What is Life Insurance?
Life Insurance is an insurance policy that provides an agreed amount of cover over an agreed term, so that should you die during the policy term, a lump sum is paid out. Life insurance is considered as the cornerstone of financial planning. It is a cost effective way to provide for your family after you are gone.
Many of us will at some stage in our lives have the need for life insurance. Life insurance is an agreement between you and an insurer and under the terms of a life insurance contract, the insurer promises to pay a certain sum to a designated beneficiary when you die, in exchange for your premium payments. This may give you peace of mind that, should you die during the policy term, your family would have some financial security.
The most common reason for buying life insurance is to replace the income lost when you die. For example, say that you work, and that your income is used to support yourself and your family. When you die and your income stops the life insurance proceeds can be used to continue to support the family members you've left behind.
If you have dependants or your income is needed to maintain your family's standard of living you may need life insurance. If you died your family could use the money to pay off some outstanding bills or perhaps towards a mortgage. There may also be extra costs to deal with that were not there before; such as the cost of extra childcare. To decide if you need life insurance you will need to consider whether your family could cope financially without you and for how long.
Some people choose to take out a joint policy with their partner. This means the policy covers both people and is paid out when either person dies (but not both).
There are several kinds of policies that may be available to you, if you are healthy enough:
Term Insurance is the basic life insurance. It provides financial protection bound by a specific time, usually between one to thirty years. They are comparatively inexpensive and are well suited for specific purposes, like insurance protection for paying off a mortgage or paying the tuition fee for college education. Purchasing term insurance is like renting a car, a short-term solution. Monthly costs are lower, but you will not be building any equity.
Permanent insurance provides long-term financial protection. These policies include both a death benefit and, in some cases, cash savings. Purchasing permanent insurance is like buying a car instead of renting. You are taking care of long-term needs with a long-term solution. Your monthly costs may be higher than if you rent, but your payments will build equity over time.
The cost of life insurance varies depending on such factors as the insured's age, health, and occupation.
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