Loss adjuster: job description
Loss adjusters are often contracted out by specialist loss adjustment firms. Those who enter the profession often choose to specialise in either commercial or domestic claims. Typical duties include:
- advising both insurance companies and informing policy holders on the progress of claims
- checking that the insurance policy will cover the costs
- assessing the extent of physical damage caused by incidents such as fire or theft
- recommending repair and prevention techniques to avoid further losses
- interviewing claimants/employees/security staff for evidence about possible causes
- obtaining valuation certificates and reports from the police/fire service
- arranging the cleaning and repairing of claim scenes
- requesting expert reports from specialists, such as forensic investigators
- negotiating settlement payments
- compiling post-investigation reports
- investigating suspected fraudulent claims
- liaising closely with the insurance company.
- Loss adjusting firms
- Insurance and reinsurance companies
- Risk and claims management companies
- Major private and public companies.
Vacancies are advertised online, by recruitment agencies and careers services, in newspapers and specialist publications including Insurance Week, Insurance Post and their respective websites. Early applications are recommended for larger firms that operate training schemes. Speculative applications, relevant sector/company research and networking are also advisable.
There are routes into a career as a loss adjuster for both university graduates and school leavers. Graduates may have a degree in any subject, though employers that specialise in a technical field, such as construction and engineering, may prefer a surveying, construction or engineering degree. Relevant experience gained through vacation work and placements can be beneficial, but it can be difficult to get.
School leavers can join a loss adjuster firm by starting as an assistant or a claims technician. It may also be possible to enter the profession via an apprenticeship in financial services. For more information, see our article on how to get into a career in finance, as well as the finance sector of TARGETcareers, our website aimed at school leavers.
New employees are encouraged to qualify as chartered loss adjusters by passing examinations with the Chartered Institute of Loss Adjusters (CILA) or the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII). Five years' experience at an independent loss adjusting firm is required.
- Excellent time-management
- Decision-making skills
- Numerical skills
- Analytical skills
- Oral and written communication skills, including ability to negotiate
- Good observation skills