– Sean O.
Illinois residents purchase life insurance with the expectation that these policies will provide financial security to their loved-ones in their time of greatest need. Unfortunately, this peace-of-mind is not always well placed. Too often, insurance companies inappropriately deny death benefits while beneficiaries are too bereaved to fight for what is rightfully theirs.
If your life insurance claim has been denied, it is important that you have an Illinois life insurance lawyer on your side. At the law firm of Drost, Gilbert, Andrew, & Apicella, our attorneys have experience handling these challenging cases. We will stand by you and help you recover the benefits that you deserve.
Insurance companies frequently attempt to deny life insurance claims for the following reasons:
Material Misrepresentation. Insurance companies can look to the policyholder’s original application to justify the denial of a claim. If the application contains any misstatements or omissions, the insurance company may try to rescind the policy and deny the claim. However, the denial of a claim on these grounds is legitimate only if the misstatement or omission would have affected the insurance company’s decision to write the policy in the first place. An experienced DGAA life insurance lawyer will help you fight back against these illegitimate attempts to deny your claim.
The Policy was not “In Force.” The insurance company may claim that the policy was not in force at the time of death because the policyholder failed to make one or more premium payments. However, an insurance company is required by the Illinois Life Insurance Code, 215 ILCS 5 to provide notice of cancellation and to extend a “grace period” of at least 30 days, during which the policy may be renewed by submitting payment for the premiums that are due. If the insurance company has not met these conditions, it cannot legitimately deny the claim. A life insurance attorney can fight for you if your insurance company attempts to deny your claim without meeting the conditions mandated by the law.
Death was not “Accidental.” Many people have stand-alone accidental life insurance policies or riders on their complete life insurance policies, which pay more if the policyholder suffers an accidental death rather than a death through disease or some other cause. Insurance companies may claim that the death was deliberate or caused by the decedent’s reckless choice. Alternatively, the insurance company may claim that an intervening event caused the death. For example, the insurance company may argue that the death of a patient who suffered a stroke during surgery, which was undertaken to address injuries sustain in a car accident, was not accidental because the car accident did not ultimately cause the patient’s death. If this happens to you a lawyer working on insurance matters can assist you by thoroughly investigating your case and skillfully presenting the facts and argument that will be necessary to defeat an insurance company’s claim that a death was not accidental.
Even when life insurance policyholders pay their premiums on time and make no misstatements or omissions in their applications, many insurance claims are still denied.
If you have had a claim denied, it is important to have legal counsel. Contact Drost, Gilbert, Andrew & Apicella today to speak to an experienced life insurance claim attorney. We have offices in Chicago and the Northwest suburbs and serve clients throughout the greater Chicagoland area including Arlington Heights, Rolling Meadows, Palatine, Inverness, Schaumburg and Barrington.
©2013 DGAA Law, LLC