My loved one has passed and I can't find the life insurance policy. What can I do?

When a loved one passes away, the last thing you want to spend your time doing is looking for the life insurance policy.  It is not uncommon for the surviving family members to be unaware of the details regarding the life insurance policy, including the company who issued it.  However, it is worth the effort to try to locate the missing life insurance policy, as the settlement can help pay funeral expenses, medical bills and household expenses. 

Before you start your search, you should consider what company may have sold the policy.  For example, is there a particular insurance agent you work with for your insurance needs?  Is it possible that this insurance agent also sold the policy to your loved one?  Employers, trade associations and unions also frequently offer life insurance to their members, so you should also check with these resources.

If you are still not sure what company issued the policy, you may want to look through your loved one’s file cabinets, storage boxes and bank deposit boxes, if applicable.  An address book may even be helpful as it could list the name of an insurance agency.  You might consider calling professionals you have worked with in the past, such as accountants, attorneys, insurance agents and financial advisors.

While there is no central database to locate life insurance policies, you can employ a private service to help you find the policy information.  These companies will search for lost insurance policies for a fee.

Another great source is the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, which can provide you with contact information for state insurance personnel who can help identify possible insurers that may have issued the policy.  Florida’s Bureau of Unclaimed Property is also worth looking into.  If the life insurance company is aware of your loved one’s death, but can’t locate the beneficiaries, then it has to give the death benefit to the state.

The article, Locating a Lost Life Insurance Policy, has more information and strategies regarding finding missing policies. 

J.P. Gonzalez-Sirgo
Founder of J.P. Gonzalez-Sirgo, P.A.