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Was Your Athene Life Insurance Claim Denied?

Call Gianelli & Morris Today for Help

The life insurance denial attorneys at Gianelli & Morris are ready to help you fight back against an improper claim denial by Athene or other California life insurance companies. If your life insurance claim was denied by Athene, or if you’ve been subject to other insurance bad faith conduct, our Southern California insurance claim denial legal team is ready to help.

Who is Athene?

Athene Holding Ltd. is a financial services company specializing in the management of retirement benefits and purveyance of related financial products. Through subsidiaries such as Athene Annuity & Life Company and Athene Annuity & Life Assurance Company of New York, Athene sells a number of financial products including various types of liability insurance, annuities, and life insurance.

In 2021, Athene was acquired by Apollo Global Management Inc., one of the largest investment management firms in the world. In 2021, Apollo reported close to $500 billion in assets under management and revenue of close to $6 billion per year. While Athene was already a substantial company before–Apollo paid $11 billion to acquire Athene–Athene is now part of a massive corporate family.

Like other massive corporations dabbling in life insurance, Athene’s main priority is generating profit, not paying out on legitimate claims. Athene and its subsidiaries have been the target of numerous complaints over the years alleging that they engaged in bad faith practices. For example, in 2020 Athene agreed to pay $45 million in fines to the State of New York for conducting insurance transactions within the state without a proper license. The company improperly took over corporate pension plans and engaged in several unauthorized transactions. The superintendent of New York’s Department of Financial Services stated that such “unlicensed insurance activity puts retirement assets at risk, and that’s why we won’t tolerate it.”

Why Does Athene Deny Life Insurance Claims?

Like many other financial services companies, Athene and its corporate family have moved away from selling new life insurance policies in recent years. They hope to distance themselves from their life insurance practice and limit payouts on as many of those policies as possible. Life insurance customers of Athene can expect push-back when trying to collect the benefits they are due under an existing life insurance policy, even if the claims are entirely legitimate.

At Gianelli & Morris, we’re well-versed in the tricks and methods used by life insurance companies to deny legitimate claims. We help insurance policyholders, beneficiaries, and other interested parties ensure that proper claims are paid out, regardless of the unsubstantiated justifications of Athene and other life insurance companies. We know how to counter arguments offered by Athene that claims should not be paid out, including the following:

  • Lack of evidence. Many life insurance claims are denied based on insufficient evidence in the record. In many cases, gaps in the record can be solved by providing all relevant evidence as to the death and the cause of death, including police reports, autopsy reports, medical records, and medical examiners’ reports.
  • Policy lapse due to non-payment of premiums. Insurers love to see policyholders miss premium payments when they are ill or elderly, and they will happily terminate policies that have been properly paid for decades. Insurers must follow strict rules before terminating a policy for lack of payment, however. They must give proper notice to policyholders and other parties designated in the policies, as well as provide a grace period of at least 60 days, during which the policy is still in effect. Many insurers from out of state fail to comply with California’s laws protecting insurance policyholders.
  • Excluded cause of death. Some policies may exclude coverage for suicide, criminal activities, or death caused by preexisting conditions. However, proper examination of the evidence in the record may demonstrate the insurer was wrong in their assessment of the cause of death. Never take a life insurance company at its word when they claim a death was excluded from coverage.
  • Policy rescission due to misstatements in the policy application. Insurance companies can rescind or void a policy that was issued based on material misstatements in the original life insurance application. Rescission is, however, subject to strict rules–there must be material (important) misstatements in the original application, and the policy must be less than two years old. If the policy was issued more than two years earlier, then the “contestability period” is over and rescission is not on the table.

Call Gianelli & Morris After a Life Insurance Claim Denial by Athene

If someone you love has passed and your life insurance claim has been denied by Athene or another life insurance company in California, contact the savvy and successful Los Angeles insurance denial lawyers Gianelli & Morris for a no-cost evaluation of your claim at 213-489-1600.

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