Can a death benefit be denied, if there was no notification that thepolicy ownerdefaulted on payments?

UPDATED: Jul 13, 2010

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Can a death benefit be denied, if there was no notification that thepolicy ownerdefaulted on payments?

Term life insurance policy for $50,000. Policyholder made monthly payments for 10 years until 12/10. At that time, he was diagnosed with dementia. His family was not notified that payments were not made. His heirs only found out that payments were stopped after making a claim for the death benefit, which was denied by the insurance company.

Asked on July 13, 2010 under Insurance Law, Florida


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

I am sorry for your loss.  Insurance companies are strictly regulated as to cancellation of a policy of an insured.  The must send a certain number of notices of cancellation, it usually must be of a certain type size, etc. Was it a whole life policy or a term policy?  Either way ask for proof of the notices sent.  Once received then take them to an attorney to see if the cancellation was proper under the law and if it is worth bringing an action against the insurance policy for invalid cancellation and payment out of the policy.  Also kas what the legal fee will be so that you can make an informed decision. Good luck.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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