After the death of a loved one, there can often be a lot of paperwork to deal with while you are grieving. Dealing with your loved one’s insurance policy is often one of those things that need to be done, and there can sometimes be complications. For example, in some cases, a person named as a beneficiary in your loved one’s policy was no longer meant to be a beneficiary, but the policyholder never got the chance to change their policy. You should know that you can contest someone’s beneficiary status if you believe you have a valid claim (which means your position as a beneficiary can also be challenged), so it’s important to understand how to contest a beneficiary and how the dispute can affect life insurance payouts.
Why a Beneficiary Might Be Contested
There can be a few reasons why a life insurance beneficiary might be contested. Essentially, anyone who believes they have a valid claim to a life insurance policy can contest the original policyholder’s choice of beneficiary. The most common situations in which a life insurance beneficiary may be contested include:
- A current spouse objects to a former spouse being named as the life insurance policy’s beneficiary
- Adult children believe they should be named beneficiaries of a parent’s policy, or stepchildren who were never added to the policy believe they were left out in error
- Someone believes the original beneficiary designation was made under duress or undue influence
The Process of Contesting A Beneficiary
Unfortunately, if a policyholder passes away without updating their policy, they leave the people who feel they should have been named as beneficiaries a long uphill legal battle. It can take a lot of money, time, and energy to contest a beneficiary, and the final decision will be made by a court, not the life insurance company. So, the whole process can end in you not getting any money, or losing a lot of the money you are rewarded (if you win) to court and lawyer’s fees.
Avoid the Hassle
The last thing that you would want is for your loved ones to have to have a court battle with the named beneficiaries of your policy because you never had the chance or forgot to change your policy. Ensure that your loved ones receive the financial support they need by reviewing your policy on a yearly basis, to make sure that everything is accurate.
Another thing that you can do is make sure there is enough coverage for your loved ones. To make sure you have enough coverage, you can add riders to your policy for additional coverage, or you can search for a new life insurance policy – you might find that you can get one that is better and more affordable.
If you need help reviewing your policy or deciding on a policy, consider using online tools to see what is available, as well as working with an agent who will help you compare plans and see which is the right fit for you. To get you started, we have provided the top insurance companies that offer life insurance policies below; each can give you hassle-free assistance and the most competitive rates in the nation. Always check multiple sites to make sure you have bargaining power and know the advantages of each company. Make sure a hard time isn’t made harder by a financial burden, check life insurance rates today.