Life Policy Locator Service
TDI can help you find a missing life insurance policy or annuity.
Understanding Life Insurance
How it works
- Fill out the Consumer Request Form with basic information about the deceased person for whom you're trying to find a life insurance policy or annuity contract.
- Each month, TDI will give the information from the request forms to the companies voluntarily participating in the service.
- The companies will search their records to determine whether they have life insurance policies or annuity contracts in the name of the deceased.
- The companies will contact you directly if they find a policy or contract and you're authorized to receive the information.
Who can get information
To get information about a life insurance policy or annuity contract you must be
- the legal representative of the deceased person’s estate
- otherwise legally entitled to information about a policy (for example, the policy’s beneficiary).
How long it takes
In most cases, you should learn whether a participating company was able to locate a policy within 90 days of the date you submitted your request to us. If you don’t get a response from a company within 90 days of your request, it means that either the participating companies didn’t find a policy or annuity contract in the deceased’s name or you aren’t eligible to get this information.
What the companies look for
The companies will search only for policies or contracts that were in force at the time of the insured’s death. This means that the insured must have kept up premium payments, or that the policy had enough cash value to cover the cost of insurance after the payments stopped. Companies will also search for policies or contracts that, within 12 months before the date of death, were terminated, lapsed, surrendered, or transferred.
More tips for tracing missing or old life insurance policies
TDI has no way of knowing whether any person has life insurance and with which company. We can, however, offer some tips for continuing your search.
- Examine your relative's bank statements and check registers for payments to life insurance companies. Life insurers commonly require payment of premiums by bank drafts. These payments appear on monthly bank statements.
- Look for insurance agents in your relative's address book or personal phone directory. The agent who wrote your relative's car, home or health insurance also may have sold him or her a life insurance policy.
- Contact the employee benefits offices at your relative's former employers. Sometimes people buy group life insurance at work.
- Review your relative's income tax records to see if he or she reported interest income on a cash value life insurance policy.
If a life insurance company knows that an insured has died but it cannot find the policy beneficiaries within three years, it must send the death benefit to the state Comptroller’s unclaimed property fund. The rightful owners of the life insurance proceeds can reclaim them from the Comptroller. For more information, go to the Comptroller’s unclaimed property Web site, www.cpa.state.tx.us/up/.
Just be aware that for a life insurance policy to be valid, your relative had to keep it in force by paying the premiums. Some cash value policies become "paid up" after a person pays premiums for a specific number of years. However, people often cancel policies or let them lapse but keep the discontinued policies in their records.
If you find a life insurance policy for a deceased relative but can't locate the company, you can get help from TDI by calling the Consumer Help Line at 1-800-252-3439. You can also use the Company Lookup feature on TDI's Web site at www.tdi.texas.gov. Profiles of active companies include addresses and phone numbers. Profiles of inactive companies include histories that let you trace mergers, acquisitions and reinsurance agreements that transferred their policies to other companies.
For more information or assistance
If you have questions or need more information, please call our Consumer Help Line at 1-800-252-3439.
- Top 40 Life Insurance Companies - Based on Texas written premium with percentage of market share
- Top 40 Annuity Insurance Companies - Based on Texas written premium with percentage of market share
- Life Insurance Online Complaint Form - Use for reporting complaints against life insurance companies or agents..
- Consumer Complaint Information/Data - Search TDI´s Internet Complaint Information System (ICIS) by (1) summary complaint information by quarter (2) region complaint information by quarter or (3) line of insurance.
Related Web Links
- Consumer Federation of America - For a fee, CFA will analyze the return rate on a cash value life policy.
For more information contact:
Last updated: 02/20/2014