Many families wonder what they would do to survive financially if they were to lose the main breadwinner. With a tough job market and skyrocketing costs of just about everything, it’s a very valid concern. Life insurance provides a safety net to protect your loved ones in the event that something happens.
When designing your life insurance policy to pay out to a spouse, consider the tax implications of the titled spouse owning the policy. When the titled spouse dies, the policy payout then becomes part of their estate, and transferring those funds to the living spouse creates a tax burden. If the non-titled spouse owns the policy the funds are not considered to be part of the deceased’s estate.
When you are thinking about how much life insurance to purchase, it’s a good idea to get at least eight or ten times the amount of your annual income. With this amount, if something happens to you, your dependents will be able to invest wisely and continue to take care of their living expenses in the long term.
If you are considering purchasing life insurance, consider carefully why you think you might need it. A life insurance policy isn’t always a good idea. It is primarily designed to protect those who depend on your income in the case of your death. If you have or anticipate needing to care for a family or an elderly parent, life insurance would be a good investment, but not otherwise.
If you are looking to purchase a life insurance policy and you are a smoker, try to quit. This is because most life insurance companies will not provide insurance to a smoker, as they are more at risk to getting lung cancer and other smoking-related conditions. Companies that will provide insurance to a smoker will usually charge higher premium rates.
Choose permanent life insurance if you want to build cash value. Building cash value in a life insurance policy helps you have additional cash for the future. The insured can borrow the cash value at a low interest rate. They can also use it to pay the premiums. The cash grows tax-free, and some financial planners recommend it as a way to cover estate taxes as part of a comprehensive financial plan.
Some people try to lie on their insurance applications and end up losing their life insurance once that lie is exposed. Never lie on your application. Someone will find out that you’re only trying to save money, and then you lose your premiums and the entire policy in the blink of an eye with no recourse.
Have your medical history ready when applying for a life insurance policy, because waiting around can be a hassle for everyone. You know that they’re going to request your medical history, and unless you’ve kept track of it yourself, the hospital’s records system might take weeks or months to get it to you.
Continuing to build savings has been difficult for many families over the past few years, and some that could afford to self-insure, may not be able to do so any more. Life insurance can fill that gap and provide the means for families to carry on if disaster should strike them.