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leaving shoreCaptain: “Is everyone ready to set sail?” If you are a member of a yacht crew, hopefully you will never have to think twice about whether or not you are ready to leave shore. Don’t find yourself in a situation where you forget something, or aren’t fully prepared to be at sea for an extended period of time. Follow our list to assist you when preparing for the next time you leave shore.


1. Passport

It is important to confirm that your passport is valid before leaving shore. Not only does it have to be valid on the dates for which you are expected to visit another country, but in some cases there are countries that require your passport to be valid long after you are expected to be there. This may be because they want you to be prepared for the unexpected. For example, if you are stranded and must stay longer than originally expected, there will be no worries about whether your passport has expired. 

2. Immunizations & Local Health Hazards 

Make sure all of your immunizations and vaccines are up to date. While you may know where you are headed, it is common for yachts to make unexpected stops. So it is a good idea to be updated with the vaccines of the entire area you are going to. Also, research and prepare for any medical conditions, viruses, etc. that are prevalent in the area. For example, the Chikungunya Virus which is spread by mosquitoes is spreading throughout the Caribbean. If you will be in that area, be sure to heave plenty of mosquito repellent, and wear the necessary protective clothing. 

3. Locations

There is a chance that you will be heading to a place that you have never been to before. Do your research, and try to become familiar with the location. Learn any major roads or landmarks that can help you navigate the area. Know where medical facilities are located. Also, your guests may ask you for some assistance with directions, or advice on any activities and excursions that the location has to offer. 

4. Emergencies 

Familiarizing yourself with the emergency procedures of certain situations is always a good idea before leaving shore. Even more so if this is your first trip, or have recently switched vessels. Different yachts can have different procedures and rules, so prepare yourself for any unexpected issues that may arise. 

5. Insurance 

Even though this is the last thing on our list, it is the most important! Having the right health insurance coverage is critical when abroad. Anything can happen no matter where you are in the world, so having the proper coverage can be the difference between financial peace of mind, and financial disaster. There are many yacht owners who have the entire crew under one plan, however if you are required to find your own insurance, don’t hesitate to give us a call! 

Having proper insurance is important whether you are at sea, or docked at a shipyard. For more information on some of the dangers you can experience while docked, read our previous blog, “The Dangers of Being Docked at a Shipyard.” MHG is your specialized broker when it comes to crew insurance. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to find the policy that works best for you. If you are interested in purchasing, or have any questions about yacht crew insurance or travel insurance, or would like some advice, please contact us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com.  

5 Things for Yacht Crew to Complete Before Leaving Shore

life insurance claimLosing a loved one is a reality that we all dread. No one wants to get that phone call that forces them to begin the grieving process. With so many things crossing your mind, the last thing you may want to be thinking about is what the next step is in order to receive a death benefit from the deceased’s life insurance. Yet, there is a process you must go through to attain the payout which may help you when it comes to funeral costs, paying the bills, or putting money away for the kids. 

 

Where Do I Start?

Locate the policy for specific information about who to contact. It’s a good idea to keep the policies in a place that is easy to find. Once located, contact the insurance company and they should assign an agent to assist you through the steps you need to take in order to submit the claim. If life insurance was provided as a benefit from his or her employer, then contact the employer for the information. The policy will also tell you how much you can expect to be paid.

What Information Will I Need?

You will need to obtain the death certificate as well as any other necessary documents. All documents must be originals or notarized copies. Once all the paperwork is filled out and the documents are sent in, the insurance company will begin to process your claim. 

How Long Can it Take to Process? 

Generally, the processing time is quick. Companies want to help those in need as quickly as they can. However, if any of the forms are not filled out correctly or the documentation is wrong, the claims process can turn into a lengthy one. 

Are There Different Collection Options? 

There are different ways to collect the benefit. You can receive it in a lump sum, receive it in installments, or leave it to collect interest. Keep in mind that all payouts will be tax free. So if you are trying to avoid paying higher taxes by not selecting to receive the payout in a lump sum, it’s not necessary because you will receive the entire amount. 

Can My Claim Be Denied? 

If the insurance company discovers that you were withholding information about a medical condition, there is a good chance your claim will be denied. That’s why it is crucial for you to disclose all information when buying the policy. Also, the insurance company can deny your claim based on the manner of death by the insured. Policies have a list of scenarios that will explain what can get your claim denied, so read the policy and follow directions! If you suspect that the deceased had a life insurance policy, but are unsure, contact the American Council of Life Insurance (ACLI). For a fee, they will investigate and try to locate the policy.

