Life insurance is an important tool in your estate planning that allows you to continue providing for your loved ones after you’re gone. In fact, a solid life insurance policy can play a significant role in your legacy. Life insurance disputes, however, can be a real rebuff to the good faith effort (in the form of costly premiums) you poured into your policy. The good news is that a dedicated Chicago life insurance dispute lawyer can help your loved ones obtain the payout you planned for them – when they need it most.
Common Reasons for Denying Life Insurance Claims
There are a variety of reasons that life insurance companies can legally deny policy claims (and it’s important to note that some insurance companies are not beyond pushing the limits of these valid reasons). Common reasons include:
Death during Contestability Period – The insurance company typically has an amount of time (from the date of the policy being executed) in which the policy is considered contestable. During this time, the insurance company can do its fact-checking to help ensure that the policy and the information therein are legitimate. In Illinois, this contestability period is two years.
Failure to Pay Premiums – if there is a lapse in premium payments (even if it’s due to no fault of your own), it can lead to a lapsed policy that will not payout. In Illinois, residents are allowed a 30-day grace period for premium payments.
Failure to Name a Beneficiary – When a life insurance policy fails to specify a beneficiary, it can lead to an outright claim denial. The provider may also pay the benefits to your estate, but this can result in lengthy benefit delays.
Failure to Disclose Necessary Information – Life insurance companies can deny a claim for your failure to disclose certain information that is necessary to accurately measure the risk involved in the policy. Pre-existing health conditions are a common example.
Cause of Death Not Covered – Life insurance policies tend to incorporate some exclusions (such as causes of death that aren’t covered). In fact, life insurance companies can get quite tricky with the language of their policies in order to leave beneficiaries in the dark about whether the death in question is covered in the first place.
Even if the life insurance company doesn’t deny your claim, it may use other techniques to help bolster its profits, including:
Stalling the payout process (knowing that the beneficiaries are reliant upon the funds)
Extending the investigative period beyond what is reasonable
Using the confusing language of the contract to thwart claimants
The insurance company has plenty of tools at its disposal to help minimize the benefits it pays out, but an experienced life insurance dispute lawyer is up to the task of effectively and efficiently fighting back.
Discuss Your Concerns with an Experienced Chicago Life Insurance Dispute Lawyer Today
At Anspach Law Office in Chicago, our resolute life insurance dispute lawyers are committed to skillfully advocating in defense of your rights and for a fair resolution of your claim dispute. We’re here to help every step of the way, so please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information today.
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