For life insurance claims, there is no claim form as such to complete. You just need to supply the required documentation, and then complete a discharge form.
The documentation required depends on whether the policy is owned (either jointly or solely) by another person, or was owned solely by the deceased. If the policy is owned jointly or solely by another person (such as the partner of the deceased), then the documentation required for a claim is as follows:
- The original policy document, or a completed Lost Policy Document form PDF.
- An original or certified copy of either the deceased’s birth certificate or passport.
- An original or certified copy of the death certificate.
The death certificate must state the cause of death. If the cause of death is “Subject to Coroner’s Findings”, then it is an interim one which is issued prior to a coroner’s inquiry. In that circumstance the confirmed cause of death will be contained in the coroner’s report which is issued after the inquiry. As the cause of death must be confirmed, you need to provide the coroner’s report (or a certified copy) for the claim to be assessed.
If the policy was owned solely by the deceased, then you also need to supply the original (or a certified copy) of either:
- Probate, or
- Letters of Administration.
However, if the amount claimed (the sum insured) is $15,000 or less, then Probate or Letters of Administration are not required1. Instead, a certified copy of the will or a completed statutory declaration is sufficient.
The claim is assessed when all required documents have been provided (a process which normally takes only a day or two). On acceptance of the claim, a Claim Discharge Form is prepared and sent to the policy owner, or the executor of the will, as applicable. The claim amount is paid after receipt of the signed Claim Discharge Form, and is direct-credited to the bank account nominated on the form.
The entire claims process can be illustrated as follows:
Terminal Illness Benefit
If the claim under a life insurance policy is for a terminal illness benefit, then the documentation required for assessment of a claim differs from the above.
A terminal illness benefit can be claimed for part or all of the sum insured under a policy. In either case, the documentation required is as follows:
- A completed Terminal Illness Claim Form PDF.
- A completed Medical Certificate PDF.
- The original policy document, or a completed Lost or Destroyed Policy Document Form PDF.
- An original or certified copy of either the life insured’s birth certificate or passport.
Further medical information may be requested from your specialist or from an independent medical specialist.
Following receipt of all required documents, the claim is then assessed. On acceptance of the claim, a Claim Discharge Form is prepared and sent to the policy owner or owners. The claim amount is paid after receipt of the signed Claim Discharge Form, and is direct-credited to the bank account nominated on the form.
- Section 65(5), Administration Act 1969, and regulation 4(d), Administration (Prescribed Amounts) Regulations 2009.