Beneficiary Assistance

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Beneficiary Assistance

Supporting you through one of life's most challenging moments

Support Beyond Life Insurance

Below are several resources to support you during this difficult time including information on how and why to notify important third parties like credit agencies, the Social Security Administration, and Veteran’s Affairs, as well as guidance on how to shut down common social media accounts. 

Please note that this site is not intended to be a comprehensive list of all resources you may need or all situations you may encounter.

Beneficiary Checklist

Manage important tasks when a loved one passes away

Early days and weeks following a loss

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  • Maintaining your own wellness during a period of significant loss is an important part of successfully moving through this difficult period.
  • Reaching out to family and friends for support can be helpful, along with professional resources when needed.
  • Check with both your own employer as well as the deceased's to find out about any support programs they may provide. If either your or the deceased’s employer have coverage with MetLife, you may have access to services such as grief counseling.
  • Find more information about bereavement here.
  • If you or a loved one are having thoughts of suicide or self-harm you can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or find out more about the services and support they can offer you at their website.

If funeral preplanning or final wishes were considered, there may be documents located with the deceased's important papers or on their computer that can assist you in making final arrangements.

As planning a funeral isn't a process most people have to complete frequently, it can be overwhelming. Reviewing available consumer information can help with confident decision making:

Reaching out to family and friends to help provide support can be critical as elderly parents, children and/or pets may need care and temporary accommodations while any immediate planning needs are being addressed.

Check with your or the deceased’s employer for any support programs and resources they may offer. If either your or the deceased’s employer have coverage with MetLife, you may have access to services such as funeral assistance and discounts.

In the days that follow the funeral, matters turn to settling the deceased’s estate. Begin by going through records and any written guidance the deceased may have provided prior to their passing. If a will and/or trust is not found in the deceased's important papers at home, check any safe deposit boxes or with their attorney or financial advisor.

If you are the executor of the estate, check with either your employer or the employer of the deceased about estate resolution services that may be made available to you.

If you are working with a funeral home, they can assist you in obtaining certified copies of the death certificate. Alternatively, you can request them from the county/state where the death took place or through a third-party vendor. You will most likely need 10 to 12 certified copies of the death certificate. Original certified death certificates may be required by multiple third parties, including banks, credit agencies, social media account providers, mortgage lenders, and insurance companies.

Here are some ways to check if the deceased had life insurance:

  • Check with the deceased's prior employer(s)
  • Look through your loved one’s bank statements to see if premium payments were being made to insurance companies
  • Contact your state’s department of insurance

Check with the deceased's employer as well as your own to find out about any other support services that may help you through the grieving process and the financial and legal aspects of settling the estate. If either your or the deceased’s employer have coverage with MetLife, you may have access to services such as funeral assistance and discounts.

If the deceased was living alone, and no one is staying in their home, the homeowner’s insurance carrier should be notified that the house is vacant and the name on the policy adjusted as appropriate.

What comes next

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Help prevent identity theft.

Notify at least one of the three nationwide credit bureaus to report the death and obtain a copy of the deceased's credit report as needed for estate settlement purposes. Whichever credit bureau receives the notification will inform the other two. You can use this form to help with this notification.

In addition, you can use this template to report the death to other financial institutions.

Notify credit card issuers of the deceased's passing as soon as possible to avoid possible fees and additional interest being charged to accounts.

Identify any automated services such as grocery and pet supply delivery, housekeeping and lawn care services, recreational or personal memberships and subscriptions and check websites for cancelation procedures.

You can have the deceased’s name added to the Direct Marketing Association’s Do Not Contact List to avoid receiving ongoing marketing materials addressed to the deceased.

Direct Marketing Association

If the deceased’s pets are not able to be adopted by family or friends, and if there was no pet preplanning completed, you may contact local rescue resources to assist with rehoming.  Here are some resources to help with considerations.

It is important to close the deceased's digital footprint; failure to close accounts can leave doors open to identity theft. Especially important are financial services accounts such as PayPal and Venmo that may be linked to bank accounts and credit cards.

PayPal: How do I close the PayPal account of a deceased relative?

Venmo: Contact us

Check credit card and bank statements for subscriptions, membership fees and third party services that may be automatically charged on a regular basis.

Every situation is unique and there may be additional steps needed for your particular circumstance. There may be other individuals or institutions you need to contact such as landlords, foreign pension providers, etc. You may wish to consult with your own financial, tax or legal advisors.

Your own needs

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Your financial wellness is an important part of your wellbeing and there may be changes that result from the loss you've experienced. MyMoney.gov provides financial education from the Department of Treasury and may assist you on your journey forward.

If the life insurance company providing you with a benefit payment offers the option of payment through an interest-bearing settlement account, this option can provide a secure place for the proceeds to stay and gather interest. This allows you to take the time you need to decide how to use the funds without the worry of making financial decisions while grieving for a loved one. It can also provide a flexible payment tool as it functions similarly to a money market or checking account.

If you receive a benefit payment from MetLife, the MetLife Life Settlement Account1 offers new accountholders access to Visa debit cards and accounts can be linked to popular payment services such as PayPal and Venmo. MetLife accounts do not include monthly maintenance or service fees and no charges for making withdrawals, writing drafts, reordering drafts, or debit cards.

Your financial life will most likely require review and updates after the death of a spouse, parent or other member of your household.  You can download the Beneficiary Task List which contains to-dos for not only the deceased’s estate, but for your own family and financial wellness considerations. These include review of retirement accounts, beneficiary changes, etc.

Financial Protection

Speak to family members or a financial planner to ensure you have the right amount of financial protection in place for you.

1 The Total Control Account (TCA) is not insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or any government agency. The assets backing TCAs are maintained in MetLife’s general account and are subject to MetLife’s creditors. MetLife bears the investment risk of the assets backing the TCAs and expects to receive a profit. Regardless of the investment experience of such assets, the interest credited to Total Control Accounts will never fall below the guaranteed minimum rate. Guarantees are subject to the financial strength and claims paying ability of MetLife.

Links to third-party sites and materials are provided as a convenience and MetLife does not endorse, nor does it take responsibility for the content of, any such sites or materials. MetLife assumes no responsibility or liability for, nor makes any representation regarding the quality of any product or service that may be obtained through, any third party site.

Every situation is unique and there may be additional steps needed for your particular facts and circumstances.  Nothing on this site is intended to be, nor should be construed as, legal, financial or tax advice or a recommendation for a particular situation or individual.  Please consult with your own appropriate advisors for such advice.