Planning for Life Events
The need for life insurance comes from these life events. Each of these stages in life comes with a series of financial challenges, some unique, and some shared with others.

Graduation - If you are like most graduates (or graduates-to-be), this is probably one of the last concerns you have. However, it makes sense to be prepared for unexpected events in life. If you are married or have children, life insurance is critical at this stage of your life. After all, it provides protection for your family's financial future. Even if you are still single, life insurance can play an important role in your overall financial plan, protecting other loved ones who could be negatively affected by your untimely death. Different options available include:
1. Term life insurance, providing coverage for a set period of time, usually at a very reasonable rate. It is strictly a death benefit policy.
2. A variable universal life policy is another option that provides death benefit coverage and the ability to build cash value in the policy through an investment account.

Marriage - Whatever financial plans you have, those plans are most likely dependent on both of you being there to make them happen. However, if either of you should die prematurely, those dreams may be dashed. An untimely death could mean the end of college plans for a child, of plans to start a business or the ability to purchase a dream home. But it doesn't have to be that way with proper life insurance coverage. Now, more than ever, you need to take a careful look at what it would take to support your family and its long-term goals if you are no longer in the picture. Insurance protection is an affordable way to assure the future security of your family.

Buying a home - Now that you and your spouse are taking responsibility for a long-term financial commitment, you need to make sure you can sustain that commitment. For instance, consider how difficult it would be to make house payments (and meet other family expenses like food, transportation, clothing and more) if one spouse unexpectedly died. Life insurance provides important protection. You can consider owning a policy that is specifically designed to pay off the mortgage debt at the time of the insured individual's death. However, remember that expenses such as homeowner's insurance and property taxes will be an ongoing cost, as will all other family expenses. So be sure sufficient coverage is in place to meet those needs.

Starting a family - Even if you already have life insurance coverage, your protection needs significantly change once children become part of the picture. Now, your family's financial needs have increased. The role your income plays in supporting not only today's needs, but tomorrow's plans, must be insured. That means carrying the appropriate level of life insurance to meet your family's needs. For instance, a couple, both 30-years old with one making $50,000 per year and the other $25,000 per year, should consider that they will need sufficient life insurance coverage to protect their family if either should face an untimely, premature death. With more mouths to feed today and more goals to achieve for tomorrow, you need to make sure that cash flow needs are met by owning sufficient insurance coverage.

Estimated lost income over working life
Accumulated lifetime earnings assuming annual earnings equal to today's income plus annual 4% salary increase
Spouse 1 $3,682,611
Spouse 2 $1,841,306
This is the amount of total earnings that could be generated from work, from age 30 through age 65.

Changing jobs - If you change employers, your health insurance coverage is likely to change as well. Be sure to compare policies so you know what benefits you'll gain and whether you'll lose any, and pay careful attention to how much of the cost will come out of your pocket in the form of monthly premiums, deductibles and co-payments.

In addition, your former employer or new employer may include group life insurance coverage. Make sure the coverage you have from work is consistent with what you had under your previous employer. If you end up with less group coverage, you'll need to replace that with personal insurance policies. In either case, now is a good time to review your overall protection plan, and determine if you have sufficient coverage for your family's needs.

Divorce - In this unhappy circumstance, the financial ramifications are significant. Whatever coverage existed prior to the divorce, it is likely to change in the new environment. At a minimum, beneficiary designations may be affected. More than that, you will likely need to consider adjusting current policies or purchasing new ones to meet your revised protection needs.

 

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