What to do after the death of your next of kin (Part 2)

Though working on filing an insurance claim after the death of a loved one is always hard, you must try and look at the bigger picture, which is that they wanted to make sure you are well taken care of.

What to do after the death of your next of kin (Part 2)

The death of a loved one is a very unfortunate circumstance, and at a tough time like this, money would be the last thing on your mind. But you, as the next of kin, must stay strong and put certain things in order to ensure that the final wishes of your loved one are fulfilled.

One of these wishes was undoubtedly to ensure the financial wellbeing and future of you and your surviving kin.

Once all the religion-specific post death rituals have been completed and you have handled all immediate obligations, you need to now start the process to claim the insurance pay-outs andtackleother financial compulsions.

To make the process easier for you, we have listed the seventhings you make sure you get what your loved one wanted you to.

Related: What to do immediately after the death of someone you love

  1. Notify banks and other services- You need to inform the bank- or banks- where your next of kin operated his or her accounts of your loved one’s demise. This is important because the banks need to block his or her credit cards etc. to make sure it is not misused. You will also need to halt various other services your loved one may have subscribed to, like gas connection, electricity, domestic help, etc.
  2. Find insurance policies- The next step is to find all the policies your kin bought- be it life, health, car, home, etc, and compile them. If you were very intimately related to the deceased, then he or she must have confided in you the details of each policy. These details would include the insurer’s name, policy number, cover amount, etc. He or she might even have shared the copy of policy documents or at least the location where they had been kept by him/her. Find them at the earliest and study each policy document carefully. Know what each policy covers and what amount you are supposed to claim under each cover.

Related: 5 things to know before you buy life insurance

  1. Intimate about death- The next step is to intimate all insurers about the unfortunate passing away of your next of kin. You will need to contact each one of them and tell them what happened- the date, place, and cause of death, which will be mentioned on the death certificate. This needs to be done within the first month of the death, so it is absolutely essential you understand how important it is to find all the policies at the earliest possible.
  2. Get all the documents- Filing each claim would involve a tedious process of completing claim forms. To complete these forms, you will also need to attach various documents. Apart from the death certificate, there are other documents that you might require, likethe post-mortem report, deed of assignment, etc. Collect all of these and get separate copies made for each claim form. Put all the documents together- policy wise, checking which policy requires what documents.
  3. Submit all the documents- Next, you must submit them to the insurance company along with the claim form. The earlier you submit the complete set of documents required, the sooner the company would put into motion the process of handing over the pay-out to you. Check all the documents one last time before you submit them to make sure you have not missed anything. Feel free to ask friends or family for help.

Related: Why women need life insurance

  1. Find the will- Finally, you will have to find out how your next of kin intended to distribute his or her money and immovable assets after his or her departure from the world. You need to know if he or she has left behind an heir or not. Knowing this is important because if your kin hasn’t left behind a will or heir, the law will need to be called upon to intervene and distribute the assets in question.
  2. Consult his/ her accountant/ lawyer- You must consider talking to the lawyer or accountant of your next of kin after his or her death. This might help you understand better how your next of kin wished his or her finances to be utilised after his or her death. Working with a professional will alsoensure you make no errors while filing the claim and prevent you from overlooking anythingimportant.

Insurers understand that the death of a next of kin is always very traumatic to deal with, which is why they try to minimise the pressure on the claimant by helping them at each step. With a little support from your loved ones, and assistance from your insurers, the steps given above will at least ensure that the process of claiming insurance does notdelay your recovery.


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