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Term Life Insurance Friday, 9 September 2011

The insurance needs of individuals are unique. Individuals with short-term insurance needs opt for term life insurance policies. Term life insurance policies are extremely affordable and have lower initial premiums in comparison to whole life insurance.

One major downside is that in later years the premium become costlier and can be greater than the premium cost of whole life insurance policies. Term life insurance is completely protection-oriented. The beneficiary obtains the death benefit only in the event of the death of the insured within the specified time period. If the insured lives past the term period, not a single dime is given. There is absolutely no ingrained cash value or investment character in term life insurance policies. In case of an inability to pay premiums, or outright cancellation, the insurance policy becomes useless.

Most people fail to understand the logic of opting for term life insurance. Death cannot be predicted, and no specific date can be fixed for it; thus, there is a substantial risk of cash loss. However, for people with a great need for short-term coverage this is the most logical and affordable choice. In most cases, individuals with budget constraint find it difficult to get a whole life insurance policy. A person with young children, a car loan and a house mortgage opts for term life insurance for the duration when the need is substantial. Getting short-term insurance is a reasonable option when it is a ground for securing loans, or for completing a MBA degree.

There are basically two variation of term life insurance; namely, level term and annual renewable term (increasing premium) policies. Level term insurance policies have a more expensive initial premium in comparison to annual renewable term. Generally, after 5 years, the premiums are maintained at a cost-effective standard level. Purchasing a level term insurance for a longer duration (more than 10) is the best option in most cases. Annual renewable term insurance is like a pure term life insurance, apart from the fact that the premium rates keep increasing with each year of renewal. There is also another variation of term life where the initial premiums are high and they keep decreasing until the end of the term. Certain companies buy group term policies for their employees. However, these policies are only for the work period of the employees.

Many insurance companies provide the option of renewing or converting a term policy into whole life or universal policy, after the expiration of the term. However, both renewal and conversion premiums are often much higher. Certain companies require a repeat health examination during renewal, which may become grounds for refusing to provide insurance. Term life insurance, like any other insurance policy, has its own set of pros and cons. A policy should always be bought depending on its suitability to individual needs, and with due caution.

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