Property crimes can happen anywhere, even in areas that are generally considered safe. Burglaries account for approximately one-fifth of the nearly 8 million property crimes that occur each year in the United States, so it's important to protect your assets just in case something happens. A homeowners insurance plan may help cover items that were stolen during a residential robbery. Here's what happens after you file a claim with your insurance company.
Assessment of the Situation
Contact the police as soon as you realize you're the victim of a robbery. This helps law enforcement track down the guilty party, but it also provides a paper trail that you can share with your insurance company. An insurance company typically needs written confirmation that a robbery occurred, not just a verbal explanation from you or a household member.
The insurance company needs this information because it helps agents weed out fraudulent reports. You may have heard about the notorious Florida couple that faked a robbery in an attempt to collect insurance money.
When you file a claim with your insurance company, be honest about what was taken or destroyed during the robbery. The company knows that you probably don't own 20 flat-screen television sets or have 15 refrigerators, especially if you're dealing with a home robbery rather than a business robbery. If you provide information that is obviously false, there's a chance that the insurance company might reject your entire claim.
You can speed up the claim process by providing receipts for all of your items. If you can't find printed receipts from the store, you can also provide the following documents:
- Credit card receipts
- PayPal emails or statements
- Photographs with a time stamp that show the item in your home, such as a photo of you standing in front of your flat-screen television
- Warranties for furniture, electronics, or jewelry
Your insurance company may request or accept additional verification during this process.
Reimbursement of Qualifying Expenses
After your homeowners insurance provider verifies a robbery occurred and tallies up your total for lost and damaged goods, you can receive payment for qualifying expenses. If you do not agree with the amount offered, contact the insurance company to discuss your compensation. The company might offer to reevaluate your reimbursement.
You may never become the victim of a home robbery, but it's important to protect your possessions in case an unwelcome guest invades your home. Contact a homeowners insurance company to learn more about how you can protect your assets.