Naming Beneficiary(Ies)in LIfe Insurance. Should I name that person as the beneficiary of my life insurance or make it payable to my estate and have it distributed according to my will? Does the beneficiary have to be a relative?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jul 16, 2021

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When you apply to take out a new life insurance policy, the insurance company requires that the beneficiary (or beneficiaries) have an insurable interest in the insured. Frequently they would be dependents, such as a spouse or children, who would suffer a loss if the insured were to die.

It is usually better to name a person or persons as your beneficiary unless there is a specific reason to designate the estate as your beneficiary – as when you have papers drawn up by a legal professional to control the disposition of the proceeds.

You can name anyone you choose to be the beneficiary. You can also have multiple beneficiaries. Your beneficiary or beneficiaries do not have to be related to you.

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