Thousands of Minnesotans could be due payments from two life insurance companies that failed to pay beneficiaries when policy holders died.
MPR News reports that Met Life will pay the state a settlement of at least $1.5 million and Transamerica will pay at least $2.5 million. According to Minnesota Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman, the companies in many cases stopped paying retirement benefits based on a policyholder's death, but never tracked down the life insurance beneficiaries owed a payout.
"The companies will now have to go through the information they have, make sure the data is good and match that to anybody who has passed away," he said.
The companies must now check polices going back to 1986. If beneficiaries can't be located, the money will go to the state as unclaimed property. Transamerica says it's pleased the matter is resolved. MetLife officials say the company uses a Social Security database to identify any unclaimed policies.
InsuranceNewsNet urged consumers to be proactive by talk to loved ones about any insurance policies they may have and learning who the beneficiary is listed on the policies. The website published resources for those who believe they may have money coming to them from the settlement. It recommends contacting the companies directly, noting both have toll-free numbers answered by staff prepared to answer questions and assist the process. (MetLife: (800) 543-3566, Transamerica: (855) 807-2665)
The article clarifies that MetLife and Transamerica include smaller companies under their holding group of companies. All of the companies listed below are included in these settlement agreements.
Metropolitan Life Insurance Company
New England Life Insurance Company
MetLife Insurance Company of Connecticut
General American Life Insurance Company
Metropolitan Tower Life Insurance Company
MetLife Investors Insurance Company
First MetLife Investors Insurance Company
MetLife Investors USA Insurance Company
Delaware American Life Insurance Company
Transamerica or Aegon:
Transamerica Life Insurance Company
Transamerica Advisors Life Insurance Company
Transamerica Advisors Life Insurance Company of New York
Transamerica Financial Life Insurance Company
Monumental Life Insurance Company
Stonebridge Life Insurance Company
Western Reserve Life Assurance Company of Ohio