a few things you need to do just in case the situation escalates later. First, make sure to take photos of the damage done to both cars, and the area of the house that’s in question, before beginning repairs. In the case of a car accident, call the police to the scene or go to the local station to file a report. Both will provide important documentation.
At the end of the day, you’ll want to report the majority of accidents you may experience to your insurance company, just to be on the safe side. If the accident caused $2,000 or more of damage in total (all vehicles involved), there’s an injury, or there’s suspicion of impaired driving, then failing to report it will violate the law.
At renewal time: Whether you file the claim or not, use your annual renewal to freshen up on your policy requirements and coverage limits, understand your deductibles. That way you’ll have a better idea of whether you should make a claim or fund the repairs yourself if the situation arises.
Multiple claims may also exclude coverage or limit coverage amounts. It’s important to understand when it makes financial sense when to make a claim. Finally, it’s critical to know your policy and its limitations... before you need to make a claim. A broker can help you review so there aren’t any future surprises.
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