COMMERCIAL FIRE INSURANCE CLAIMS

Having a fire at your shop or office is, to say the least, a very traumatic experience. Fortunately, you’re well prepared. You have a solid insurance policy covering your livelihood against such eventualities. You’ve paid your premiums on time, year after year. That’s the good news. The bad news is that the ensuing insurance claim you’re about to make will more often than not be fraught with so many difficulties that the stress of the fire will appear a mere trifle by comparison.
Your insurance company will do everything they can to avoid paying you out your full entitlement. Salmon Assessors have successfully settled thousands of fire claims in the last 30 years, and no other firms of loss assessors are more qualified to help you through such a disaster.
At Salmon Assessors, we have dealt with thousands of commercial fire insurance claims over 30-years. We guarantee to get you every single penny you are entitled to. No Win, No Fee!

OUR INSURANCE CLAIM SERVICES

Fully Managed Fire Claims

Fire claims require expert management from start to finish. Your insurance company will employ a Loss Assessor whose sole purpose is to build a case against your claim.

By employing an expert Loss Assessor to fight your corner. You can focus on doing what you do best while we do what we do best.

Contact our expert assessors now.

Alternate Accommodation

Gaining alternate accommodation is a vital part of most fire claims. Your insurer’s appointed loss adjuster will often neglect to tell you your full rights or will offer you the cheapest option available.

Salmon Assessors will always ensure that you are given like-for-like housing at no extra cost.

Contact our expert assessors now.

No Win No Fee

We work on a total ‘no win, no fee’ basis. Our fees are based on a small percentage of the total settlement figure so it is in our mutual interest to ensure we achieve the maximum settlement on your behalf.

Our initial consultation is undertaken without any obligation or charge whatsoever.

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Highest Settlement

We are regarded as the leading loss assessors in the industry and have over 30-years of successful trading history to show for it. A huge part of the work we get comes from repeat business or recommendation.

There is no other loss assessor that will be able to get you more than Salmon Assessors.

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Settled Quickly and Efficiently

We receive countless enquiries from potential clients with claims that have been dragging on for months and months (sometimes years).

By employing Salmon Assessors, you can rest assure that your claim will be presented and settled in the quickest time possible.We will never let the insurance company delay.

Contact our expert assessors now.

Insurance Experts

Insurance companies will always try to bend the rules if it favours giving you the smallest possible payout.

Our expertise is vital in stopping insurers ‘pulling the wool over our clients’ eyes. There are always new rules and regulations set to help the policyholder, and our job is to make sure they are put in place.

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PEACE OF MIND.

WE DO WHAT WE DO BEST, SO YOU CAN DO WHAT YOU DO BEST.

ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FIRE CLAIMS

Your insurance company will instruct a firm of Loss Adjusters to act on their behalf. While the loss adjuster will insist upon being independent and impartial on the matter, the reality says otherwise. The firm is being paid by the insurance company and is there to represent their best interests. As far as the insurers are concerned, the loss adjuster doing a good job means reducing the final settlement as much as possible and, ideally, enabling them to decline cover entirely.

Even in situations where you stand a good chance of eventually receiving the settlement you’re entitled to and having your premises restored to the pristine condition it was in before the disaster occurred, the proverbial obstacle course you’ll have to navigate a daunting and demoralising one. You’ll be bombarded with a barrage of seemingly irrelevant questions spanning across various meetings and will have to produce pages worth of schedules of damaged items. You may be required to obtain quote after quote from contractors before it is decided that you can even think about proceeding with repairs. And that’s not the end of it. Quite frequently, if you cannot produce substantiating evidence for all of the damaged items, the loss adjuster will try to decline cover for them or at least substantially reduce the payout.

Of course, in commercial fires, it is not merely a question of having the premises repaired and replacing ruined stock. Your business has probably been rendered entirely inoperable, and the financial consequences of this are tremendous. You will have to claim for the losses accruing from the interruption to your business, and this often involves claiming for temporary relocation to alternative business premises while repairs are being undertaken. Once again, and particularly in the current economic climate, your insurers will seek out every avenue that may enable them to accuse you of failing to comply fully with the policy and to thereby repudiate your claim.

As Loss Assessors, our function is to represent your best interests. We are experts in commercial fire insurance claims negotiation and can ensure that you get the very best settlement possible under your policy. We will manage your entire claim from start to finish, taking all of the stress and burdens away from you and ensuring the claim is not put in jeopardy due to one or two simple errors.