Did you know there is a type of life insurance that allows to borrow money from the policy? For more information, be sure to read our previous blog, “Can I Borrow against My Life Insurance Policy?” If you are interested in purchasing life insurance, or have any questions about your policy, or which policy would be best for you and your family, contact us at 954-828-1819 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com. We have the insurance specialists to assist and advise you on the best coverage for you and your loved ones at every stage of life.

How to File a Life Insurance Claim

retireDoesn’t it seem like whenever you visit some beautiful place, you never want to leave. Well, depending on the terms. I’m pretty sure that Tom Hanks couldn’t wait to get off that island in Cast Away. But if you are on holiday somewhere in the Caribbean, it’s not too hard to envision yourself calling that place “home” and truly “living the life.” That may be why it is becoming more and more popular for people to retire, and move to their dream destination to live out their golden years. But before you jump on that plane, there are some things you need to get squared away. 

 

Social Security and Other Retirement Funds 

If you lived and worked in the United States and are looking to retire abroad, your Social Security should follow you wherever you go. Also, your 401k, IRA, or any other retirement savings plan you may have administered during your working career should be available to you. However, you may have to get an account at a bank in your new country, or an international one. 

Government Sponsored Health Care 

Unlike your Social Security, Medicare (or your countries equivalent) will not follow you to your new country. However, the good news is that in many cases, being a resident in your new country can make you eligible for its government sponsored health care plan. Also, most of the developed countries around the world have Universal Health Care systems, which can be better than what is offered in the U.S. The only con is that it can take a long time to get an appointment or see a doctor. 

Insurance Options Local Health Insurance: Domestic health insurance won’t follow you to another country. And if it does, it will only offer a fraction of the coverage that it would have offered back home. So it would only make sense to keep your domestic plan if you planned on traveling back and forth to receive any medical services. In most countries, the local health insurance that is available is much like the one you may have had back home. Including a provider network that lets you know which doctors or hospitals the carrier will provide coverage for. One drawback to having a local plan is that in some cases, they will not write a new policy for you after the age of 63. 

No Health Insurance: You have the option of having no insurance coverage at all. Thus meaning you would have to pay cash for everything. If you live in the Unites States, this may seem like a crazy idea given the fact that health care costs can be more than twice as much as other countries. But, even with costs in other countries being lower, this still may not be the smartest option. 

International Health Insurance: International health insurance, also known as expatriate insurance, is essentially the same as your domestic health insurance, with coverage all around the world. So you would have coverage whether you are in your new home, or visiting your old one. This may be the best option of health insurance for most people that are retiring abroad. Especially for those who are over the age of 63 and cannot purchase a new local health insurance. 

Moving to a new country, no matter what stage in life can be an exhilarating experience. With so many tasks to complete in order to prepare yourself, it can be easy to forget some items. Read our previous blog, “Expat Checklist Before the Big Move,” for help when preparing for re-location. If you are interested in purchasing an international medical insurance plan, also known as expatriate insurance, please contact our insurance specialists at 1 954-828-1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com. We have an office full of expats, and others who have re-located, who can assist you and advise you about all the necessary steps to take when selecting the proper insurance for you or your family.

Want to Retire Overseas? What You Need to Know

travel kidsJust picture it. Looking out the window of a plane, on your way to see some of the most breathtaking sites from 20,000 feet up. You then glance at your significant other to see if they are as excited as you to finally get away from the rat race, and begin planning what you guys will do next. Then, one of you finally remember that this isn’t exactly a honeymoon, the kids are tagging along! Family vacations create some of our most cherished memories. Ones that we will one day try to create with our own children. From driving across the border, to flying across an ocean, traveling the world is one of life’s most exhilarating activities. Maybe even more so when traveling with children. Follow these do’s and don’ts when traveling with kids in order to make the trip as smooth and stress-free as possible.  

 

Do’s

  • Do take your time. Don’t stress out about trying to see and visit everything. Children can get tired quickly, and may not be cut out to be on their feet all day.
  • Do keep track of your kids. If traveling with more than one child, regularly count them. Traveling can be very tiring, and easy for a child to run off without you paying attention. Especially if you are rushing to make a connecting flight. It may also be a good idea to “brand” them by writing your phone number on their arm.
  • Do ask if the hotel is full. If not, try to reserve a room that doesn’t have any other rooms occupied on either side. This can allow your children to be themselves, and you won’t have to continue telling them to be quiet.
  • Do plan for extended downtime. There could be lengthy layovers or delayed flights. Kids can get restless when sitting for an extended period of time. Bring snacks and be prepared to keep them busy with games, books, or other activities.
  • Do ask for help. Many hotels and airlines are quite accommodating when it comes to making children comfortable. This can help make your trip more enjoyable, cutting your stress level.
  • Do check your travel documents. Make sure your passport is still valid, you have the necessary visas, and that all of your booked dates for flights and hotels are aligned.

