When a loved one passes away, locating a life insurance policy can be a challenging but necessary task. There are some steps you can take to get the information you need. Here are a few tips to guide your search.
In many cases, evidence of policy and any relevant information
If this search turns up empty, there are still actions you can take.
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Life Insurance Policy Locator Service, a free online tool, can assist you in locating life insurance policies. Once a request is received, the NAIC will ask participating companies to search their records to determine whether they have a life insurance policy in the name of the deceased you entered. If they do, the participating company will respond to you if you are the designated beneficiary or are authorized to receive the information.
Click here to use the service. You will need information from the death certificate, including social security number, legal first and last name, date of birth, and date of death. This video provides instructions on how to use the service.
When a life insurance company is aware that an insured client has died but cannot find the beneficiary, the company must turn the death benefit over to the state where the policy was purchased as “unclaimed property.”
If you know (or can guess) the state where the policy was bought, you can search the state’s unclaimed property database. The National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators has a search tool that will take you to your state’s unclaimed property database.
There may be circumstances that complicate the search for a loved one’s life insurance policy:
Sometimes, even despite all the best efforts, finding an insurance policy when a loved one has passed away can seem overwhelming. In these cases, it is helpful to know that MIB, an insurance membership corporation, offers services for a fee. This service may be able to find evidence of life insurance applications but does not indicate whether a life insurance policy was purchased. Additionally, several private companies can assist you with the search for a lost life insurance policy for a fee.