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Life Insurance Claim Process – A Step by Step Explanation

By Deepak Yohannan

Life Insurance Claim Process – A Step by Step Explanation
Death of a family member is never easy to deal with and especially so if it is sudden and untimely. However, life goes on and the bills and payments make a beeline, oblivious to the mourning of the family members. At such a time it becomes very difficult for the mourners to balance the grief and the finances simultaneously. So if you have made provisions to protect your family at such a time, make sure you inform them about the procedures through which they can get the money you provisioned for them. If you have a life insurance policy, explain the claim procedure to your wife, children, parents or other nominees so that in your absence they know what to do and how. The claim process is quite simple if you have the documents ready. Take a look at the steps below:

File the claim

The nominee or beneficiary(s) needs to file a claim after the death of the policyholder. To do this, the claim form must be duly filled out. Claim forms are available at the office of the insurance provider and also on their website. If there is more than one nominee, then each has to fill out a separate form. The forms have to be submitted to the insurance company after which the claim process will begin.


Documents needed

Next, the nominee has to submit some documents to the insurance company. First of all, a photocopy of the original life insurance policy is to be submitted. If you cannot find the original policy, you need to obtain the policy number. This can be done by submitting the policy details to the insurance company, who in turn, will search the policy from their records. Then, the nominee has to submit a photocopy of the death certificate of the policyholder. If it was an accidental death, then the postmortem copy, FIR copy and other legal documents need to be handed in. If it was a natural death, hospital documents and doctor's certificates are needed.


The insurance company will then run an inquiry to see if there is any discrepancy. This procedure is not always carried out. It is carried out only if the insurance company feels that the cause of death wasn't natural or violates the terms of the policy. As per IRDA regulations, the insurer has to complete the inquiry in a maximum of 30 days. Beyond that, it will have to pay interest to the deceased's family. If there is no inquiry, the claim process has to be wrapped up within 8 days.

Mentioning the payment option

The nominee has to opt for a payment option. He or she may either choose to receive the entire amount in bulk or go for monthly payments. The choice has to be conveyed to the insurance company, who in turn will make the payments.

A life insurance claim process is simple, if done methodically. Make sure all the documents are in place. You, as a policyholder, must inform your nominee as to where you store your documents so that they know exactly where to look for after you are gone.

For more articles by Deepak Yohannan, please visit

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