Why do I have to have a small estate affidavit and a TIN just to get paid for a life insura ncepolicy when there are no other assets?

UPDATED: Aug 6, 2012

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Why do I have to have a small estate affidavit and a TIN just to get paid for a life insura ncepolicy when there are no other assets?

I was a contingent beneficiary on a life ins. policy,my aunt was the beneficiary. She died after the policy holder4 days. Now the insurance company is telling me that the money from the policy must go into an estate for my aunt because she died after the policyholder. She has no other assets but the insurance company wants me to give them a small estate affidavit and a TIN. There is no reason to open up a small estate because she has no assets except this insurance policy.

Asked on August 6, 2012 under Estate Planning, Michigan


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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your losses here. The policy is the "property" of your Aunt's estate.  So the insuirance company can only realease it to the Personal Representative of her estate.  And the money goes to her heirs, not necessarily to you becuase you are listed as the contingent beneficiary.  You are going to have to prove to the court and to the company that you are the next of kin entitled to the funds. Check in to the small estate laws in your state. Good luck.

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