The death of a loved one is an extremely painful, emotional and hectic time. In addition funerals are expensive, and the bills will keep coming in regardless of a person’s loss. For many people the life insurance money is needed sooner rather than later.
Similar to other types of insurance, a claim must be made before a life insurance policy pays out. The sooner a claim is made, the quicker payment will be.
Use this blog article as a guide on how to file a life insurance claim in Canada. Note that there will also be tips to help avoid undue delays when making a claim.
Steps to Submit a Life Insurance Claim
#1 - Locate the Life Insurance Policy
The first step is to find the original copy of the life insurance policy. Most times the beneficiary is a family member such as a spouse who already knows where the important paperwork is kept.
If you are a beneficiary and do not know where the policy is kept attempt to locate the policy.If you cannot find the policy and believe you are a beneficiary for a life insurance plan please contact the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association.
They will submit the deceased’s particulars to all companies that sell Canadian life insurance. If one of these companies has a policy for the deceased then that company will contact you with the details.
#2 – Contact the Life Insurance Company
If the life insurance policy is a personal policy (e.g. NOT from a group insurance plan) then contact the insurance company directly.
If the life insurance is provided via an employee benefits plan you can either contact the insurance company directly or you can talk with the Human Resources department of the company the deceased worked for.
Find out from the insurance company what forms need to be filed to initiate the claim.
#3 - File the Required Forms
A life insurance claim typically requires the following forms to be submitted:
- Original copy of the death certificate
- Proof of Death form (contact the life insurance company to obtain this form)
Send the originals but make backup copies of all submitted documentation before doing so
Life Insurance Claims: Tips and Help
More than One Policy?
Many people have more than one life insurance policy. If the deceased had an employee benefits plan from work (e.g. group insurance) then contact the former employer and find out if the group plan had a life insurance provision.
If so initiate a claim using the steps outlined above.
In addition various associations also offer life insurance (e.g. CAA). If the deceased was a member of associations then contact the association to find out if the deceased had a life insurance policy with them.
Also consider these other possible sources for life insurance coverage:
- Mortgage life insurance from a bank (pays off the mortgage upon the death of an insured person)
- Credit card life insurance plans
- Travel insurance (if the deceased passed away while travelling)
- Automobile insurance (if the deceased passed away while driving)
Lost the Policy?
If you suspect that you are a beneficiary for a lost policy then please contact the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association
Reasons for Delay
A life insurance claim is typically processed within a week or two.
However, processing may be longer if:
- The paperwork was improperly filed
- A claim is made within two (2) years of purchasing life insurance coverage
The death of a loved on is a difficult time, and dealing with more stress as a result of making a life insurance claim should not happen.
We hope you found this article useful. Please contact us if you need assistance regarding Canadian life insurance!