When you lose a loved one, you not only need to deal with the grief but also everything else that goes with it. There is a lot to sort out with the likes of funerals and death certificates, but another thing you may need to do is claim life insurance.
To make your life easier, we wanted to explain the process of how to file a life insurance claim in Toronto, and also how to overcome any challenges you may face. Hopefully by the end, you’ll have a much clearer idea of what your next steps need to be.
Step-By-Step Guide to Filing a Life Insurance Claim
Step 1: Gather Important Information
The first thing that you’ll need to do is gather all of the required information. This will help you to go through the claim smoothly and prevent any delays. The documents that you’ll need available include:
Death Certificate – It’s best to obtain multiple copies of the death certificate as many companies may require to see it and only having one copy can slow the process down. The insurance provider is just one of many companies that will require it.
Life Insurance Policy – Of course, you’ll also need the life insurance policy to hand which will have all of the relevant details you need. If you can’t find the life insurance policy then you’ll be able to request it from the provider.
Beneficiary Information – You’ll also want to list all the details of the life insurance claim beneficiaries listed on the policy, which may include their Social Insurance Number (SIN). This will be easy if you are the sole beneficiary.
Policyholder Information – Along with your information, you may also need details of the policyholder.
Step 2: Contact the Insurance Company
The next step once you have gathered all the necessary information and documentation is to contact the insurance company. They will have a claims department that will guide you through their process and give you any life insurance claim forms you need to start the process.
Step 3: Complete the Claim Forms
Next in the life insurance claims process is completing the claim form. The exact details of the form will change from one company to another, but they are all very similar. Here are the separate parts you’ll need to complete.
Claimant Statement – This is where you fill out basic information such as your personal information and relationship to the deceased, along with any other relevant information.
Physician’s Statement – The attending physician who treated the deceased may need to fill out this form to provide details about the cause of death and medical history.
Death Certificate – Submit the certified death certificate along with the claim forms.
It’s always best to double-check the information required. You don’t want to send off an incomplete claims form as this will cause delays and further stress.
Step 4: Submit the Claim Forms
The next step is to simply submit the claim forms. Some companies allow online submissions which may be a little easier for some people, while others may require physical copies of the forms. It’s a good idea to make copies of all the documents you’ve sent.
Step 5: Be Patient and Follow Up
The next step is the waiting, and it’s a good idea to ask for an estimate on how long the claim may take. The length of time often depends on the complexity of the claim. Don’t be afraid to follow up and ask about the progress of the claim.
Common Challenges and Tips to Navigate Them
While filing is generally a straightforward process, there can be delays. Here are the challenges you may face and life insurance claim tips to overcome them.
Delayed Processing – Your insurance company may be dealing with a high volume of claims. If they are, then delays in the processing may be possible. This can make it even more important to fill out forms correctly to prevent any delays.
Disputed Claims – It’s possible that the insurance company may dispute the claim. This can happen if the policyholder’s death occurred due to the likes of exclusions in the policy (such as extreme sports) or if the death was caused by something not disclosed in the policy, such as diabetes. If your claim is disputed then you’ll need to seek legal advice.
Outdated Policy Information – If the policyholder did not update their information after significant life events such as the birth of children, complications may arise. This can usually be resolved by communicating with the insurer to resolve any discrepancies.
Multiple Beneficiaries – There could be disagreements or complexities in dividing the death benefit if there are multiple beneficiaries, or if someone believes themselves to be a beneficiary. This can lead to life insurance claim challenges. Open communication and legal guidance may be necessary in these situations, and showing copies of the policy can sometimes settle disputes.
The life insurance claim filing process is quite simple and involves getting the life insurance claim documentation together, filling out a claims form, and waiting for it to be accepted. It’s vital to double-check your forms to prevent any delays.
If there are any challenges, you’ll need to stay proactive and seek legal advice when needed. If you need any help, then contact Marathon Insurance today. We’ll happily answer any questions and support you on your journey to a quick and successful claim.