Life Insurance Lawyer Alaska
Our Alaska life insurance lawyers are here to help. Call us at 800-330-2274 for a free consultation.
Typically, the policy will include a provision outlining the time frame for the beneficiary to dispute a claim denial. This time frame can vary, but it is often 60 to 180 days from the date the insurance company denies the claim.
If the policy does not include a time frame for disputing a claim denial, the beneficiary may need to refer to the state's insurance laws or seek legal advice to determine the applicable time frame.
It is important to act promptly if you wish to dispute a claim denial, as there may be deadlines for filing a lawsuit or appealing the decision. Delaying action could result in the loss of your legal rights to pursue a claim.
Life Insurance Beneficiary Rules and Disputes Alaska
Beneficiary Designation Oversight: Scenario: Mark and Lisa divorced several years ago after a tumultuous marriage. During their marriage, Mark purchased a life insurance policy and designated Lisa as the primary beneficiary. However, after their divorce, Mark never updated the beneficiary designation, assuming that the divorce settlement nullified Lisa's claim to the proceeds. Dispute: Unfortunately, Mark passes away unexpectedly. Upon his death, it is discovered that Lisa is still listed as the primary beneficiary on Mark's life insurance policy. Mark had remarried after the divorce, and his current spouse, Sarah, expected to receive the insurance proceeds to support herself and their children. Sarah contests Lisa's claim, arguing that the designation of Lisa as the beneficiary was an oversight on Mark's part and does not reflect his current intentions. Resolution: Resolving this dispute would require careful examination of the applicable state laws and the specifics of Mark's divorce settlement. While some jurisdictions automatically revoke a former spouse's beneficiary designation upon divorce, others may require explicit changes to the policy.
2023-2024 Life Insurance Claims in Alaska Recently Settled
- Northwestern Mutual delayed claim $65,000.00
- Liberty National COVID-19 denial $115,000.00
- OneAmerica coronavirus wouldn't pay $50,000.00
- Accidental Death & Dismemberment $704,000.00
- Farmers Life dispute beneficiaries $57,000.00
- Bright house Financial medical record $83,000.00
- Denied SGLI claim beneficiary change $401,200.00
- RiverSource boat accident alcohol $59,000.00
- FEGLI claim denial resolved $402,000.00
- Delta Life autoerotic asphyxiation $309,000.00
- Centennial Life poisoning death $279,000.00
- American United denial claim $102,000.00
- Ladder cancer in medical records $38,000.00
- Monarch prescription drugs in system $55,000.00
- Ethos change of beneficiary issue $50,000.00
- Principal Life interpleader lawsuit $92.000.00
- SGLI dispute we won quickly$400,000.00
- Lincoln Financial Life exclusion $21,000.00
- Colonial Penn divorce change $70,000.00
- Denied AD&D claim Alaska won $343,000.00
- United Republic Life felony exclusion $291,400.00
- Columbian Mutual Life COVID denial $44,000.00
- Universe Life sickness exclusion health $39,000.00
- Protective Life beneficiary dispute $303,000.00
- SGLI claim appeal contesting beneficiary $400,000.00
- Ketchikan dangerous activity exclusion $752,000.00
- State Farm alleged misrepresentation $200,000.00
- Denied FEGLI claim resolved by us $281,000.00
- Banner Life alcohol exclusion resolved $109,000.00
- Fairbanks bad faith life claim plaintiff $877,000.00
- Colonial Life ex-spouse dispute with spouse $240,000.00
- TSGLI appeal our client was successful
- Alaska denied life insurance claim $300,000.00
- Universal Life prescription drug exclusion $150,000.00
- Denied SGLI claim that was resolved $407,200.00
- AAA nonpayment of premium problem $113,000.00
- USAA bad faith denial of life benefits $397,000.00
- Principal Life felony exclusion resolved $204,000.00
- Allstate Life Insurance medical record $103,000.00
- FEGLI appeal our plaintiff prevailed $110,000.00
- Mutual of Omaha Life suicide exclusion $175,000.00
- Freedom Life autoerotic asphyxiation death $100,000.00
- Anchorage resolution of life death benefits $240,000.00
- Metropolitan Life misrepresentation application $200,000.00
- Alaska divorce and life insurance claim $632,000.00
- USAA Life accidental death resolved for client $100,000.00
- Denied AD&D claim from a fall that we won $529,000.00
- Denied life insurance claim Alaska $921,400.00
- Alaska ERISA life insurance claim $269,000.00
- Denied Veterans Life claim resolved $402,800.00
- Sitka illegal activity exclusion success $428,000.00
- American General Life beneficiary dispute $201,000.00
- Jumeau invalid beneficiary designation $946,000.00
- Alaska bad faith life insurance claim $739,000.00
- John Hancock Life foreign death resolved $106,500.00
- American Life alcohol exclusion won $126,000.00
Interpleader Lawyer Alaska
A life insurance interpleader is a legal process used to resolve disputes over the distribution of life insurance proceeds when multiple parties make conflicting claims to the benefits. It typically occurs when the policyholder dies, and there is uncertainty or disagreement about who should receive the payout.
Here's how a life insurance interpleader works:
Death of the Policyholder: The process begins with the death of the insured individual, triggering the payment of the life insurance policy's death benefit.
Conflicting Claims: If there are multiple beneficiaries listed on the policy, or if there are disputes over who is entitled to the proceeds, the insurance company may be unable to determine the rightful recipient(s) based on the information provided.
Interpleader Action: In response to the conflicting claims, the insurance company may file a legal action called an interpleader in court. This action essentially asks the court to determine who among the claimants is entitled to receive the life insurance proceeds.
