Timing is everything when it comes to when death benefits are due and payable, and the Florida Department of Financial Services got the question wrong, an appeals court has decided.
The First District Court of Appeal reversed a declaration of the state agency, which had decided that life insurance funds are due immediately upon the death of the insured.
Thrivent Financial for Lutherans didn’t like the answer, so it appealed to the First District.
First District Judge James Wolf, author of Tuesday’s opinion, said the DFS’s interpretation was clearly erroneous.
Thrivent Financial attorney, Timothy Schoenwalder of the Meenan law firm in Tallahassee, said, “We’re obviously happy with it, because we believe it’s a correct interpretation of the statutes and the issue. The court was given a chance to consider some pretty thorough legal scholarship addressing the key points and came down on the right side.”
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A copy of the opinion can be found here.