We work on a “no win, no fee” basis in which our fee is calculated as a percentage of your final settlement. This means that negotiating a bigger settlement for you equates to a bigger payment for us. There could be no better incentive to do the very best job for you that we possibly can. We’re on your side.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Before calling your insurers, do everything you would do if you were not insured. Get a damage control company to come round and secure any broken windows and fire damaged doors to ensure that your workplace remains secure. If your shop/offices/factory is very badly damaged, do everything to retrieve anything of important commercial value including computer data, business files and anything else essential to the continued best running of your business.

When you are satisfied that you have retrieved everything possible then telephone your insurers or your insurance broker to report the incident and it is vital that you take the name and department of the person you speak to. They will undoubtedly employ a Loss Adjuster to meet you at your place of work and, again, if the damage is particularly serious, they will advise you as to making plans for finding alternative business premises whilst the building is being rebuilt/refurbished/redecorated. Do not make the mistake that over 90% of claimants make in believing that the Loss Adjuster has been sent to meet you by the insurance company to help you make and compile your claim. For the avoidance of doubt, it is vital that you understand that the Loss Adjuster is being employed by the Insurance Company to represent their interests, although under charter, they are purportedly independent. Regretfully, that independence will quickly prove to be one-sided.

After telephoning your insurance brokers or claims department of your insurance company, we would well advise you to telephone a reputable firm of long-established Insurance Loss Assessors (hopefully us!) and, in all likelihood, we will visit your business before the Loss Adjuster gets there in order to give you impartial advice. Salmon Assessors’ only interest is your business and to put the business back in the same position it was in before the fire.

A good 60% of our clients are repeat business and many of them have used us since the inception of our company in 1983. More often than not, repeat customers telephone us before telephoning their insurers and we are on call 24/7 in the case of emergencies.

You are very likely to find camped outside your business what are commonly termed “ambulance-chasers”, all dying to get you to sign up with them as Loss Assessors. We find this practice abhorrent and Salmon Assessors have never indulged in this type of “business getting”.  These “cowboy” assessors spend much time listening in to the emergency services on shortwave radio and try their luck to sign up the business owner when he/she is at their lowest point. If you are reading this after you have signed up with an “ambulance chaser” and you are regretting your decision, may we remind you that the law is on your side and that you have a 14-day cooling off period to cancel any such contract and to employ any other Loss Assessor of your choice. The only way you will employ Salmon Assessors is by perhaps a friend giving you a recommendation or by searching the internet for ‘Loss Assessors’ or ‘fire insurance claim’ etc.

You don’t, we do all of the negotiations. Please be mindful that we will not accept any offer of payment from insurance companies without your explicit approval in writing. Our function is to make an easily and acceptable formatted Schedule of everything that has been damaged in the fire.

Our first interest is to ensure that if needed, your business is transferred promptly and efficiently to another suitable location so as to cause as little inconvenience as possible to you and your staff. (Please be mindful that you must have Business Interruption insurance as part of your overall business insurance policy. It still takes us by surprise when we find that some business owners have not opted for such an essential part of their business insurance policy and running the exceptionally high risk of the business literally falling apart because they are unable to afford the expenses of the consequences of the fire. It’s also very interesting to note that, more often than not, the owners of the businesses blame the insurance broker for not having told them about Business Interruption Insurance when the real truth is that they were simply trying to save on their annual premium. Of course, it’s very much in an insurance broker’s interest to ensure that you take Business Interruption Insurance because they earn a commission from the premium).

We have contacts at all major commercial agents in the UK and can generally quickly find you a suitable trading premises whilst your business premises are being refurbished. The Loss Adjuster acting for your insurers will try “every which way” to suggest that you get premises perhaps not in the same location or to find something smaller so as to save the insurance company money. Let’s get it straight from the beginning; if your business premises are large and very conveniently placed for your customers, then we will ensure that your insurers do not “pussy-foot around” and try to get you something less suitable because it suits them. Quite obviously, if you have a small shop then your insurers are not going to pay for premises that are double the size. Conversely, if you have large premises then you will have no interest in renting something, even if it’s just for a few months, that is much smaller.

We are not “yes men”. If we think that the Loss Adjuster is acting unfairly in his handling of your insurance claim (more often than you would believe!) we in no uncertain terms will tell them so. Our function is to get you the highest possible settlement due under the terms and conditions of your insurance policy. Fire insurance claim negotiation is, sadly, never a quick and easy matter and we find that the average time that a major fire takes to settle can be up to 12/18 months. However, this does not mean that you will have to wait that time for the settlement monies insofar that we will keep tabs on every penny that you spend and we will make sure that your insurers pay you out an interim payment on a very regular basis.

