Life insurance proceeds can be paid out either by way of beneficiaries designated on the life insurance policy itself or, if no beneficiary is listed, through the deceased’s estate.
Disputes can arise when determining which beneficiary should be awarded the proceeds from the life insurance policy. An experienced probate attorney for these types of insurance disputes might be needed to resolve the issues.
Beneficiary Attorney in Sarasota, Florida
Germain Law Group represents beneficiaries that may be involved in a dispute with another beneficiary that was listed under a certain life insurance policy. Our capable attorneys pledge to be aggressive advocates for our clients. We are experienced in all types of insurance disputes and we will go to court, if necessary, to defend a client's rights.
The Sarasota County office of Germain Law Group is conveniently located just off Interstate 75 along University Parkway (Exit 213). We also serve clients in Manatee, DeSoto, Highlands, and Hardee counties.
Call Germain Law Group at our Sarasota, FL, office today at (941) 316-0333 to talk to one of our experienced life insurance law attorneys.
Information Center on Beneficiary Issues in Sarasota, FL
- What is a Beneficiary?
- Primary and Contingent Beneficiaries
- Revocable and Irrevocable Beneficiaries
- Choosing a Beneficiary
- Multiple Beneficiaries
What is a Beneficiary?
A beneficiary is a person or entity you name in a life insurance policy to receive your death benefit. If you do not name a beneficiary, your death benefit will be paid to your estate.
Primary and Contingent Beneficiaries
- Primary Beneficiary - The primary beneficiary is the person, or persons, who will receive the proceeds of the life insurance policy when the insured person dies. However, the primary beneficiary will not receive any proceeds if he or she dies before the death of the named insured.
- Contingent Beneficiary -The contingent beneficiary, or second beneficiary, will not receive any of the life insurance proceeds if the primary beneficiary is still alive when the insured person dies. The contingent beneficiary is only entitled to receive proceeds if the primary beneficiary dies before the named insured.
Revocable and Irrevocable Beneficiaries
- Revocable Beneficiary - The owner of the life insurance policy has the right to change the beneficiary designation at any time without the consent of the previously named beneficiary.
- Irrevocable Beneficiary - The owner of the life insurance policy cannot change the designation of the beneficiary without the consent of the original beneficiary.
Choosing a Beneficiary
Naming a life insurance beneficiary should be an easy and uncomplicated process. When people choose beneficiaries, they usually consider:
- Legal Guardian
If you have multiple beneficiaries, it is best to designate that proceeds will be distributed as a percentage rather than a dollar amount. The law allows for two options when it comes to picking multiple beneficiaries:
- Per stirpes - You can designate your beneficiaries by “branches of the family or lineage.” This means that the life insurance proceeds would be passed down and divided equally among the beneficiaries and/or the surviving children of the beneficiaries.
- Per capita - the proceeds are divided equally among all the beneficiary survivors of the lineage line.
RBC Life Insurance Company v. Monaco et. al. – Read this case in Canada in 2010 about competing beneficiaries to get a better understanding of how beneficiaries can dispute over proceeds.
Find a Competing Beneficiaries Attorney in Sarasota, Florida
Life insurance should be straightforward, but if you are in a dispute with another beneficiary over proceeds in Sarasota, Florida, contact an experienced attorney at Germain Law Group today to schedule an appointment so we can discuss your case.
We can help you if the life insurer brings an interpleader action to determine which competing beneficiary is entitled to proceeds of life insurance policies. The beneficiary is determined by the requirements in the life insurance policy but a settlement agreement might also come into play.
Florida law provides that a settlement agreement that specifically requires one of the parties to maintain a named individual as beneficiary will control the disposition of proceeds upon notice to the insurer. Some policies contain a provision that if the named beneficiary is dead, that the proceeds will be paid to the estate. The policy also has requirements for changing the named beneficiary or transferring ownership of this policy during the lifetime of the insured.
Germain Law Group handles many types of insurance matters in Sarasota, FL, and the surrounding counties, including Manatee County, DeSoto County, Highlands County, and Hardee County, but none are more important than life insurance claims.
Our Sarasota office is located in the University Commons Office Center at 6151 Lake Osprey Drive, Suite 300, near the intersection of Interstate 75 and University Parkway (Exit 213) in northeast Sarasota, near Lakewood Ranch.
Call Germain Law Group at (941) 316-0333 today to discuss your situation.
This article was last updated on Friday, January 12, 2018.
Meet Our Attorney
Michael B. Germain
Michael B. Germain is the founder of the Germain Law Group. For over a decade, Michael has been involved in litigating insurance claims and complex commercial matters.