Missing or Lost Life Insurance Policies

Unfortunately it’s not an uncommon story; someone pays the required premiums on a life insurance policy for years and neglects, or forgets, to give the policy, or any information about the policy, to the intended beneficiary. The insured person passes, the policy documents can’t be found, if the beneficiary even knows about it, and the insurance money is never paid out. And those unpaid life insurance dollars run into the billions!

If you think that this is not happening, and you are the beneficiary on a loved one’s life insurance policy, just ask yourself these few simple questions:

1. Do you know the details of the policy?

2. Do you know the whereabouts of the policy?

3. If something happened today, would you know where to find the details?

If you answered, “no,” to any of these questions you’ve got big gaps in your knowledge which could lead to a real financial tragedy.

Further, if you even suspect that you may be a beneficiary, get the details now. Waiting until it’s too late to talk about it can, in addition to the grief caused by the passing of a loved one, cause severe financial hardship. These subjects, we know, are difficult ones to talk about. But to avoid the difficulties of not knowing, THEY MUSTBE TALKED ABOUT.

If, however, you have lost a loved one and are experiencing the difficulty of not knowing, there are some things that you can do. A few of them follow:

1. Go through your loved one’s financial documents for insurance company dividends or premium notices. Many people keep all their important documents in one place; often in a home office, a bedroom closet, or a safe deposit box at their bank.

2. Scan through their current and past checkbooks. It may be that the last premium is paid is recorded there.

3. Check your loved one’s cell phone contact lists and computer email addresses for the name of an insurance agent.

4. Get in touch with the current and/or previous employer who may have a record of a group policy. If your loved one was retired, group coverage may have been converted to individual coverage.

5. Monitor your loved one’s snail mail for a year. Watch for any correspondence from an insurance company.

6. If your loved one’s passing occurred some years ago, you can also check with unclaimed property office of any state where he/she may have lived. If an insurance company is aware of the passing of a policy holder but is unable to locate the beneficiary, after a period of time it has to turn the proceeds over to the state where policy was issued.

Finding a lost or misplaced life insurance policy can be a daunting task but there are ways… and your patience in searching could prove very rewarding. Also, there are services that will, for a fee, assist you in your search. http://www.LostPolicy.com is one such service. Insurance companies are not only willing to give the beneficiary their rightful due, they are obligated to. But it is the responsibility of survivors to make the required notifications and claim any proceeds.

Strategies For Finding Missing Life Insurance Policies

If you have anyone depending on you, life insurance is of paramount importance to ensure their financial safety. Once you have purchased a suitable life insurance policy all the beneficiary needs to do in order to collect the payment, is to give a legitimate copy of the insured person’s death certificate to the insurance company. However, if the policy has been mislaid and cannot be found, how does one go about claiming the money?

How to find a missing policy

As there is no Company nationwide that can assist you in finding the policy, you will have to look yourself. While it may be a cause of some consternation, finding it will ultimately bring about a substantial reward.

Here are nine ways of finding a life insurance policy that has been lost:

I: The deceased probably has files that may contain bank account records, documents, or receipts that are proof of a transaction with the insurance company.
II: Contact people who had business dealings with the insured, perhaps they had a business partner whom they trusted implicitly, or a lawyer who handled all their affairs. These people could provide you with the valuable information you need.
III: The insured may have been prudent enough to buy more than one type of life insurance policy, and could have been content enough with an insurance company to continue doing business with them. Finding any such records will simplify the recovery of the policy.
IV: A company’s HR department would have records of any group policy bought by the deceased, so find and contact their past employers.
V: Some life insurance policies pay expenses, and allow interest income to be earned, so have a look for previous income tax forms.
VI: For twelve months after death, the insurance company will issue premium notices or else a yearly statement regarding policy status will be posted to them. With this in mind, take a special interest in the deceased person’s mail for clues.
VII: Each state has a department of insurance, which is often used by companies trying to find beneficiaries of a life insurance policy. This is because the state department may have the requisite information to find the name of the insurance company used by an individual. Contact this department, and they may help you find what you are looking for.
VIII: In the event of a beneficiary not being found within three to five years, an insurance company may decide to give the state the proceeds for safety. If this is the case, a call to the unclaimed property office of the state could prove fruitful.
IX: When the deceased initially applied for life insurance, they would have to have undergone medical testing. The Medical Information Bureau (MIB) may have information on their database pertaining to the insurance company the deceased was insured with.

