Under what conditions can an insurer deny death benefits to a beneficiary?

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Under what conditions can an insurer deny death benefits to a beneficiary?

My uncle was recently killed in WY in a blizzard. It was a single car accident; he was the only vehicle involved. A police report was filed; he was in front of a snow plowthe men inside witnessed the accident. He had auto insurance with AAA. They are now asking for a toxicology report but at his wishes he was immediately cremated. No toxicology report was taken. Can AAA deny payment of benefits if the report is not available? My mother is listed as the beneficiary.

Asked on February 20, 2011 under Insurance Law, South Carolina

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  You may need to get yourself an attorney here.  Some insurance policies - which are contracts as between the insured and the company - request that toxology reports and autopsy reports be submitted if the insured person died due to an accident or an injury.  Some also require that if the person dies within 2 years of taking out the policy a copy of their medical records be submitted s well.  You need someone to read the policy for you and to discuss your options here should they deny paying out the benefit. You may want to get a copy of the insurance companies file and the witness reports as well.  Good luck to you.


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