We’ve listed down the general procedure and the documents nominees need to make a claim.
About six months ago, Vijay passed away in an accident. He had invested in a Life Insurance policy of Rs. 80 lakhs, but his wife, Rani, has still not been able to claim this amount since she has no idea about the death claim process or the required documents.
Life is unpredictable. And death is unavoidable. The ugly part of death is that it affects one’s family – both emotionally and financially. The loss of a loved one can scar individuals for a long time.
Ensure that your dependents are financially sorted after your demise by getting Life Insurance early in your life. After all, you wouldn’t want your loved ones to suffer (at least financially) after your death, right?
Additional Reading: Life Insurance Buyer’s Checklist #In60Seconds
What is Life Insurance?
It can be defined as a contract between the insurance company and the insured individual or life assured wherein the former agrees to pay a lump-sum amount to the insured’s nominees after the insured’s death. The insured will be paying a defined premium every month to the insurance company for this service. In short, a Life Insurance policy is protection from financial losses that result from an insured’s sudden death.
Additional Reading: Term Life Insurance-A Necessity
Life Insurance claims are classified under two categories – maturity claims and death claims.
As a nominee, it is important for you to understand the claim process and know the required documents unless you want to be in Rani’s state. So, we’ve listed down the general procedure and the essential documents needed to make a death claim. However, please note that the exact documents required for a death claim could vary from insurer to insurer.
Additional Reading: 5 Things To Do If You’re Not Happy With Your Life Insurance Policy
When an insured dies during the term of the policy – that is, the policy hasn’t matured – then their beneficiary can claim the proceeds. This claim is referred to as a ‘death claim’ or a ‘Life Insurance claim’.
How to make a death claim
The first and most important step is informing the insurance company of the death of the insured. There are two classifications for death according to insurance companies – an ‘early death’ and a ‘non-early death’. These are based on the time from when the policy was taken.
Early death is one wherein the insured dies within three years of having taken the policy. The documents necessary for claiming insurance for the two types of death can vary. Approach the insurance company and obtain the claim intimation form. At the same time, you could also ask them for the necessary documents that you need to produce for the claim. For online insurance policies, you can apply online for the form.
Generally, a death claim would require these documents:
- The death certificate
- Original policy documents
- ID proof of the beneficiary
- Age proof of insurer
- Discharge form (executed and witnessed)
- Medical certificate (as proof of the cause of death)
- Police FIR (in case of unnatural death)
- Post-mortem report (in case of unnatural death)
- Hospital records/certificate (if the deceased died due to an illness)
- Cremation certificate and employer certificate (in case of early death)
As a claimant, you should make the insurance claim immediately following the death of the insured. Ensure that you have all the necessary documents with you too.
Additional Reading: Your Guide To Accidental Death & Disability Riders
With all of the above in order, the whole process of claiming Life Insurance should be fairly smooth.