Over 50s life insurance
None of us likes to think about getting older, but while some things improve with age, life insurance premiums are definitely not one of them.
As you get closer to retirement, the life insurers assess you as a higher risk to them because, quite frankly, there is a greater chance that they will be paying out on the policy sooner than they would if you were in your 30s. Yet life expectancy has improved significantly in the last 50 years, thanks to advances in medical science and for many of us, better diets.
Specific policies for the over 50s are designed to take into account that you are older and may have had some problems, including health problems, in earlier years. They also have some add-ons that are particularly useful for the over 50s age group.
Over 50s life insurance is sold as a whole of life policy – it will cover you until you die, unlike the term policies that are available which will only cover you if you die within a specific period of time while the policy is in force.
There is the option of getting a standard term assurance policy, which will cover you if you die within a specific amount of time, but this will not necessarily have the benefits available to you that you would get from the over 50s life cover policy.
These policies will give you some additional benefits that are not offered within general policies that can be taken out by people of any age. For example, many policies will offer guaranteed acceptance, which can be a blessing if you have had any health issues. You can also get policies without answering medical questions, or divulging your medical history.
Over 50s life insurance can also have fixed premiums, so you do not have to worry about the policy getting more expensive as you get older. But this will mean your payout will not rise in line with inflation either, so it could leave your family worse off.
They often also offer funeral benefits which will provide at least some money to help cover the cost of your funeral. Given that the cost of funerals has now soared to more than £7,000, according to research from Sun Life Direct, any help is welcome.
You may also get free life cover after you reach 90 years of age, depending on the life insurer. However, you must check the terms and conditions carefully. Some insurers will only pay out if you die from an accident in the first couple of year, as the insurer does not want to encourage those who have an existing condition to take out a policy that is then claimed on immediately. Check the terms and conditions to see how long this period lasts, and only sign up to a policy you are happy with.