One of the reasons that commercial fire claims take such a long time to settle is because Loss Adjusters have a very heavy workload dealing with lots of very small claims. This also results in it often taking “an age” to respond to your calls and vitally, come back with an offer. Salmon Assessors circumnavigate this by only taking on claims of c. £15,000 (yes, we go into the millions as well!) so we are never overloaded and, if we are, we take on new staff. (Also note that we do not have any junior staff whatsoever).

The whole purpose of insurance is to indemnify. That’s a fancy word for putting you back into the same position you were in prior to the fire. On the proviso that you are not very underinsured, we are likely to get payment for everything that has been fire damaged. However, and importantly, this is often all down to getting the correct valuations. If you and your wife and family have expensive clothes in your wardrobes that have been damaged by the fire or heavy soot contamination, we will not be fobbed-off with a second-hand value if your insurance policy states clearly that you will get “new-for-old”. This also applies to household linens. For some strange reason, we find that many insurers use Tesco or Primark as their base for valuing damaged clothing! Of course, that’s no problem if that’s where your clothes have been purchased from. However, if your clothes are designer led we will not accept anything other than a settlement for designer clothes. Now is as good a time to mention to you that one of the very easiest of ways for the insurance loss adjuster to suggest that you are underinsured is to check your wardrobe. If much of what you purchase is high-end designer fashion then it really does not take long for the total to mount up leaving you very under-insured. In cases where there is gross under-insurance, your claim is likely to be “subject to average”. In short, if you are insured for £50,000 when you ought to be insured for £100,000, i.e. 50% underinsured, the loss adjuster will discount your claim by 50%.

However, and importantly, this often all comes down to giving satisfactory proof including invoices for everything you are claiming that has been damaged by the fire or soot contamination. Also, it’s not simply about the damage but if your stock simply smells of smoke then we’d consider that a write-off and would demand 100% payment. However, please also be mindful that you can have all the satisfactory receipts to hand but, if you are under insured, then be prepared for the very fact that your claim will not be paid out in full. Indeed, in some instances where there is “gross under-insurance” then you may find that the claim is repudiated. Being under-insured is very much a false economy and must be avoided at all costs.

Good question, and we hope an equally good answer. There’s a lovely old saying that “The strongest doesn’t always win the fight and the fastest doesn’t always win the race, but that’s where the smart money goes”. In short, we do not do anything other than negotiate insurance claims. We don’t sell insurance. We are simply master insurance claim negotiators… nothing more and nothing less. It is important to understand that your own insurance company is employing third party insurance claim experts, i.e. the Loss Adjusters, to negotiate any large claim on their behalf. And the reason? It’s because the insurance company does not hold itself out to be a claim negotiator. In much the same way, you, the claimant, would be considered very unlucky indeed if you had to make more than two or three large claims in a lifetime. We, as insurance Loss Assessors, handle 5-10 new fire claims, both commercial and domestic, every couple of weeks and our experience is second to none. We know our way around the insurance claims industry very well and understand the “ins and outs” and the complications that a fire at your place of work can throw up. Remember, the more the Loss Adjuster knocks down your commercial fire claim, the more they earn. And the longer they take to pay you, then the more money sits in your insurance company’s bank earning them interest.

We make no apologies when we describe ourselves as “mercenaries inhabiting the world of insurance”. In fact, it was the London Evening Standard that described us in this manner and, we are pleased to say, in a complimentary way! In short, the more we get you, the more we get paid. The quicker we get your claim settled, the quicker we get paid. There just couldn’t be a better incentive. In much the same way that the Loss Adjuster is, it could be said, being paid to reduce your claim on behalf of your insurers, we are doing everything possible to get you the highest possible settlement. You would not dream of going to Court to defend yourself without a Solicitor, and we hope that you will agree that something as important as a large commercial fire claim should be treated in expert hands on your behalf, just like the insurance company are leaving it to their experts. (Isn’t it strange how the vast majority of commercial insurance claims are worth far more than minor court claims, but one seeks expert representation for the minor court claim but does not seek expert representation to help them get the largest possible settlement). Please, do not make the misguided mistake of thinking that the Loss Adjuster has been sent to help you by your insurers. He hasn’t. He is there to represent their interests and to ensure that the extent of their liability is restricted by clever negotiation.

REQUEST A CALL BACK.

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