Don’ts

  • Don’t wait until the last minute to pack. Waiting until the last minute can raise the chances of you forgetting something, or even missing your flight. Also, be prepared for the weather. Pack jackets if it is expected to be cold, raincoats and umbrellas for stormy weather, etc.
  • Don’t forget to pack medicine. Getting sick with no relief in sight is a sure way to ruin a trip. Also, check with your pediatrician regarding inoculation and vaccination requirements.
  • Don’t let your child roam the hallway of the hotel unattended. Being away from home can multiply the chances your child gets lost.
  • Don’t pay for your kids to stay at a hotel. Try to find a hotel that doesn’t charge for kids that are under the age of 12.
  • Don’t lose it. If your child has a security blanket, or a favorite stuffed animal, it is a good idea to leave it at home. Don’t risk it getting lost, unless it can be easily replaced.
  • Don’t forget travel insurance! Having the proper coverage while on your travels can be the difference between having a great trip, and a major headache. Not only will you not have to worry about medical coverage if something happens to you or your children, but you will have a 24/7 assistance hotline to call in case you get lost, or need help with any other travel arrangements.
For more help when traveling overseas, read our previous blog, “Tips for Traveling Abroad.” We wish you safe travels along your journey. If you are interested in purchasing travel insurance, or have any questions or concerns, please contact us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0)1624 678668 or visit us at mhginsurance.com. Our insurance brokers have the experience to assist you in selecting the right plan for you, with the best value.

 

Top Do’s and Don’ts for Traveling with Kids

safeIn many cases, workers’ compensation is a large expense for a business, even before a claim is filed. Sometimes injuries are unavoidable, especially if your business requires physical labor from your employees. But when an injury happens that could have easily been avoided causing your premiums to increase because of a claim, it can cripple your business. This is why it is crucial for a business to have great safety protocols, and create a safe work environment.


1. Uniforms/Gear

Having the proper protective gear can have a great impact on the safety of your workers. For example, a construction worker on the job site without a hard hat on could fall victim to a head injury. Depending on the business your company is in, this should dictate the qualities of your uniforms or protective items required for work.

2. Emergency Exits 

Be sure that emergency exits are in clear sight throughout your building. In the event of an emergency, it can be easy to freeze and panic. Having guidance throughout your office, warehouse, building, etc. could save someone form an injury, or worse.

3. Discussions/Meetings

Let employees voice their concerns, and take note of any safety hazards that aren’t currently being addressed. Not only will allowing employees to go around and speak during a meeting help you solve some issues, it will also make your workers feel empowered.

4. Signs

Sometimes employees can develop habits and get comfortable, causing them to not take as much care performing a dangerous task as they once did. Use signs to remind workers of safety rules and precautions that must be taken. 

5. Inspections

Putting your work area through a safety inspection can really contribute to making it a safer place. It can let you know what proofing you need to do and what improvements you need to make such as, adding handicap ramps, upgrading to nonslip flooring, or even putting handrails along walkways and stairs.

6. Tests/Drills

The best way for your workers to prepare for an emergency event is to put them through drills. Every so often, run different drills that will help prepare them for the real thing.

7. Access to Information 

Employees should have access to safety information such as what may be included in their employee handbook at all times. Whether a hardcopy, digital copy, or both.

8. Training 

Many times a new hire must go through job training or skills training. While this is a great way for an employee to learn the proper and safest way to perform a task or use a machine, there is no reason to not train ALL of your employees regularly. This can help keep your workers fresh, and may prevent and injury.

9. Upgrades 

Equipment and technology is constantly changing. Once you buy a new cell phone, it seems a newer version is on its way. Keep upgrades and replacements up to date. Many times they include a safer or more efficient product. 

10. Certifications

Having workers who are CPR certified, or other similar certifications can assist in preventing a serious injury, or minimalizing one. The safety of your workers should be a top priority for all businesses. However, accidents still happen, and workers’ compensation insurance should also be a priority of your business. 

