Credit Union refusing to pay life insurance

Discussion in 'Credit Union issues' started by Arnoldspence, Aug 9, 2017.

  1. Arnoldspence

    Arnoldspence New Member

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    My Wife had a credit union account in her sole name since before we were married sometime ago she added my name to her own account when we got married, tragically my wife passed away a number of months ago leaving a 17 month old baby. The credit union offers life insurance where they double whatever you have in the account up to a maximum of €7,700 to all its members free of charge.
    The credit union is refusing to pay out on the life insurance because the young lady at the counter says they only pay out on the first named on the account I was stunned when i got home i have had another look at account book and says Mr & Mrs Joe bloggs on the top but the signatures on the bottom have my wife's name first then my signature underneath hers, remember this account was hers in her sole name i was added to it and they put my name first, the money she had saved was for our baby so I'm pretty upset. any advice as to how approach the branch would be appreciated thanks
     
  2. Slim

    Slim Frequent Poster

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    Sincere condolences on your loss. You should make an appointment to see the manager at the credit union. He or she can at least explain the rule to you and consider your objection to the interpretation you have been presented with so far. By the way, your username looks like a real name. If you're happy with that, fine, but you might want to change your username to protect your privacy.
     
  3. Arnoldspence

    Arnoldspence New Member

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    Thank you Slim for your reply I suppose the best thing to do is contact the branch manager and plead my case I'll come on here and give an update. the username i used was a character in a book I read recently perhaps I should have chosen differently
     
  4. Monbretia

    Monbretia Frequent Poster

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    So sorry for your loss. Do you have any documentation from the old account lying around? I wonder did they add your name to an existing account or open a brand new one in joint names. You should request copies of whatever documentation was done at the time to see exactly how it was processed. Not really good enough if they just decided the husband should be first named! A little archaic to say the least but you'd need to see the forms to know what the intention was. I'd imagine in a situation where stuff was computerised that the original account title should remain but you wouldn't know what system they are operating!
     
  5. Thirsty

    Thirsty Frequent Poster

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    So sorry for your loss.

    Don't take no for an answer.

    Write a formal letter of complaint, detail your reasons as to why you believe this insurance should be paid. Ask them for their Final Response (you must use this phrase).

    If they still refuse to pay the insurance, make a Data Access Request (which should give you all the documentation on how the account was setup etc.,) and then lodge a complaint with the FSO.
     
  6. Brendan Burgess

    Brendan Burgess Founder

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    32,069
    This is a very difficult issue for the credit union.

    If Joe, Mary, Paddy and Johnny open a joint account, they can't all get free life insurance on it. So, it's reasonable to have a rule that the insurance applies to the first named person.

    If John has an account and later adds Mary,but Mary dies first, he should not expect a payout.

    If Mary has an account and she adds John and changes the account name to John and Mary, but John dies, I would expect Mary to claim even if it was originally her account. So in this case, it's very tough, that the original account holder became the second named person.

    I would not be adopting an all guns blazing approach at this stage.

    I would write to the Manager and ask them to reconsider the decision. That it was not made clear to you. And therefore they should pay you.

    There is an insurance company behind this and they are probably refusing to pay out.

    If the manager refuses, then write to the Chair and ask for an ex-gratia payment.

    Brendan
     
  7. T McGibney

    T McGibney Frequent Poster

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    No wonder so many credit unions run into trouble when they can so easily be held to ransom like this.
     
  8. Thirsty

    Thirsty Frequent Poster

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    I'd disagree.

    Consider the scenario where joint account holder dies & CU pays the life assurance.

    Surviving account holder closes joint account and opens their own sole name account.

    When that person dies, CU pays the life assurance. So they have paid out for both.

    I think the 'first named' is a bit of a swizz, it's a gamble on who passes away first.

    When you take out regular life assurance, you don't gamble on who will die first.

    I doubt many joint account holders are made aware of this 'rule'.
     
  9. Monbretia

    Monbretia Frequent Poster

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    You kind of can gamble on life assurance, you can get a 'joint life first death' policy which has only one payout.
     
  10. Danny Boy

    Danny Boy Registered User

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    My condolences on your loss.

    Being honest & not degrading the counter assistant I would be checking this further before taking her word for granted - is she qualified in this department, has she dealt with a similar situation in the past which makes her 100% sure that she's correct. It seems to me that your wife was the first name on the account & you were added after & if that's the case then you should be paid.
    If I was you I'd be making an appointment with the manager & hear what he / she has to say before I'd make my next move.
     
    jjm likes this.
  11. Thirsty

    Thirsty Frequent Poster

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    if memory serves me right that pays out on one death only, but I don't think it specifies which death? In any event, it would be clearly stated that was the condition on which you purchased the policy.

    I'm inclined to agree with Danny Boy - follow up with a senior employee first and then go to a letter if you're not getting satisfaction.
     
  12. Brendan Burgess

    Brendan Burgess Founder

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    upload_2017-8-10_14-26-3.png
    I thought I has struck a good balance between an explanation of the rule and a request for an ex gratia payment to be made. Not sure what ransom you are referring to.

    Thirst was much more assertive "Don't take no for an answer"

    Brendan
     
  13. Thirsty

    Thirsty Frequent Poster

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    Escalating an issue and/or using the complaints procedure is hardly a 'ransom demand'.
     
  14. Arnoldspence

    Arnoldspence New Member

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    Thanks to everybody for replying my argument to the manager would be my wife had an account in her sole name i got added to the account at some stage the person behind the counter decided to add my name first and that's where the crux of my argument as to why i think they should pay rests on.

    I realise Brendan it's a tough call for the credit union and will require bit of diplomacy on my part in the first instance and but i hope common sense will prevail if that fails i will take on board all the suggestions people have kindly offered here and decide what is the best course of action to proceed with.
    Thank you for your condolences.