Life Insurance is a legal contract between you and a life insurance company with the purpose of providing an income to spouse, children or other beneficiaries in the event of your death.
There are two different categories of Life Insurance. Term Insurance is designed to provide death benefits for a specific time period. It is set up to pay a death benefit if a person should die in this specific time period. The most common term for life insurance is 20 years. Term Insurance has many benefits: it is relatively inexpensive to purchase initially. The reason for this is because your only paying for this death benefit if the death occurs during this specific time period or "term". Term life insurance is great for young couples just starting a family. It is affordable and offers high levels of coverage.
The drawback to Term life insurance is that when you initially start out, your payments are low and coverage is high, but at the end of your 20 year term you decide you still need coverage and the cost is much higher because your are now 20 years older. If you are in good health your premiums will be higher. If you have had any medical conditions in the past 20 years, you may not even qualify for life insurance. Some term life insurance policies do offer a provision that will allow a person to convert their term into permanent life insurance in the first few years of the policy.
The other type of life insurance is Permanent Life Insurance. Permanent is just that-as long as the premiums are paid, the death benefits are paid. One of the benefits a person receives from Permanent Life Insurance is that it has a cash value. That means you can borrow money on it. There is no need for a credit check on this type of loan. Basically the life insurance is the collateral.
The drawback to Permanent life insurance is cost. It is much higher premium than that of a term policy.
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