The collection timing on life insurance is not statutory. The contract could affect timing, but most contracts only require that there be a death. Your hold up is because there appears to be a dispute as to the beneficiary and timing of the possible beneficiary changes. The company will make sure there are no mistakes in this case and will require that their lawyers clear any proceeds to be paid out. If the other party agrees that there is some dispute, it may have to be settled in court. MN Statute allows proceeds from insurance (even when paid outside of the typical estate), to be includable in the proceedings. You should get an attorney on your side to make sure your rights are protected.
When there is a discrepancy, life insurance companies will take the "long road home" instead of rushing to judgment. They would rather go slowly than make a mistake and since it seems that the children are not included and you don't give your specific status, they will want to investigate in detail before making any distribution.