What happens if I’m the beneficiary on my late ex-husband’s life insurance policy?

UPDATED: Jun 12, 2015

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UPDATED: Jun 12, 2015Fact Checked

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What happens if I’m the beneficiary on my late ex-husband’s life insurance policy?

I was told by his employer that they have documents listing me but would not tell me what those documents are. Am I entitled to a copy of that or any policy if I am designated?

Asked on June 12, 2015 under Insurance Law, Oregon


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

1) No, you are not entitled to copies of policies designating you as a beneficiary, though you ex-husband could voluntarily give you a copy.

2) If you are listed by name, you would still be his beneficiary until/unless he changes it. If you are described or identified as "my wife," however, you would not be the beneficiary any longer in practice, since you are not his wife--that is, you are not the person actually identified.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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