Once we are notified of a death, we verify the participant or payee information, determine if a benefit is due, and restrict any benefit payments from further activity until the death claim is settled. If a benefit is due, a claim package will be provided to the designated contingent annuitant or beneficiary generally within 5 business days from the notification of death. If there is no benefit due, a claim representative will also reach out to notify the family of the deceased that no benefit is payable upon death.
What if I receive payment for a participant after their death?
It is very common for a periodic monthly benefit to continue to be paid after the death of a participant. This is because John Hancock is typically notified of death during the month after the participant’s passing and a benefit payment has already been released. If this occurs, please call us at 800-624-5155 weekdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Eastern time. We will instruct you on how to handle the post-death payments. The handling treatment will depend when the payments were issued and if a continuing benefit is due.
Why can't I choose a death benefit settlement option?
When the participant completed the Benefit election form upon retirement, they elected the type of benefit, including whether the benefit was to be payable only to them, or whether subsequent payments or continuation of a benefit would be due to a spouse or contingent annuitant upon the participant’s death.
How can the death of a participant result in no death benefit due?
Whether or not a death benefit is due is based on the terms of the group annuity contract and the benefit option chosen by the participant when they commenced retirement benefits. Once a benefit option is chosen, it cannot be changed. As the beneficiary or contingent annuitant, you cannot change or elect a benefit option.
When will my claim be processed once you have received all of the necessary forms and documents? Will I receive a statement when it's paid?
Claims are generally processed within 5 business days after all of the necessary forms and documents are received in good order. A confirmation letter will be sent with the claim payment.
John Hancock Annuities are issued by John Hancock Life Insurance Company (U.S.A.), Lansing, MI 48906, which is not licensed in New York. In New York, John Hancock Annuities are issued by John Hancock Life Insurance Company of New York, Valhalla, NY 10595. John Hancock Variable Annuities are distributed by John Hancock Distributors LLC.