Once they reach adulthood, they’ll have access to their policy’s cash value. They could buy their first car. They could help fund college. They could put a down payment on a house.
Are you thinking about buying a life insurance policy on a child or grandchild, but aren’t exactly sure what the benefits of this purchase are? Fundamentally life insurance is a transfer of risk, and in most cases it’s a transfer of risk from the insured to the insurance company for the case of premature death. But let’s face it – when it comes to a healthy child, the risk of premature death is pretty low. That’s why we think the more important thing to look at is locking in their insurability.
The most important reason that we recommend that parents or grandparents purchase insurance for their child or grandchild is to lock in their future insurability. So in other words, when you purchase life insurance on a child, you’re able to “lock in their current health”. That is so important because if later in life, they lose their insurability because of a mental or nervous problem, a health issue or an occupational issue, they’re going to be guaranteed by the insurance company, through the policy rider, that they will be able to purchase a stipulated face amount $25,000 up to $125,000, every few years from the ages of 25 through 40. This allows them – as they become adults and maybe have become uninsurable – to take care of the things that are most important to them, their families and their businesses.
So adding that Guaranteed Insurability Rider for just a few dollars a year onto the policy for the child is going to lock in their ability to purchase more insurance throughout their adult life, which is really important.
The next point to consider when thinking about insuring a child is the cost of the premiums. Now the premiums cost much less for a child than it does for an adult because the insurance company has many more years to collect those premiums.
We often hear from people to gee. I wish I purchased insurance when I was younger. What better time to purchase the insurance than when you’re a child? Now, obviously a child doesn’t have that ability, but the parents do. My parents purchased small policies for me that would have the funeral covered in case I died. Well, I use those policies today. I borrow against those policies to purchase my computers and every couple years I pay the money back and then it’s time to buy a new computer.
Well, the other practical purpose of having insurance we talked about earlier was guaranteed my youngest son when he was 18, had a stroke he’s uninsurable, but he has a large policy with options that he can purchase additional insurance in the future. So he can take care of his family and his business.
This brings us to our next point – the savings component of the policy you see with every whole life insurance policy. The insurance company is making two promises. The first is to pay a death benefit whenever the insured dies. The second is that the cash value in the policy will be equal to the face amount at the age of maturity – so the cash value is guaranteed to be there. Because of that aspect of a whole life insurance policy, you’re actually getting multiple duty dollars. Think about it instead of just putting money away in a savings account or a mutual fund or a 529 plan, you’re also getting a death benefit. You’re also getting future insurability and you’re also giving them the ability to choose how they want to use their money. It’s almost like their money is going to be in two places at once. They’ll always have access to cash in the policy and they can use it for whatever they want. And the money’s going to continue to grow uninterrupted on a tax-favored basis.
With the loan provision, they’ll have guaranteed access whenever you’re ready to transfer the policy into the child’s name. Once they reach adulthood, they’ll have access to their policy’s cash value. They could buy their first car. They could help fund college. They could put a down payment on a house. The possibilities are limitless. There’s no stipulations that say what policy loans can be used for. The only stipulation is that it’s guaranteed, that they’ll have access to the cash value via the policy loan, which is a really great thing for a savings vehicle for a child or a grandchild.
So now that we looked at the benefits of owning life insurance on a child or a grandchild, we have to also discuss the rules because insurance companies have special underwriting rules that they abide by when considering offering insurance to a child.
The first rule is that the child can’t have more insurance in place than the parent, unless there’s a good reason such as the parent is uninsurable.
The second rule is that when the child has siblings, then all of the siblings need to be equally insured. In the case of a grandparent purchasing on a grandchild, all of the grandchildren would also need to have equal amounts of life insurance in force.
In conclusion, life insurance is a unique financial tool for children or grandchildren. It could literally protect them from the cradle to the grave. They’ll have access to cash everywhere along the line. They can use the money to supplement their retirement income on a tax favored basis. And then they pass away and the money goes to their children or their grandchildren. It is a unique financial tool that should be considered. It may not be everybody’s choice, but it definitely should be considered and in the conversation.
If you’d like to get started with a policy on your child or grandchild, or would like to learn more about the options, feel free to give us a call, or to schedule your free strategy session today. Please leave us a comment down below, let us know what questions you have about life insurance. And we’ll be sure to answer them in upcoming videos.
Remember, it’s not how much money you make – it’s how much money you keep that really matters.