This may seem strange but there are times an insurance company will deny a claim for life insurance benefits based on their assertion that the insured has not been proven to be dead. This is discussed in the 1987, Texas Supreme Court opinion styled, Davidson v. Great National Life Insurance Company.
Here are some interesting facts. In May 1980, a man identifying himself as Dauod Alquassab applied for a $1,000,000 life insurance policy with Great National. Alquassab had previously used the names of David Kassab and David Kay; was a convicted of felony fraud charges under a different name. Alquassab named Ilan Eiger, his partner in a real estate business, as the beneficiary when Great National issued the policy in June 1980. In September 1980, Alquassab changed the beneficiary designation from Eiger to Phyllis Davidson, his former wife from whom he was divorced in 1968. Alquassab then traveled to Tel Aviv, Israel, in February 1981. Prior to his departure, the record indicates that Alquassab allegedly defrauded First City Bank in Houston, of approximately $1.5 million dollars, and committed additional acts of fraud upon other banking institutions.
On Wednesday, February 11, 1981, a body was discovered approximately 100-200 yards from the hotel where Alquassab was registered. The body, which Davidson claims was Alquassab, had been struck by a car and then dragged face down. Great National was notified of Alquassab’s alleged death on February 12; the body was buried the following day, Friday, February 13. After Davidson made a formal claim under the policy to Great National on June 1, Great National rescinded the policy because of Alquassab’s alleged fraud in procuring the policy, and refused to pay any beneficiary proceeds to Davidson.