Frequently Asked Questions
1. Do I need life insurance?
Yes, life insurance aims to provide a solution for those who seek income replacement, mortgage protection, estate planning, leaving a legacy, or burial expenses.
2. What is a Death Beneficiary?
A Life Insurance Death Benefit is the amount of money the insurance company pays the designated beneficiaries upon the insured’s death, provided the policy was in force at the time of the incident.
3. What is a Beneficiary?
A life insurance beneficiary is an individual, entity, trustee, or estate named by the policy owner to collect the death benefit proceeds upon the insured’s death. There are two types of beneficiaries:
a. Primary beneficiary: The first one in line to collect the death benefit upon the insured’s death.
b. Contingent beneficiary: Also known as a secondary beneficiary, is the second one in line to collect the benefit if the primary beneficiary is deceased.
4. Can I buy life insurance for anyone I choose?
Sure, provided there is an insurable interest, a relationship and with the insured’s consent. Insurable interest is a reason to buy life insurance on someone else because you could undergo a financial disaster if they die. A relationship can be:
a. Husbands, wives, or children
b. A business owner can buy life insurance on his key employees
c. Creditors are allowed to take a policy on their borrowers
5. How can I money when buying life insurance?
Buying a policy early in life is a good way to ensure a lower premium. The younger you are, the lower the premiums you have to pay and the less risk you represent to the insurance company.
6. How does the insurance company determine my premium?
Premium rates are typically based on factors such as age, gender, height, weight, health status, tobacco use and if you participate in high-risk activities or occupations.
7. What is Critical Illness Insurance?
This is coverage that can help cover the extra expenses associated with a serious illness. When a serious illness happens to you or a loved one, this coverage provides you with a lump-sum benefit. Critical Illness Insurance provides you with a lump-sum benefit upon diagnosis of the following conditions: Cancer, Heart Attack, Kidney Failure, Coronary Artery Bypass, Graft Alzheimer’s disease, Major Organ Transplant, and others.
8. I have a good medical plan at work. Why do I need Critical Illness Insurnace?
Even quality medical and disability income plans don’t always cover all of your expenses. For example, your medical coverage may have deductibles and copays, and may not cover out-of-network treatments. And if you’re out on disability, only a portion of your income may be covered. With the average family spending thousands of dollars during a time of critical illness and recovery, most people will need the means to cover extra medical and daily living expenses. Such costs can include deductibles, groceries, housing expenses, car payments, and more.
9. What happens if I miss a premium payment?
Most policies have a 31-day grace period wherein you can pay the premium with no penalty or interest. If you have a term policy and do not make the payment within this grace period, the insurance company will usually terminate the policy. If you have a permanent life insurance policy, you can authorize the insurance company to draw your premium from your policy’s cash value.
10. What is a contestability period?
Most life insurance policies have a contestability period of two years after you buy the policy. During this time, if the insurance company finds that they issued the policy under misrepresentation or withholding of information by you, they can declare your policy void.
11. What is the “return of premium” feature?
Some term policies have a return of a premium feature that allows for a refund of all or some of the premiums you paid through the term of the insurance if no death benefit was paid. Some Critical Illness policies include this feature.
12. What are accelerated death benefits?
Some life insurance policies have a provision that allows you to collect a significant portion of the death benefit while you are still alive should you become terminally ill. The amount you take out early will be subtracted from the death benefit payment along with interest.
13. What is a term life policy?
Term insurance plans cover you for 20, 25 or 30 years, and it pays a death benefit only if you die in that term. Term policies typically offer the lowest monthly premium and are usually the best option if you have a limited budget or a temporary need. You can typically renew term policies for one or more terms even if your health has changed, however each time you do so; the premium may be higher.
14. Am I still eligible for coverage if I have a serious health condition?
Yes. Even if you are not in top health or have a serious health condition, there are still some options available for you.
15. What is a graded benefit life insurance policy?
A graded benefit life insurance is method insurance carriers use to offer coverage for individuals who aren’t in the best of health and otherwise may not qualify for coverage by limiting the death amount payment should they die in the first two or three years.
16. Do I Need Life Insurance for my child?
Yes. A child’s policy can provide a saving vehicle, the ability to buy more coverage in the future without proving insurability and also pay the death benefit in the event of a child’s death, which can be used for burial expenses. In the future, the beneficiaries of your child’s policy can be changed to their own children.
17. What Is the Underwriting Process?
The underwriting process is a method through which carriers assess your risk based on the answers on the application, medical exam (if needed) and databases search results such as Medical Information Bureau, prescription database report, and Motor Vehicle Report to conclude whether or not to approve, deny, or rate up a life insurance policy.
18. Do I Need to Take a Medical Exam?
If you apply for a $500,000 policy or higher, then yes, you will have to undertake the exam. However, most of the insurance carriers we represent offer life insurance coverage without the need to go through an exam. Additionally, policies such as final expenses are approved on a simplified issue basis and do not require you to take the exam.
19. Can I buy more than one policy?
Sure, you can buy more than one life insurance or critical illness policy. You may want to supplement your current policy from work or add another policy because you just had a new addition to the family.
20. How does the claim process work?
On a life insurance policy, your designated beneficiary will have to file a claim with the carrier. They will need to supply the original death certificate, along with the deceased’s policy number, social security number, and address. On a critical illness policy, your doctor has to provide evidence of the diagnosis.