Can insurance be paid to beneficiaries in the case of suicide?
Benefits may be payable if the insured commits suicide, but it
depends upon the terms of the policy. Because the contract terms
govern the conditions upon which the insurer is obliged to pay, the
beneficiaries have no greater rights to payment than those set
forth in the policy, and are subject to all conditions of
One of the provisions that often is contained in a life
insurance policy is that death by suicide is covered once the
policy has been in force for a stated number of years, often two.
Again, the terms of the policy govern provided that those terms are
in accord with governing State law on the subject.
Another issue to consider is that a beneficiary will not be
permitted to benefit from the death of another if that beneficiary
is complicit in the death. Therefore, if a hypothetical beneficiary
takes such action as to in effect force the insured to commit
suicide, and it can be proven, he/she is not likely to be able to
recover proceeds from the policy.