Houston, TX asked in Insurance Bad Faith, Insurance Defense and Estate Planning for Texas

Q: My mother had no beneficiary listed on her life insurance policy, what can I do to get the information I need?

Not only did she have no beneficiary but her ex employer whom she was long retired from seems to be holding up the process to pay out the funeral home. For privacy reasons they will not give out the policy number (the insurance company) and i have no copy of the policy itself. The funeral home says I was the "default" beneficiary since she had no parents/husband and I am her only son. Is there any way I can find out who to talk to. I read I have to file paperwork with the ins. co. to start a claim but they are already in the process of paying out the funeral home. It has been about a month and a half and I still do not have copies of the death certificated either. What should I be doing so that I can make sure I have the money timely enough to pay the needed expenses that remain and everything I am reading says if there is no beneficiary it goes to an estate but the funeral home told me it follows a next of kin system. Very confusing to me.

1 Lawyer Answer
Terry Lynn Garrett
Terry Lynn Garrett
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Austin, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: Step one. Obtain the death certificate.

Step two. Hire a local probate attorney to help you file either a Small Estate Affidavit or an Application to Determine Heirship, opening the estate.

Step three. Send the court order to the life insurance company.

Please remember that the funeral home may have its own internal druthers but is not a court of law.

Tim Akpinar agrees with this answer

1 user found this answer helpful

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