20 Aug The single parent’s guide to life insurance
Whether you’re up all night with a newborn, dealing with a kid who’s getting into trouble at school, or trying to keep your teen safe, you already have enough problems to worry about as a parent. That’s why having life insurance and knowing that your family is protected helps you sleep a bit more peacefully at night. This is especially true if you’re a single parent. Unlike your married peers, you can’t readily rely on a partner to cover your kids’ expenses if you were to die. That is why we put together a complete guide to life insurance for single parents.
How do you make sure you’re getting the coverage you need as a single parent? Keep these tips in mind when you purchase life insurance:
Get advice on how much life insurance you need
Life insurance is complicated (just like the trivia question that stumped you last night). So when you choose a policy without customized advice that’s tailored to your needs, you can run into one of two big problems: you may leave your family with much less than they need (“underprotection”) or you may find yourself struggling to save for retirement because you spent too much on insurance (more on “overprotection” here). That’s why giving you the life insurance advice you need is the core tenant of our philosophy at PolicyMe.
To gain a deep understanding of your needs, our life insurance checkup pays close attention to the financial obligations your kids rely on you to cover, like their food, clothing, and education. We also ask you about their future living arrangements, and if there aren’t relatives or friends who can provide housing for them, we’ll get you covered for that too. We can even help you factor in funeral expenses so that your kids can celebrate your life without worrying about money.
Choose a term that covers your children
This doesn’t mean you need to buy life insurance for the longest period available, which could be expensive and completely unnecessary! But you want to ensure that by the time your policy expires, you have enough money saved to cover your children’s needs if you were to die.
Sound too complicated to figure out?
At PolicyMe, we make it easy by taking care of all the heavy lifting for you. We do this by projecting your coverage needs into the future based on your current income and expenses. We then use this information to predict which term length suits you best (usually 10, 20, or 30 years) while making sure that your family won’t be underprotected once your policy expires. Complete our life insurance checkup today to find out more.
Identify a “custodian” or use a trust as your beneficiary
It’s important to know that life insurance companies won’t pay out claims to minors. In fact, it’s against the law for them to give your death benefit to your kids if they aren’t adults yet. So if you don’t make arrangements before you pass, the court has to appoint a legal custodian to oversee the distribution of your death benefit on your behalf.
Don’t like the idea of leaving your kids in a sticky situation? You can avoid this mess altogether by either naming a “custodian” when you take the policy out (which is usually required) or setting up a trust and naming that fund as your policy’s beneficiary. Both of these options will expedite the payout process (for you and your insurer).
Finally, don’t wait.
Remember that every day that you don’t have protection, you run the risk of getting sick. And any health conditions that you develop later in life, like high blood pressure or sleep apnea, will only lead to higher rates (remember when we talked about the factors that affect life insurance pricing?)
Life insurance for single parents: putting off this purchase could cost you
Not sure how much coverage you need? We can help with that. Complete our free life insurance checkup to figure out how much life insurance you need to protect the ones you love.