Life Insurance Details - Change Beneficiary

As major life events happen, such as marriage and children, you may find that it's time to make a beneficiary change to your life insurance policy. Here's how to do it:

Written Request

All insurance companies will require you to make your request for a beneficiary change in writing. This protects them from any lawsuits down the road by your ex-beneficiary, or others affected by your decision. It's often as simple as filling out a form that you can get by calling your life insurance agent and asking them to mail you one, or downloading one from their website. You can't just fill a form out online, because your signature is required.

More Difficult Circumstances

There are some circumstances that require you to do more than just fill out a form. You may need to get written permission from others, or a court order may impact your ability to make any changes. These include:

  • A spouse who wants to make a change lives in a community property state
  • The original beneficiary is an irrevocable beneficiary
  • A divorce decree affects the life insurance policy

Each insurance company has its own forms and procedures for making a beneficiary change. It's important to read the form carefully and keep a copy for your own records.