What is the “Effective Date” of Your Life Insurance Policy?

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

The "effective date" of your life insurance policy is the official and legal start date of your policy.  This is a very important date since benefits can only be triggered once a life insurance policy becomes "effective".  In addition, this date also affects when the two year contestability period of the life insurance policy starts and when certain exclusions (e.g. suicide exclusion) become inapplicable.

Since a life insurance policy is a contract, the "offer and acceptance" rule applies.  With life insurance, offer and acceptance means that both parties have agreed to be bound by the terms and conditions of the contract.  During the application process, the offer is started when the applicant mails the application and initial premium to the insurance company.  The life insurance company accepts the offer when formal notice is sent to the applicant accepting the applicant's life insurance policy and premium.  It is important to note that without the initial premium attached to the application there may exist no offer.  If no premium is initially sent to the insurer, acceptance typically occurs when the applicant sends the required premium after receiving notification of application approval from insurer.  The effective date is usually set when the insurer receives the initial premium. 

It is recommended that an applicant mail the initial premium along with the application to trigger coverage as as possible.  If you die soon after, the effective date will prove to be very important.  The effective date can also be established by the date the policy is actually delivered or received by the applicant.  This can include a manual delivery or via email receipt since so many policies are actually purchased online. The effective date can be found in the declarations page of the life insurance policy.

While choosing a life insurance carrier, understanding how the insurer establishes the effective date is very important.

You can reach Miami Life Insurance Claims Lawyer J.P. Gonzalez-Sirgo by dialing his direct number at (786) 272-5841, calling the main office at (305) 461-1095, or Toll Free at 1 (866) 71-CLAIM or email J.P. directly at [email protected].

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