Friday, July 12, 2013

ACLI Statement on New York Unclaimed Life Insurance Report

The American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) issued the following statement today on the New York Department of Financial Services’ report on unclaimed life insurance benefits.

Washington, D.C. (July 12, 2013) — The American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) applauds the coordinated efforts of the New York Department of Financial Services and New York-based life insurance companies to deliver $1.1 billion to beneficiaries of unclaimed life insurance policies, the earliest dating to 1960.

Life insurers adhere to the letter and spirit of all laws and regulations pertaining to unclaimed life insurance benefits. For more than 200 years, life insurers have been committed to keeping their promises to consumers who look to the industry for their financial and retirement security needs.

Over the past twenty-five years, life insurers have paid benefits totaling $1.1 trillion nationally and an estimated $75 billion in New York. In the normal course of business, 99 percent of claims made for benefits are paid promptly.

Unclaimed life insurance benefits represent a very small percentage of total claims paid. But life insurers operating in New York and throughout the nation know the percentages represent real people and historically, if those consumers did not come forward, unpaid claims were and continue to be paid to the states as unclaimed property per the current state laws. Many companies are using new technology to take proactive measures to locate missing policyholders and the industry is working with regulators and lawmakers on new ways to help ensure all beneficiaries get the benefits they are due.

The ACLI and its members also support state lost policy locator programs, such as those in Missouri, Louisiana, New York and Ohio. These programs help consumers search for deceased family members’ life insurance policies. To help consumers keep track of their life insurance policies, ACLI has developed My Insurance Log to help consumers maintain a file of important information about their life insurance policies and other relevant matters so it is readily available, now and in the future.


The American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) is a Washington, D.C.-based trade association with more than 300 member companies operating in the United States and abroad. ACLI advocates in federal, state, and international forums for public policy that supports the industry marketplace and the 75 million American families that rely on life insurers’ products for financial and retirement security. ACLI members offer life insurance, annuities, retirement plans, long-term care and disability income insurance, and reinsurance, representing more than 90 percent of industry assets and premiums. Learn more at

Date Posted: July 12, 2013
Document ID: NR13-029
Contact: Jack Dolan, (202) 624-2418
Whit Cornman, (202) 624-2442
Steven Brostoff, (202-624-2419