Business Insurance Claims Frequently Asked Questions

At Erie Insurance, we’ll always take time to answer your business insurance claims questions. The following information is provided as a general resource for Erie Insurance Customers. For exact answers to questions about a specific loss, you should talk to your Agent or claims adjuster, who could more thoroughly explain your business insurance coverage, processes and your options regarding business insurance claims as well as answer any other questions you may have.

Filing a Claim

How do I file a business insurance claim?
To file a claim, choose one of these options:
  • Contact your Agent during business hours
  • Call a local ERIE office near you during business hours
  • File your claim online
  • On nights and weekends, call (800) 367-3743.
  • File an identity theft claim by calling ERIE’s Identity Recovery hotline at 1-866-ERIENOW.
What information do I need to report my business insurance claim?
Your claim representative will work with you to identify the information needed during the claim process, but it is helpful if you have your policy number available and can answer these questions:
  • When the loss occurred (date, time)
  • How the damage happened
  • What was damaged
  • If the police were contacted (if theft)
Do I need to contact the police?
If your loss involved theft or burglary, make sure you call the police to report the incident. This will help to expedite your claim later on.

Claims Process for Business Property Claims

What are the basic steps involved with handling a business property claim?
Because each claim is unique, the claim handling process varies. Below are the typical steps your claim will go through after you report it:
  • Discuss the claim
  • Determine coverage
  • Inspect the damages
  • Estimate damages
  • Settle the claim
Who can I call with questions about my business property claim?
If you have questions not answered here regarding your claim, it is best to contact your claim representative. If you do not have your claim representative’s name or phone number, contact an Erie Insurance office near you for assistance with your questions.
What happens after I report my business property claim?
A claims representative will be assigned to your claim and will contact you, usually within 4 business hours of your report. Your claims adjuster will explain the claims process and steps involved, discuss what your insurance policy covers, and answer any questions you may have.
What information will I need when I meet with my claims adjuster?
The more information you have about the incident, the faster we can handle your claim. The following information will help you and your claims adjuster accurately record the claim:
  • Photos of the loss scene prior to the incident
  • Pre-loss inventory
  • Receipts for any expenses or supplies you needed to prevent further damage to your business
My business isn’t safe to keep open because of my loss. What should I do?
If your business is not safe to keep open following your loss, and you have Income Protection Coverage or Additional Income Protection on your policy, ERIE will pay for loss of income due to the disruption. If you have Extra Expense Coverage, ERIE will also pay the costs you incur to minimize your business interruption. For example, you may need to pay rent for a temporary business location. Your ERIE claims adjuster will discuss the amount you will be given for these types of expenses.
What’s the difference between actual cash value and replacement cost?
Actual cash value is typically defined as replacement cost less depreciation (the amount deducted based on the age and condition of the item). With replacement cost coverage, the depreciation is withheld but then paid back to you after the repair or replacement of each item.

Claims Process for Business Liability Claims

What are the basic steps involved with handling a business liability claim?
Because each claim is unique, the claim handling process varies. Below are the typical steps your claim will go through after you report it:
  • Discuss the claim
  • Determine coverage
  • Determine liability
  • Evaluate the damages
  • Resolve the claim
Who can I call with questions about my business liability claim?
If you did not find answers to your claim questions here, please contact your claim representative. If you do not have your claim representative’s name or phone number, contact an Erie Insurance office near you for assistance with your questions.
What happens after I report my business liability claim?
A claims representative will be assigned to your claim and will contact you, usually within 4 business hours of your report. Your claims adjuster will explain the claims process and steps involved, discuss what your insurance policy covers, and answer any questions you may have.
What information will I need when I meet with my claims adjuster?
The more information you have about the incident, the faster we can handle your claim. The following information will help you and your claims adjuster accurately record the claim:
  • Photos of the loss scene prior to the incident
  • Secure names, addresses and phone numbers of those involved in the claim.

What’s Covered?

Am I covered? Will my rates go up? Will my business insurance be cancelled?
Unfortunately, we can’t answer these questions directly because there are so many factors that go into determining each answer, such as your policy coverage, claim history, loss type and the length of time you have been insured with Erie Insurance. It’s a good idea to discuss your concerns and other questions you may have about your claim with your Agent.
Does my business policy cover water damage?
It depends. Several of our business policies cover damage from ruptured plumbing.  If however, water leaks into your business through the foundation, or because of a flood, the damage is not covered.
Does my business property policy cover damage caused by natural disasters such as hurricanes and tornados?
Yes. Your policy will cover damage caused by some natural disasters. However, if floods occur because of the natural disaster, your business property policy will not cover the damage. Damage caused by floods is not covered by business property policies. Talk to your ERIE Agent about obtaining a separate flood insurance policy. ERIE has partnered with American Bankers to offer this coverage to customers.
Are my company vehicles covered under my business property policy if a fire caused the loss?
No. Your business property policy won’t cover damage to your vehicles. Your auto policy will cover damage to your vehicles.
What happens if I, or my contractor, finds additional damage after my claim is settled?
Call your ERIE claims adjuster immediately. We may need to re-inspect the damage before the repairs are complete. If the additional damages were covered under the original claim, we would reopen your claim and work closely with you and your contractor to satisfactorily resolve the matter.
How can I get a copy of my policy?
You may contact our Customer Service Department at (800) 458-0811 or your local ERIE Agent to get a copy of your business policy.

Repairs

How quickly will the repairs be made to my business?
We know that you want to fix your business quickly so you can get back to work. ERIE will do everything it can to expedite the process for you. The timeframe to fix your business will largely be determined by the type of damage and the contractor you’ve chosen to do the repairs.
Will ERIE recommend contractors or can I use contractors that I’ve worked with in the past?
ERIE Customers always have a choice when it comes to deciding who you want to repair your business. We recommend that you use a contractor that you know and trust. If you don’t have someone, we’d be happy to provide a few recommendations to you. After all, we’ve been in this business for more than 80 years. Our claim handlers have worked with many different contractors in your hometown. They can provide you with names of electricians, general contractors, plumbers, roofers and more.

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