Claiming on Life Insurance Policies
Yes, you may claim more than one life insurance policy.
If you are designated as a beneficiary on more than one policy, you may make a claim on each policy that names you as a beneficiary.
In order to make a claim on life insurance you must be a beneficiary listed in the policy.
When someone buys life insurance they are required to name a person(s) as beneficiary. That person or persons receive the death benefit upon the passing of the insured person.
For example, if your spouse bought life insurance on you, and you died, your spouse being listed as beneficiary in your policy would make a claim for death benefits from your insurance.
What is a Life Insurance Claim?
A claim is a request by a beneficiary for indemnification by an insurance company for loss incurred from an insured peril; such as, death of the insured of a life insurance policy.
With life insurance, if the person insured by the policy dies, the beneficiary makes a claim for payment of the death benefit.
How to Make a Claim?
There is a Claim Provision stated in the life insurance contract.
This is a clause in the policy that describes the administration and submission of claims procedure. It tells you how to make a claim on the policy.
Common Steps for Beneficiary Claim on Life Insurance:
It may take up to 2 weeks to get the check once the insurer has all necessary paperwork for the claim.
Who Can Make a Claim on Life Insurance?
The only parties who can claim a life insurance policy would be the people listed in the policy as beneficiary.
Or, if the beneficiaries are all dead when the insured person passes away, the next closest living relative, or the estate of the person insured may be able to make a claim on the policy.
Most life insurance policies specify the beneficiaries of the death benefit proceeds, and include a list of the beneficiaries in the actual written contract.
Beneficiaries are named by the owner of the policy, and can be any person, place, or thing.
The owner of the policy is usually the insured person, but can also be any person or organization with an insurable interest in the person who is insured by the policy.
The named beneficiaries can be changed by the owner of the policy.
Some types of life insurance are designed to pay the death benefits to a funeral home as the beneficiary.
This type of policy is known as a final expense policy, and is sometimes referred to as funeral insurance or burial insurance.
When the insured passes away, the named funeral parlor or director will claim the policy death benefit and use the proceeds to cover the cost of your funeral and interment, whether it is cremation or a traditional burial plot.
In some cases, your employer company can buy life insurance on you, naming the company as beneficiary of the policy.
The company must have an insurable interest in you, such as losing a key employee, where the loss of the employee would cause financial hardship on the company.
For example, a company that would suffer from your loss or even go out of business might take out a life insurance policy on you.
The proceeds from the life insurance would help to offset the potential financial loss to the company due to your passing.
Named beneficiaries can be anyone the owner of the policy chooses, but is usually someone who will suffer from your loss, such as a family member or a close personal friend.
However, the owner of the policy has the discretion of naming any beneficiaries, and might name a pet, a property, or an organization rather than a person or persons.
Where the beneficiary is not able to claim the proceeds personally, the caretaker or legal representative would be the claimant. Or the legal guardian of a minor child who is named as beneficiary, if there is no trust set up.
If no beneficiary is named in the policy, or all named beneficiaries are deceased prior to the death of the insured, the next closest relative is usually the person to claim the policy.
This could be a widow or children, and may include domestic partners under some state laws.
Claimants of this type have more difficulty with settling the policy and may be subject to legal disputes, making this the least favorable way to make a claim on life insurance.
How Many Life Insurance Claims Can You Make?
You are eligible to make a claim on any and all life insurance policies listing you as a beneficiary.
Example: A husband has a term life insurance policy and a permanent life insurance policy, both name his wife as the beneficiary.
Upon the death of the husband, the wife could make a claim on both policies, because she is the named beneficiary in each policy.
Who is a Beneficiary?
Beneficiary is a designation by the owner of a life insurance policy indicating to whom the proceeds are to be paid upon the insured’s death or when an endowment matures.
Anyone can be named a beneficiary (relative, non-relative, pet, charity, corporation, trustee, partnership)
The owner of a life insurance policy can name anyone they choose to be beneficiary of their policy.
Common Beneficiaries Listed in a Policy:
A primary beneficiary is the first-named beneficiary, who must survive the death of the insured in order to collect the proceeds.
Contingent or Secondary Beneficiary
A contingent or secondary beneficiary will receive the proceeds if the primary beneficiary does not survive the insured.
A revocable beneficiary (primary or secondary) can be changed by the policy owner at any time.
An irrevocable beneficiary (primary or secondary) can be changed by the policy owner only with the written permission of that beneficiary.
NOTE: If a beneficiary is convicted of murdering the insured person, the beneficiary cannot collect the death benefit. The insured’s estate would receive the benefit.
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