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True tale of life insurance in action

Diane McCurdy

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Making sure a policy, and a house, isn't lost when spouse becomes ill.
A good client referred me to a couple. I had known the woman for 20 years. Eight years earlier, I had discussed doing a financial plan for her and her husband, but they decided not to proceed.

Recently, the husband called me and said he wanted to come in. His wife was vice president of a local organization, and she was dealing with some health issues. They had sold their house, lived in temporary housing, bought a new house and remodeled it. He needed financial help — his wife had taken care of all short- and long-term household finances and was no longer in a position to manage them.

It turned out his wife had a form of early onset dementia and died 16 months after that initial meeting. She was still employed at the time we met. In my first notes, she had told me about her and her husband’s personal life insurance. During the year of moves, the premium notice was lost and the policy lapsed. I helped the husband track down the policy information and drafted a letter for her doctor to send to the insurance company and the insurance commissioner.

This came after another MDRT member suggested her doctor make the appeal for reinstatement and copy the insurance commissioner. Her doctor was very willing to assist. The insurance company reinstated the policy promptly and was very helpful with the doctor’s letter. Previously they had declined to reinstate the policy based on the request of the writing agent, who provided very little information.

In the meantime, we had to teach the husband everything he needed to know about household finances. There was excellent group insurance, which we were able to convert to individual coverage and assist with managing the disability benefits. He was also working and managing her care. There weren’t enough hours in the day or emotional energy to do it all. The policy was reinstated two months before she died.

At her death, the reinstated policy meant he would be able to keep the house. The house had been a dream of theirs and is located blocks from where they had met and where he proposed.

We are now managing the retirement assets and the remainder of the life insurance proceeds.

Diane McCurdy is a 35-year MDRT member from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Diane McCurdy

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