If you are the beneficiary of a life Insurance policy, it means that the policyholder cared enough about you; you are now left with financial resources to help you overcome the obstacles that life will present. The policyholder wanted you to have this money, and there is no reason to feel guilty about claiming it. There is also no reason to feel stressed about filing the claim. It is typically a simple process and can be easily completed.
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Filing a life insurance claim
This involves a four-step process:
1. Contact your insurance agent. Even if this is not the person who sold the life Insurance Policy, he does know the procedure. He can give you competent guidance, and answer any questions you may have.
2. Get a copy of the death certificate of the policyholder. This can be obtained from the policyholder’s doctor, the doctor present at the time of death, or the funeral director.
3. Contact the insurance company that issued the policy. Such information is usually available on the policy document. There will be a clearly defined procedure for informing the company of the death of the policyholder. If you have any doubts over it, or if anything is unclear, contact the company for clarifications, or ask your insurance broker for guidance.
4. Submit the death certificate to the insurance company, without which the processing of the claim cannot begin.
Procedures for processing claims may vary from company to company. However, this is all that is usually required in general. The next stage is deciding on the mode of receiving the money.
Receiving the payment
When a claim is filed under a life insurance policy, the beneficiary usually has a few options available on receiving payment. Again, the options will vary in degrees from one insurance company to another, but in general, they are as follow:
- Lump sum payment: All the money due to a beneficiary will be given in one single payment, after which nothing further is due from the insurance company
- Scheduled payout: A specified part of the money due under the policy is paid at a future scheduledtime as defined by the beneficiary.
- Life income: The beneficiary receives a monthly payment for the rest of his/her life. The quantum of the payment is based on the value of the insurance policy and the life expectancy of the beneficiary.
- Specified period income: The beneficiary receives a regular monthly payment for a predefined period of time.
- Joint and last survivor income: If the policy is a joint one, the surviving insured person will receive a fixed monthly payment for the rest of his/her life. In some cases, there is the option to give part of the money available to a third party.
Filing a life insurance claim is designed to be simple and easy. However, this needs to be done by a beneficiary who is greatly affected by the bereavement of the benefactor, a dearly loved one. That is why seeking the help of an experienced insurance professional is the right course of action. They will give all the relevant information, and guide properly in claiming the insurance benefits due.