There are many reasons for buying life insurance of people, but there’s one thing about every policyholder has in common. Should they die during the policy is in impact, they want to gives financial protection for their loved ones. But how to file a life insurance death claim.
If you’re a life insurance beneficiary, you participate in this promise of financial protection. But it’s not as simple as waiting for the policy’s death benefit to drop into your bank account. Even as you procedure the loss, plan for a funeral or celebration of life, and probably helps settle your loved one’s financial affairs, you must make a life insurance claim. Else, you might not get paid. So learn how to make a life insurance claim and avoid common pitfalls along the way.
How to File a Life Insurance Death Claim
Four-step process is Filing a life insurance claim. Under normal situations, expect to wait up to 30 days for the life insurance company to process the claim. Thereafter, you’ll get the death benefit, a request for additional information, or a clarification of why the insurer denied the claim.
1. Collect the Necessary Documents For
A Certified Copy of the Death
At first, get a copy of the policyholder’s death certificate. You may require death certificates for different reasons as you work for settle the deceased’s financial affairs, so ask for more copies while you’re at it.
You can acquire the death certificate from the person or organization that confirmed the policyholder’s death. How and where they died, depending on that could be the funeral director, a local medical examiner, or the medical employees who confirmed their death. If no one of these parties has the death certificate, request it from the vital records office in the county or city where they died.
This official document duration out how the life insurance policy distributes death benefits. It need include:
Documents Required For Life Insurance Claim Guide
- The policy number
- The policyholder’s name
- The named insured’s name if different from the policyholder — this is the person whose triggered the death benefit payment
- The death benefit amount
- The policy’s beneficiaries
If you have access for any online account the deceased had with the life insurance company, you may find the policy document there. Otherwise, try:
- Looking for a printed version in deceased’s financial records
- Consult the life insurance company
- Consult the deceased’s financial advisor
- Contact the state insurance department
If you’re still stocked, the Insurance Information Institute has additional advice for locating a lost life insurance policy.
Claim Form of The Life Insurance Company
The claim form is how you are applying for life insurance benefits. Also known as a request for benefits, it asks to basic information about the life insurance policy, policyholder, and beneficiaries:
- The policy number
- The cause of death as filed on the death certificate
- Your name and the names of any other beneficiaries
- Your relationship to the deceased
- How you’d like to get the death benefit
Looking for the claim form on the life insurance company’s website or with the paper copy of the policy. Call the insurance company if you’re having difficulty finding it online.
2. Communicate with the Insurance Company & File the Claim
Once you have all the essential information in hand, contact the insurer’s claims department and file your claim.
Search Claims or File a Claim on the company’s website. You should be able to download the claim form and another required document. If the insurer assists you to file claims online, you can be able to file the claim form electronically, upload the death certificate, and submit the claim.
If the insurer cannot allow online claims, print and complete the claim form. After that, send it to the claims processing address along with the death certificate and any supplemental information required by the insurer. The claim form should show around the processing address.
3. Wait for the Response
The claims department needs to inspect that the company is obligated to pay the death benefit. Need it to:
- Confirm the policyholder was exist on premium payments when they died
- Confirm the policy was not canceled by policyholder before they died
- Confirm if the policy was a term life product coverage, that term hadn’t expired
- Confirm the policyholder’s death wasn’t excluded — for instance, that they didn’t passed away by suicide during the first two years.
- Prove you’re a named beneficiary on the policy
If everything is on the up and up, this whole process could take just some business days. At that time, the insurer notifies you that the approves the claim and advice you to choose how you want the death benefit.
If there’s any unreliability about whether the policy is valid or If you’re not able to receive the death benefit, several weeks could go by before you hear anything.
This processing to takes longer if the policyholder passed away during the first two years of the policy, known as the questionability period. Throughout the contestability period, insurance companies inspect life insurance applications for evidence of fraud — a process that can take weeks.
Depending on how its investigation proceeds, the insurance company might need extra information before approving or denying the claim. To reduce delays, respond immediately to any information requests.
One of the most persevering myths about life insurance is that it’s difficult for beneficiaries to get their claims approved.
The opposite is the closest to the truth. Citing data from the American Council of Life Insurers, Money reports that life insurers deny fewer than 1 in 200 claims. That’s a success rate of 99.5%.
Still, a life insurance claim approved isn’t automatic. You need to indorse you’re really eligible for a payout, provide all essential documentation, and respond instantly to the insurer’s requests for additional information. If insurer denies your claim, you must to decide whether you should appeal.
It’s worth the effort. for file a claim as a life insurance beneficiary make sure your loved one makes good on the promise they made years ago — that their death wouldn’t make a new financial burden for you.
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