The death of a family member or a loved one can be difficult for everyone. The last thing most people want to think of during this time is cashing in a life insurance policy. Filing a life insurance claim is easy, but you should have a few documents for that while being prepared for any obstacles on your way. Here is a look at a few tips to help you file a claim and get the death benefit.
The first step in filing a claim is substantiating your claim by having crucial documents, including a copy of the life insurance policy and a death certificate of the insurer. Providing these two documents will accelerate the payout process and make things go much smoother than if you had to track down the policy through your state's Board of Insurance. If possible, try to have a copy of the deceased's will on hand as well. This will help clear any questions about the beneficiary. The entire process can often be completed online and doesn’t take more than a week to about 30 days.
In most cases, the claim process will go smoothly, and you won't experience any questions or delays. When delays do occur, it usually involves a question about the manner of death, or someone may come forward saying they have a right to the insurance policy or estate. While an insurer can tell you if you aren’t the beneficiary, they aren’t obligated to tell you who is. Determining the identity of the beneficiary would need legal action. You may not be successful in this endeavor unless you have substantial proof that the proper procedure wasn’t followed, the beneficiary change was done under duress, or it was conducted due to fraud, forgery, undue influence, etc. If you have the original policy and the death certificate, the burden of proof will fall on them to provide stronger substantiation. Besides someone challenging you as the beneficiary, the biggest obstacle you may face is waiting for the coroner's report after the autopsy has been performed.
Once the claim has been filed and approved, the next step is determining how you will receive the payout. You have multiple options to choose from. You can choose a lump sum option where you receive all of the payouts at once. You can establish an access account where the money will draw interest, and you can tap into it whenever you need it. Finally, you have the option to take the payout in annual installments. This type of account works much like an annuity. How you receive the payout is up to you. Many people will choose to save it to have the money for future expenses. Without the deceased's income, they may not have any other way to make their bills and monthly payments.
Facing the death of a loved one can be extremely painful, and filing a life insurance claim may be too much to take on by yourself at that time. At Fuller Insurance Agency, we offer comprehensive life insurance policies to protect your loved ones. We also guide you through the claim filing process and get things done within a short period to help you get the payout sooner. If you have any questions about the life insurance policy or claim filing process, contact our insurance experts at Fuller Insurance Agency.