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Modern Estate Planning Blog

Elder Law & Special Needs Planning

How do I find my loved one’s insurance benefits and retirement accounts after their death?

May 4, 2011

As a will lawyer in Sacramento, I often hear from clients that finding out what benefits are available under insurance policies and retirement accounts was one of the most difficult tasks in closing out their loved one’s estate.

This step can be especially difficult if the person handling the estate is not a surviving spouse or is not in possession of the policies. Since many people do not discuss private matters like life insurance policy limits while they are alive, trying to figure out the available benefits after the person is gone can seem impossible.

Talk to close family members or the family’s financial advisor to see if the decedent had policies that may provide benefits after death such as life insurance, health insurance, and private retirement accounts. Be prepared with the policy number and a copy of the death certificate, as well as proof that you have permission to discuss these matters with the company before you call.

The insurance company will then forward the proceeds of the policy to whoever was named the beneficiary.

If you are unsure about any aspect of this step of discovering death benefits after the loss of a loved one, I invite you to call our office at (916) 241-9661 and schedule a free Peace of Mind Planning Session. These sessions are normally $750, but you can come in free with the mention of this article. However, they are limited to 10 per month so call today!

Call The Chubb Law Firm today at (916) 241-9661 to review your goals and discuss your options.

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I was absolutely without a clue as to how to begin or what I should do to establish an estate plan. I did know that I wanted someone I could trust, that was honest and I would have confidence in. I was referred to Heather by my friend who was being legally advised by Heather on another estate. She was very satisfied with her work and thought I might be happy with her service. At our consultation appointment, her presentation was very thorough. I had lots of questions, and she was easy to talk to and was able to guide me to just the kind of estate plan I needed. That was 10 years ago. Due to circumstances in my life, I have had to make changes to my plan, and I always go back to her for her legal services and guidance. I have recommended Heather before.
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