Did you know there is a way to find out whether a deceased family member or acquaintance owned a life insurance policy or annuity at the time they died?  The State of Michigan offers an online search request form through its Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DFIS). You can access the Life Insurance and Annuity Search (LIAS) Request form at:  https://www.michigan.gov/difs/0,5269,7-303-74800-345270–,00.html

The person requesting the information is required to supply their name, address, daytime phone number, relationship to the deceased owner, and an e-mail address for response.  He or she must also provide the deceased individual’s name, last address, date of death, and social security number. (This information can be found on the person’s death certificate, and the site supplies a link to Vital Records if a death certificate must first be obtained.)  There is also a block in which additional information can be provided which may assist the search request.

DIFS collects the search requests and submits them to all life insurance and annuity companies authorized in the State of Michigan at the beginning of each month.  The web site advises that companies will only respond to the actual beneficiary.  

If you know that persons who were likely named as beneficiary did not survive the deceased owner, it is advisable to provide this “additional information.”  The reason is that, under such circumstances, the appointed Personal Representative of the deceased owner’s estate may be eligible to obtain search result information.