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On Monday I posted on some tips for the victims of the good Friday Tornado. Upon reflection, I forgot to recommend the most important part. Give notice of the claim to your insurance company, so they can start their investigation. Call them, then follow up with a faxed letter. If you do not have a response in 4-6 hours, call again until you speak with a live person. Get their name and a claim number. Write it down with the date and time. Ask when an adjuster will come out. If the adjuster does not show up, call again. Keep a log of all your contacts with the insurance company.

If you had damage to your auto it may be covered under the comprehensive portion of your auto policy. Thus give notice to both your homeowners AND auto policies. Again document, document, document.

Often an adjuster when asking about a loss will ask "Is that all?" The response is not "yes" but rather that is all I can think of right now. Then you ask "Who do I contact if I forgot something?"

The community response has been overwhelming. The Tennessean reported almost immediate clean up efforts. This is great, but what if the record of the damage is destroyed by these efforts BEFORE you take pictures or the insurance company gets there. Problems with your claim is my prediction. I hope not, but that is my fear. I also fear there is going to be claims by the insurance companies that the damage was caused by something that is not covered by your policy. Again document and know your policy.

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