How to Make a Successful Mobile Insurance Claim
If you've opted to pay for a mobile phone insurance policy, then there may come a time when you need to make a claim on that policy. Unfortunately, just as with any other kind of insurance policy, simply having insurance isn't a guarantee that you're going to get your cash. That's why we're here to help, with our top tips for filing a successful mobile insurance claim. Of course, we can't promise that you're going to get your payout, but follow these tips and you'll increase your chances of getting your money…
Know Your Policy
By far the most important thing is to know your policy, and that means reading it all, including the fine print. Most policies will have exclusions, which means that there are certain things that won't be covered. Knowing what your policy does and does not cover will save you wasting your time filing for a claim that isn't going to be paid. Similarly though, you might find that something unexpected is covered, a cracked screen, for example.
Another important reason to read through your policy's terms and conditions is so that you know exactly what the procedures are for filing a claim. In many cases you're going to need to have a police report before you can make a claim for a stolen phone, and that means heading to your local station to get the appropriate paperwork. You'll save yourself time and hassle by knowing exactly what you need to do in the event that your mobile is lost, stolen or damaged. And you'll save your claim being denied because you didn't follow the appropriate steps.
The sooner you file your claim, the better, for a couple of reasons. One reason is quite simply that you want the process started as soon as possible. The sooner you file, the sooner you'll (hopefully) get your money. And it will be kind of tough to persuade your insurer that your phone is an essential item if you wait two weeks before you report it stolen.
There's another important concern though. In some cases, your insurer will cover you for incurred charges. That means that if your phone is stolen and the thief uses it to call Australia, your insurer will pay the bill for you. However, most companies will only pick up the tab once your phone has been reported stolen. So if you wait two weeks to report it then you'll be responsible for paying the phone bill for those fourteen days.
Add to that the fact that most insurance companies only cover a limited amount of your bill (generally around £100 or so), and you can see that acting quickly is important. As soon as you find your phone is missing you need to call your operator to stop service, call the police to report it stolen (don't call 999, get the regular station number from directory enquiries), and then call your insurer to start the claim process.
Tell the Truth!
It can be very tempting to exaggerate a little, can't it? After all, you've paid your premiums, you might even have paid more in premiums than you're going to be claiming. But don't be tempted to add extra value onto your claim. Insurance companies are pros, they know the value of the property that they're insuring, and they can sniff out lies a mile away.
And if you damaged your phone in an embarrassing way? Hey, it happens. Companies have heard it all before, from people dropping mobiles down the toilet to customers having phones removed from bodily orifices.
Failing to tell the truth, will get your claim denied, and it's just not worth it. You'll be required to back up your claim with the appropriate paperwork, and once the numbers don't add up (or your story doesn't make sense), you could find yourself under investigation for insurance fraud- or at best your policy will become invalid.
Be Clear and Organised
You'll need to be able to explain exactly what happened to your mobile in clear and precise terms. The simpler your explanation (whilst still being honest) the faster your claim is going to go through. If you have trouble explaining things you might want to write everything down first and make sure that you're being logical and that you're not missing any important details.
You'll also need to be organised. Keep records of all correspondence between you and your insurer, as well as writing down the names of people you spoke to on the phone and the dates and times of the calls. Mistakes happen, and clear records will help you remember what's been done and what hasn't. And in the worst case scenario, these records can be used to support a claim against your insurer with the insurance ombudsman- a regulatory body that can intervene if you think your insurer has been unfair.
Check That You Actually HAVE Insurance
It might sound like common sense, but one of the biggest reasons that insurance claims are denied is quite simply that the customer is no longer insured. This can happen for a couple of reasons. Some insurance policies are time sensitive- policies bought through mobile operators tend to be for a year or two years, meaning that your coverage will elapse after that time, for example.
Other policies are product specific. If you bought your policy when you had an iPhone 5 and you've recently upgraded to an iPhone 6 then your new mobile may not be covered under your old policy. The lesson? Make sure that your mobile insurance is up to date and you haven't unknowingly cancelled it!
Filing a mobile insurance claim doesn't have to be a nightmare. Sure, you might need to fill in some forms and deal with some technical jargon, but as long as you follow the process outlined in your policy and tell the truth then you should be fine. Having mobile insurance is no guarantee that your phone will be replaced or fixed, but by properly and promptly filing a claim you can increase your chances of getting your payout.