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Things to Remember While Filing a Death Claim

Filing a life insurance claim is one of the most difficult tasks one may face after the death of a loved one. It might worry the survivors that the loved one's value reduces to an amount by filing a claim. But, life insurance ensures that the deceased's family will not have to face financial troubles while coping with the death of a loved one.

When the person assured dies during the Term of the policy i.e. before the date of maturity, proceeds under the policy as a claim, is payable to the beneficiary which is called a Death claim. The person entitled to the proceeds must complete certain death claim forms giving due proof of the death and establishing the claimant's right to such proceeds. When filed with the company, the company is said to have received a death claim.

There is another type of claim called as Maturity Claim in which the payment to the Life Insured at the end of the stipulated policy term is called maturity claim.

In case of Death claim, following steps need to be followed by a beneficiary/ nominee:

  • Procurement of required documents
  • Submission of required documents for claim processing
  • Settlement of claim

Documents needed for Death Claim

Following documents are needed for filing a death claim form but the requirements may vary from one insurance company to another.

  • Death Certificate
  • Original Policy Bond
  • Death Claim forms that are issued by your insurer along with other supporting documents as required.

Accidental Death Claim

Accidental Death Claim form can be filed by submission of the following documents to your respective insurer

  • A fully completed Accidental Death Benefit Claim Form.
  • Death Certificate.
  • A medical report indicating the cause of death.
  • A written statement outlining the date, location and circumstances of the accident.
  • Police FIR copy
  • Official documentation proving the insured member's family status, and for the beneficiaries, proof of identity as well as proof of relationship to the insured member.

Beneficiary / Nominee

The term beneficiary is used to describe a person or entity who is designated to receive a death benefit from a life insurance policy.

There are three different types of beneficiaries in life insurance policies who are eligible to receive death benefits.

  • Preferred Beneficiary: This can either be a spouse, parent, child or grandchild
  • Primary Beneficiary: This is the first choice life insurance beneficiary to receive the benefit. You can designate more than one primary beneficiary depending on the provisions of your insurance policy
  • Contingent Beneficiary: This is the person who will receive the death benefits if the primary beneficiary dies before or at the same time as the insured. In case there is no contingent beneficiary, the proceeds are passed to the estate.

The following are Beneficiaries/ Nominees unless otherwise specified by the insured:

  • The insured member's spouse, if not legally separated.
  • Failing the spouse, the insured member's surviving children including step-children, adopted or foster children and children born less than 300 days from the date of the insured member's death, in equal shares among them.
  • Failing the children, the insured member's father and mother, in equal shares between them, or to the survivor of them.
  • Otherwise, the insured member's estate.

The bottom line is to simplify the life by getting prepared for everything whether its death or death claim. Knowing about death claim will not make the sadness go away but it will help you to make the process more convenient.

Written By: PolicyBazaar - Updated: 03 June 2020
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