*If you cannot answer the following questions you need to read this blog*
1. What is the name of insurance company that provides your life insurance benefits through your employer?
2. What is your employer’s life insurance policy number?
3. Do you meet the eligibility requirements to have a life insurance claim issued on your behalf?
4. Will your family know how to successfully file a life insurance claim in the event of your death?
5. Have your made your spouse, children, family or designated executor of your affairs aware of your employer issued life insurance policy?
When I ask family members and friends if they have invested in a life insurance policy for themselves and their families one of the more common responses that I receive is “I have life insurance through my job”. My follow up question to this response is whether or not they have contacted the policy holder to get the information needed to file a claim in the event of a death. Many times, I am told that they have not but their spouse, parents, or children will know what to do. I find this hard to believe. How many times have you heard employer issued life insurance policies discussed at dinner?
Many of us wake up and go to some form of a job on a regular basis. We exchange our time for compensation and because of this we are in many cases entitled to receive benefits from our employers that extend beyond health coverage. If we are lucky, these benefits may extend beyond our lives themselves. Most of us are blissfully ignorant to the protocols that must be followed in order for our families and/or executors to successfully file and be compensated from our employer issued life insurance policies. Others of us have no idea that they even exist.
In order to shed more light on this particular matter I have compiled the following 4 steps to Confirming Life Insurance Benefits with Your Employer.
1. Check with your HR department or representative to find out whom your employer contracts with for Life Insurance. This information may be available on your employer internal website. Once you find out who has issued the policy you will need to gather the following pieces of information:
a. Policy Holder
b. Group Policy Number
c. Type of Insurance Provided
d. Effective Policy Date
e. It would be really smart to obtain a copy of the entire policy for your personal records
2. Make sure that you (or your loved one) is indeed covered by this policy and that a beneficiary has been named. Please see the policy or contact your HR representative to obtain this information. You and your loved one’s eligibility for coverage is determined by a number of factors. Eligibility factors may include but are not limited to:
· Hours worked
· Employment Status
· Length of time employed
· Retirement Status/ Date of Retirement
· Contract Employee/ Student/ Resident
*Please call your Life Insurance provider in order to confirm that you/ your loved one are indeed considered a member and eligible for life insurance benefits based on policy and employer requirements. Be sure to make detailed notes about the conversation which include the name and employee number of the representative that you speak with. *
3. Please keep in mind that unless additional policy contributions are made by the employee, the coverage and value of the policy are pre-determined by your employer. It is vital that you know the true value of your policy. This should be outlined in the policy itself which may be available online or by request from your HR department / representative. Once you have the policy number you can request this information directly from the insurance company via telephone. When speaking with the insurance company it may be helpful to ask the following questions:
1. How long will it take to receive payment once I file a claim?
2. Where do I send a copy of the death certificate (if needed)?
3. What are the terms for accidental death and dismemberment?
4. Does the value of the policy increase in the event of accidental death or dismemberment?
5. What are the age requirements or limitations of this policy?
6. What happens if there are changes to the policy? How will I be made aware of these changes?
7. Can I increase the amount of my coverage or add additional individuals to be covered?
8. How do I change or add beneficiaries?
4. Finally, it is vital that you let someone who will be involved in making or overseeing your final arrangements know this information. If you don't wish to discuss this information please make sure that it is put in a place where it can be easily accessed when it is needed.
I love gaining insight from my readers. If you have experience with this particular topic or if there is anything that you would like to add please feel free to comment. Your questions and comments can also be emailed to me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Peace & Blessings,
The Grave Woman
Joél Simone Anthony, also known as ‘The Grave Woman,’ is a graduate of the Gupton Jones College of Funeral Service in Atlanta, Georgia. She is dedicated to eliminating misconceptions about post-life preparation while stimulating an open, honest and straight forward discussion about death. You can submit your comments, questions and requests to email@example.com or by using the contact page.