Eleven more insurance companies that do business in California have agreed to settle claims involving failure to either pay death claims or escheat the money to the state.
The settlement with California comptroller John Chiang brings to 18 the number of insurers that have settled with the state over allegations of failure to pay death claims.
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The companies involved in the latest settlements include:
- New York Life;
- Northwest Mutual;
- Pacific Life;
- Sammons (Midland and North American);
- Transamerica; and
- Western & Southern.
Chiang said the latest settlement means that California has settled with insurance companies that write more than 50 percent of all the issued and active life insurance policies nationwide.
Chiang estimated that the settlements have an aggregate value of $266.7 million belonging to California beneficiaries, and an estimated $2.4 billion nationally.
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The American Council of Life Insurance immediately issued a statement that contended that, “The fact is, the vast majority of claims made for benefits are paid promptly – in the normal course of business.”
The statement said that unclaimed life insurance benefits represent a very small percentage of total claims paid.