Life insurance: Get some…. a lady who just lost her husband

January 25, 2013 at 1:19 pm Leave a comment

“Even a few months after my husband’s accident, when the fog was just starting to clear a bit — if I would have had to go back to work immediately, or been facing financial ruin — I. Would. Have. Caved. Completely. And I am not the caving type. Knowing there was some life insurance coming, even a modest amount, provided me with a financial life raft. I could take time off work. We didn’t have to move. I didn’t go bankrupt. You should have some”.

 

How-to’s:

Life insurance can come from your employer (though it is usually only valid while you’re working there), from your home/auto insurer, from an independent broker, or possibly your credit union if you bank with one. Some things to consider when you’re lining up your policy:

  • Your home: What would it take to pay off the house or cover your rent for a comfortable period? Plan for that amount or chunk of time.
  • Living expenses: Calculate your or your family’s monthly expenses against how long you or your survivor(s) should be able to focus on healing without having to work. Make it as generous as you can, especially if you have kids or haven’t worked outside the home in recent years.
  • Debt: How much do you have? Is it in your name, both names, or your spouse/partner’s name? If your name is on it, you are responsible for paying it off. If it is only in your partner’s name, you may not be.
  • Education: If you want your kid(s) to go to the best college they can get into, or go to college at all, and/or if you are considering private school along the way, you are looking at major expenses coming down the pike. Add them up.
  • Retirement: Most people are woefully unprepared for this, so was I. If your partner/spouse generates income, or is the primary breadwinner, think about what you’d need to give yourself a future cushion if that income were to go away.
  • Your Sanity: Think about a number that would make your feel comfortable, and see you if can afford the monthly payment on that policy. Life insurance is not supposed to replace your retirement planning, or necessarily be a financial windfall … However, get what you can afford so you can feel covered.
  • Note to Single-parents: If you are not around anymore, make sure your kid(s) will have have some financial resources and some financial padding to take care of your details not listed above like, your memorial service, medical costs, counseling, moving to a different home, state or school, etc. I know, brutal, but there may be some additional nuances to think over.

Do it now:

Ask your employer, insurance agent or credit union about life insurance. Or look online. Get some. Get enough. Get it from an independent broker…..that’s me

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