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Barbara Hastings has no children of her own, but she does have a beloved niece named Ellen Laughridge. Attentive to the future financial needs of Ellen, Barbara secures a $500,000 life insurance contract from Chameleon Insurance Company, listing Ellen as the sole beneficiary. Barbara has every intention to inform Ellen of her new life insurance policy, but "life gets in the way," and she neglects to do so. Hastings dies on January 15, 2005. As part of her estate distribution, Ellen receives a chest-of-drawers from her dear aunt. On August 29, 2007, while rearranging her clothing in the chest-of-drawers, Ellen comes upon a secret compartment. In the secret compartment is an original copy of the life insurance contract. Ellen is overjoyed to see her name listed as beneficiary, and she contacts Chameleon Insurance Company immediately. Upon review of the policy, Chameleon denies coverage. Chameleon's claims representative points to Section 15(b) of the policy, which specifically requires notification of the insured's death no later than one year after death. It has been over two years and seven months since Barbara Hastings died. Will Ellen recover the $500,000 in insurance proceeds? Is it ethical for an insurance company to deny a claim on the basis of a "technicality?" 

Business Law & Ethics, Finance

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