Serving clients in Fayetteville and all of NW Arkansas
Accidental death insurance is also known as accidental death and dismemberment (AD&D insurance). This insurance is different from a whole life insurance policy or a term life insurance policy and covers death only in the case of a serious accident. Many people carry this kind of insurance to help their family if they die in an auto accident or workplace disaster. If a loved one was killed in an accident, you should speak with an attorney for help filing a claim and getting the compensation your family needs to keep going. Fayetteville wrongful death lawyer Ken Kieklak discusses AD&D policy coverage and what to do if the insurance company refuses your claim.
What Does an AD&D Policy Cover?
AD&D is one type of life insurance policy. The most common life insurance policies pay benefits to the family of the deceased if they die for any reason while the policy is active. Because this would cover death from non-accidental things like health problems, the life insurance company may have high premiums for unhealthy individuals or people with an especially high risk of death from genetic or lifestyle factors. Accidental death policies are often more forgiving because they cover different things than other life insurance policies.
There are three main types of life insurance policies that are popular in the United States:
- “Whole life” insurance policies cover you for the rest of your life. As long as you keep paying the insurance premiums, you will continue to build value in the policy, creating a sum of money that can be paid to your loved ones if you die for any reason.
- “Term life” insurance policies cover you for a set period. Because these policies cover you for less time, it is less likely you will die during that period, and premiums are cheaper. These can sometimes be converted to whole life policies or extended.
- Accidental death insurance covers you for as long as you maintain coverage, but only in the event of accidental death. They do not usually cover death from natural causes, suicide, drug overdose, or other factors covered under term or whole life insurance.
The “dismemberment” part of an AD&D policy can even pay partial benefits for a serious injury if the victim survives. This can help with things like blindness or amputation injuries from an accident.
Accidental death insurance can be a cheaper and better alternative for many individuals. Without factoring in the policy holder’s health, these policies can be cheaper and more available. Accidental death policies can also be taken out on top of other life insurance policies, potentially increasing the benefits for your family after an accidental death.
Wrongful Death Claims and Accidental Death and Dismemberment Policies
If a loved one is killed in an accident while they have an AD&D policy, the policy should pay you damages. To get these damages, the accident must be the type of accident covered by the policy, and you must be the named beneficiary on the policy. Most people put their spouse or children as the beneficiaries, leaving the policy to support their family.
Most accidents are ultimately someone’s fault. The law in Arkansas allows the spouse, parents, children, or siblings of someone who died in an accident to sue the person responsible for the accident for damages. These damages can include the cost of end of life medical treatment, funeral and burial expenses, lost income from the deceased, the emotional damage of losing a loved one, and other damages.
If your loved one died with an active AD&D policy, you may be able to choose between filing a wrongful death lawsuit or filing a claim against the insurance policy. A lawyer can help you understand what the best choice is in your situation. In many cases, you may be able to file both claims, allowing the accidental death insurance to pay certain amounts for immediate support while the lawsuit fills in other damages.
The damages available from a lawsuit and AD&D insurance do not always overlap, and you might still need to file a lawsuit to cover the full damages you and your family faced from the death of a loved one.
Fighting Accidental Death Insurance Denials
If your spouse, parent, or child had an accidental death and dismemberment insurance policy that should have covered their death, but the insurance company denied the claim, you should speak to an attorney immediately. The terms of an insurance policy are a contract that dictates when the insurance company must pay. If the insurance company denies your claim or refuses to pay you under the policy, talk to an attorney about filing a lawsuit against the insurance company to enforce the policy.
You may be able to file a lawsuit against the parties responsible for your loved one’s death while simultaneously fighting the insurance company in court. An attorney can manage these cases on your behalf, allowing you and your family time to grieve and heal.
Fayetteville Wrongful Death Attorney Offering Free Legal Consultations
If a family member was killed in a car accident, a workplace accident, or another serious accident, contact Fayetteville personal injury lawyer Ken Kieklak today. Ken has decades of experience representing injury victims and the families of victims, and he may be able to take your case and fight to get you the compensation you and your family need. To schedule a free consultation on your case, contact our law offices today at (479) 439-1843.
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