Proof of Loss

Each insurance company provides a form that is used to document damaged or destroyed items. Your insurer will request specific information from you in the event of a loss. Keeping receipts and a current home inventory can assist the claims process.

​There are many reasons why you might have a property loss: a thief might damage your home while breaking into it and stealing your valuables; a fire, a windstorm or a sewer backup might damage part or all of your home. After a loss happens, contact your insurance representative as soon as possible. Immediately make notes and take photos – if safe to do so – of as many details as possible.

Information Your Insurer Needs

When you need to make a claim, you will be asked to complete a proof of loss form. Typical information you'll be asked for includes:

  • The type of damage that occurred
  • What covered items were involved – for instance, if it was a theft, what personal property is missing?
  • The current replacement value of the property damaged or destroyed, as well as the value of the contents involved – original receipts or other records can be used to confirm the value of damaged items
  • Evidence of the loss – if a natural disaster partially or completely damages your home, you will need to document (e.g., via photographic evidence, adjuster review, etc.) all elements that were lost, along with their value.

Every insurance company has a unique form for detailing the replacement value of items. The form reflects any applicable government regulations as well as the insurer's specific requirements.

What Happens Next

Once you complete and submit the proof of loss form, the following takes place:

  1. Your documentation is thoroughly reviewed.
  2. Your insurance company will either accept or reject your claim for items you have noted on the form.
  3. When the review is complete, your insurer will determine a total loss value for your claim and contact you.
  4. You will have an opportunity to consider the payment amount your insurer is offering you.
  5. If the proof of loss form is accepted, your payment, less any applicable deductible, will be processed.

Property policies typically include a deductible, which is a specified sum or a percentage of the total amount of insurance that is deducted from the amount of a loss. Regardless of the number of items claimed, a deductible applies only once per occurrence.

If your property requires repairs, your insurance company may provide you with a selection of recommended local vendors to consider or you may choose your own.

In the event of a loss, your insurance representative can guide you through the claims management process.