Life Insurance and AD&D Claims
Life insurance is the original safety net for your family in the worst time of their life. We have found over the past decades that many insurance companies sell people on life insurance being a means to protect your family. What those companies sell is the promise of a lump sum payment in the event of death that will take care of the family’s financial needs while they grieve. But all too often those promises are broken.
Insurance companies often take a series of steps to deny life insurance claims. The first step is to try to rescind the policy, which is essentially voiding the policy out. Insurance companies will claim that some required step wasn’t taken before the death of the insured and will send your estate or your loved one a much smaller check refunding the paid premiums, trying to get the beneficiary to “consent” to the policy being voided out.
You have lost a loved one. You are faced with funeral expenses, medical expenses, and the loss of the loved one’s income. The bills are piling up and during your grief the insurance company sends a check, hoping you are desperate or distracted enough to cash it. This ‘premium refund’ scheme is perhaps (to us) the most offensive because it takes advantage of families in their most trying hour. Do NOT cash that premium refund check until you talk to an attorney.
Another insurance company tactic we see all too often is hiding the very existence of the life insurance policy. You had some conversation long ago with your loved one who has now passed away. You recall they mentioned an insurance policy, but you cannot find a physical policy in their belongings. You search everywhere. This insurance company tactic often comes up when your loved one was employed and had group insurance benefits through their employer’s group insurance policy. Only by investigating the claim using an attorney will you find that policy and even then, the search for those life insurance benefits is not over. We pride ourselves on exhausting every avenue for finding those policies that you and your loved one had in place to take away the financial burdens of death and provide you time to grieve.
The fine print. We have all heard of stories where insurance companies try to use the fine print in insurance policies to avoid paying a claim. That fine print is often contained in what the law refers to as “exclusions” in a policy. Those exclusions are places in the insurance contract where the insurance company gives itself ways out of paying valid claims. This tactic often runs afoul of the law. Only by getting a lawyer working for you can you fight back against the exclusions in a policy.
Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance
Another part of the safety net provided by life insurance takes the form of something called Accidental Death and Dismemberment insurance, often referred to as AD&D insurance coverage.
This is a limited form of insurance that has some of the coverages of disability insurance and some of the coverages of life insurance. Because this is typically a clause in a life insurance policy, the beneficiary is often unaware of the coverage and is sometimes entitled to additional benefits under these policies while also being entitled to benefits under an Accidental Death and Dismemberment policy. Accidents are just that: accidents. These benefits are meant to offer protection for when the unforeseen occurs.
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