Life Insurance Lawyer California
Our California life insurance lawyers are here to help. Call us at 800-330-2274 for a free consultation.
Gather information: The first step in resolving a beneficiary dispute is to gather information about the dispute, including the terms of the life insurance policy, the beneficiary designation form, and any other relevant documents.
Attempt to resolve the dispute informally: Before resorting to legal action, it may be possible to resolve the dispute through informal negotiations or mediation. The parties involved should attempt to communicate and work towards a resolution.
File a claim: If the dispute cannot be resolved informally, the beneficiary who believes they are entitled to the benefits should file a claim with the insurance company. The insurer will review the claim and determine whether to pay the benefits to the claimant or to interplead the funds.
Initiate legal action: If the insurance company refuses to pay the claim or interpleads the funds, the beneficiary may need to initiate legal action to resolve the dispute. This may involve filing a lawsuit against the insurance company and any other parties involved in the dispute.
Litigation: Once legal action has been initiated, the parties will go through the litigation process, which typically involves discovery, motion practice, and a trial. The court will consider the evidence and arguments presented by both sides and make a decision on who is entitled to the life insurance benefits.
It is important to note that the process for resolving a life insurance beneficiary dispute can be complex and time-consuming. Beneficiaries who are involved in such disputes may want to consider consulting with an attorney who specializes in life insurance law.
Settled Life Insurance Claims in California
- Primerica felony shooting exclusion $111,500.00
- North American alleged lying about smoking $60,000.00
- Penn Treaty auto accident alcohol denial $51,200.00
- United Republic drowning death drugs $84,000.00
- Mid Continental Life heart attack denial $240,300.00
- Christian Fidelity smoking denial won $15,000.00
- AAA contestable period delay resolved $104,500.00
- Freedom Life claim rejection health record $25,000.00
- Life and Casualty autoerotic asphyxiation $78,000.00
- Inter-American denied coronavirus $115,900.00
- Denied Accidental Death & Dismemberment $820,000.00
- SGLI denied claim beneficiary change $400,000.00
- Pacific Life sickness denial $50,300.00
- Shooting death felony exclusion $335,200.00
- Unum beneficiary dispute resolved$80,000.00
- Nationwide fentanyl wouldn't pay claim $105,000.00
- Denied AD&D claim California $825,000.00
- Protective Life interpleader $95,000.00
- Veterans Life poisoning issue $75,000.00
- Principal stabbing felony exclusion $50,000.00
- Malignant cancer found on records $60,000.00
- Summit National pneumonia death $102,000.00
- MassMutual misrepresentation $515,000.00
- Union International fall death at issue $50,000.00
- FEGLI claim dispute won by us $291,000.00
- Northwestern Mutual boat accident alcohol $104,200.00
- Wilton changed by power of attorney $77,000.00
- Boston Mutual material misrepresentation $21,000.00
- RiverSource last minute policy change $47,000.00
- MD Life heroin overdose at issue here $59,000.00
- Gleaner Life husband verse ex-husband $88,600.00
- Shenandoah Life high BAC toxicology $75,000.00
- AM Income Life sickness excluded $30,000.00
- Guarantee Trust interpleader filed won $97,000.00
- Iowa Farm change by home health aid $50,000.00
- Philadelphia American bad toxicology $42,000.00
- ALCPA suicide at issue accidental $55,000.00
- Oxford Life felony crime commission $74,000.00
- Christian Fidelity Life lapse of policy $69,000.00
- Life heart attack claim rejected $84,000.00
- Mutual Security Life long delay $368,000.00
- Unison International COVID-19 denial $22,000.00
- Health misrepresentation health $300,000.00
- Wilton COVID 19 death denial $77,000.00
- Nassau Beneficiary dispute we won $10,000.00
- Allstate asphyxiation death denied $25,000.00
- Ohio National Fentanyl death $50,000.00
- Fidelity & Guaranty boat accident $200,000.00
- AAA Interpleader case was resolved $100,000.00
- Global Atlantic poisoning death claim $83,000.00
- OneAmerica felony exclusion resolved $150,000.00
- Globe fraud on application successful $100,000.00
- Denied SGLI claim resolved $401,200.00
- Genworth cancer demise fought hard to win $60,000.00
- Penn Mutual heart attack claimed not accidental $25,000.00
- AAA Life alcohol exclusion $200,000.00
- Met Life drowning death was denied $15,000.00
- Stonebridge contestable period medical records $50,000.00
- Denied FEGLI claim resolved $280,000.00
- Nationwide pneumonia $250,000.00
- AXA Equitable drug exclusion $200,000.00
- National Life smoking not on app $75,000.00
- State Farm private experimental plane crash $25,000.00
- AIG stabbing death was denied $100,00.00
- Pacific Life long delay of almost 2 years $10,000.00
- Lincoln Financial fall from ladder death $100,000.00
- Transamerica sickness exclusion $50,000.00
- Oxford Life suicide exclusion $102,400.00
- Santa Ana dangerous activity exclusion $750,000.00
- Denied AD&D claim resolved $287,000.00
- Material misrepresentation application $143,500.00
- SGLI claim we won disputed beneficiaries $400,000.00
- Stockton VGLI appeal our plaintiff won case $400,000.00
- Cigna Life Policy lapse premium nonpayment $224,250.00
- American General Life 4 policy exclusions overcome $175,000.00
- California denied life insurance claim $1,500,000.00
- Fresno drug exclusion heroin case won $250,000.00
- Long Beach contestable period case $761,000.00
- Chesapeake Life contestable period $106,300.00
- American General Life type of death $509,125.00
- California bad faith life insurance claim $327,000.00
- Stonebridge failure to disclose information $248,100.00
- Bankers Life bad faith refusal to pay $307,340.00
- Oakland felony exclusion crime case $741,000.00
- California ERISA life insurance claim $285,000.00
- Monumental Life accidental death claim $250,000.00
- Sacramento denied life insurance claim $818,000.00
- Denied life insurance claim California $530,000.00
- Anaheim dispute between wife & ex-wife $288,000.00
- Riverside illegal activity exclusion $907,000.00
- Gerber drug exclusion heroin overdose $114,300.00
- California life insurance lawyer wins claim $759,000.00
- American General divorce spouse and ex-spouse $274,800.00
- VGLI claim wife and girlfriend dispute $400,00.00
- AARP prescription drug exclusion $127,390.00
- Life insurance denial San Diego $849,000.00
- Primerica autoerotic asphyxiation $302,450.00
- California bad faith life insurance claim $638,000.00
- Denial of life benefits Los Angeles $954,000.00
- San Jose interpleader case we won $683,000.00
- Prudential AD&D claim denial $507,250.00
- California divorce and life insurance claim $2,100,000.00
- San Francisco resolution beneficiary dispute $1,720,000.00
- Bakersfield beneficiary dispute case resolution $560,000.00
- Globe alcohol exclusion overcome $231,400.00
California Life Insurance Law
Our attorneys know all too well that life insurance companies hate paying out claims made under Accidental Death & Dismemberment (“AD&D”) riders. This is because is the insured dies in an accident with an AD&D rider in place, the insurance company typically has to make a much greater death payout to beneficiaries than it would without the rider.
