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Insurance claims

It’s great to have insurance when accidents (or other calamities) happen. But in order to receive the benefits from your policy, you generally have to submit a formal claim in writing to your insurer. This page offers guidelines for composing a letter for an insurance claim.

Preparing to write

Before you begin composing your letter, gather any documents related to the claim. Such items may include photos of damaged items, receipts for repairs, medical bills, and copies of statements to police. In most cases, you will need to include copies of these documents with your letter in order to support your claim.

How to structure your insurance claim letter

Your insurance claim should follow the standard composition format for a formal letter. See how to lay out a letter.

Below the recipient’s address, include a subject line to indicate that the letter is an insurance claim. In the subject line, list your policy’s reference number. You should open your letter by stating the purpose of your claim in your first body paragraph. List what injuries, property damage, or loss you have sustained and give a brief description of the event that has prompted your claim.

After you have summarized the reason for your claim, you should include more information about the events that led to the injury, property damage, or loss in question in subsequent body paragraphs. Include precise dates and times, or if necessary, reasonable estimates. Be sure to emphasize any information that supports your claim for settlement (e.g. if another party was determined to be at fault in an auto accident). Include all costs that you have incurred from the claim incident as well as the estimated value of all property under the claim. If applicable, also provide details of your contact with the police, including case numbers.

Suggestion: Be professional and don't overdramatize

Maintain a professional tone throughout your letter by focusing on the facts related to the incident that prompted your claim. Though you should aim to persuade the reader that you have suffered injury or damage that merits compensation, be sure not to overdramatize the incident. Avoid using abusive language, even if you have experienced previous difficulties communicating with the insurer.

Examples

See an example of a home insurance claim letterPDF.

See an example of an auto insurance claim letterPDF.

See an example of a health insurance claim letterPDF.

 

Back to Letters and invitations.

 

You may also be interested in:

Letters of complaint

How to lay out a letter

 

 

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