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Do I Really Need Life Insurance after Retirement?

November 28, 2016

If you’re closing in on retirement or have already retired, you may be wondering if you still need life insurance. After all, you purchase life insurance to protect your family, but the retirement savings you’ve built up throughout your career should be enough to support your spouse in the event of your passing. So, there’s no reason to apply for life insurance anymore, is there?

At JEHM Wealth & Retirement, we want to remind you that the answer is not as simple as it seems. Whether or not you should apply for life insurance depends on a number of factors and differs from individual to individual. For example, life insurance may be a good choice for a retiree if any of the following scenarios apply:

  • Non-adult children are dependent on the retiree’s income.
  • The retiree owns a large, illiquid estate.
  • The spouse may lose substantial income in the event of the retiree’s passing.
  • The retiree has substantial debt.

Also, experts state that life insurance can help pay off debt, minimize estate taxes, and ensure that the spouse and children are taken care of after the retiree’s death.

Which is the Right Type of Life Insurance for Retirees?

There are different types of life insurance, but the following are the most common:

  • Term life insurance – provides insurance coverage for a certain period of time, typically from 10 to 30 years.
  • Permanent life insurance – also known as “cash-value insurance” and features lifetime insurance and cash accumulation on a tax-deferred basis.
  • Whole life insurance – a type of permanent life insurance that features guaranteed premiums and cash value.
  • Universal whole life insurance – similar to whole life insurance but allows more flexibility to adjust the premiums and the coverage amount.

 Generally, term life insurance is the least costly option, but it only offers insurance coverage for a specified period of time. In contrast, permanent life insurance provides lifetime coverage and accumulation of cash value as long as the insured continues to pay the premiums. Moreover, it can be used to pay taxes imposed on large estates.

Think about your situation before applying for life insurance, and take the above factors into consideration while making your decision. Talking with JEHM Wealth & Retirement can be a great starting point to help discover if purchasing a life insurance policy in retirement is a good idea for you and what type of life insurance fits your needs.



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