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Whole Life Insurance for Seniors

Life insurance is a financial tool that can help protect your loved ones in case you pass away while the policy is active. In the event of your passing, your beneficiaries can receive a substantial death benefit. Getting a policy can help seniors support their surviving partner, pass down wealth to their children or grandchildren, and even support charitable organizations.

Whole life insurance can be a popular choice for seniors who want long-term coverage and have more complex financial needs. This article will discuss whole life insurance in more detail and explore whether it could be the best policy type for you.

What is whole life insurance, and how does it work?

Whole life insurance is a form of permanent life insurance that offers lifelong coverage. Premiums cost more than term life insurance, but coverage never expires. When you pass away, your loved ones can use the death benefit payout to replace income, pay off debts, and cover expenses.

Whole life insurance also contains a cash value component, which grows with each premium payment. Whole life insurance cash value earns a fixed interest rate, growing tax-deferred, and you can use it for various purposes, as discussed below.1

Benefits of whole life insurance for seniors 

Here are a few benefits whole life insurance can offer seniors:

Offers lifelong coverage

Whole life insurance covers you for life. You won’t need to worry about renewing coverage or getting a new policy, as long as you keep up with premiums.

Comes with level premiums

Whole life insurance premiums don’t change once you buy a policy, so the earlier you get it, the lower your premiums could be. This can help you receive the coverage you need at a better cost.

Builds cash value 

Part of each premium payment you make goes toward your cash value component. It grows at a fixed, tax-deferred interest rate. Once your cash value grows large enough, you can tap into it as a source of wealth in several ways:

  • Loans: You can borrow from your cash value at a low rate and no required repayment date. Your policy will remain active as long as the cash value remains larger than the loan balance.
  • Withdrawals: You can withdraw from your cash value once it grows enough. However, this may reduce your death benefit, and you may be subject to taxes.
  • Surrendering your policy: If you surrender your policy for any reason, your insurer will pay you the cash value minus surrender charges.

Some policies don’t require a medical exam 

Some seniors find medical exams inconvenient or invasive. Fortunately, there are several smaller whole life insurance policies that don’t require medical exams. For example, Aflac offers whole life insurance without medical questions or exams. This can help you shorten the application time and get coverage easily from the comfort of your home.

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How much does whole life insurance for seniors cost? 

Age is one of the main factors insurers use when calculating life insurance premiums, so whole life insurance may cost more for seniors. For example, 50-year-old male nonsmokers of average height and weight pay an average of $5,125 per year for a whole life insurance policy with a $250,000 death benefit.2 This amount could increase for people over 50. That said, other factors can impact premiums, such as:

  • Health history: A good health history can reduce premiums if you get a policy that requires a medical exam.
  • Occupation: If you still work, certain jobs deemed hazardous, such as law enforcement or aviation, may cause insurers to charge more.
  • Hobbies: Having hobbies considered hazardous, such as rock climbing or skydiving, may result in higher premiums.

However, life insurance companies like Aflac offer a wide range of coverage options to help you find the policy you need at reasonable rates.

Reasons to get whole life insurance for seniors 

Here are some reasons seniors should consider whole life insurance:

You want to provide financial protection to your partner

Whole life insurance can offer your partner substantial financial protection. If you pass away and name them as a beneficiary, they can use the death benefit to replace your income or assets and supplement their own to maintain their standard of living.

You have multiple debts

If you pass away with debts, some of your estate’s assets may be liquidated to help cover them. If those debts exceed your estate, you may be unable to pass on assets. Life insurance can help prevent this. Your estate can use the payout to eliminate your remaining debts and pass the remaining money onto your partner or heirs.

You want to help loved ones cover end-of-life costs

Funerals can cost almost $8,000 on average.3 That doesn’t include other end-of-life costs, such as hospital or hospice care bills. Plus, loved ones may have to travel for the funeral. Whole life insurance can offer your family financial relief by helping to cover these costs. That way, they won’t have to deal with financial stress during difficult emotional times.

You want to provide an inheritance to children or grandchildren 

Whole life insurance death benefits are generally not taxable. Therefore, they may allow you to pass on more of your assets. Instead of simply having those extra assets in your estate, you may be able to name your heirs as beneficiaries so they can receive the tax-free payout when you pass away. You can also use your policy to benefit your heirs while still alive, thanks to the cash value. For example, you could use it to help cover your grandchildren’s education costs.

What is the best whole life insurance policy for me?

The best whole life insurance policy for you depends on your financial situation, loved ones’ needs, and budget. Factors such as your income, debts, and potential end-of-life costs can help you figure out the coverage amount that may work best for you. And if you’d like to explore policy options with lower premiums, consider types of life insurance for seniors. Whichever policy you choose, it’s important to ensure that the death benefit can adequately support your loved ones in the event of your passing.

Get a whole life insurance quote today 

Whole life insurance can be a more expensive option for seniors than other policies. However, the peace of mind offered by lifelong coverage and the wealth-building potential of the cash value component can be worth the extra investment. Aflac offers whole life insurance at various levels of coverage, along with several other types of life insurance policies. Chat with an agent today to find the best plan to protect your loved ones.

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