Maximizing Your Recovery From Mangkhut
In a region that is accustomed to typhoons and only recently recovering from losses from Super Typhoon Hato, we were given another reminder over the weekend on the challenges in handling the fallout from yet another powerful storm; Super Typhoon Mangkhut.
We set out below some practical guidance to follow in the event your business has been affected by Typhoon Mangkhut and you wish to make a recovery under your property insurance policy.
DO’S (AS SOON AS PRACTICABLE)
Personnel - Make it your priority to account for all employees. Be ready to provide and receive frequent updates on employee movements.
- Protect property - Take reasonable steps to minimize and mitigate the extent of loss, for example, effect emergency works where absent completion could lead to further damage or pose a significant risk to the safety of your staff and the general public. Restoring fire protection measures is an essential item of emergency repairs.
- Notification - Enact notification procedures so your insurance company is aware of the loss. This should be done by contacting your Marsh representative and/or claims advocate. Your insurer will likely appoint a loss adjuster (see below) who will want to conduct a site inspection.
- Record the damage - Document the extent of the damaged property by way of photographs and video footage. Failing that, take a written record of the damage.
DO’S (AFTER THE INITIAL INCIDENT RESPONSE)
- Salvage process – As soon as it’s safe, begin properly identifying damaged property (certain damaged items will only come to light upon detailed inspection). Separate undamaged goods from damaged ones and begin to segregate what can be repaired.
- Retain damaged property – Insofar as is reasonable and practicable, refrain from disposing of damaged property until it has been inspected by a loss adjuster (see below).
- Track claim costs – Set up special work orders, job numbers, and other accounting procedures which will enable you to identify and capture all claim costs.
- Permanent repairs or replacement – Attempt to obtain the loss adjuster’s agreement, with our assistance, on the scope of repairs and this should feed into the approval of repair costs. As to the costs of repairs and/or replacement, obtain competitive quotations for repair work. We recommend obtaining 3 quotations from contractors if repair work is likely to exceed US$10,000.
DON’T S (NOTE: WE WILL ASSIST IN OBTAINING CONSENT)
- Do not unreasonably delay reporting the incident to your head office and/or us.
- Refrain from disposing, insofar as practicable, of any damaged property without your insurer’s consent.
- Do not commence non-emergency repairs/replacement without your insurer’s consent as this may lead to disputes over the monetary value of your claim.
- Please refer to the Loss Checklist found on Appendix 2/Page 13 of Preparing For and Handling a Property Loss. It can be used as reference throughout the duration of any property claim (including where your business has suffered a loss of revenue if you have acquired business interruption insurance). However, please note that not every item listed will necessarily apply to your particular claim emanating from Typhoon Mangkhut.
If you do possess business interruption insurance and would like to make a claim, please contact us directly to discuss further due to the complex nature of such claims.
Role of Marsh
Our property claims advocates will be to assist you in reporting, coordinating, and negotiating settlement of your loss with insurers and / or the loss adjuster (see below). Our claims team has considerable experience with all types and sizes of losses, particularly drawing on experience assisting with Typhoon Hato losses last year. We can advise you on many aspects of your loss: salvage and clean-up operations, temporary protection, preparing the claim, and, in particular, negotiating with insurer representatives. We will act as your advocate directly with insurers in any difference of opinion or interpretation issues of your insurance policy.
Role of Loss Adjuster
After a loss is reported, an adjuster will likely be appointed by your insurance company. The adjusters represent the insurer and Marsh will act in your best interests in liaising with the loss adjuster. Adjusters will do what they can to assist you but it is not their obligation to prepare your claim.
Primary adjuster duties are to investigate, negotiate, and settle your loss. They will need to speak to your employees, inspect the damage, and gather facts about the value of the loss. With sufficient information, a coverage determination will be made. Assuming this is favorable, the adjuster will proceed toward settlement.
Ideally, to help your settlement be timely, accurate, and fair, your relationship with the adjuster needs to be professional, not adversarial.
The latest super typhoon again highlights the need for preparedness and recovery plans to address your risks around the world. The above steps will assist your business in minimizing losses and maximizing your recovery through insurance.
For more information, please contact:
Head of Claims, Asia
Head of Claims, Hong Kong