Insurance company won't pay up

DEAR HARRY: My father died in 1991. Mother knew that he had life insurance, but she knew neither the company nor the amount. We did a limited search for about a year after he died, but we came up with nothing. Last month, my brother came across a canceled check to an insurance company that Dad apparently used as a bookmark. We contacted the company and got a response that Dad's policy had a provision for automatic premium payment from the cash value if a premium was not received on time. They insisted that this used all the cash value, and that the policy was then lapsed for nonpayment. They said they tried to find Mother, but they lied. Mother still lives in the same house they bought in 1975. When I told them this, they seemed to scramble for an answer that would save them from paying. Last week, I finally got a VP to say that a check was going out the next morning. So far, no check. I'm now at my wit's end. Mother can certainly use that $25,000. Help!

WHAT HARRY SAYS: I've heard and seen situations where companies did little to find beneficiaries who have moved or had name problems, but never anything so blatant. Call that toad of a VP and give him 48 hours to have that check delivered to your mother. If that fails, call the Pennsylvania Insurance Department at 1-877-881-6388. They'll get action.


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write to him at Daily News, 801 Market St., Philadelphia, PA 19107. Harry urges all his readers to give blood. Contact the American Red Cross at 1-800-Red Cross.