Insurance policy discovered 37 years after death

Insurance policy discovered 37 years after death
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My husband just discovered that his mother purchased a whole life insurance policy through MetLife listing him as the insured. She died 37 years ago. He is 56 years old. We called MetLife who verified that the policy existed. We were instructed to send a letter of intent to transfer the policy along with her death certificate. They wouldn’t give us any information about the policy. Just wondering if it’s usual for this kind of situation to bear out any money.


HI conniehurst17, welcome to NerdWallet.

It’s not unusual at all. LIfe insurance payouts are left unclaimed quite frequently.

The unclaimed benefits eventually are turned over to the state if no claim has been made and the insured person can safely assumed to be dead (this “limiting age” is now set at 120).

Good luck with this; let us know how it turns out!


We’re keeping our fingers crossed for you and your husband! My sister discovered two old life insurance policies after our father died. One had long since been cashed in (the insurance company told us that over the phone) but the other one still had value. My grandfather had purchased it for him when he was a small boy. It wasn’t a huge amount of money – $5,000 I think – and it would’ve done a whole lot better if the money had been invested in the stock market in those intervening 80 years. Still, as my dad would’ve said, it was better than a stick in the eye. Hope you get some good news and as Des says, please let us know!