If you’re waiting for your life insurance or disability insurance benefits to arrive, you’re not alone. Many people will wait weeks or months, only to eventually be told that their claim is denied or invalid. The truth is, insurance companies will look for any possible reason to deny a claim—and if they can’t find one, they may even attempt to find a way rescind the policy to avoid claim payment. In Oklahoma, these disputes often arise during the first two years after someone has purchased a policy and also made a claim. After two years, it is very difficult for an insurance company to get out of paying the benefits to the beneficiaries or named insureds. During that two-year window, however, the company has the opportunity to challenge the application. It will typically go back through the health information the person provided and look for a way to claim he or she lied or left out important facts.
For instance, the company may see that the deceased person was taking medication for high blood pressure. It may then assert that the person failed to include “high blood pressure” as a health condition on the life insurance application, and therefore the application was invalid. The company will then use this excuse to avoid paying any money to the person’s beneficiaries. Oklahoma law requires the insurance company to prove that the insured intentionally provided deceptive or inaccurate information. This means that it isn’t enough for the insurance company to show that a person failed to report a certain health condition — it must also have evidence that the person meant to do so.