If you would like more information on workers’ compensation, read our previous blog, “Follow These Tips When Preparing for a Workers’ Compensation Audit.” If you have any questions, or are interested in purchasing workers’ compensation insurance, USL&H or other types of business insurance, or group health insurance for your employees, please contact us at 954-828-1819 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to cover your company’s risks appropriately.

10 Tips on Creating a Safe Work Environment

maritime workersNobody wants to think about getting injured on the job, especially if that injury will keep you from being able to work. However, if you work in the maritime industry, there is a good chance that you may not have to worry about what will happen if you do experience an injury. Thanks to the United States Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA also known as USL&H), those who work in the maritime industry and fall into certain categories, will have coverage backed by the federal government, not just the state. Having a peace of mind when it comes to coverage can help rid your life of the question, “What’s going to happen to me if I’m injured at work?” 

 

The Mission 

There is one mission when it comes to the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, to assure the coverage and minimize the impact of injuries and death for employees and their families. This is done by ensuring that workers’ compensation benefits are provided under law. 

The Details 

The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act provides workers’ compensation for anyone working in a marina or on the water. It protects you from injury and occupational disease while on the job. Benefits are only available to those maritime employees who meet certain criteria known as a “Status” and “Situs” test. 

Status Test- The Status Test has to do with the work that is performed by the employee. Basically the test decides whether you are performing “maritime” work. This is important because in order to be eligible for benefits under the act, it must be determined that employees are performing “maritime” work for the employer. 

Situs Test- The Situs Test has to do with the location that the employee has performed the work. After determining whether a worker is a maritime employee, they then have to determine if the work was performed on, near, or adjacent to navigable water. 

The Benefits 

The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act gives employees to the power to file claims for injuries that happen while at the workplace. Much of workers’ comp is through state legislation, however being that this one is administered federally, you can have the option to use both your state’s system as well as the federal system, just not at the same time. The Federal Process is a lengthy one, but it’s good to know the coverage is there for when the employees need it. The state coverage can provide benefits while the federal reviews the benefits available under the USL&H laws. For those that are content with receiving benefits from the state, you should know that state workers’ comp benefits are 60% of wages, while the Longshore Act is 2/3 of your wages. Workers’ compensation insurance should be a top priority for all businesses. 

If you would like more information on workers’ comp or the LHWCA, or are interested in purchasing a workers’ comp policy, or any other form of business insurance, or group health insurance for your employees, please contact us at 954-828-1819 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to cover your company’s risks appropriately. For more information on marine general liability, read our previous blog, “Why Do I Need Marine General Liability? I Have Commercial General Liability. Isn't That Enough?

Explaining the United States Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act

United StatesLand of the free, home of the vacation? Visiting the United States is a great way to spend a vacation. The country has so much to offer, from amusement parks like Disney World, to big cities like New York City and Los Angeles, breathtaking natural sites such as the Grand Canyon, even tropical beaches in South Florida! There is something to do, no matter what type of vacation you are looking to go on. That may be the reason why the U.S. is the second most visited country in the world behind only France. With so many people traveling to the U.S, people are bound to have accidents, get sick, etc. So if a trip to the United States is in your future, here are 5 reasons to make sure you have sufficient health insurance coverage during your travels. 

 

The High Cost of Medical Care

There are places around the world that have government sponsored, affordable or free healthcare. While the U.S. has recently attained a government sponsored healthcare system, many would argue that it is anything but affordable for those who don’t have coverage. So whatever health care plan you have in your home country, likely will not work in the U.S. But better to be safe than sorry, and up with a medical bill that’s a few thousand dollars. For example, accidents happen, and you unfortunately fell and broke your leg while walking down the stairs of your hotel. The total cost of treatment could be as high as $2,500 without health insurance coverage. And if surgery is required, you’re looking at a total cost that could be over $15,000. 

Accidental Death and Dismemberment 

Accidental Death and Dismemberment is essentially a fancy way of saying life insurance. You go through the similar process in selecting a beneficiary to receive a benefit in the event of your death or dismembering injury. No matter where you are traveling, it is a good idea to protect yourself and your loved ones in the event something happens to you.

Medical Evacuation/Repatriation 

Even though the United States has some of the best medical facilities in the world, it is possible that you may need to be medically evacuated to your home country in the event of a serious injury. Being medically evacuated from the U.S. can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. I think that is a good enough reason to make sure you’re covered. Also, in the event you pass away on your trip, repatriation should cover or assist in the returning of your remains to your home country. Otherwise, your family could be left to foot the bill of transporting your remains back home, which could be quite expensive. 

