If you have recently lost a loved one, you’re likely going through a myriad of emotions. If they were sick, you may be experiencing feelings of relief. If it was sudden, you’re likely in shock. No matter the circumstances, losing a loved one is never easy. If they had life insurance, they likely purchased the policy to protect those they left behind. If you suspect that you may be the beneficiary of a life insurance policy but have few additional details, it’s up to you to collect your rightful life insurance benefits.
How Life Insurance Claims Work
Life insurance claims are paid out to the named beneficiaries once the national social security database has been updated to indicate the policy holder is, in fact, deceased. This typically happens a few days after the death certificate is issued. Then, there are a few steps that must be completed by the beneficiary to claim life insurance benefits. If you are the named beneficiary, it is up to you to contact the life insurance carrier and begin the claim process.
Not sure which carrier issued the policy? This is a very common occurrence. Each year there are billions of dollars of unpaid life insurance benefits in the United States. This is precisely why it’s important for the insured to share the details of their policy with their beneficiaries. If your loved one did not share this information with you, there are several steps you can take:
- Contact the deceased’s former employer and inquire about possible policies
- Review the final will and testament, you may very well find information there
- Review bank and credit card activity, if they have been making regular premium payments you may be able to identify the carrier within the financial statements
- Contact the financial advisor, he or she may very well have helped your loved one purchase the policy
By taking these simple steps, you will very likely determine if there is a policy in your name. Recent changes in industry policies have life insurance carriers now charged with the task of contacting beneficiaries when possible. If, for any reason, your contact information has changed, or was submitted improperly, it can be close to impossible for carriers to reach you. This is precisely why we encourage consumers to take action and begin the claim process as quickly as possible.
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