Consequently, we have spent years watching life insurers argue that the death of a policyholder was not an accident. They will do this even in the most clear-cut cases of accidental death you can imagine. Their hope, of course, is that the grieving beneficiary won’t have the fight in them to contest the claim denial. In many cases, that’s the truth. Grieving beneficiaries often don’t have the will it takes to battle a major corporation in court.
That’s where we come in. We study the law in this area constantly and report on scores of cases illustrating the hardball tactics life insurance companies will use in denying claims. Importantly, we then use that knowledge to help our clients get the death benefit payouts they deserve.
This article explores an extreme case where a life insurer denied an AD&D claim when its insured died as the result of a motorcycle accident. How could they possibly do that? Read on.
A head on crash in the night
The case involved a middle-aged man named Trent. One night, Trent was riding his motorcycle down a windy country road. He took a hairpin turn a little too fast and rammed head-on into an oncoming car. Emergency personnel arrived on scene in a matter of minutes and it was clear to everyone that Trent was in bad shape.
Upon his arrival at the Emergency Room, doctors and nurses did everything they could for Trent. He had a badly shattered pelvic bone and had multiple injuries to his internal organs. Early in their treatment efforts, doctors noticed Trent was bleeding more profusely than one would expect – even in such a severe accident. They quickly located his medical bracelet which revealed what they already suspected. Trent was suffering from a heart condition that required him to take a prescription medication called Coumadin.
Coumadin is a drug that not only thins the blood, but also prevents the blood from coagulating as quickly as it otherwise might. In other words, the drug made it more difficult than normal for Trent’s body to stop bleeding. Emergency personnel are very familiar with this drug and, upon learning of Trent’s prescription, immediately administered a second drug to counteract the Coumadin.
Notwithstanding their valiant efforts, Trent’s injuries we just too immense to overcome. Trent died in the emergency room from the massive trauma suffered in his accident. Autopsy reports would later conclude that Trent died from the severe injuries to his internal organs. The report also noted that Trent’s situation may have been exacerbated by his Coumadin prescription, but it did not attribute the cause of death to that drug.
Shortly after his death, Trent’s wife, Kim, made a claim for policy benefits under his life insurance policy and AD&D rider. Given that Trent had died as the result of a motorcycle accident, it never occurred to Kim that the AD&D claim would be denied.
Blaming the death on the drug
In just under a month, Kim received a letter in the mail from Trent’s life insurance company. While the insurer agreed to pay a death benefit under his base life insurance policy, it refused to pay anything under the AD&D rider – an amount that would have tripled the overall payout.
The stated reasoning for the denial was confusing to Kim. The insurance adjuster claimed that Trent had not died as the result of an accident at all. Rather, the adjuster concluded, Trent died because he got in an accident while taking Coumadin. According to the adjuster, it was that drug’s impact on Trent’s ability to naturally stop bleeding that caused his death. Because the policy required an accident to be the “sole cause of death,” in order for the AD&D rider to kick in, the insurer simply could not pay the claim.
Kim was devastated. She was counting on that payout to help her survive while she navigated her new life without her husband by her side. She turned to friends for help. One of them suggested that she seek the advice of an attorney who specializes in contesting the denial of life insurance claims. Kim made an appointment that day and is forever grateful that she did.
Following an initial consultation, Kim agreed with the attorney that she needed to sue the life insurance company. Her lawsuit was premised on the idea that Trent’s death was undeniably due to an accident. Though the case was hard fought, eventually the court agreed with Kim and her attorney.
Specifically, the court noted that Trent never would have even had the opportunity to “bleed out” if he hadn’t been in the accident in the first place. And, while the Coumadin may have initially caused greater blood loss, emergency personnel administered a counteracting drug very early in the treatment. In light of all this evidence, the court found that the life insurance company had been wrong in denying Kim’s claim for benefits under the AD&D rider.
As attorneys who contest the denial of life insurance claims, we end up fighting insurance companies on wrongful denials of AD&D claims all the time. The truth is, an insurance company will always twist the facts to try to make an accident seem like something else. We are dedicated to not letting them get away with that. We have a very successful track record in that regard. If you have recently had a claim denied on a similar basis, please call us. We’re here to help.