Life Insurance Lawyer Georgia
After paying premiums for years, nobody expects to have a life insurance claim denied, but insurance companies don't make money paying out claims. We fight all delayed and denied life insurance claims. We handle life insurance beneficiary disputes and interpleader lawsuits.
You need to call to collect! Call us at 800-330-2274 for a free consultation.Georgia Settled Life Insurance Claims
- Amalgamated Life COVID-19 denial $219,000.00
- TIAA CREF coronavirus exclusion $103,500.00
- Employee Life insurance termination $152,000.00
- Georgia denied life insurance claim $1,100,00.00
- Denied Life insurance claim Georgia $440,000.00
- Denied SGLI claim beneficiary change $405,200.00
- Accidental Death & Dismemberment $780,000.00
- American General autoerotic asphyxiation $303,000.00
- NTA life lapse of policy premiums $12,000.00
- Mutual Savings Life suicide exclusion $40,000.00
- National Life Group interpleader $130,000.00
- VGLI competing beneficiaries $402.420.00
- Haven Life felony exclusion $25,000.00
- Bestow Life coronavirus denial $46,000.00
- TruStage Life lapse of policy $30,000.00
- Permanent Life sickness exclusion $178,000.00
- Georgia denial of life insurance claim $520,000.00
- AFLAC life insurance denial won $29,000.00
- Ladder Life prescription drug rejected $101,490.00
- Ethos Life lapse of payment we won $50,000.00
- CUNA Mutual Life alcohol exclusion $20,000.00
- Denied FEGLI claim dispute wife and ex-wife $118,000.00
- Georgia interpleader lawsuit resolved $306,000.00
- First National Life COVID-19 denial won $103,500.00
- Transamerica denied suicide exclusion $237,200.00
- Greater Georgia misrepresentation application $303,850.00
- FEGLI appeal of life benefits resolved $114,000.00
- Security Life drug exclusion opioids $108,300.00
- Banner Life exclusion for alcohol $174,000.00
- Denied FEGLI claim resolved quickly $138,000.00
- Savannah competing beneficiaries $3,500,00.00
- Atlantic American Life sickness exclusion $190,000.00
- American Family divorce settled $218,500.00
- Villanova Life long delay of benefits $220,000.00
- Georgia denied life insurance claim $750,000.00
- Macon mistake of age on application $319,000.00
- Prudential AD&D denial of benefits $504,000.00
- Met LIfe accidental death denial $320,000.00
- Denied SGLI claim resolution dispute $402,000.00
- iA Financial Life delay of benefits $22,000.00
- Sandy Springs divorce settlement $450,000.00
- Bad faith life insurance claim denial $768,000.00
- Augusta long delay medical records $635,000.00
- Reliance interpleader resolution $257,000.00
- AIG lapse while in nursing home $211,400.00
- Denied AD&D claim resolved 1 week $520,000.00
- Lincoln Financial felony exclusion $101,350.00
- Marietta denial of life benefits won $150,000.00
- Athens contestable period records $620,000.00
- Denied life insurance claim Georgia $538,112.00
- Union Fidelity delay contestable $156,000.00
- USAA change of beneficiary $375,000.00
- South Farm Bureau suicide exclusion $141,900.00
- Atlanta beneficiary contest by son $507,000.00
- Guardian autoerotic asphyxiation $113,600.00
Georgia Life Insurance Law
Most Americans go through life dutifully paying their insurance premiums without a deep understanding of the insurance industry. In fact, many people believe that insurance companies almost play a charitable role in our society given that their job is to show up and pay for major life expenses like health care, car accidents, and property damage.
The truth about insurance companies is vastly different. By and large, they exist for one reason and one reason only – to generate large profits for shareholders. To do this, most types of insurance companies play the same game. They collect the greatest amount of premiums possible and deny the greatest amount of claims possible. The more successful they are at this game, the more profits they generate.
As attorneys who specialize in the denial of life insurance claims, we’re here to tell you that the life insurance industry is no different. In fact, after successfully contesting life insurance claims for many years now, we’ve come to know the tricks insurance companies play in order to justify valid claims. As we hope this article illustrates, just because an insurance company initially denies a claim for death benefits does not mean the claim is not valid. Here are a few examples of the faulty denials we see day in and day out.
Material misrepresentations and life insurance
In order to receive a life insurance policy, most people have to go through an application process with the insurance company. Among other things, that process involves a health questionnaire requiring the potential policyholder to disclose any significant health risks that might impact the insurer’s decision whether or not to issue a policy.
