Life Insurance – Think About It

Not everyone needs life insurance. If you don’t have any debts or maybe only minimal ones which would be covered by your disposable assets should you die, then you’re fine. Not everyone has dependants and as long as there would be enough funds to settle your affairs and pay for your funeral, then you wouldn’t be leaving your next of kin any headaches.

Not too many people are in this position though. Most have people who depend on them. If you’re the main breadwinner of the family, have you considered what would become of them if you were no longer there to provide their needs? There would be the mortgage to pay, plus any other loans and commitments. Then there’s the upkeep on the home, expenses such as running a car, holidays and maybe school fees and support through college to fund. Even if your ”other half” earns a salary, it’s a lot to take on. Some thought and provision now could save a lot of heartache later on.

The definition of life insurance is a policy which will pay out an amount of money on your death.

A term insurance policy is just that. It covers you for period, or term, of your life. It may be the term of your mortgage, or maybe the term which you expect your children to need financial support. In the event of your death within that term, there would be a lump sum, or maybe a series of smaller sums, for your dependants to draw on for their support and to maintain their standard of living. There is no actual cash value to these insurance policies; they simply expire at the end of the term.

A whole of life policy is one which, once purchased, will continue until your death. It is necessary to keep up the premiums or the policy may lapse, but the policy does have some cash value, should you decide that the cover is no longer necessary.

Many people take out this simple cover when they’re older and feel that they’d like to leave enough money for their family to be able to cover funeral costs.

Another use for this insurance is for people who realise that their estate is going to attract inheritance tax. By doing some careful calculations, it may be possible to work out the approximate amount of tax which would be due on their death and taking out a whole of life policy to cover this amount. This could save their next of kin from having to sell any property left to them simply to pay the inheritance tax. If the policy is written ”in trust”, then the payout should be excluded from inheritance tax. The benefit should be easily available, enabling the family to attend to the tax side of the estate efficiently.
If you were going down this route, it would be advisable to take some financial advice. Inheritance tax planning needs some thought, but whole of life insurance is a tool often used.

Back to term insurance. Level term insurance might be taken out to cover the term of a mortgage. It is often used in conjunction with an interest only mortgage, where your capital amount remains constant. Both the premium and the sum insured stay the same throughout the term. This type of insurance would also be suitable for family protection.

A decreasing term policy is useful if you have a repayment mortgage, where the capital amount owing on your property reduces over time. The actual cover reduces in line with the mortgage balance and because the insurer would actually pay out far less should your death occur towards the end of the term, these policies are cheaper to purchase.

There are other term policies out there pension term and increasing term being just two of them.

If you’re looking for more information, the internet’s the place to look. Don’t search for an individual insurer though. A broker will have the facility to search out some quotes for you from a range of suppliers. They also have a wealth of experience and will be able to offer some sound advice.

Don’t delay though. It’s really very easy to arrange some simple, uncomplicated cover and it’s well worth thinking about.

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