What to do if a lifeinsurer refuses to produce the designation of beneficiary form upon which they relied for the death benefit distribution?

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What to do if a lifeinsurer refuses to produce the designation of beneficiary form upon which they relied for the death benefit distribution?

My dad’s life insurer paid his death benefit to all 5 children even though we have a copy of a designation of beneficiary naming his trust. Insurer refuses to provide a copy of the form upon which they claim they relied, which is not the one naming the trust. Requests have been made by me, my brother (as successor trustee) and the state’s insurance commission. How can I force a copy short of filing a lawsuit? Don’t beneficiaries have right to accountability?

Asked on September 30, 2011 under Insurance Law, Wisconsin

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Listen, if the state Insurance Department can not get the insurer to produce the designation of beneficiary form then I think you really have no choice but to hire an attorney - or your brother should as the trustee of the trust - to write a letter demanding payment to the trust based upon the designation of beneficiary form that you believe was in effect at the time of his death.  Then you may indeed need to bring a suit demanding payment.  I can not understand why they will not produce a copy of the form and put the matter to rest.  But in any event I thing that your backs are up against the wall at this point in time.  Good luck. 


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