There are a little over 30 states who filed a lawsuit against Metlife Inc which is a leading provider of life insurance in the United States. The Pennsylvania Insurance Department is representing its state in ensuring the beneficiaries of their policy holders get what is rightfully due to them.
Last week it was announced by Metlife that they would be paying out up to $500 million to the states that had filed a lawsuit against them for wrongfully holding back the dues that were due to policy holders despite being aware of the fact about their death. Michael Consedine, the Insurance counselor of the state of Pennsylvania said that the investigation conducted by multiple states in the country has revealed that Metlife cheated policy holders not just in Pennsylvania, but many other states across the country. He also went on to say that the settlement that Metlife has agreed to pay out to insurance regulators highlights the need for better protection to policy holders to prevent such incidents from taking place in the future.
Consedine went on to say that one of the most frequently asked questions by policy holders is how to determine if their loved ones who have passed away had any life insurance policy. He said that it is important to educate customers about learning how to find out about the existence of the policy so they can claim the benefits that are due to them. He says that though customers should put in an effort to find out about the existence of the policy, it is also the role of the life insurance providers to intimate the beneficiaries of their policy holders in case the payments have not come in for a long time. He also said that the insurance department of Pennsylvania was pleased that Metlife has already begun taking steps to reach out to their beneficiaries to make the payments due. He also said that the company has begun developing a new approach to tackle this problem head one and find a permanent solution.
As per the agreement that has been approved, Metlife will use the information in the ‘death file’ maintained by the Social Security Department and get in touch with the beneficiaries to make payments. This agreement has been signed by Pennsylvania, North Dakota, Florida, New Hampshire, Illinois and California. In order for this agreement to come into effect, signatures of the representatives from 14 other states are still needed.