2 min. readlast update: 11.01.2023


A Beneficiary, in the context of a death benefit claim, refers to the individual or entity designated by the policyholder of a life insurance policy or superannuation fund to receive the death benefit upon the policyholder's demise. The death benefit is a payout that is triggered upon the death of the policyholder, and it is intended to provide financial support to the beneficiaries.

Key Features

  1. Designation: The policyholder has the right to designate one or more beneficiaries. These can be individuals (like family members or friends), trusts, charities, or businesses.
  2. Types of Beneficiaries: There are typically two types of beneficiaries - primary and contingent. Primary beneficiaries are the first in line to receive the death benefit. If a primary beneficiary predeceases the policyholder or cannot accept the benefit, the contingent (or secondary) beneficiary will receive the payout.
  3. Changeable: Unless the beneficiary designation is irrevocable, the policyholder can change the beneficiaries at any time.


Designating a beneficiary is a crucial part of planning a life insurance policy or superannuation fund. It ensures that the death benefit goes to the intended recipient(s), providing them with financial support after the policyholder's death. This can be particularly important for dependents who rely on the policyholder's income.


When designating a beneficiary, the policyholder should consider their circumstances and the needs of potential beneficiaries. It's also important to regularly review and update beneficiary designations to reflect any changes in the policyholder's situation, such as marriage, divorce, or the birth of a child.


A Beneficiary plays a vital role in executing a death benefit claim. They are the individual or entity who will receive the financial payout upon the policyholder's death. As such, selecting beneficiaries should be done thoughtfully and reviewed regularly to ensure that the death benefit will benefit the policyholder's intended recipients. 

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