Time and Payments

There is no time limit when it comes to claiming on life insurance, yet astonishingly, it is claimed that one-quarter of all policies go unclaimed.Yes, even if a policy is discovered thirty years after the policy holder’s death, it can still be claimed, as long as there are no suspicious circumstances surrounding their death, and all premiums were paid.

If the policy holder dies suddenly, and results in the insurance policy being rendered null and void because the premiums were not paid, the company will always try to contact them to find out the reason. At this stage, the beneficiary can make it known that the policy holder is in fact, deceased. Upon producing a valid death certificate, the beneficiary is legally entitled to every cent due by the terms of the policy.

If the policy holder passes away with no one to claim the money however, the insurance company can either turn it over to the state for safekeeping as already outlined, or hold on to the money until the beneficiary becomes aware of the situation and claims it. No matter what, that money stays available until it is found.

The end result

It is often difficult to locate a missing life insurance policy, especially if it has been gone for a long time. It will take time and effort, but, invariably, putting in the hard yards and finding it will justify every second you spent in pursuit.

What to Do When Your Life Insurance Policy is Missing

Having a life insurance can be a protection that you can give to your loved ones in the future if they are the chosen beneficiaries. But it can also be good to know if you have become a beneficiary of one of your relatives of family members. But there can be a problem in a situation where your relative dies and then you found out that you are one of the beneficiaries but the insurance policy is missing! Don’t panic because there are ways on how you can still claim your benefits even when the policy is lost.

Finding the life insurance policy in the future will still entitle you of the benefits that the insurance policy can give. There are many ways on how you can get the benefits when the insurance policy is nowhere to be found.

First, you have to look through the checks that have been canceled or you can also go to the bank where your relative policyholder draws his or her checks. Make a request asking for the old checks drawn by the policyholder and find out if there are some drawn for the insurance company. Next, you can ask the lawyer of your relative or the insurance agent and the accountant that may give you the ample information that you need. Another thing to do is to call the boss of your relative in a company where he worked and ask if they ever purchased a group life insurance for the workers of the company.

Beneficiaries Of Lost Life Insurance Policies Can Really Use The Money

It is just a shame that money owed to some beneficiaries of lost insurance policies never get to them during their lifetimes. I spoke with some representatives of insurance companies, to see how many, on a daily basis, get phone calls from the public, asking them to search their database for insurance policies. I had one company say 100’s a day. I had another company tell me 1000’s a day and they even elaborated that it was a total waste of the consumer’s time as well as resources and man power of his company. He said that they will never find it if they do not know which company their loved one bought it from. Well, I took this opportunity to explain the need of a central life insurance database to him; telling him that it is a safe and a much needed service. He listened to me for around 10 minutes while I explained the many benefits a central database could have to his insurance customers. Even with him telling me that it was a waste of time for anyone calling his company, he did not want anything to do with the thought of a database. He flatly told me that he did not feel a database was a benefit to his customers, I was surprised.

Now as a insurance agent myself, I took offense to this comment. Isn’t it the responsibility of the agent (regardless of the company they work for) to do what is best for the customer? Don’t you think that registering anyone with life insurance on a central database so their beneficiaries can locate the company name is the best thing for the customer? Well I do. Not only does a database allow an individual to register the company name they have insurance with, it allows the beneficiary with certainty to find the policy you have in place. All an individual would need, to find a life insurance policy, is the company name. Since there are over 2000 life insurance companies in the United States alone, having the company name on a central database will solve a major problem that gets recognized only when it is too late; lost life insurance policies. Hopefully consumers of life insurance will also recognize the need and buy it from agents and agencies that offer to register on a free central database. It is definitely something to think about.