For most of your adult life, you’ve had the protection of life insurance to help safeguard you and your family. But as your life evolves, your family's needs and financial goals will inevitably change, too. With every transition and milestone, you should take the time to revisit your life insurance policy to make sure you have the coverage you need. Here are some key reasons to take a second look at your life insurance.
1. It’s time for your annual review.
Each year, you need an annual health checkup with your doctor to make sure all is well. The same thinking applies to your life insurance policies. Generally, it’s a good habit to review your policy every 12 months; doing so will help you identify where you are today versus what you may need in the future.[i] You can also ensure that nothing changed in the market to affect your coverage. You may find that you have the coverage you need and do not need to change any details — or that you need to make more adjustments than you anticipated. You’ll only truly know what strategy to pursue if you complete an annual policy review with your financial advisor.
2. You no longer have financial dependents.
Retirees often revisit their life insurance because they no longer financially provide for their loved ones.[ii] When your children or grandchildren are young and depend on you financially, protecting your family with life insurance makes sense should anything happen to you or your spouse. But, once children and loved ones move out and manage their own financial lives, they will no longer be as financially affected when one of you passes. As a result, you may no longer need the full coverage you had with dependents.
3. You are newly married or divorced.
A change in your marital status affects how many people you must account for in your financial life. Whether you have married, remarried or divorced, your financial life and needs have evolved. When you experience one of these life changes, you’ll want to revisit your life insurance policy to ensure it accurately reflects your marital status and financial profile.[iii]
4. You and your spouse are no longer employed.
When you had a job, you probably had life insurance coverage through your employer. Once you are no longer employed, however, you completely lose that coverage — and now must cover your life insurance needs on your own. If you and your spouse find yourself no longer supported by your employer benefits, now is the time to revisit your financial needs and the life insurance policy that will best support your life today and in retirement.[iv]
5. Your beneficiaries changed.
Whether you want to name a new grandchild or remove someone who passed away, revisiting your life insurance to ensure your beneficiaries are up to date is essential.[v] Any time you have a change in your beneficiaries, you need to address every policy they are connected to. Failing to do so could leave your desired beneficiaries without access to the funds — while jeopardizing the money you’ve invested in the policy throughout the years.
Overall, your unique financial needs will drive what strategies make sense for you. And a variety of factors will affect whether or not you need to revise your life insurance policy beyond what we share here. To explore what strategy is right for you, feel free to contact us at (518) 581-1642We’re happy to discuss the options available to you as pursue your financial goals.