Congratulations on having life insurance through work! You have taken the 1st step in helping protect your home and family through life insurance. Buying a life insurance policy may be the most important decision you could make. BUT.... are you making the right decision of getting your life insurance only through work? Let's review the worst mistakes people make with their group life coverage and how to avoid them.
1. You enjoy paying more in premiums each year
All group life insurance plans increase in cost over time. Most plans are called an annual renewable term and because they renew each year the premiums increase as well. Life insurance through work can become very expensive over time because of the increase of premiums. The premiums increase every year or every five years depending on your group plan and it becomes incredibly expensive over time. With an individual policy, the premiums stay level and don't increase for most term and permanent plans.
2. You don't have enough coverage
The amount of coverage you can get with an employer is limited based on your income, typically just a few times your salary. According to financial experts you need roughly ten times your salary to be adequately protected. With an individual policy, it is customized to your specific needs.
3. You believe an individual policy costs too much
According to recent studies from the Life Insurance Marketing Research Association (LIMRA), consumers severely overestimate the cost of life insurance. Life insurance rates are at all time historic lows and getting an individual policy is much cheaper than you probably think.
4. You assume your health will never change
We get it everyone believes they are Superman and nothing is going to change with their personal health. Unfortunately, the reality is our health is fragile and can change very quickly and unexpectedly. You never know when you might develop a medical condition that could seriously raise your rates or make it impossible to get coverage. What would happen if you were diagnosed with cancer and you loose your job? Securing an individual policy while you are young and healthy protects what matters most now and in the future.
5. You think you'll stay with the same employer
Most people don't stay with the same employer for their entire career and their insurance doesn't transfer with them. What if the new employer doesn't offer coverage? The average employee changes their job ten to twelve times during their career. Plus if you choose to convert your group policy to an individual one it typically costs substantially more and has limitations on options.
6. You believe your coverage is safe and secure
Your employer owns your life insurance policy, not you. It is designed to fit a group and not the individual. It is true that for some people a group life insurance is a good fit, but the employer can make changes or even eliminate the policy at any time. Employers change their HR policies and benefits all the time to help save costs in today's economy. Since an individual policy is owned by you, it puts you in the driver's seat for changes and adjustments.
7. You believe there are no other options
Life insurance policy options are limited through work and term insurance is the only option available. Everyone's situation and goals for life insurance are different and if you are looking for permanent coverage, a policy that builds cash value, one that has flexible premiums, one that comes with member or living benefits -- employers simply don't offer it. Life insurance should support your overall financial goals and finding a product specifically designed for you is important.