For several years now, September has been designated as Life Insurance Awareness Month. When we change our clocks back in the fall, we also check the batteries in our smoke detectors to protect our families. What a perfect reminder to review our life insurance needs annually to help ensure our loved ones are protected.
There are many life changes that can take place in a year – marriage, children, job changes, etc. Each of these changes can make a big difference in the life insurance coverage needed for your family.
“I know I need it, but I don’t want to think about it now.” “I’ll deal with it later, it’s not a priority.” These are two of the most common responses when the topic of life insurance comes up. Despite being saddled with a reputation as a boring financial product, life insurance still remains a product that many financial professionals agree should be the foundation on which people should build their financial goals.
Why so? First, think about your loved ones. The primary benefit of life insurance is to provide for them, helping them meet daily expenses and continue the activities of daily life without any further major disruption. Familes can use life insurance proceeds to pay bills – like credit card and mortgage bills – and daily necessities such as groceries, gas, etc. Without adequate life insurance coverage, many families could be placed under great financial distress to meet the ongoing financial obligations of their new lives.
Life insurance can also protect one’s spouse against sharp reductions in future pension and Social Security payments by replacing assets cut short by premature death. For example, it is not unusual for a surviving spouse to receive less than half of his or her spouse’s projected pension because death has interrupted anticipated contributions flowing into the plan.
And it’s not just at home where life insurance can help. Life insurance can help business owners and others with significant assets to pass those assets to their loved ones in a tax-efficient manner. It also serves as a tremendous tool enabling people to support nonprofit organizations through charitable gifts.
Life insurance might not be a popular topic, but the security it offers brings a level of comfort that most people can’t do without. In addition, most people will find that life insurance coverage is a key component as they plan for their long-term financial goals. None of us can control whether we will have tomorrow, but protecting the people in our lives is something we can take control of today.