Insurance Claims – Dealing With Adjusters

The claims handling of insurance adjusters can go well or be a disaster. Part of the responsibility lies with you!

Ever wonder what type of service an adjuster should provide when you file a claim.

It is a pleasure working with a professional, intelligent and honest adjuster. He is kind and respectful to you. He is patient with you, even though he knows that you may not be familiar with the claims process. He can understand how anxious you may be about your claim. He can sense that you are already scared about your claim.

Before he starts, he explains the process to him and invites you as an active participant to it. He will sit down with you and go over your policy, explaining it as he goes. He will make sure you have his phone numbers so that you can reach him if he is not available. He responds promptly to his phone calls.

Professional claims adjusters must be compassionate towards people. It’s not clear if this skill can be learned through a book or in a class. A person’s upbringing must play a part in empathy. A person must have compassion for someone who is in pain or afraid. Even though this is true, it is not uncommon for someone to feel his compassion and empathy strained by life’s events.

Have you ever heard of someone telling you how bad the insurance company treated them after they filed an insurance claim? Most people will have heard it.

Poor customer service is almost accepted in today’s society. We are often overjoyed and surprised when we receive great customer service. When we receive great customer service, we are shocked and share our experience with all of our friends.

Many people who have suffered a loss and have filed a claim never considered what type of service they would receive from the adjuster assigned by their insurance company. However, I am writing to let you know that there are a few things that will make it easier for you to collect all of the settlement money from claims.

1. The number of trained, qualified adjusters is decreasing.

I continue to read industry magazines. The latest issue of Claims Magazine and the most recent edition of Best’s Review contained articles that stated that insurance claims adjusters across the country were moving towards retirement. The article stated that many of the most skilled and experienced adjusters are leaving the industry. There is also a growing shortage in North American adjusters. According to the articles, insurance companies spend less time and money training adjusters.

You, the consumer, should be DOUBLE ANGRY if insurance companies are concerned! !


Inexperienced adjusters will not be as thorough with the claims process. They won’t have the benefit of years of experience. They won’t be able to understand the policy language or the claims process as well the “old guys”.

You’ve heard the expression, “The Devil is always in the details.” The claims process is where devil lurks, as I have repeatedly stated. My book focuses on educating consumers about the claims process. The policy does not include the claims process. Because the insurance companies won’t tell you…the customer…about the claims process, the insurance settlement amounts could skyrocket if they did!

Do you need a few examples?

First, you’re in an accident and your car has been damaged. Most likely, the adjuster will tell you to get three estimates from three repair shops. The adjuster will want you to choose the lowest estimate or the middle estimate as the agreed price. There is no requirement that you get three estimates. This is a waste time and a waste of your time. It is your responsibility to get an estimate from the repair shop you choose, and not the insurance company. Next, the adjuster should use your estimate. You should also know that if your insurance company has approved repair facilities, they will often use low-cost aftermarket parts. This leads me to the next example.

Second, the insurance industry sells “aftermarket” parts to repair autos. These parts might fit your car and work well, but they are not as good quality as the original parts your automaker made. It is not a good idea to allow your insurance company to insist that you use aftermarket parts in order to fix your car. Your policy does not allow the insurance company to repair your car with cheap parts. Most policies will guarantee that you receive “similar quality and type” repairs. Although aftermarket parts can save insurance companies a lot of money, they are still your responsibility.

2. It’s important to ensure that your adjuster has the right qualifications to handle your claim, knowing that the talent pool is shrinking.

Chapter 7 in my book contains extensive information about the qualifications of adjusters. I also discussed the service that you can expect from an adjuster handling your claim.

Interview your adjuster to find out about his claims experience and education. If you are not convinced that your adjuster has sufficient experience and education to handle your claim you can call his supervisor to request that the claim be transferred to another experienced adjuster. In Chapter 7, I also recommend that you ask for another adjuster if your adjuster has less experience than two years. If your insurance company refuses to accept the claim, you can call your state’s Department of Insurance to file a complaint.

Do not allow insurance companies to bully you. However, you will need to take responsibility for your own education.

You can add hundreds, or even thousands of dollars to your claim settlements if you take control over your claims!