Why You Need an Experienced Life Insurance Lawyer By Your Side in Illinois
If you have recently lost a loved one, dealing with their life insurance company is probably the last thing you need, and all too frequently, filing a claim for death benefits isn’t as straightforward as it should be.
If you’ve filed your life insurance claim and your payout is being delayed or your life insurance claim was denied, contact us right away. We know all of the reasons the life insurance companies try to use to unfairly delay or deny claims, and we will help you fight back.
Boonswang Law has served beneficiary clients throughout Illinois with a dedicated team of life insurance lawyers. We’ve helped life insurance beneficiaries who live in and near the following cities in Illinois:
- Arlington Heights
Common Reasons Life Insurance Claims Denied in Illinois
You might assume that when someone purchases a life insurance policy, their beneficiaries will automatically receive death benefits when they die. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Life insurance companies frequently use the following reasons to initially refuse to pay beneficiaries’ claims for death benefits, often unfairly.
Insufficient Proof of Death
A life insurance company requires official proof of the death of the insured in order to process a claim for death benefits. Typically, life insurance companies accept proof of death in the form of a certified death certificate, an obituary, or a bill from the funeral home. If the policyholder died overseas, sometimes a foreign death certificate is not enough. If your claim has been denied for this reason, contact us–we can help you.
Lapse or Termination of the Life Insurance Policy
Life insurance policies generally require that a premium is paid each month in order to maintain coverage. If the policyholder fails to pay premiums, coverage can lapse, resulting in any subsequent claims for death benefits being denied.
Sometimes lapse in coverage is not the fault of the insured. If your claim was denied due to policy lapse or termination, call us. We may be able to help you get paid.
Policy Exclusion Applies to Cause of Death
All life insurance policies list exclusions from coverage, and each policy is different. Examples of common exclusions from coverage include suicide and acts of war or terrorism. If the policyholder’s death circumstances are excluded from the policy, the life insurance company will refuse to pay death benefits.
If your claim for death benefits was denied because an exclusion allegedly applies to the cause of death, give us a call. A life insurance attorneys can help you understand what is excluded or covered in a policy.
Life Insurance Fraud
Life insurance fraud occurs in several different ways. The life insurance company may allege that the insured faked their death, or that the beneficiary killed the insured in order to collect death benefits, or that a change in beneficiary designation at the last minute was done through coercion or duress.
Not only will fraud cause claims to be denied, but the persons responsible for the fraud could face serious legal consequences.
READY TO TALK TO AN ATTORNEY ABOUT YOUR LIFE INSURANCE BENEFITS?
What You Can Expect When You Hire an Experienced Illinois Life Insurance Lawyer
If you’ve never worked with a life insurance lawyer in IL, know that there are several benefits to hiring Boonswang Law instead of trying to handle your life insurance claim on your own. Below are some of the many ways we can and will assist you with your claim:
- We handle all correspondence and communications with the life insurance company
- We keep you in the loop as to developments in processing your claim
- We review the terms of the policy and explain coverage and exclusions
- We investigate why your claim has been denied or delayed
- We investigate the cause of death of the insured and whether the denial reason used applies
- We follow up on any delayed payouts
- We settle disputes over incorrect payout amounts
The fact is that life insurance companies only make money for their shareholders when they DON’T pay claims. Yes, life insurance companies have the incentive to cite any possibly-applicable reason to delay or deny your claim. For this reason, many valid claims are unfairly denied or payout is unfairly delayed. We will help you fight back and get paid.
Frequently Asked Questions About Illinois Life Insurance Claims
MY LIFE INSURANCE CLAIM WAS DENIED, WHAT DO I DO?
You can contest the claim denial.
If your life insurance claim was denied, the life insurance company will send you an explanation letter listing the reason or reasons they will not pay your claim. In many instances, those reasons are insufficient or do not actually apply. An experienced IL life insurance lawyer can assist you in disputing a denied claim. Call us – we know how to navigate the situation to improve your chances of getting the money you deserve.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GET A LIFE INSURANCE CLAIM PAID IN IL?
It usually takes a life insurance company 30-60 days to process a claim for death benefits.
Try to file your claim as soon after the insured’s death as possible to expedite processing. Working with an IL life insurance lawyer can ensure that your claim is filed timely and correctly and that the process goes as smoothly as possible.
HOW DO I KNOW WHETHER SOMEONE HAD A LIFE INSURANCE POLICY?
Unfortunately, there is no nationwide database that lists every single life insurance policyholder. If you believe that a loved one may have had a life insurance policy, investigate by contacting their employer to ask about benefits, looking through their paperwork for life insurance documents, and reviewing their bank statements for evidence of life insurance premium payments.
CAN I SHARE LIFE INSURANCE BENEFITS WITH MY SIBLINGS?
Sure! There are no rules against a beneficiary sharing the death benefits with their siblings if the insured listed only one of their children as the beneficiary.
CAN THE BENEFICIARY DESIGNATION BE CONTESTED?
Yes, if there is suspicion that the change was made fraudulently or under duress, or if the change was made in defiance of a court order.
Everyone may change life insurance beneficiaries while they are alive as long as they are of sound mind and not under duress, and not subject to a court order.
CAN A SPOUSE OR FORMER SPOUSE CONTEST A LIFE INSURANCE POLICY?
Yes. There can be some confusion over who is entitled to what when an insured gets divorced or remarried because state law varies. An experienced life insurance lawyer can help you understand your rights as the deceased’s spouse or former spouse.
CAN I STILL RECEIVE DEATH BENEFITS IF THE INSURANCE POLICY HAS LAPSED?
Maybe. It depends on the circumstances causing the lapse or termination of the policy.
If the lapse was not the fault of the insured, you may still receive death benefits. Examples of this include when the insured does not receive the required notices and when the insured is not given the conversion forms by their employer. Every situation is different, so it’s best to talk to an Illinois life insurance lawyer so they can directly address the specific policy in question.
CAN A LIFE INSURANCE BENEFICIARY DESIGNATION BE CHANGED AFTER THE INSURED’S DEATH?
No. The policyholder generally is the only person who can make changes to the policy. Any paperwork showing that the beneficiary has been changed after the insured’s death is fraudulent. Contact Boonswang Law immediately if you believe that someone is attempting to scam you out of your death benefits.
WHAT DO I DO IF MY CLAIM WAS DENIED DUE TO MISREPRESENTATION?
Give us a call–we can help.
Alleged misrepresentation on the part of the insured is a common reason life insurance companies use to deny otherwise valid life insurance claims. We have gotten beneficiaries paid in cases where it was an honest mistake on the part of the insured, there is no evidence of the intent to deceive, and the cause of death had nothing to do with the alleged misrepresentation.