Losing a loved one is a devastating experience. You’re depending on the life insurance policy to meet your needs and take care of the victim’s final expenses.
Then, you receive a notice. Your life insurance claim has been denied. It’s a devastating blow.
What do you do now? Can you appeal? Can you hire an attorney?
Fortunately, the answer is yes.
Bannister, Wyatt & Stalvey, LLC handles legal claims involving life insurance denials. If your claim has been denied, there are things you can do to fight back and receive the compensation you deserve. But you must act quickly.
Let’s talk about life insurance claim denials and what you can do if you have been unfairly denied.
Can a Life Insurance Claim Be Denied?
Life insurance pays for a death that is covered by the terms of the policy. There may be some valid reasons why a claim is denied. However, remember that insurance companies make their profits when they deny claims. If the insurance company denies your life insurance claim, you can bring a legal claim for payment.
Why Would a Life Insurance Claim Be Denied?
Some reasons that a life insurance claim may be denied include:
- The policy has lapsed: An insurance policy may lapse because of non-payment of the policy. If the premiums aren’t paid, the insurance company may terminate the policy rather than pay a claim. However, failing to pay the premiums may not be the fault of the insured. If the insurance company fails to follow government regulations in their administration of the policy, it may be possible to collect benefits despite non-payment of premiums.
- Misrepresentation of health conditions: Premiums for life insurance are often based on the health of the insured. The insurance company may ask the insured party to make statements about their health and medical conditions when they apply for a policy. Later, the insurance company may scour records trying to show that the insured made a misrepresentation about their health when they took out the policy. However, an innocent mistake or things that the person didn’t know shouldn’t stand in the way of the beneficiary receiving a payment from the policy.
- Excluded deaths: Most life insurance policies exclude suicide. Other deaths like homicide, terrorism and acts of war may also be excluded. Substance abuse is another common excuse given for a denial. Our lawyers can help you contest the cause of death or the policy language relied on by the insurance company. The insurance company may try to improperly classify the cause of someone’s death to avoid paying benefits.
- No beneficiary or deceased beneficiary: An insurance company may deny payment on the grounds that there is no named beneficiary. Our lawyers can assist you with how to proceed to determine who should receive the payment.
- Creditor claims: In South Carolina, life insurance proceeds paid to a spouse, children or dependents are exempt from insured creditor claims. There are exceptions for a bankruptcy petition within two years of taking out the insurance policy and attempts to defraud creditors. Our lawyers can assist you if your proceeds are withheld in error because of creditor claims. (Source: S.C. Code § 38-63-40).
What Can You Do If a Life Insurance Claim Is Denied?
If a life insurance claim is denied, you can challenge the decision. You may take legal action, if necessary. Remember, the insurance companies maximize their profit by taking in premiums and paying as little as possible in claims. They have tactics and strategies that they use to minimize payments and deny benefits completely.
It may be necessary to take legal action to receive the compensation that you deserve. You must act quickly. You have only a limited amount of time. The sooner you begin, the easier it is to gather information and move the claim forward to receive your payment.
How Our Life Insurance Claim Lawyers Can Help You
The insurance company has a team of lawyers to fight claims. When you’re fighting a life insurance claim denial, you need experienced legal counsel to represent you. At Bannister, Wyatt & Stalvey, LLC, Attorneys at Law, we are a team of skilled professionals. We tailor our representation to meet your needs. We’re committed to excellence in the legal profession, representing individuals and families in life insurance claims.
If you need help with a life insurance claim, or you have questions about your situation, we invite you to contact our attorneys. We provide compassionate service and relentless representation. Contact us today.