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Virtual appraisal solution helps settle auto claims fast

October 22, 2019

Commercial auto insurance customers can get repair estimates and payments without waiting for an in-person damage assessment.

car wreck cellphone

Zurich North America has incorporated the use of a virtual appraisal solution into its auto claims process, allowing customers to more quickly resolve auto physical damage claims.

Chicago-based Snapsheet is providing the technology behind this innovative new approach to claims.

The solution is available to Zurich property insurance customers. Here’s how it works:

  • When a customer’s vehicle is involved in a traffic accident, the customer takes photos of the damage to their own vehicle and of any third-party vehicles for which the customer may be liable.
  • The photos are submitted electronically to Snapsheet via its photo capture solution.
  • Then, licensed and experienced appraisers complete a Zurich-approved repair estimate, without having to meet with the driver or visit the repair facility.
  • Finally, the virtual appraisal is submitted, and Zurich issues a claims payment.
  • The customer can then take the vehicle to a repair facility of their choice.

“Building and maintaining strong relationships with innovation partners, like Snapsheet, help us enhance our service to customers,” said Sumeet Bhatia, head of Innovation for Zurich North America. “Adopting this virtual appraisal solution means our customers get paid faster and spend less time navigating the claims process.”

Zurich began looking for a solution to simplify the auto claims process in 2018. A six-month pilot of Snapsheet’s virtual appraisal solution provided key insights indicating the technology, workflow and expertise held promise to provide a more simplified process for Zurich customers.

“The pilot results demonstrated that virtual auto physical damage appraisals can result in faster claims processing and that the appraisals it produced were just as accurate as traditional in-person assessments, when done correctly,” said Eileen Neugebauer, Head of Claims Liability, Zurich North America.

John Shane, Senior Vice President of Liability, Specialties, Environmental Claims and Staff Legal Services, Zurich North America, said customers will benefit the most from virtual appraisals.

“Filing and managing claims can be a daunting and time-consuming process for customers," he said. “We believe this service lessens that burden by offering a more direct, user-friendly experience that begins at notification and continues through the life of the claim.”