24/7 Assistance 

While visiting a foreign country can be one of life’s greatest adventures, it can also be a scary and stressful one. Especially when visiting a country as large as the United States of America. That being said, many travel insurance companies offer a 24/7 hotline that you can call in the event something has happened to you, you’re lost, or help with any travel details. This can be even more helpful if the language spoken in the country you are visiting isn’t the same as your native tongue. 

There are fewer experiences that can be as fulfilling as traveling and experiencing different parts of the world. We hope that your trip is perfect, and that you never have to actually use your travel insurance. However, if you do, read our previous blog, “How to File a Travel Insurance Claim,” for help when having to file a claim. If you are interested in purchasing travel insurance, please contact our specialists at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0)1624 678668 or visit us at mhginsurance.com to help identify the right travel insurance plan for your particular situation. Have a wonderful vacation!

Going on Holiday to the U.S? The Reasons You Need Travel Insurance

workers' compIt’s no secret that in today’s world, it is becoming increasingly more difficult for people to find a job. With jobs being lost to technology, going overseas, companies downsizing, and a great population of qualified candidates, people are turning to any resolution they can find. Thus, making staffing firms more and more popular, especially with more and more companies looking for temporary workers. 

 

It Can Be Difficult 

Staffing firms employ such a large amount of people, who perform various tasks ranging from nursing, to working in a warehouse or on an assembly line. Another reason is that there is great turnover, so it can be hard to keep track of every single detail that is required when applying for a workers’ comp policy. Luckily, you aren’t required to pay the same premiums for temporary workers as you do for full time employees which can help to keep your costs effective. 

It’s the Law! 

Many state and federal jurisdictions require the staffing firm of a temporary worker to cover their workers’ compensation insurance. This may be because most states consider the temporary worker to be an employee of the staffing firm, rather than an employee of where they are placed. With that being said, if a workers’ comp claim happens to be placed, the responsibility again is placed on the staffing firm. 

Risk, No Reward 

Workers’ compensation usually classifies jobs by risk. This means that a staffing company should be aware of the work, tasks, and duties that a worker will be performing in order to get a good understanding of the risks that will go along with the job. The purpose of this is to ensure that the worker(s) will have the right amount of coverage. For example, a person working in a shipyard may need more coverage than a person working in an office. 

Keep the Necessary Documentation 

The premiums for a staffing company are regularly changing because of variable factors such as the number of workers and hours they work in a given period. This makes it very important for staffing firms to keep good records of where the placed employee worked, what kind of work they performed, how many hours they worked, and the rate at which they were paid. This is important because it can dictate the premium rate that the firm will have to pay. Some examples of other records that firms should be keeping are name, Social Security information, job title, date hired, date terminated, and compensation type (salary, hourly, commission). If you are looking to get a workers’ compensation policy, you may be required to produce several different documents such as business plans, financial statements, 3 or 5 year loss runs, safety policies, etc.

Workers’ compensation insurance should be a top priority for all businesses. If you would like more information on workers’ comp, read our previous blog, “How to Save Money on Workers’ Compensation Insurance.” Or, if you are about to experience a workers’ compensation audit, read our blog “Follow These Tips When Preparing for a Workers’ Compensation Audit,” to help you prepare. If you have any questions, or are interested in purchasing Workers’ Compensation Insurance, other types of business insurance, or group health insurance for your employees, please contact us at 954-828-1819 or visit us online at mhginsurance.com. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to cover your company’s risks appropriately.    

Explaining Workers’ Compensation Insurance for Staffing Firms

flag stateEver wonder why a yacht or ship had a certain flag on the back of it? Or a certain city and country under the name of the ship? No, it’s not just a flag of their favorite country, or where they are headed next. Believe it or not, those flags and countries have a significant purpose in the maritime industry. A flag state, or flag of convenience, is the state that a yacht or ship is registered or licensed under. Meaning that they have to follow the laws of that state. 

 

Why Do Yachts and Other Vessels Need a Flag State?

If there were no flag states, then who would regulate vessels traveling through the seas? Where would their jurisdiction begin and end? Typically, a vessel needs to be registered under a flag state for international voyages. It’s considered illegal to sail the seas without being registered, much like it is illegal to drive without a license, so think of flag states like the DMV in the United States, or the DVLA in the United Kingdom. 