It is absolutely essential that applicants be truthful in answering those health questionnaires. Even when they are, however, life insurers still sometimes claim the policyholder lied in an attempt to avoid paying out claims for death benefits.
In one recent case, for example, the applicant stated on his questionnaire that he was a nonsmoker. Based on that representation, the insurance company issued him a policy at nonsmoker rates. After he died, however, life insurance company investigators scoured his social media accounts. There, they found pictures of the policyholder smoking a cigar at a bachelor party. Based on that photo, the insurer denied his wife’s claim for death benefits. The denial letter alleged that it was not obligated to pay the claim because the policyholder made a “material misrepresentation” in his insurance application when he claimed he was a nonsmoker.
The beneficiary hired an attorney specializing in the denial of life insurance claims and was able to successfully contest the denial.
Intentional harm and life insurance
The vast majority of life insurance policies contain a provision that nullifies the life insurer’s responsibility to make death payouts if the insured dies while performing an act of intentional harm. This is one of the biggest loopholes in the life insurance arsenal.
Over the years, we’ve seen life insurance companies denial claims on the basis that the following actions were the type of intentional harm that would prevent coverage: snow skiing, use of prescription medications, drinking alcohol, taking recreational drugs, and driving above the speed limit.
In most of these cases, courts find that the insured, while engaging in behaviors that are arguably dangerous, did not do so with the intent to inflict self-harm. Consequently, courts frequently overturn claim denials that are made based on intentional harm provisions.
Similarly, life insurance companies will often try to avoid paying out on claims based on a suicide exclusion in the underlying policy. Shockingly, they do this all the time even where the official cause of death is ruled to be an accident or a natural death.
In one recent case, for example, the policyholder died from ingesting a lethal dose of a prescription medication. In investigating the death, the police and medical examiners determined that policyholder – having missed a few days of her medication – simply tried to “catch up” by taking several days’ worth of pills at one time. That proved to be a fatal mistake that was officially ruled an accidental death.
The evidence supporting this conclusion included testimony from the policyholder’s day nurse, written notes in the policyholder’s medication journal, and a voice message the policyholder left at her doctor’s office on the day she died. Nonetheless, the insurance company denied the beneficiary’s claim for death benefits on the grounds that the policyholder committed suicide when she took the pills.
Ultimately, a court determined the insurance company’s claim denial was wrongful and ordered the insurance company to pay the full policy benefit, with interest. Nonetheless, the beneficiary had to endure the time and stress of a trial to reach that point.
What to do if you receive a life insurance claim denial
If you receive a claim denial letter from a life insurance company, don’t panic. Remember that initial denials from life insurers are often rife with problems. Moreover, if you believe the claim denial you’ve received is wrongful or deceitful, your instincts are probably right.
The first thing you should do is contact an attorney who specializes in the denial of life insurance claims. The attorney will review your case thoroughly and give you an honest opinion about your chances for successfully contesting the claim denial.
In the event the denial is contestable, the attorney will likely first pursue any internal, administrative appeal processes the life insurance company requires. Without this step, a court may refuse to hear your case. Unfortunately, however, many internal appeals prove to be an exercise in frustration as the insurer’s appeals board is hesitant to overturn the decisions of its own claims adjusters.
If necessary, your attorney will then file a claim against the life insurance company in court. While this can be a prolonged process, our firm will take your case on a contingency – which means we won’t charge you a dime until you receive a recovery from the insurance company.
If you find yourself battling an unreasonable life insurance claim denial, please call us today. We’re here to help.
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The case involved a married couple in their mid-thirties named Dave and Jan. Both were highly successful. Dave was an attorney and Jan was an aeronautical engineer. They both had great benefits through work, which included lucrative life insurance policies. Jan’s policy was worth $2.5 million and she named Dave as her sole beneficiary. Dave’s policy was worth $2 million and he named Jan as his sole beneficiary.
Several years into their marriage, the couple had their first child, a son named Ben. Although Ben’s birth should have been a joyous occasion, it came at a turbulent time in the couple’s relationship. Jan struggled with having to take time off work for maternity leave because she was the lead engineer on an important airliner project. Once Jan went back to work, Dave resented the time he had to spend caring for the child as he was preparing for a trial that was expected to last several months.
Though the couple sought help from their family as well as a full-time nanny, they never recovered from the stress that having a child brought to their relationship. By the time Ben was two, the couple was in the midst of a bitter divorce.
