Search for:

When the policyholder passes away, the life insurance will provide valuable cash benefits to the beneficiary and help the family meet expenses. The best life insurance company will have a simple, easy to understand system that will process the claim quickly. This article guides seniors over 70 years on how to claim the death benefits.

Did You Try Out Our Life Insurance Quote Comparison Tool? Save BIG!

Life Insurance Claim – Step by Step:

Learn How to Claim Life Insurance Death Benefits for Seniors

In order to process the claim, there are a few actions that you are going to take. While different insurance companies have their own rules, for the most part, they all follow the same guidelines when you need to file a life insurance claim.

Have Several Copies of the Death Certificate: The death certificate is the standard document that is required when filing a life insurance claim. Your life insurance company may have alternatives available. However, receiving the death certificate copies may take one to three weeks on average.

Contact Insurance Agent: Preferably, you’ll want to talk to the agent who sold the life insurance policy if at all possible. They can help fill out the forms and act as an intermediary between you and the insurance company. If you are unsure of the identity of the agent, you should call the insurance company directly.

Hopefully, the policyholder did not store the life insurance policy in their safety deposit box. In most states, the safety deposit boxes are sealed temporarily and that could delay the claims settlement.

FREE Quotes, No Obligations!

Group Life Insurance: If the person was covered under group life from their employer, then the human resources department or group plan sponsor needs to be contacted. If that fails, contact the life insurance company.

Submit Death Certificate or Acceptable Copy: Once you have submitted the death certificate along with the claim, the settlement should be issued in a timely manner.

How to Distribute the Proceeds?

Life insurance claims for beneficiaries should take from a week to three or four weeks to deliver depending on the circumstances of the death and the company itself. At this point, you will have some settlement options.

Lump-Sum: You can receive the totality of the death benefit in one lump sum which offers the advantage of only being taxed a single time. Plus, you can use the lump sum for what you need and invest the rest if you so desire.

Life Income: Here, you will receive a guaranteed income for the rest of your life. The amount of the income would depend on how much was specified in the benefits, your gender, and your age when the policyholder passed away.

Compare life insurance quotes and save!

Specified Provision: This is where the life insurance company will pay you the benefit on a predetermined time and schedule. This includes both the principal and the interest.

Interest Option: The insurance company will hold onto the proceeds and pay you the interest. This means that the totality of the death benefit remains intact and will be designated to another beneficiary when you pass away.

By having everything in order, you can hasten the process of getting your claim returned. You should try to work with the claims representative either directly or through your insurance agent.


Meet Aaron H., a senior life insurance agent from California with 15+ years of experience. With a major in finance, excellent analytical and communication skills, and a passion for helping clients find personalized solutions, Aaron is a trusted advisor in the industry. He stays up-to-date on the latest trends and developments by attending webinars and workshops, reading industry blogs, and writing informative blog posts on this website. Aaron also has a keen understanding of SEO and online marketing, which he uses to help his clients reach a wider audience and get the coverage they need. He cherishes spending quality time with his wife, two children, and elder parents.