Life insurance

A financial safety net for those left behind

Normally you wouldn’t think twice about insuring your home or car, or even material things, like jewellery and prized possessions. We also insure our beloved pets. When it comes to insuring ourselves though, it’s a different story – but it really shouldn’t be. 

Life insurance (sometimes known as Life Assurance) is an insurance policy designed to provide financial security to your dependents if you die. It is paid out as either a lump sum, or regular income. If you’re single with no debts then you probably don’t need life cover. But if you have financial liabilities and / or a family who relies on you for their income, then it should be a financial priority.

When looking for a life insurance policy, it’s important to consider what types of policy are available, how much they might cost and how they could benefit you and your family. The type of life insurance that’s right for you will depend on your circumstances.

Common types of Life Insurance

If you have a mortgage, or dependents, you might choose what’s called Term Assurance. This covers you for a specific period so that, if you die during the term, your mortgage will be paid and / or your dependents looked after. Whole of life cover, on the other hand, will continue until your death – as long as you keep paying the premiums. 

In both cases you can choose to insure yourself (single-life cover), or you and your partner (joint-life cover). And with joint-life cover you can choose for the plan to pay out on either the first, or second death. A joint-life, second death plan is typically used to cover an inheritance tax bill, as part of your estate planning.

Whichever type of life insurance you decide to take out, it’s important to ensure it meets your goals – and to check whether you have any existing cover, so you don’t end up being over-insured. Your employer might offer a death-in-service policy as part of their employee benefits, for example. A financial planner will help you assess your options and choose the most appropriate solution for your needs.

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