Older Americans might find it challenging to get enough life insurance. However, with the appropriate approach, many can still find coverage. After initial enrollment, opportunities to get more protection might still arise. How can you expand your options? It may take a extra steps but can prove worthwhile.
Understanding Life Insurance Challenges
When you carry life insurance, you leave behind a sum of money after your death. It might help survivors get needed cash to cover the void left in their lives.
Still, older Americans might find it harder to get coverage. Simply put, they have a higher likelihood of dying. Their health, safety risks, and even finances might make extending coverage a high risk for insurers. In this case, many insurers limit the coverage for which seniors can initially apply.
Start with Term Coverage
The policy seniors most often qualify for is term life insurance. Coverage only lasts for a certain number of years, often five, ten or twenty. You'll have to renew it when the term ends. It may also come with other restrictions, such as no ability to accumulate cash value. Instead, the policy will usually only provide a relatively simple lump payout.
However, many seniors will still find this coverage acceptable. You can choose a policy sum that matches your personal needs. With the sum, your survivors can often use the money to settle funeral costs and other final expenses. They can also use the money for everyday expenses they might need covered.
Converting Your Policy as Your Needs Change
Still, some seniors might not find term policies quite suitable. You might want to leave more money or financial options after your death. Other policies might offer extra options which give a better security cushion. Ask your insurer if ways exist to get another form of coverage.
Once you get a term policy, you may be able to convert it, in time, to another policy type. That essentially means switching coverage. Your other options might include:
- Permanent policies: Also called whole-life policies, these policies have no terms. They also might have other benefits, such as cash value accumulation. That's more money over time.
- Guaranteed whole-life policies: This insurance offers most seniors a smaller death benefit. However, it can prove adequate when someone might not have a lot of needs after death.
- Universal life policies: Coverage allows policyholders to adjust the death benefit as their needs change. Policies might also be able to accumulate cash value.
Keep in mind, you might face extra qualifications, like medical exams, to get these policies. Not only that, you might see higher premiums for coverage as well. Still, this shouldn’t stop you from asking your insurer about your options. Even as a senior, you have life insurance choices. Capitalize on them today.