As jobs in the insurance industry go, claims adjusters have a pretty important role to play. Individuals who purchase auto insurance often look for the best price and rarely think
about the claim handling aspect.
Auto claims adjusters evaluate insurance claims and decide whether or not
the insurer ought to pay a claim, and if
so, how much. They investigate accidents
or losses and make hard decisions that
can financially impact those involved in
A work day typically starts with a long
list of automobile claims, which need to be
handled – now! A typical claims adjuster
will work over 100 claims each month.
Once the adjuster addresses all of the
new claims, he or she can then move on to
other assignments such as: writing reports,
attending appointments and interviews
with claimants and witnesses, inspecting
the car in question, and additional research such as looking at police reports.
They may also have to consult with a variety of professionals like third-party carriers, lawyers and physicians in order to get
expert evaluations of a claim. Often, adjusters have to work irregular hours in order to accommodate the heavy work load.
In addition to the normal work day,
the auto claims adjuster must also be alert
to any fraud, since some car owners and
vehicle repair shops have been known to
defraud insurance companies with fraud-
ulent claims. These frauds may include a
situation in which owners register their
cars in a place where premiums are like-
ly to be lower, even though they live in
neighborhoods where car theft is high
and premiums are higher. Other examples
include selling a car to a body shop for
dismantling and then declaring it stolen,
staging a car accident or exaggerating the
cost of repairing a car after an accident.
With this crazy work schedule, and all of
these considerations, it is no surprise that
time management can be a challenge for
many auto claims adjusters. Adjusters can
achieve a proper balance in life by:
• Prioritizing: As an auto claims adjuster, you can ease some of the burden
by prioritizing the most urgent matters
and setting a realistic goal of how many
activities you can complete in a day. Not
only will you reduce your workload, this
will make you a better adjuster.
• Avoiding procrastination and time
Issues faced by auto claims
wasters: Unlike potted plants, work ig-
nored does not shrivel up and die. It pro-
creates and gives you more work. So avoid
procrastination. Come in each day with a
positive mindset and set reasonable expec-
tations on how much work you will finish.
Avoid activities that prevent you from com-
pleting claims quickly. Have a proper filing
system so you don’t misplace documents,
which will slow down your efficiency.
Auto claims adjusters experience work-re-lated emotional stress due to the nature of
their work. Not only do they have to deal
with claims whose impacts have had devastating effects on peoples’ lives, they may
also have to reject some claims which are
genuine, but are not clearly defined in the
insurance coverage policy.
Another issue is the impact on personal lives. Auto claims adjusters are the ultimate road warriors. Sometimes travelling frequently and often at short notice,
they may be away from their families fre-
quently and for extended periods.
With all of these challenges, however,
many auto claims adjusters find fulfillment
in their jobs, especially when they are able to
set and achieve goals. Achievements include
making the claims process easy during a dif-
ficult time for clients. Adjusters also enjoy
the chance to boost their company’s reputa-
tion. Delivering good service means a good
review and recommendation, which is a
plus for them and the insurance company.
The auto claims adjuster’s day is a tough
one, but their importance to the insurance industry cannot be overstated.
Frank Medina (frank@frankmedinainsurance.
com) has been in the insurance industry
for over nine years. He began his career
in claims and now runs Frank Medina
Insurance, which specializes in home and
Daily Responsibilities of an
Auto Claims Adjuster