Unpleasant as it may be to think about dying, each of us needs to take the necessary stops to protect our families and loved ones in the event of our deaths. Life insurance is a vital part of making sure that the death of an earner doesn’t lead to a family losing its home or financial security.
Within the category of life insurance, there are a wide range of different types of cover. Buyers who have never purchased insurance before may find the jargon confusing, but most of the terms are actually relatively simple. Insurance providers such as Standard Life will offer a range of different insurance types in order to meet the needs of a wide range of clients.
The first distinction between types of life insurance cover is between whole life and term life cover. Term life insurance pays a lump sum on the death of the policy holder if he or she dies within a certain period of time, while whole life insurance pays on the death of the policy holder, whenever it occurs. Whole life insurance is more expensive than term life because the insurer knows that it will be paying out eventually. Term life is often chosen by people who want to provide for their children or cover their mortgage payments; these policy holders select an ending date for their term based on their estimate of when this cover will no longer be needed. Some term insurance policies can be changed to whole life insurance; this is called convertible term insurance.
Another difference between types of insurance cover is the size of the payment. In level life insurance, the size of the final payout, and the premiums, remain consistent throughout the period of the cover. Standard Life’s flagship life insurance product is a type of level cover. Because this means that the value of the payout will not keep up with inflation, some customers choose an increasing policy, which increases in value by a certain amount annually. By contrast, decreasing cover reduces its final payout amount, as well as its premiums, over time. This type of cover is often linked to the balance remaining on a mortgage payment, meaning that the final payout will cover the remaining payable amount on the mortgage.
Individual life insurance is the most common, but some families choose joint life insurance. Joint life insurance cover is taken out by two people, usually a couple. In joint life cover, both partners pay premiums and the policy usually pays out on the death of the first partner.
The range of possible types of insurance cover can be confusing, but it also means that buyers can customise their cover to meet their individual needs. Because different insurers vary in the prices and features they offer, potential buyers should be sure to compare Standard Life’s offerings with those of other insurers to see which best fits their needs.