Commercial Claims

When you have suffered severe property loss or damage, your insurance company requires you to prove your loss to them…

Here is what The Baldwin Company can do to help you:

  • We arrange for immediate emergency assistance as required by the insurance policy. This helps protect your benefits under the policy, and starts you on the road to recovery.
  • Our public adjusters thoroughly examine your policies to be sure all of your coverage is included in our claims strategy.
  • We search for all benefits and exclusions to make sure you maximize your covered settlement.
  • The Baldwin Company develops a claims strategy with you to minimize problems with cash flow and business interruption.
  • We put together a pro-active plan, together with you, that coordinates our claims strategy and enables your business to continue with minimal disruption.
  • Our team creates a complete picture of the loss, including:
    • contents inventory
    • building damage
    • loss of income
    • and other time-element losses to be certain nothing is left out. This provides the basis for your claim.
  • We stay in close contact with the insurance company to keep the settlement moving smoothly while we keep you informed and in control.
  • Our adjusters know what to expect and are prepared to respond to any objections and meet any additional requirements posed by the insurance carrier.
  • After your review, and with your approval, The Baldwin Company will submit the claim and get the process underway as quickly as possible.
  • We meet with insurance company representatives on your behalf to energetically pursue a timely, fair and legitimate outcome. We will bring all offers to you. We cannot finalize your claim without your approval, although we will be with you and assist you every step of the way…
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My business is halted after this event, I am losing money. What could a Public Adjuster possibly do to help me with this situation?

Cash-flow problems are among the most severe consequences that a business owner has to deal with during the settlement of a large property-loss claim. One of the many ways that The Baldwin Company helps our clients is that, being familiar as we are with the ins and outs of the claims process, we are often able to determine a way to get the insurance company to advance you some funds to deal with some of these more pressing issues.

All my records I need to prove my claim were destroyed in the fire. Can a Public Adjuster help me reconstruct an inventory of all our contents?

Dealing with very real scenarios like these is what we at The Baldwin Company do best. Our experienced experts are able to help you reconstruct an inventory of your contents – we know what sorts of questions to ask, to help prod your memory about stored items; we know how to re-document the prices of items for which you no longer have receipts; and we are familiar with what sorts of objections the insurance company’s adjuster might put forth, and so we are pro-actively able to make sure ahead of time that your claim covers all the bases.

Our business is highly specialized with unique equipment. How can I convince the insurance company’s adjuster of how much it will cost to replace this expensive machinery?

The terms of your insurance policy – which is a contract between you and your insurance company – require you to prove your loss. As your representatives, The Baldwin Company will document your loss to help you prove your claim and will also negotiate, on your behalf, with the insurance company’s representatives to try to get them to agree with our decisions on such issues as these. Please see the Appraisal Clause section of this website, for further information on this important option.

The insurance company’s adjuster seems very knowledgeable about the claims process. Why should I be concerned about him misleading me?

It’s usually not so much a question of a company adjuster deliberately trying to mislead you as it is a matter of his expecting you to already know how to do everything required to convince him and his employer, your insurance company, that they ought to pay you for what you say you have lost. You always need to bear in mind that insurance companies are profit-making businesses, and to keep their bottom line as healthy as possible, they usually try not to pay out any more than the bare minimum on as many claims as possible.

That is why you need to talk to one of us at The Baldwin Company: we are Public adjusters, which means we are licensed to represent and assist you, as a member of the public, in the intricacies of documenting, presenting, and negotiating with the company’s representatives, to make sure you achieve not only what you deserve but also what you have faithfully been paying your premiums for: the maximum amount your coverage entitles you to.

How is a public adjuster paid, and how much?

Our fee is usually a small percentage of the total amount that you receive when your claim is settled. We are not paid anything until you are paid. However, it is important to note that we generally are able to help you take full advantage of your policy’s benefits in such a way as to more than make up for our fee.

How long will it take to settle my claim?

