Many family breadwinners have the foresight to purchase life insurance to ensure that their spouse and children have the financial resources they need to ensure financial security. In many cases, the benefits available under a life insurance policy can be a critical component of an individual’s estate plan. Unfortunately, some insurance carriers delay or deny these critical benefits even when policyholders have faithfully paid their premiums and filed a timely claim. As a Florida life insurance claims attorney, I help policyholders whose insurance companies fail to fulfil their contractual obligations under life insurance policies. This blog post provides answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) for policyholders dealing with delays or denials by a life insurance carrier.
What is the period of contestability of a life insurance policy?
If the life insurance policy has been in place for two years, the insurance carrier cannot dispute the validity of the policy other than for non-payment of premiums. If the coverage took effect less than two years ago, the insurer can obtain the insured’s medical records. The insurance carrier can attempt to deny coverage based on a misrepresentation. For example, the application might indicate that the insured never smoked despite the fact that the policyholder was a life-long smoker.
Can a life insurance claim be denied because the policyholder missed a premium payment?
Once you have made your initial premium payment, most life insurance policies allow for a 31 day grace period after the due date for subsequent premium payments. The policy will remain in full force and effect if the late payment is made during the grace period. Benefits paid on policies where a death occurred during the grace period might be reduced by the amount of the outstanding premium payment.
How should I proceed if a life insurance company is denying or delaying my claim?
If the insurance carrier is stonewalling or refusing to pay your claim, you need to talk to an experienced life insurance claims lawyer immediately. Prior to representing policyholders, I worked as an insurance claims adjuster and at a prominent insurance defense law firm. As a result of this experience, I am familiar with the tactics and language that insurance companies use to postpone payment and to deny valid claims.
Am I out of luck if my claim was denied, and the life insurance company that issued the policy was converted to another carrier?
No. This is an extremely common problem, and you need to consult with an experieneced insurance claims lawyer.
Why did the insurance company deny my claim?
While the insurance company may rely on a litany of excuses or justifications, the simple fact is that denying valid claims benefits an insurance company’s bottom line. Insurance companies frequently engage in bad faith practices in the hopes that people making claims will simply give up. You can be sure the insurance company has a team of insurance defense lawyers analyzing the claim to find a defensible basis for a denial, so you need an experienced Miami life insurance claims attorney in your corner.
If your life insurance claim has been denied, we invite you to contact us so that we can assess your situation and start fighting for the benefits you are entitled to under the policy. I am an experienced Miami life insurance claims attorney who handles disputed claims in Miami and throughout Florida. The Law Firm of J.P. Gonzalez-Sirgo, P.A. offers free consultations and case evaluations. No Recovery, No Lawyer Fees. Call 305-461-1095 or Toll Free 1-866-71-CLAIM.