A claims adjuster trainee helps investigate insurance claims for property damage or personal injury. As a trainee or entry-level adjuster acclimates to his role, he is usually involved in conducting research, preparing information, and issuing claim settlements. The employee may be required to work closely with a tenured adjuster or supervisor as he gains knowledge about the carrier's policies, procedures, and coverage liabilities. Those in claims adjuster positions are primarily responsible for working on an assigned group of cases, assessing damage, and estimating repair costs.
An insurance carrier may hire a claims adjuster trainee to prepare him for a career in researching and settling insurance policy claims. A claim is a request for insurance money to cover the costs of repairing damage or to compensate for a loss. The adjuster is responsible for gathering information related to the incident that caused the damage or loss. When property damage occurs, an adjuster is also obligated to review the extent of the damage in person.
During the research process, a claims adjuster trainee may speak with witnesses, the claimant, and those involved in the incident that may have caused the damage. For example, an adjuster will usually interview both parties involved in a car accident that caused body damage to an insured vehicle. In addition to speaking with witnesses, an adjuster may also reach out to local law enforcement agencies that might have conducted an immediate investigation. Individuals involved in minor incidents may file their own police reports, which adjusters usually use in the settlement process.
Generating reports is a major job responsibility for a claims adjuster trainee. Most of the reports detail the expected repair costs and the amount of money that will be issued to the claimant. The reimbursement amounts are usually substantiated with official data from parts suppliers, repair shops, or market values. For example, if a car is determined to be a total loss, the settlement amount may be equal to the fair market value of the vehicle. Damage repair costs are typically broken down by line item, especially if several parts sustained injury.
When determining settlement amounts, a claims adjuster trainee often has to review insurance policy coverage limits, types of coverage, and the policy's provisions. For instance, some home insurance policies state that damage caused by flooding will not be reimbursed. Part of the adjuster's responsibility is to help the insurance carrier control the amount of claim disbursements and maintain an expense budget.