Our goal is to expedite your claim so as to put you back to the way things were prior to your loss. We at The Baldwin Company are trained, experienced professionals who know how to put your claim together far more quickly than someone who has never suffered a catastrophic loss before. If there is any delay in settling your claim, more often than not, it has to do with the insurance company’s lack of urgency regarding claims payments, and we are well-versed in dealing with such delay tactics.

Do Public Adjusters have to be licensed or certified?

Most states do require Public Adjusters to be licensed and bonded by each state’s Department of Insurance. Additionally, reputable Public Adjusters belong to The National Association of Public Insurance Adjusters (NAPIA) and operate under that organization’s strict ethical code of conduct. Wes Baldwin, owner and founder of The Baldwin Company, not only belongs to NAPIA but has also served as President of that internationally recognized association, and continues to chair several of its national committees as well as serve on its Board of Directors in an advisory capacity.

My policy says I’m supposed to make some temporary repairs to protect my damaged property. How do I know what to repair now and what to wait till later to repair?

The Baldwin Company can help you with this decision, as this is one of the many services we provide for our clients. In general, our advice after a loss is that you should protect your property as you would if you had no insurance. Still, this is an area where our familiarity with how insurance companies might view your good intentions will definitely be of use to you. Call The Baldwin Company now so we can help you from the very beginning.

We have a lot of building contractors and cleaning/restoration companies knocking on our door, wanting to do our work and help us file out insurance claim. Why should I hire a Public Adjuster to do this for us, instead?

This fairly recent development is causing confusion for many policyholders: Salesmen and building contractors are presenting themselves as being qualified to help you understand the intricacies of your insurance policy as well as purporting to have the expertise to help you get your insurance company to pay for all your repairs and clean-up. However, for the most part, these people are not licensed by any state’s insurance department to act as claims adjusters of any sort, nor do they have the training to do so. Additionally, they are treading on the fine line which, for ethical reasons, usually separates adjusters from builders. Your best bet is to contact us at The Baldwin Company: we are licensed to represent you in documenting and settling your claim, and we can help you find ethical, bonded contractors to complete your repairs when the time comes.

For a statement from The North Carolina Department of Insurance regarding the above topic, click here.

Isn’t it a good idea to go ahead and get everything cleaned now by a professional restoration service instead of waiting until I have settled my claim?

Absolutely not! This is probably the single biggest mistake a policyholder can make. This is because, once this process is started, the cleaning bill reduces the amount of coverage you have left to replace the destroyed and other damaged items in your loss. It is just this sort of well-meaning mistake that clearly illustrates why policyholders need a professional like the Public Adjusters at The Baldwin Company on their side, to prevent such costly errors in judgment.

Who decides if an item needs to be repaired or replaced? My insurance company and I are disagreeing on just about everything.

The terms of your insurance policy – which is a contract between you and your insurance company – require you to prove your loss. As your representatives, The Baldwin Company will document your loss to help you prove your claim and will also negotiate, on your behalf, with the insurance company’s representatives to try to get them to agree with our decisions on such issues as these. However, if no agreement can be reached between you and with the insurance company, the Appraisal Clause of your policy may be considered. Please see the Appraisal Clause section of this website, for further information on this important option.

“It is devastating to see portions of your belongings in our century-old engineering and surveying firm completely burned — some partially charred and the rest singed and covered with smoke. After the insurance company’s adjuster asked us to give him a list of items damaged and lost within the building, as well as damages to the building itself, our 11-person staff floundered around for a week with no measurable results. It was such a relief when Baldwin showed up and said, ‘Put all your employees back to work on engineering problems, and let me handle the fire problems.”

C. P. Palmer, Sr.
Fire, Palmer & Mallard, Engineers/Surveyors
Have you suffered a major property loss?

If you’ve suffered a major loss, we meet with insurance representatives on your behalf to energetically pursue a timely, fair, and legitimate outcome.