The suit filed in federal court in Los Angeles states that Syed Rizwan Farook had obtained two life insurance policies in 2012 and 2013, after he had become radicalized and had initiated plans to carry out terrorist attacks.
Farook and his wife died in a shootout with police following the December 2 assault in San Bernardino, California.
The insurance policies, one worth $250,000 and the second $25,000, named Farook’s mother Rafia Farook as the primary beneficiary.
But authorities said that given the nature of the San Bernardino assault and the fact that Farook had been plotting terror attacks when he took out the policies, the money was subject to forfeiture by the government.
“Terrorists must not be permitted to provide for their designated beneficiaries through their crimes,” federal prosecutor Eileen Decker said in a statement.
“My office intends to explore every legal option available to us to ensure these funds are made available to the victims of this horrific crime.
“We will continue to use every tool available to seek justice on behalf of the victims of the San Bernardino terrorist attacks.”
The San Bernardino carnage was the deadliest terror attack on US soil since the September 11, 2001 attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people.