Damage report made – what happens now?

A look behind the scenes at the Coya claims department
Linda O’Grady

What actually happens after you’ve reported damage to an insurance company? How long does it take to process a claim? And what does the timeframe depend on? We take a look behind the scenes at the Coya claims department and answer your most pressing questions.

Felix finishes work for the day and wants to cycle home. But his bike is no longer where he parked it that morning – it’s been stolen. Frustrated and annoyed he reports the loss to his insurance company (luckily, he’s insured in the case of bicycle theft) - but the case is, of course, not quite closed yet. What happens now? When can he expect to be contacted? And how does the insurance company decide if the damage is covered?

Step 1: Notification of claim

Felix reported the damage to his insurance company. As a Coya customer, he can make a quick initial damage report online on his smartphone, send an e-mail or report the damage by telephone. In all three cases, the reported damage is recorded in our system. Our claims department takes care of the matter as quickly as possible - usually either the same day or the following working day.

Step 2: Clarifying the facts of the case

First of all, our colleagues have to clarify three basic questions: What is the damage report about, is it an insured case and, if so, how high is the claim for payment? In addition, other details are also determined, such as who the policyholder is and whether a valid contract exists. In order not to lose any unnecessary time, these things are determined in parallel. At Coya, some processes are already automated by artificial intelligence.

Step 3: Everything clear?

For a claim to be processed accordingly by the insurance company, all necessary documents and information must be available. Are the facts of the case clear and unambiguous? Is proof, such as photos and receipts, required and has it already been submitted? Since most people in this situation don’t know exactly what the insurance company needs from them at first, there is often an additional request from the insurance company after the first damage report. Don't worry, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s not done to annoy or pester you; it’s simply about gathering all the available information in order to substantiate the facts beyond any doubt and to help us make a decision. How much time is needed for this, therefore, also depends on if and when all necessary information and documents are complete. In serious cases, the insurance company will also send an expert to take pictures on site and document the damage.

In principle, the more information provided when the damage is reported, the faster the insurance company can process the case.

In Felix's case study, the insurance company also needs additional documents. For Coya to replace the stolen bike, Felix must submit a copy of the police report of the theft. This is a basic requirement for theft cases that are reported to an insurance company, because otherwise the insurance company cannot know whether a theft actually occurred. In addition, proof of purchase of the bike should also be provided, in the best case, a receipt or invoice, but photos or screenshots can also help (e.g. for used bikes). The insurance company's aim is to determine a) who owned the bike and b) what would it be worth if you bought it new today. If the bicycle is insured against theft either through a stand-alone policy or through your home contents insurance, it is insured at replacement value. This means that the amount paid out is the same as what’s needed to buy the same or a similar bicycle again (in technical terms: a bicycle of "the same type and quality").

Step 4: The decision

Once all the information and documents are available, the final assessment is made - i.e. payment or rejection. Nothing stands in the way of a pay out once all of the information is available and the facts of the case are clear beyond doubt. For example, false information, discrepancies relating to the cause of the damage or attempted fraud may lead to a rejection.

Felix can look forward to a pay out because, after he submitted the missing documents a day later, there was no longer any doubt that his secured bike was stolen. €650 (= the cost of a new bike) is transferred to Felix's account.

All in all, the process from the first notification of damage, to the subsequent submission of the missing documents, to payment took only a few days. And while Felix goes out to buy a new bike, we at Coya are already working on the next case ...

Here’s what some of our customers have said about the process:

(excerpts from Google and Facebook, among others)

"Super insurance, our claim was processed and settled quickly and without any complications. We recommend it."

- Uwe

"Very friendly staff, my claim has been well taken care of."

- Daniel

"In my case, I received unbureaucratic, fast and friendly help and am very satisfied. Thank you very much."

- Sönke

"I was so uncomfortable calling and reporting my damage... But ta-dah! Everything went great, everyone was super friendly, they handled the case quickly, and within a week I had the money.

- Anonymous

"Such first-class insurance deserves the rating ‘Premium+’. Competent employees in customer service. Minor problems and inquiries in the live chat were responded to quickly and I found them very well informed. Extremely friendly and helpful."

- Frank

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