The loss of a family member can be a devastating time, leaving one to wonder how they will move forward, emotionally, and financially. If the deceased was the financial provider of the family, you may not be sure how to overcome what appears to be a great obstacle. Many people are insured (usually through coverage obtained through employment) for Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) benefits. Such coverage is often in addition to basic life insurance benefits. Accidental death and dismemberment is a unique type of insurance; it is different than life insurance under which benefits are paid if your loved one died of natural causes. Under AD&D coverage, the beneficiary of the policy will only receive benefits if the death was “accidental.” For example, death caused by an car accident, truck accident, motorcycle accident, mechanical malfunction, malpractice, or any other type of accident.
This type of insurance is also beneficial because it may cover accidents that cause dismemberment (loss of a body part) or loss of speech, hearing or vision. Under an AD&D polices, benefits are payable for the death of the insured, if such death was due to an “accident” as defined under the policy.
Accidental Death and Dismemberment insurance policies exist in order to provide peace of mind to individuals in this circumstance. Your policy may entitle you to benefits, if your death or dismemberment was the cause of another party, and if your situation meets certain requirements. While you may feel your claim is straight-forward and your situation obviously meets these requirements, the insurance companies may not agree. Insurance companies will look for ways out of paying these benefits, and will rely on faulty information. This “evidence” is often taken out of context and misrepresented throughout the documentation.
Additional Benefits under Basic AD&D Coverage
Many accidental death and dismemberment policies provide an additional benefit to be payable for a loss under the general terms of coverage. Such benefit is payable in addition to any benefit payable under the AD&D Policy. The additional benefits sometimes available under policies are as follows:
- Loss of life as a result of an automobile accident while using a seatbelt
- Loss of life as a result of an automobile accident while in a car with an airbag
- Tuition reimbursement for your dependent spouse or civil union partner
- Tuition reimbursement for your dependent child
- Child care expenses for your dependent child
- Return of remains (if the loss of life occurs outside a specific mile radius of your home)
Most of the above additional benefits only apply, if the insured suffers a loss of life. Additional benefits that might apply for a loss under the dismemberment portion of an AD&D policy might be as follows:
- Home alteration and vehicle modification expense
- Loss of life as a result of an accident involving a common carrier
Losses Typically Not Covered
Most AD&D policies will not cover losses due to:
- Suicide or attempted suicide
- Intentionally self-inflicted injuries
- Medical or surgical treatment of sickness
- Any bacterial or viral infection
- Commission of, or attempt to commit a felony
- Air travel
- War or any act of war
- Being legally intoxicated or under the influence of any narcotic (although many policies do not contain this exception)
If your Life Insurance or Accidental Death and Dismemberment claim has been denied, or you believe that it will be given the delays you are experiencing, give the Denver life insurance attorneys at McDermott Law a call for a free, no obligation consultation.
We assist clients in all of Colorado, the Rocky Mountain region, and throughout the United States.