READ: 4 Minutes


An insurance policy is a safety umbrella. It is for far more than medical and funeral expenses, car accidents, and criminality. Pet insurance, travel insurance, and more are all on the table. While we hope you never need to file a claim, nothing’s guaranteed. It’s important that if you need to collect, do it right. Insurance companies have an exacting process and the slightest glitch can prevent you from getting paid promptly. Read on to learn about how to properly file an insurance claim.

Step 1: Reach Out to Police

If there’s been a crime, significant damage, or someone got hurt, get help. In many of these matters, you’re going to need a police report. Insurers rely heavily on law enforcement’s interpretation. If you’ve been burglarized,  be ready to list what’s missing and its worth


Step 2: Document and Exchange Info

You need to gather as much information as you can. Whether it’s a car accident or your pet has gout, the insurance company needs to know the who, how, and why.

Regarding accidents, the police will put together a report. Keep your own records anyway.

  • You want names, addresses, and numbers of the driver(s). Get a photo of their license if you can.
  • Exchange insurance policy numbers
  • Get the year, make, model, and license plate of all involved vehicles
  • Take photographs of the scene from as many perspectives as you can
  • Take notes of any conversations you have with others involved
  • Lastly, gather and keep all medical bills and physician reports related to the accident

Step 3: Contact Your Carrier

What follows is a summary of what information your insurance carrier is going to need when you file an insurance claim. If you have any queries above anything that’s on this list, you go ahead and contact your local IMA Select representative.

  • Date and time of incident
  • Details regarding loss
  • Location and condition
  • Names, addresses and phone numbers of all involved parties
  • If applicable, vehicle description(s), property location, or equipment description
  • Any witness names, addresses, and phone numbers
  • Lastly, nature of damages or injuries

Regardless of fault, have a conversation with your agent. They need to be in the loop.

Step 4: What Info You Need to File a Police Report

Law enforcement is going to need the most accurate narrative for their report that can be given. They will talk to everyone involved and any witnesses. The situation will influence the kind of questions asked, but you can expect the police to want to know the following.

  • Information about the scene
  • Witness accounts
  • Photos taken at the site
  • Estimated cost of damage
  • Lastly, proof of loss that includes lists of items and cost to replace them

Step 5: Put in the Insurance Claim

Today, insurance companies allow quick and easy filing through their app or website. You can also do it through direct contact with an agent over the telephone. And there’s still the option to fill out paperwork and send it via snail mail or fax.

What to Expect When You File an Insurance Claim

You must thoroughly document your situation to promote maximum payout. Insurers will send adjusters to investigate. This individual will recommend how much the insurance company should payout.

Take advantage of these tips as well as maintain solid contact with your agent. Properly filing your claim increases maximized payouts. If you want to learn more, reach out today.

Have questions? Want to know more?

Reach out!  At IMA, we’re here to help safeguard your future!