Court Decision: Once the interpleader is filed, the court will hear arguments from all parties involved and review the evidence presented. The court will then make a decision regarding the rightful beneficiaries of the life insurance policy.
Distribution of Proceeds: Once the court makes a decision, the life insurance proceeds will be distributed according to the court's ruling. This decision is legally binding and resolves the dispute.
Let's consider a scenario where a father named John passes away, leaving behind a life insurance policy with a significant death benefit. John had three children and his ex-wife, Mary, who is the mother of the children, but they divorced several years ago. The life insurance policy lists Mary as the primary beneficiary, but John never updated the policy after the divorce.
After John's death, his children and Mary both claim entitlement to the life insurance proceeds. The insurance company, unable to determine the rightful beneficiary, decides to file an interpleader action in court.
During the legal proceedings, the court examines the terms of the policy, the divorce agreement between John and Mary, and any other relevant evidence. After careful consideration, the court may rule that since John did not update the policy after the divorce, Mary remains the primary beneficiary.
As a result of the court's decision, Mary would receive the life insurance proceeds, and the children would not be entitled to any portion of the benefits. This ruling resolves the dispute and ensures that the life insurance proceeds are distributed according to the court's determination of the rightful beneficiary.
Alaska Life Insurance Law
Life insurance companies are in business for one reason and one reason only – to make money. To do this, they have to collect the greatest amount of premiums possible and deny payment on the maximum number of claims possible. It may not seem fair, but it is the simple math of how the industry works.
Sometimes, however, life insurance companies push the envelope too far. Such was the case recently when an insurer tried to rescind an insured’s policy right around the time of the insured’s death, based solely on the insured’s mental health conditions. Fortunately, the Federal Court system didn’t let the insurance company get away with that.
As lawyers specializing in the wrongful denial of life insurance claims, we try to stay abreast of all the legal developments that happen in our area of the law. Not only do we use those cases to help us form winning strategies for our clients, we also report on those cases here. The hope is that if you or a loved one has experienced a similar claim denial, you’ll feel emboldened to call us and to let us help you contest that claim denial.
With that, let’s turn to the facts of our case.
Doing the best they could
This case involves a married couple – Christina and Derek. Both individuals were in their mid-thirties and gainfully employed. Christina’s employer, a popular radio station, offered a generous benefits package that included a group life insurance policy for employees and their spouses.
When the life insurance plan was offered to them, Christina and Derek decided to take advantage of the offer. They applied for policies covering each of their lives, and naming each other as beneficiaries under the respective policies. Upon receiving the applications, the insurance company issued what they called “provisional policies.” These were policies that were intended to stay in place while the insurance company performed a thorough investigation into the couple’s medical background.
The provisional policies were issued on September 14, 2015. Christina paid all premiums due under the provisional policies through the month of December. On December 17, 2015, however, Christina was killed in a tragic car accident. As it turns out, that same day, the life insurance company was drafting a letter to Christina and Derek cancelling the provisional policies. The letter explained that the insurer was doing this on the grounds that the medical background investigation revealed both Christina and Derek suffered from moderate depression and borderline personality disorder.
It was true that Christina and Derek had both received these diagnoses. Nonetheless, they had both been on medication for years, were both receiving regular psychotherapy, and were generally living very healthy lives at the time of Christina’s death. In fact, therapists would later testify that they had never seen a couple work so hard to try to achieve true mental health.
Importantly, the December 17 letter from the insurance company to Christina and Derek was not mailed on that date. In fact, before the letter was ever placed in the mail, the insurer received Derek’s notice of claim with respect to Christina’s death. At the time, Derek had no reason to believe his claim would be denied.
The harsh denial letter
Almost contemporaneously, Derek received two letters: (1) a letter alerting him that the insurance company was denying his claim for death benefits under Christina’s policy; (2) a letter informing him that the provisional policies were being rescinded due to the couple’s history of mental illness.
While Derek was understandably overcome with grief, he also couldn’t believe the contents of the two letters. If he and his wife hadn’t worked so hard to overcome their mental health challenges, perhaps the letters might have made sense. But they were the couple who was doing the hard work, they were making life work for them, they were overcoming every challenge. He simply didn’t understand.
Fortunately, Derek did a very wise thing in that moment. He sought the advice of an attorney who specializes in the wrongful denial of life insurance claims. The attorney reviewed all of the files and instantly recognized that the insurance company’s actions smacked of discrimination under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). With Derek’s approval, he filed a lawsuit against the insurer for discrimination under the ADA, as well as breach of contract under the provisional policy.
After a long, hard-fought battle, Derek finally prevailed against the insurance company. Specifically, the court found that the insurer’s investigation of Derek & Christina’s medical background had ignored the positive prognoses given by their therapists. To the contrary, the insurance had simply seen the diagnoses of depression and borderline personality disorder and made a rush to judgment. Based on these facts, the court found the insurer: (1) should not have rescinded the provisional policy; and (2) should have paid Derek the full death benefit his wife had intended for him. The court also found the insurance company had illegally discriminated against Derek and Christina under the ADA.
As attorneys who practice exclusively in the area of life insurance claim denials, we’re not shocked by the facts of this case, nor of its outcome. We are fully aware that insurance companies make the most money when they deny the most claims. We’re also aware that those companies will push the bounds of appropriateness in an effort to exploit grieving beneficiaries like Derek.
Our sole and exclusive focus is to help wronged beneficiaries recover the death benefits their loved ones intended for them. If you have received a claim denial based on facts similar to this case – or for any reason at all – please call us. We battle life insurance companies all the time. We know their tricks and games and we successfully confront them in court on a regular basis.
Life Insurance Contestability Period Alaska
Your initial consultation is free and you typically won’t need to pay us a dime until you recover something in your case. Call us today. We’re here to help.