Property Claims

Property damage due to severe weather, theft or vandalism can be a very unsettling experience. In this situation, you need advice and assistance, and you need it fast. Our experienced, knowledgeable staff and brokers are always available to guide you through what to do next. If you need to file a home insurance claim, or any property claim, we’re here for you every step of the way.

Here are the first steps to getting your life back to normal:

Step 1: Call the authorities

If you have experienced vandalism, theft or fire, you need to report any and all damages immediately. Law enforcement authorities should be your first contact and a police report should be prepared.

Step 2: Contact your Broker

Once you’ve contacted the proper authorities, call your insurance broker. Your broker knows the specifics of your policy coverage, and can give you the best advice relating to your situation.

Click here for Insurance Broker contact information.

If your broker is not available, please call our head office at 1-800-222-9550 and one of our experts will be on hand to assist you.

In the event of an after hour Claims Emergency that requires immediate assistance please call 1-888-346-6610 (Claims Alert 24/7 response center)

What to do in the event of water damage

Be careful! Do not turn on any electrical switches until your electrical system has been checked.

  • Turn off your main switch by standing on a dry surface and using a piece of heavy rubber, plastic or dry wood.

Take steps immediately to protect your property from further damage.

  • Board up holes or shut off water supplies to ensure your belongings are not damaged any more than they have been.
  • Move items out of wet basements and away from flooded parts of your home.

Report the damage to your insurance representative immediately.

  • Standing water and wet materials are a breeding ground for micro-organisms such as viruses, bacteria and mould which can cause disease, trigger allergic reactions and continue to damage materials long after the flood. Mould growth can start in less than 48 hours.
  • Save receipts for materials you use. Insurance providers will cover any reasonable cost associated with protecting your property if the loss is covered by your policy.

What to do in the event of fire

Get out and stay out! If you smell smoke or see flames, get everyone out of the building immediately.

  • During a fire, the air is cleaner near the floor.
  • Get down on your hands and knees and crawl to an exit.
  • Close doors to slow the spread of smoke and flames.
  • Have an evacuation plan in place.

Call the fire department!

  • Phone the fire department from outside the building and give the complete address of the fire.
  • Don’t hang up until you’re told to do so.
  • Be sure that no one goes back inside the building for any reason.
  • Tell the fire department if anyone is trapped inside the building.

Don’t fight fire unless…

  • You have the right tools and are trained to use them.

Remember: things can be replaced – you can’t.

What to do in the event of a windstorm

  • Secure all doors and windows. Prevent a sliding glass door from opening by inserting a dowel into its track.
  • Make sure any outdoor furniture and fixtures are brought in to prevent them from blowing around and causing damage.
  • During a storm, stay away from glass windows and doors and seek refuge in an interior room with no windows.
  • Avoid using electrical appliances.
  • Take care of your pets. A storm can be a frightening experience, and they could injure themselves or even you if panicked. If necessary, secure pets in carriers.
  • Do not light candles or lanterns. They could get blown over, causing a fire.
  • Never go out during the storm. Flying debris during high winds can cause injury.
  • After the storm clears and you come out, beware of downed power lines. Stay away from heavily damaged areas. Listen to your radio for instructions.

What to do in the event of theft at home

  • If you return home and find your door or window ajar, go to a neighbour’s home and call the police.
  • In the event of a surprise encounter with an intruder, attempt to flee. If you are blocked in, remain still and allow him to leave. Do not attempt to detain him, as he may be armed.
  • Call the police immediately. The sooner they arrive, the greater the chance that your possessions will be recovered.
  • While you wait for the police to arrive, don’t touch anything or attempt to clean up the mess. You may ruin important evidence.
  • When the police arrive, provide them with a copy of your inventory. This will make it easier to identify a suspect who is caught with your valuables.

*Information courtesy of Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC).