BROWNSVILLE, Brooklyn (WABC) — A mother and wife in Brooklyn were grieving, dealing with the sudden and tragic death of her husband, but when a situation went wrong with what was supposed to be life insurance, The widow turned her pain away and called for help. from Nina Pineda and 7 On Your Side.
Lynn, who did not want her last name used, said her husband had a great sense of humor and always made people laugh. His life was cut short.
Sylvester, a construction worker, slipped while demolishing a job site last May.
“All I was told was he was on the ladder, fell down, hit his head on the concrete or something, they called 911 , that’s it,” Lynn said.
When the 51-year-old died, the widow was left with several large bills, including the funeral, that could not be paid until they could collect on his life insurance.
So he started making the claim in July, but it was still denied.
“It’s very frustrating, because my husband was the sole breadwinner and since he passed away, things have been very difficult,” Lynn said.
The life insurance company wants an original death certificate as specified in a claim form. But all Lynn could find was a copy.
“I am sending what I got from the funeral home as a certified copy and the seal has been lifted,” he said.
But it has been rejected twice with a request for only the original copy.
“To me, he’s very angry and he’s going through a tough time and it’s getting tougher,” Lynn’s son said.
The problem is that in the town of Hempstead where his wife died, they only issue certified copies of death certificates.
7 On Your Side confirmed with the Office of the Registrar of Vital Statistics, who said they cannot and will not issue death certificates in advance.
“I was somewhere between overwhelmed, frustrated and angry,” Lynn said.
And he said that when he tried to reach the company, they stopped contacting him.
The brave homemaker and mother of four called 7 On Your Side and we contacted the life insurance company to ask for help.
The insurer said it was very different to deal with this difficult situation from a Vital Statistics office, adding:
“Our evidence of lost needs is because of the death certificates that we sometimes receive. We will take action because of the difficulties he had with Hempstead Vital Statistics.”
And 72 hours later, they received a total life insurance payout of $71,196.71.
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