Sad news out of New York this week as it was announced New York Yankees pitcher, Cory Lidle, had died in a dramatic private airplane crash along with his flight instructor. It appears the 34-year old Lidle experienced trouble with the Cirrus SR20 he was piloting, causing the aircraft to veer sharply over the Manhattan skyline and slam into a 50-story condominium building. He is survived by his wife, Melanie, and a 6-year old son, Christopher.
Now it seems there may be more tragedy involved for Lidle’s survivors. ESPN.com reported today that Lidle’s life insurance benefits, as provided by the Major League Baseball Union’s benefit plan, may be in jeopardy due to a clause included in their life insurance policy. The policy contains an exclusion for “any incident related to travel in an aircraft … while acting in any capacity other than as a passenger.” The family could stand to lose nearly $1.5 million as a result.
This story underscores the importance of reviewing existing life insurance policies for any exclusions, as well as to determine if the policy still meets the needs of the insured. In the case of private aviation, most new policies will allow insureds to participate in this activity; however, if the insured is actively participating or has plans to participate at the time of application, this must be disclosed to the insurance company.
Let us know if we can help review an old policy for you. We can also help you avoid similar potential pitfalls so you can be confident your survivors will receive the death benefit you intended for them.