As part of the divorce proceeding, the family law judge made a specific order with respect to each spouse’s life insurance policy. They were both to complete a “Change of Beneficiary” form that would name Ben as the sole beneficiary under the respective policies. The court further ordered that they maintain Ben as their sole beneficiary until he reached the age of 18. The order was intended to provide Ben with independent financial security should either parent pass away.
Three years after the divorce, Dave met another woman, Nancy, and fell madly in love. Dave and Nancy married quickly and almost immediately started a family together. After their first daughter was born, Nancy insisted that Dave change his life insurance policy to name Nancy as the primary beneficiary. Not wanting to upset his young family, Dave did as Nancy requested. He did not notify the court, Jan, or Ben of the change.
A surprise death and a special legal procedure
A few months after making that change, Dave was killed in a tragic car accident. Unbeknownst to Ben or Jan, Nancy filed a claim for life insurance proceeds within days after Dave’s death. A few weeks later, however, Dave’s first wife notified the insurance company of the court order, and – given that Ben was still a minor – filed a claim on his behalf.
Jan was distrustful of Dave’s new wife. Therefore, even though Ben’s claim had not yet been denied, she contacted an attorney who specialized in the wrongful denial of life insurance claims. The attorney was grateful Jan contacted him so early and made a point to tell her what was about to happen.
When a life insurance company receives two competing claims, the company rarely (if ever) makes its own decision about who to pay. Rather, the company will file a lawsuit known as an “action in interpleader.” Using this procedure, the insurance company basically asks the court to make a legally sound decision about who is deserving of the life insurance payout.
Because Jan contacted a specialized attorney from the outset, that attorney was highly prepared when the insurance company filed its interpleader action. In fact, he had already put together a brief asking the court to grant judgment in favor of Jan and Ben. To support that brief, he attached a copy of the court order from the divorce case, along with copies of the initial Change of Beneficiary forms Dave filled out in order to comply with that order. For good measure, he also submitted copies of Jan’s current life insurance policy which, in compliance with the family law order, continued to name Ben as her sole beneficiary.
The tactic worked. The court in the interpleader action made an early ruling that Ben was the only person entitled to recover under his father’s life insurance policy. Indeed, because the ruling came so early in the case, Jan was able to avoid the excessive attorney fees that can sometimes pile up when an interpleader action has to go on for months and months.
The moral of this story is two-fold. First, if a court issues an order telling you that you have to name a specific person as your life insurance beneficiary, you should absolutely comply with that order. Any attempt to go around the order will likely be invalid.
Secondly, if an issue arises involving multiple parties who claim competing rights to a life insurance payout, contact a specialized attorney as early as possible. Additionally, if you receive a life insurance claim denial that you suspect violates a court order, call our firm today. We practice in this area exclusively and we’re here to help you obtain the benefits you’re entitled to. Call today. We’re here to help.
Life Insurance Claims Process
When a loved one dies, there are many things that need attending to immediately. If the person who has passed owned life insurance, collecting death benefits should be one of the easiest things to do. Life insurance is supposed to offer simple and reliable payouts to an insured person’s family (or other beneficiaries), but sometimes things can get complicated.
Typically this is a simple process. Money is paid to the listed beneficiary when the insured person dies. The beneficiaries usually just need to request copies of the death certificate to present to the insurance carrier. Insurance companies will typically have a specific claim form to fill out, and then the person seeking benefits will usually be assigned a claims adjuster.
In some circumstances, the type of death will matter. For example, a policy may have an Accidental Death and Dismemberment (“AD&D”) rider that increases the payout in the case of an accidental death. Or the policy may have an exclusion that says no benefits will be paid if the person died while skydiving.
Working With a Claims Adjuster
A claims adjuster will be assigned to each case. Oftentimes, the adjuster will simply review the claim forms and give the request a rubber stamp. More often than not, the adjuster will ask for more information, and other times he or she will start a full blown investigation. That could include working with medical examiners, doctors and law enforcement to determine exactly what happened, and it can also include hiring independent forensic investigators.
With hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars on the line, an adjuster will spend considerable time and money to try to avoid payment. For a beneficiary, it is often important to have representation during this process.
What if a Claim is Denied?
Very often, an insurance company will actually deny a claim outright. If you find yourself in this unfortunate situation, you do not have to simply accept what the insurance adjuster has decided. Instead, you retain an experience life insurance attorney who can ensure you get the money to which you are entitled.
We handle all delayed life insurance claims and denied life insurance claims as well as beneficiary disputes and interpleader actions.