A catastrophe adjuster, also known as an insurance adjuster, is responsible for inspecting property damages following a man made or natural disaster. His or her job is to establish a fair and fast claims settlement with an insurance policy holder. This is done through direct, physical inspection of the damaged property.
Catastrophe adjuster jobs are continually growing. Insured property damages following an earthquake, tornado, fire, flood, or other disaster all require an assessment by a claims adjuster. Many opportunities exist in this field. Some of these include public catastrophe claims adjuster positions, independent catastrophe insurance adjuster jobs, and staff adjusters within private businesses.
Claims adjusters who specialize in catastrophes should be prepared to perform a variety of physical tasks. These may include climbing ladders, inspecting unsafe or hazardous materials, and working in unstable conditions, such as in homes that have burned or floods. A catastrophe adjuster should strive to maintain an optimal physical fitness level in order to carry out these tasks well.
Several tools may be used by the average catastrophe adjuster. A laptop computer is generally needed in order to access and transmit information quickly while at the site of a catastrophe. Other tools might include a calculator, ladder, specialized software, and measuring tape, along with any necessary paperwork, and a vehicle.
Various backgrounds can come in handy for this job. Many catastrophe adjusters have worked in contracting, construction, or home inspections. Some may have done work in home appraisals as well. Without these backgrounds, additional catastrophe adjuster training may be required prior to working in the field. Adjusters require a strong foundation in the components of building structure and design.
Skills needed in a catastrophe adjuster position include a proficiency in mathematics, interpersonal communication skills, technical knowledge, and computer skills. Most adjusters travel frequently as well. Those who do not wish to travel may be able to work as staff adjusters for less pay.
An education program for a catastrophe adjuster includes a high school diploma and course work in insurance adjusting. These courses may completed at a university or within a company's training program, which is usually completed within two weeks. These courses typically cost the student money rather than the company. Online courses are available. A specialized license will also be required per individual state laws.
Like many business people, catastrophe adjusters should maintain a professional wardrobe. A polo or button up shirt coupled with khaki trousers usually works for this purpose. Several professional societies, organizations, and clubs are available for interested adjusters who wish to join.