Why Is Choosing the Right Flag State so Important? 

Choosing the right flag state is very important. There is a reason many commercial vessels register their flags offshore. It can impact how successful you are as a business, by having to follow certain employment and tax laws and other variables that can keep money from reaching your bottom line. It can also have an impact on your liability and privacy. This is why it is typical for many vessels to register offshore with a flag state that may be more “lenient” with certain laws, in order for them to make their business as successful as possible, or for owners to save as much money as possible.

Open Registry vs. Closed Registry

There are different types of registries, open and closed. Open registries allow vessel owners to be registered under their flag of convenience, and can staff a crew of many different nationalities. A closed registry is open only to vessels of that particular nation and must employ crew from that nation. 

The Most Popular Flag States 

The most popular flag state is Panama, with almost a quarter of ocean vessels registering there. Other popular flags include Liberia, Marshall Islands, Malta, Singapore, and Hong Kong. For those that are curious, the most popular flag state for yachts is the Cayman Islands, and the most popular flag state for cruise ships is the Bahamas, with many cruise lines having their ships registered there. Part of the reason yachts and cruise ships are registered in these countries is because the Cayman Islands and the Bahamas have open registries, allowing them to hire large groups of people from around the world, while not having to follow strict employment laws, like the ones that exist in the U.S. or Europe. 

Do you work onboard a yacht or cruise ship and do you have marine crew insurance? Read our blog, “5 Things You Should Know About Crew Insurance.” If you do happen to have the insurance you need, do you know that you may need to precertify to make sure you have the coverage that you thought before heading into a procedure? Read a previous blog, “What Is Precertification?” for help. For specific medical questions or emergencies you should always contact your insurance carrier directly. If you have any general questions about precertification, your current plan, or are interested in purchasing marine crew insurance, contact us at mhginsurance.com or call us at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0) 1624 678668. Our insurance specialists have the knowledge and experience to assist and guide you to the best coverage for your budget.

What Is the Purpose of a Flag State?

travel insurance claimPicture it. Sun, beach, a fruity drink in hand and a cool breeze blowing your hair. You and your partner are having the best summer vacation ever, just relaxing on an exotic island in the Caribbean, a million miles away from the daily grind and stresses of life. And BOOM! Just like that you fall and twist your ankle and have to seek medical attention. Good thing you bought travel insurance! But now what? 

 

Be Prepared 

The best way to handle a claim, is to know your insurance policy inside and out. Knowing all of the intricacies of your policy will let you know how much time you have to contact your carrier, phone numbers to call, the coverage you have, etc. Read your policy before you go on your trip, preferably at the point of purchase. 

Contact the Insurance Company ASAP 

Don’t make any assumptions when it comes to your medical coverage or the claims process. If you have an accident or become ill while you are away, contact the insurance company as soon as possible, preferably immediately. The insurance company can offer valuable travel and medical assistance services that are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. They can also help you find Western-style medical facilities, medical and dental practices and pharmacies in addition to an array of other helpful services which can be a real stress reliever especially if you are in a country that you are not familiar with and where the primary language is different to your own. 

Save All Documents 

When it comes time to filling out your claim form, you will be asked to provide backup documentation to substantiate the claim. Don’t worry if the documents are in a foreign language. Most international insurance companies can process claims in many different languages. Be sure to save all doctor reports, itemized bills, invoices and receipts so that when it comes time to claim, you will have all of your ducks in a row. Having the proper documents can be the difference of your claim being paid, or being denied. Keep in mind that all claims regarding illness or injury must be supported by a doctor.

Denied Claim 

You filled out and submitted your claim form with supporting documentation in a timely fashion and you just got the bad news that your claim has been denied. Understandably you are probably upset but instead of venting about it, file an appeal. You will be asked to write a letter as to why you think your claim should be covered and potentially may have to provide additional documentation to support your claim. The appeal process can take up to 90 days so remain patient. A good insurance broker will be able to assist you with this. 

Read our previous blog, “Most Common Travel Insurance Claims,” to help prepare you even more for the claims process. Planning a fabulous summer holiday? Read our previous blog, “Tips Everyone Should Follow When Traveling Abroad,” and don’t forget to pack your travel insurance! Not sure which plan is right for you? Speak with the insurance specialists at +1 954 828 1819 or +44 (0)1624 678668 or visit us at mhginsurance.com to help identify the right travel insurance plan for your particular situation. Have a wonderful vacation!

How to File a Travel Insurance Claim