|Mutual Service Life Unclaimed Demutualization Compensation|
Mutual Service Life Insurance Company
On January 1, 2005, Minnesota-based Mutual Service Life Insurance Company completed its demutualization. Policyholders were to be compensated for their ownership interest in two ways - with a fixed component payment and an additional variable component based on a number of factors including policy value.
Proxy materials were sent to policyholders on October 6, 2004. On January 1, 2005, Minnesota-based Mutual Service Life Insurance Company completed its demutualization, a so called "sponsored demutualization", in which stock of the demutualized company was immediately purchased by Country Life Insurance Company of Illinois.
Demutualization is the process of converting a mutual life insurance company, owned by its policyholders, to a publicly traded stock company owned by shareholders, pursuant to a plan of conversion approved by government regulators.
The amount paid to each policyholder is based on a number of factors, including length of time the policy has been in force, face value of the policy, and total premiums paid. For many policyholders, the windfall arising from demutualization can be substantial, but millions of missing policyholders and heirs aren't aware they are entitled to receive compensation.
Thirty-three thousand policyholders with Mutual Service policies active as of Sept. 30, 2003 - half of whom were Minnesota residents - became eligible to receive payment totaling approximately $45 million. Payments range from $400 to $80,000.
Between one-quarter and one-half of all life insurance policies go unclaimed, because it is generally up to family members to notify the insurance company when a policyholder dies, and virtually no effort is made to find lost beneficiaries.
In addition, thousands of missing policyholders and heirs aren't aware they are entitled to receive this demutualization compensation. Contact efforts were unsuccessful, due to name changes after marriage or divorce, unreported changes of address , expired postal forwarding orders and non-current beneficiary information.
By law, unclaimed policy benefits, including demutualization compensation, are remitted to the custody of a government trust account until claimants come forward. Last year government custodians collected $22.8 billion, of which less than $1 billion was claimed.
It is highly recommended, therefore, that current and former policyholders and heirs - the majority of whom are unaware they're entitled to unclaimed policy benefits, stock and cash - initiate a missing policyholder search.: Unclaimed Life Insurance Policyholder Search
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