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9/8/2011 - Tips for filing a flood insurance claim

A detailed inventory can help speed the claims process.

It can be overwhelming after a hurricane or flood has hit your home or business. Here is some guidance from FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) on how to file an insurance claim after a natural disaster.

1. First, review the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Flood Insurance Claims Handbook, which provides tips on filing a claim and what to do before and after a flood.

2. Call your insurance agent to report your claim. If you have separate flood insurance, also call your flood insurance agent to report your claim. Your flood insurance agent will prepare a Notice of Loss form and an adjuster will be assigned to assist you.

3. Photograph the inside and outside of your property, showing the any damage or flooding. Be sure to adequately describe and photograph discarded items so that when the adjuster examines your losses and your records, these articles are included in the documentation.

4. Good records can speed up settlement of your claim. Compile a room-by-room inventory of damaged goods, and include manufacturer's names, dates and places of purchases, and prices.

5. Separate the damaged from the undamaged property and put it in the best possible order for the insurance adjuster's examination. If reasonably possible, protect the property from further damage.

6. When the adjuster visits your property, let him or her know if you need an advance or partial payment of loss. Use your inventory to work with the adjuster in presenting your claim.

Please visit for more tips, details, and resources on recovering from a disaster.

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