Losing a loved one can be a traumatic experience. However, in many cases, the deceased loved one has a life insurance policy that must be claimed. Failing to make a life insurance claim is surprisingly common. In fact, there is around $1 billion in life insurance benefits that haven't been claimed by beneficiaries. While making a claim is the last thing on many people's minds, it's something that should be done fairly quickly. Here are three things to know about filing a life insurance claim.
File The Appropriate Paperwork
The first thing that any recipient of a life insurance policy should do is gather the necessary paperwork. It's important to take a look at the policy itself and then contact the deceased's insurance agent or the insurance company itself in order to obtain the paperwork. In addition to filling out forms from the insurance company, it's likely that multiple copies of the death certificate will also be required. Once the appropriated paperwork is filed, the insurance company will decide whether to accept or to deny the life insurance claim.
Payouts Are Usually Quick
Once the paperwork is filled out and the claim is accepted, the payout for the policy is usually fairly quick. Depending on the policy, most beneficiaries have the choice between a lump sum and installments. Those who choose a lump sum can expect a payout within two weeks, while it can take 30 to 45 days for the first installment to go through. If the paperwork is not filled out correctly or there is some other issue, the claim may be delayed or denied. In this case, it can take a few months or even years to receive the payout from the policy.
A Lawyer May Be Needed
Having a life insurance claim be delayed or denied can be a stressful experience. In many cases, it's simply a small mistake that has led to a holdup in the payout of the policy. If a claim has been delayed or denied, hiring a lawyer to deal with the insurance company is a must. A lawyer that is experienced and well versed in insurance law can ensure that the beneficiary gets the benefits that they deserve. The cost of a lawyer can vary. However, many lawyers work on contingency for these types of cases. Contact a lawyer like Scott E. Shaffman Attorney At Law to learn more.
Filing a life insurance claim can be difficult following the loss of a loved one. Filing the appropriate paperwork as soon as possible is a must. After a claim is accepted, payout is usually prompt. However, if a claim is delayed or denied, the services of a lawyer may be required.