A cursory examination of the court reports will reveal that there is a constant stream of cases coming before our courts in which the principal questions at issue involve the disposition of the proceeds of matured life insurance policies. The question arises most often when the insured, having reserved the right to change the beneficiary, had manifested an intention that someone other than the beneficiary named in the policy should receive the proceeds, but had not complied with the formalities prescribed in his contract for effecting a change. Unfortunately, the answer to the question in the particular case has often been made unnecessarily difficult because our courts have not evolved any consistent theory on the basis of which the problem can be resolved. This is unfortunate, since it has a tendency to induce litigation which might have been avoided were there a consistent underlying theory readily determinable as a basis for predicting the probable outcome in the particular case.
Grover C. Grismore,
CHANGING THE BENEFICIARY OF A LIFE INSURANCE CONTRACT,
Mich. L. Rev.
Available at: https://repository.law.umich.edu/mlr/vol48/iss5/3