As your life has changed through the years, so have your insurance needs. A review of your life insurance coverage is an essential part of an annual financial check-up and is often the basis for updating other wealth and estate plans and corresponding documentation. Your policy fit your needs at a point-in-time but, today, you’ll likely find you have disparities in coverage arising from a number of reasons:
A lot can happen in a year that can have a significant impact on life insurance needs. A change in marital status, the addition of children or grandchildren, a new job or business and the accumulation of wealth all influence your financial situation and your future goals.
Each of these life events can trigger substantial changes in coverage needs and the cost of premiums. If a major event has changed your life, chances are it has changed your life insurance needs, too.
Is your policy’s death benefit adequate to provide for your family? Should your policy be available as a source of future income to supplement retirement, pay tuition or purchase a second home? Will your estate be subject to taxation, and will your policy be able to meet this liability and protect your legacy? Has your family grown and are your beneficiary designations up to date?
A Howard Insurance Life Insurance Policy Review will give you the answers and a plan for adjusting your policy to meet your shifting goals.
The Market is a Roller Coaster
As result of recent, record federal spending, taxes are likely to increase and changes to personal, business and estate tax rates are to be expected. Your policy may be one of your largest assets and a has high probability of a stable return when compared to other asset classes. It should be positioned in your investment portfolio to mitigate risk and to off-set liquidity lost to taxation.
The future of estate tax levels is uncertain and knowing how your policy should be owned and structured to address either an existing or potential estate tax is critical. If your policy is owned so that it is includable in the value of your estate, it is important you understand your options to prevent undue income and estate taxes and to maximize wealth transfer.
A Howard Insurance Life Insurance Policy Review will make sure your policy’s ownership and benefits match your need for liquidity and show you how your policy can be structured to be kept outside of your estate but not out of reach to be able to access its living benefits, including tax-preferred access to its cash value.
Those New Year Resolutions Stuck…or Didn’t
Did you know that Howard Insurance can ask your life insurance company to re-rate your policy? If you have given up smoking or your health has improved since your policy was issued, you may be able to reduce your premiums by presenting medical evidence. Demonstrating that you are being proactive in managing any health risks can save thousands of dollars each year in policy costs.
Conversely, if your health has declined and you own term life insurance, checking to see if your policy has an option to be converted to permanent coverage is prudent. There is a good chance the conversion can be completed with little or no medical evidence.
Your current health is not the only consideration. Many of today’s life insurance policies offer riders which offer a variety of living benefits including low-cost long-term care and chronic illness choices. In some situations, if you do not need to access your policy for its living benefits, you can receive a return of some of the premiums paid.
Your policy should survive you. Checking for policy guarantees and maturity riders can make sure your policy is designed to last as long as you do.
A Howard Life Insurance Policy Review will give you choices based on your health, your need for living benefits and your longevity.
Your Policy Has Changed
While interest rates are starting to inch upwards, two decades of declining rates have negatively impacted the life insurance industry. Many life insurance policies have not performed as originally illustrated and your policy’s planned performance could be compromised. Reviewing updated illustrations can shine some light on the effect, if any, to your policy
Fortunately, there is good news - insurance companies have lowered policy expenses on newer policies, including by basing insurance costs on a more favorable mortality table and offering more competitive underwriting. Also, recent federal legislation changed the definition of life insurance and those purchasing new policies have the ability to put more money into their life insurance policies for the same level of death benefit cost.
A Howard Life Insurance Policy Review will determine if your policy is still the best one for you and if any changes need to be made to keep it on track. A review will also reveal if other policy options will offer more benefits and better pricing.
Our Extraordinary Client Service Has Not Changed
Life insurance is not a one-and-done proposition and must change along with you and your environment. Take charge of your future by having your life insurance policy reviewed. For over 75 years, Howard Insurance has helped each of our select clients secure their assets, their ambitions, their businesses and, ultimately, their legacies. Leaders in private insurance advisory and risk management, we pair deep expertise with sincere attention to our clients’ needs to create unique solutions that benefit them best.