You would typically claim on a life insurance policy in one of two situations.

  1. If you are diagnosed with a terminal illness that will result in your death within a certain amount of time (e.g. 12 to 24 months); or
  2. If you pass away.

We’ll start by looking at the first form of payout.

Terminal illness payouts

RiskAdviser reports that, in 2014, nearly 1 in 4 claims (from one particular life insurer) were due to a terminal diagnosis. Payments in these cases can assist with:

  • accommodation near the hospital,
  • palliative care,
  • specialist treatments, or
  • transport to and from medical facilities.

The payout can also act as a cash buffer if someone in your family needs to take a step back from work to care for you.

Or, you can spend it on a trip to Hawaii! How you choose to use the money is entirely up to you.

You should also know that you can withdraw any superannuation funds you have if diagnosed with a terminal illness. Let your superannuation fund know you have a confirmed terminal illness and have a life expectancy of less than 24 months, along with proof from two separate medical practitioners.

Death benefit payouts

If the payout is due to the passing of the insured, there’s a slightly different process to go through. Typically, you need to call up the insurer, and they will walk you through the steps. You may need to provide them with:

  • medical records,
  • death certificates,
  • coroner’s report (if the cause of death is not listed on the death certificate), and
  • proof of insurance.

Make sure you have copies of these original documents at hand when you make the call. Once the claim is approved, the insurer may contact you to ask you for additional details.

Other life insurance payouts

That’s actually not all the types of cash payout you can claim for from a life insurer. Depending on your policy, you may also be able to claim on the following.

The above are generally sold as separate products, or as ‘linked cover’ with standard term life policies – for additional cost. That being said, the claiming process for them is fairly similar: get in touch with the insurer, and produce the correct information to make your claim.

What’s next? Find a life insurance policy with us, or continue to read up on the process you’ll go through to get covered.

The information provided here is general only and does not consider your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. Before you decide to purchase a product, it is important to read the relevant PDS.