Experienced travelers understand the importance of buying travel insurance. Travel insurance coverage can include a cancellation policy as well as adverse events that might take place during the trip. Yet, even if you have a paid policy in place, it can still be challenging to make claims and receive what you are rightfully owed. With all the policy options and fine print, it can be hard to know what is included. In other cases, the company might be holding back on paying a legitimate claim. If you are having problems with an insurance claim, you may want to contact an experienced lawyer as soon as possible.
What Does My Travel Insurance Policy Cover?
With some travel bookings, you need to make all of the payments up front. In other cases, you will make a substantial deposit and make the final payment on a set date. Depending on the insurance company, a travel policy can protect you if you have to cancel the trip or if it interrupted or delayed. Usually, your benefits will be more limited the closer you get to the travel date. A comprehensive policy might also cover emergency medical evacuation costs, costs to replace missing or disappeared baggage, and medical expenses incurred from injuries or accidents experienced on the trip. Most travel policies have many different options to choose from, and like all insurance contracts, you will have to pay more for extra coverage.
If you have to cancel your trip ahead of time and need to make a claim to get reimbursed, the reason will have to be covered in the policy. Legitimate reasons might be your own injury or illness, a job loss, severe weather, family emergency, or military deployment. During the trip, policies may also cover lost or stolen cash, hospital stays, alternative transport expenses, and other covered items.
How Do I File a Travel Insurance Claim?
Before you initiate a travel insurance claim, read over your policy as best as you can. There will be caps on the reimbursable amounts, so you cannot expect to be paid anything over and above those. Also, hold on to any receipts for out-of- pocket expenses due to having to make new travel arrangements related to delays, cancellations, and other problems that were out of your control.
Your travel insurance policy should include a 24/7 customer assistance line that can help you with questions, making claims, and emergency assistance. These phone lines are often busy, so know in advance that you might need to wait until you can reach a person. This person should be able to tell you what you need to do. If you are traveling and experience any problems, that number should be the first one you call.
They should be able to help with locating medical facilities and arranging alternate transportation if you experience problems when you are away. If you are far away from home and there is an accident requiring medical care, you will want to make sure that the facilities you use are covered by your plan. This includes urgent cares, hospitals, and pharmacies.
How Will I Be Reimbursed?
When trips are cancelled, travel insurance companies only reimburse policy holders for prepaid and nonrefundable money that is lost. They will need to see documentation before anything is paid out, too. For emergency situations while traveling, the provider will ask intake questions about what happened and where the customer was treated.
The provider’s customer service representative can let you know how to make a claim, and it will most likely involve considerable paperwork. In many cases, there are delays and you might not see the money for a long period of time. It is also not unusual for claims to be denied. Reasons might include cancellation for the outbreak of a disease, the provider not agreeing that the bad weather conditions were severe enough to delay a trip, and the policy owner not completing the paperwork properly, or failing to provide adequate documentation.
Tips for Buying Travel Insurance
Traveling can be very expensive, and this is why so many people neglect to purchase insurance. Even when they do, the policy can be so long that purchasers do not read it in full. Some policies offer cancellation for any reason; these can be more costly but provide blanket coverage.
Here are some guidelines for travel insurance policies:
- You need to be covered for the trip’s full duration, from the time you walk out of your house until you get back home.
- Make sure to cover all of the items you will be bringing, including that expensive laptop, jewelry, and anything else of value. Some policies may not be able to cover these.
- If you have pre-existing medical conditions, let the insurer know about them. Otherwise, they may attempt to sue you for fraud.
- Do you plan to engage in a dangerous activity, such as skiing? This may not be covered.
- Ask if the provider has a pandemic insurance plan.
- Travel agents can be helpful when it comes to recommended travel insurance plans. Seek out their opinions if you are booking through them.
- Many of these policies offer free look periods. You can buy a policy and then take that time to read everything over and ask questions. If you are unsatisfied with the offerings, shop for a better policy.
- Understand the exclusions and limits, and keep them in mind when making your final travel plans. You might want to leave that expensive laptop at home.
Warren Insurance Lawyers at Herold Law Can Help You if Your Travel Insurance Provider Has Unjustly Denied Your Claim
Insurance policies often put up roadblocks when customers try to make claims, and many times, those barriers are against the law. If you are dealing with this dilemma, get in touch with one of our Warren insurance lawyers at Herold Law, P.A. For an initial consultation, call us at 908-647-1022 or complete our online form. Located in Warren, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout the surrounding areas, including Plainfield.