No matter how old your life insurance policy is, your beneficiaries can claim a life insurance payout on a policy that’s in force. To access the death benefit, the following steps need to be taken:
|Get a certified copy of the death certificate||The deceased person’s named beneficiaries must have a certified copy of the death certificate, which shows the date, time, and location of death, as well as the cause of death.|
|Contact the insurance company||The beneficiaries must contact the claims department of the insurance company to get the death claim paperwork. If they don’t have a physical copy but know the name of the company, they can call the 800 number listed on their website to ask about filing a claim.|
|Complete the death claim||The insurance company requires the policy’s beneficiary to complete a death claim. The company has 30 days to review the claim. During this time, they can submit additional questions, deny the claim, or pay the claim. If the cause of death is suicide or the insured person misrepresented facts in their insurance application, the claim may be denied by the insurance company.|
|Receive the death benefit||If a life insurance policy is in force, the beneficiaries named in the policy should receive the full amount of the death benefit (minus any loans against the policy), regardless of how long the policy existed before the insured person died. This is true whether the insured person has a term or permanent life insurance policy. While a lump-sum payment of the death benefit is the most common option chosen by most beneficiaries, many life insurance companies offer other options, like annuities and installments. With these options, regular payments may go to the beneficiaries throughout their lifetime, providing financial security.|
If the insured person dies within two years of initiating a life insurance policy, the company may invoke a contestability clause, giving them extra time to investigate the claim. They will look at the claim carefully to make sure it’s not a case of insurance fraud. If the cause of death is listed as a homicide, the insurance company will likely work with the police department to confirm that the beneficiary is not a suspect.
Life insurance offers long-term financial planning and peace of mind for policyholders. To make the claims process go smoothly, make sure all paperwork is filled out accurately and completely and ask for help from the insurance company representative when necessary.
- Bankrate. What Happens If The Insured Dies Just After Buying Life ...
- Time Inc.. Unclaimed Life Insurance Benefits
- Life Insurance Law. What Happens When Term Life Insurance Expires?
- The Zebra. Claiming On Someone'S Life Insurance After They'Ve Died
- Kaiser Family Foundation. Life Insurance Guide