How Long Does it Take to Get a Life Insurance Payout?
You filed your life insurance claim – how long should you expect to wait to get your payout? What happens when a life insurance payout is delayed? Find out here.
If you feel you’ve waited too long for your life insurance claim to be paid, contact us for your free, no-obligation case consultation. We take cases on contingency, which means we do not get paid unless and until you do. Our goal is to get you the payout your loved one intended.
Are You a Life Insurance Beneficiary?
In order to receive death benefits, you must be a named beneficiary on a life insurance policy. The insured will have designated you and perhaps others as primary beneficiaries or as secondary or contingent beneficiaries.
An insured can name anyone they wish as their beneficiary, including friends, relatives, their spouse or ex-spouse, business partners, and charities or other organizations. The insured can allocate percentages of the death benefits to be shared, or can designate equal distribution among all beneficiaries.
An insured has the power to change beneficiary designations at any time, as long as they are of sound mind. Problems occur when an insured fails to follow procedure or fails to complete an intended beneficiary change, casting doubt upon who is the intended beneficiary and perhaps causing a beneficiary dispute or beneficiary contest.
If you believe you should have been a beneficiary to a life insurance policy, but for some reason you are not, or if you were a life insurance beneficiary but you suspect the beneficiary designation was changed fraudulently or under duress, call us. Beneficiary disputes are notoriously difficult to win when you are not the named beneficiary. Having an experienced life insurance lawyer will improve your chances of prevailing and getting the payout your loved one intended.
Have You Filed Your Claim for Death Benefits?
If you are a life insurance beneficiary, you must file a claim when the insured dies. You will not receive a payout automatically. The life insurance company will require a completed claims form as well as other documentation such as a death certificate.
Often payouts are delayed because there is a delay in obtaining the death certificate. If you are still waiting to receive a death certificate, you can begin the claims process by calling the life insurance company and speaking with a claims representative. Know that the life insurance company will not process your claim until they receive proof of death.
Once you have submitted your claims form and the required documentation, the life insurance company should process and pay your claim within thirty to sixty days.
Reasons Why Life Insurance Claims Are Delayed
There are several circumstances under which a life insurance company will delay payout. If, however, the delay is unreasonable the life insurance company may owe you interest on the death benefits. Call us if your life insurance payout is delayed – we can help you get paid.
The Insured Died Overseas
If the insured died while traveling abroad, your life insurance payout will be delayed until the life insurance company obtains sufficient proof of death. It is your responsibility to provide that proof. Unfortunately, foreign death certificates are often missing information the life insurance requires and getting that information can be difficult.
We have helped many beneficiaries obtain the proof of death they need to complete their claim for death benefits. Call us for help if the life insurance company is delaying payment of your claim because of insufficient proof of death.
The Insured May Have Died from Self-Inflicted Injuries
If the cause of death looks like suicide and suicide is excluded from coverage, the life insurance company will delay and perhaps deny your claim, initially. It will be your responsibility to investigate and show that the death was not a suicide.
Many causes of death look like suicide but are later proven to be accidental, such as:
Autoerotic self asphyxiation
Accidental drug overdose
Prescription drug interactions
We have helped many beneficiary clients show that the insured’s death was not self-inflicted, or that the insured did not intend to kill themselves. Call us if your claim is being delayed or was denied because the insured allegedly died from self-inflicted injuries.
The Insured Died During the Two-Year Contestability Period
The first two years following the purchase of a life insurance policy is called the Contestability Period. During this time, the life insurance company has the power to investigate the insured’s application and medical questionnaire and deny claims for death benefits if they find errors or omissions. This investigation will delay your payout.
The Insured Was Murdered
If the insured’s death was a homicide and you are a suspect, your payout will be delayed until the police investigation is complete. If you are not a suspect, the life insurance company will require a statement from the police confirming that. This is to ensure that the perpetrator is not a beneficiary of the insured’s life insurance policy.
A Beneficiary Cannot Be Found
If you are a co-beneficiary or a secondary beneficiary to a life insurance policy, and the primary or other beneficiary cannot be found, the life insurance company will delay your payout until they find that beneficiary or determine that the missing beneficiary predeceased the insured.
There Is a Beneficiary Dispute
If someone contests your designation as beneficiary, your payout will be delayed until the outcome of that dispute is decided by the courts. A life insurance beneficiary dispute can take months or years to resolve.
Unreasonable Delay May Earn You Interest on the Death Benefits
If your claim for death benefits has been pending for more than thirty days, whether you have heard from the life insurance company or not, contact our experienced life insurance beneficiary attorneys for help. We have helped beneficiaries nationwide get paid with interest when their life insurance payout was unreasonably delayed.
Call today at 1-855-898-4158 to discuss your case during your free, no-obligation consultation.