Proper record keeping of claim files is an obligation for claims adjusters. Furthermore, the notes recorded in the claim file that document discussions, conversations, actions carried out and advice given to claimants must be complete and objective. It is essential to remember that the use of a computerized document-management system in no way lessens these obligations.
A few of the firm’s obligations:
- Record keeping: a separate record for each claimant
- Orderly, safe filing
- Identification of the date the record was closed or of the date of the last activity that took place in the record
- Minimum preservation: five years after the last activity in the record.
A few of the claims adjuster’s obligations:
- Recording and preserving the required documents and information
- Orderly, complete record keeping; including work carried out away from the office (on the road)
- Notes in the records must specify the date, details and the author.
Minimum content required in a claim file:
- Basic information such as contact information, the reference number of the file and the insurance contract, the date and nature of the loss, etc.
- Documents to be preserved, depending on the circumstances, including: the consent form, the initial statement of loss, photos, the list of property, quotes, timetables and an estimation of the cost of the work
- Complete and objective notes in the file including the facts, concrete details (for instance, telephone conversations), claimant’s requests, information and explanations given, as well as discussions with all parties involved.