Every year, thousands or even millions of dollars of life insurance benefits go unclaimed by beneficiaries. This is often due to life insurance beneficiaries not being aware of the existence of the policy, or because they could not be located by the insurer.

Naturally, when you are busy paying for life insurance you would want your policy beneficiaries to be able to lodge a claim if you pass away. To enable this to happen, it’s important to maintain good records, and to advise your beneficiaries of the existence and details of the policy. These records should include:

•    The name and contact details of the agent and insurance provider.

•    Type of policy – whether permanent or term for instance.

•    Policy number and date the policy was started.

•    The value of the policy death benefit, and beneficiary names.

All life insurance records and documents should be kept in a place that is safe, but also easily accessible for policy beneficiaries so that they can lodge a claim if need be. Ideally a second copy should be kept off-site in case of fire, flood or other disaster.

In addition, it’s important to keep all life insurance records up-to-date with your insurer. Over time, people often move and change their contact details, and maybe even their names in some instances – either due to marriage or personal preference. It’s important to notify your insurance agent or provider of any changes to the contact details of your policy’s beneficiaries as they occur, so that they can be easily contacted if required.