Over $7.4 million in claim amounts of life insurance benefits or annuities have been located for Tennesseans so far in 2020 via the Life Insurance Policy Locator Service, a free online tool available through the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance (TDCI) and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).
Since its inception in 2016, the Life Insurance Locator Service has received 227,551 requests nationwide, which has led to 81,349 matches of life insurance policies or annuities with nationwide claim amounts of $1,028,479,262 being reported by companies through July 31, 2020. In Tennessee, 913 requests have been made in 2020 resulting in the location of $7,435,665 in claims or annuities — a 34% increase since an earlier report this year.
"I am pleased to see that Tennesseans are using the Life Insurance Locator Service to find their loved ones’ benefits during this year which has brought unprecedented hardships to Tennesseans," said TDCI Commissioner Hodgen Mainda. "As part of Life Insurance Awareness Month, I remind Tennesseans to educate themselves about the importance of life insurance today, so they might be better prepared to be a beneficiary in the future."
A recent NAIC survey revealed that many life insurance beneficiaries are unprepared to be a beneficiary. Millions of dollars in life insurance benefits go unclaimed by beneficiaries who cannot find their deceased loved ones’ policies or, in some cases, may not even know the policies exist.
"The Life Insurance Policy Locator Service provides help to consumers who may not have all the information they need in order to file a claim or may not know if their loved ones had a life insurance policy," said TDCI Assistant Commissioner Rachel Jrade Rice. "I am pleased that this service is continuing to help so many Tennessee consumers find annuities and life insurance policies. Consumers who have questions about their insurance policies should remember they can always contact our Consumer Insurance Services team at TDCI, and we will do our best to assist them."
The online policy locator requests are secure, confidential and free. Participating insurance companies are responsible for contacting beneficiaries and reporting matches to state insurance agencies through the NAIC Life Insurance Policy Locator.
To assist Tennessee consumers who may have a request, here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) to remember before using the Life Insurance Locator Service.
Who can use the locator? Anyone. This service is open to the public, including beneficiaries and legal representatives.
If a requester is a beneficiary and is notified by the company that a lost policy has been found, what information do people need to request their benefits? Typically, a certified death certificate and company claim form must be submitted to the insurer which found a policy.
How long does it take for a request to be completed? It may take up to 90 business days to complete the search. Please note that a requester will not receive a response if no matches are found; the requester is not the beneficiary; or the requester does not have legal authority to obtain information about the policy.
Consumers who have questions about their insurance policies or want to file a com-plaint about an agent can contact the TDCI Consumer Insurance Services team at (615) 741-2218 or visit us online at tn.gov/insurance.