Will Business Insurance Cover Inventory Loss After a Storm?
When a storm comes through any community, it can cause damage to property in a matter of minutes. Many times, the damage comes in the form of structural losses, such as the roof blowing off the property. Other times, it creates risks that go further, such as leaks that can cause you to lose the inventory in your business. Will your business insurance cover this type of risk? The answer to that may depend on several key factors.
What Happened Matters Most
Your business insurance usually has protection for your property and assets. This insurance works to cover losses you have for unexpected and unpreventable incidents. Storms may be one of them. It only covers loss related to what the storm caused, not any type of wear and tear, however.
Here is an example. If a storm hits and damages the roof of your property, it can pull off shingles or other roofing material. This exposure can lead to leaks. Those leaks may damage the inventory under them. Business insurance works well in this case. In other cases, wear and tear or poor maintenance cause a leak, not the storm. In this case, the insurance policy may not offer coverage.
When You Have Coverage
When a storm occurs, call your agent right away to report the type of loss you have. Most of the time, your agent needs to see visual evidence of the loss. Do not clean up the material, then, until they see it or tell you to do so. You also want to consider taking photos of everything damaged for your records.
For inventory, you may need to throw away all types of material that is unsafe to use. This may include a significant amount of cleanup for some companies. Your insurance can help pay for the debris removal, especially when it is significant.
You will need to provide records and proof of the purchase of that inventory. This can help to determine the value of the inventory. You can also work with your agent to make repairs to the structure that led to the losses, in some cases. If the damage is significant, and you have business interruption insurance, you may be able to move your business into another location until the repairs take place.
The good news is your agent can help you make decisions about what type of coverage is best for your needs. Be sure your policy is up to date to reflect the value of your inventory.