How To Determine If An Old Insurance Policy Is Still Active

My father has recently passed away on 12-24-2005. I have an insurance policy from Phoenix Mutual issued on May 29,1983.  Is this insurance still Active or did my father cash this policy in?


Your first step in these cases is always to approach the actual insurance company that held the policy.

If you don't know where the company is located, or can't find them, then you can do a search through DNB online. Check the name you have first. If you can't find the company that way, then it may make sense to hire a DNB business researcher for you, to determine what happened to the company, and if some other company has taken over the existing policies.

DNB will give you a comprehensive report on the company and what has happened to it, including mergers and acquisitions. At that point, you should have contact information, either for the original company or its successor, and you can contact them to get details.

Keep in mind that only "whole life" will have a cash value remaining if the premiums have not been paid regularly. Only whole life policies become "paid in full".

One other thing: if the insurance company somehow became aware of your father's death, but didn't know where to locate him, any proceeds from an insurance policy may have been turned over to the state comptroller, depending on where you live. this should happen within three to five years of the policy holder's death. Any funds will go back to the state in which the policy was purchased. Be aware that the money from the policy is considered "unclaimed property" so it will be handled just like other kinds of unclaimed money, such as dormant bank accounts and uncollected rent deposits. In addition to handling the money, your state's comptroller should also have a database that lists the names and addresses of lost beneficiaries for these situations.

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