Life insurance is a type of insurance policy which pays out a lump sum to your beneficiaries when you die. It is designed to provide peace of mind that your loved ones won’t struggle financially in the event of your death.
There are several different types of policy available, and the right one for you will depend on your individual circumstances.
When you buy life insurance you pay monthly premiums, usually for a fixed term. If you die during this term, the policy will pay out a tax-free cash lump sum to your beneficiary.
There are three main types of life insurance cover, level term assurance, decreasing term assurance and whole-of-life cover.
With level term assurance, the amount of cover you have remains the same during the term of the policy. This kind of cover is often taken out alongside interest-only mortgages, as the capital you owe does not decrease over time. Please note that you should have a repayment vehicle in place or a way of repaying the loan at the end of the mortgage term as the life plan will not attain a cash in value.
With decreasing term assurance, as the name suggest, the amount of cover you have reduces over time. Decreasing policies are often taken out at the same time as a repayment mortgage, so that the amount of cover you have decreases along with the capital you owe.
Whole-of-life insurance protects you for your lifetime, but can mean you’ll pay premiums right up until the point you die and costs are steeper because you’re guaranteed a pay-out.
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Serious illness can have massive implications both emotionally and financially for you and the people around you. During a period of such stress and anxiety, a Critical Illness policy can provide much-needed relief from the financial burden by providing the funds to clear a mortgage, pay-off other debts or even to delay a return to work until a full recovery is made if you are diagnosed with a defined condition.
The key consideration with this type of cover is not just about the cost, it’s essentially to select the right Insurer, ensuring the contract has a comprehensive list of critical illness definitions with a high rate of claim pay-out.
The ability to meet your day-to-day expenditure and saving commitments is normally dependant on your ability to generate income. Therefore, not being able to carry out your daily job, resulting from a back problem or a stress related illness may require a long period of recuperation and may jeopardise your ability to service these responsibilities.
Although company employees usually have an element of illness cover within their contract of employment, these tend to be limited from three to six months. An Income Protection policy would provide continuous cover at the required monthly amount until a pre-determined date (can be up to retirement age).
An income protection policy is invariably essential for anyone who is self-employed.