Generally, an accidental death and dismemberment plan will be required to pay death benefits in situations where the insured’s death is the result of an accident. All insurance companies limit their exposure to accidental death claims by stipulating the specific causes of death and conduct of the insured that subjects the insurance company to liability. In Missouri, evidence that the insured’s conduct involved a risk of death which was sufficient to render the insured negligent or even reckless, respecting that risk will not necessarily preclude a finding that the insured’s death was accidental, and the plaintiff will not be required to show that the insured was not negligent or reckless in order to prevail on this issue.
Thus, in order to show that the death of an insured apparently resulting from a voluntary act was accidental, the plaintiff will not be required to negate the existence of any significant probability of death. It will be sufficient to show that the probability of death was not so great that the death of the insured would be described by the average person as a natural or probable consequence of the insured’s conduct.
If you are the beneficiary of a life insurance or accidental death and dismemberment plan and were denied accidental death benefits, you should consult an attorney who will fight to get you the compensation you deserve.