September’s Life Insurance Awareness Month Calls Attention to the Need for Financial...

September’s Life Insurance Awareness Month Calls Attention to the Need for Financial Protection

LIFE Foundation Addresses Common Misconceptions That Prevent Americans from Getting the Life Insurance They Need


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Washington, DC–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–September 5, 2006–Whether your hopes for the future include buying a home, sending your children to college or relaxing in retirement, it is important that life insurance be the foundation of the plan that gets you there. Life insurance makes sure that no matter what twists and turns life sends your way, your family’s goals and financial dreams will remain on track.

Today nearly 68 million Americans have no life insurance coverage and those who do are often grossly underinsured, setting their families up for financial disaster if tragedy were to strike.

That’s why the nonprofit Life and Health Insurance Foundation for Education (LIFE) created Life Insurance Awareness Month, an annual industry-wide education campaign held each September to encourage more Americans to evaluate their life insurance needs and obtain needed coverage.

“If you don’t own life insurance or haven’t recently reviewed your coverage, September is the ideal time to set aside excuses, stop procrastinating and meet with an expert to determine if your family is adequately protected,” said spokesperson Sigi Pazos. “Remember, life insurance isn’t really for you — it’s for those who depend on you. Having the right amount and type of life insurance in place guarantees your loved ones will be ok financially, no matter what tomorrow brings.”

According to LIFE, there are several common misconceptions about life insurance that prevent many Americans from getting the coverage they need.

1. EXCUSE: Life insurance is too expensive. REALITY: In fact, there are options available to meet virtually any need and budget. Today, term life insurance costs about half as much as it did 10 years ago. A healthy 40-year old male can purchase a $500,000 20-year level premium term life insurance policy for just $375 a year, that’s a little more than a $1 a day!

2. EXCUSE: I don’t need life insurance because I’m not the primary breadwinner in my household. REALITY: Even if you make less than your spouse or don’t work outside of the home, you probably need life insurance. Secondary breadwinners and stay-at-home parents perform many valuable functions that would be expensive to replace. Salary.com estimates that if stay-at-home parents were paid for the 100 hours they spend each week taking care of kids and managing the household, they would earn an average of $134,121 annually. Even if they were only paid for a 40-hour work week, it would still cost more than $45,000 to replace those services.

3. EXCUSE: The coverage I have through my employer is enough. REALITY: Employers typically provide a modest amount of coverage, and generally you can’t take it with you if you change jobs. Many life insurance experts recommend having 10 times your gross annual income in life insurance coverage or more. That may seem like a lot, but it’s really not when you consider all the things that life insurance needs to fund and how long the money will be needed.

To properly assess your life insurance needs and learn more about the different types of policies available to you, LIFE recommends that you meet with a qualified insurance professional. To help you find a good agent in your area, LIFE offers the following three tips:

1. Ask around – It’s always best to get referrals. Collect the names of several agents through recommendations from friends, family, business associates or trusted advisors, such as your lawyer or accountant. Also, the LIFE Foundation has an agent locator tool (http://www.life-line.org/agentlocator) that lists agents who are members of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA), which means they adhere to a stringent code of ethics.

2. Interview at least two insurance professionals – It’s important to have a basis of comparison. Find someone who will take the time to understand your personal financial situation and goals, and will help you find the right insurance solutions for your specific needs.

3. Find out about an agent’s specialties and training. Your agent should be an expert in the products you need. Professional designations, such as Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC), and Certified Financial Planner (CFP) indicate that the agent has completed advanced training and passed rigorous insurance and financial exams.

For more information about life insurance and Life Insurance Awareness Month, visit http://www.life-line.org.

About Life Insurance Awareness Month

Life Insurance Awareness Month was created in response to growing concern about the large number of Americans who lack adequate life insurance protection. This year, Olympic Figure Skating Gold Medalist, Scott Hamilton will serve as the national spokesperson for the initiative, sharing his own story of losing his mother at a young age and overcoming cancer to illustrate why financially protecting your loved ones is so important. According to LIMRA, 68 million adult Americans have no life insurance. Those who own life insurance have an average of four times their annual income in coverage, which is considerably less than most experts recommend. Held each September, Life Insurance Awareness Month is an industry-wide effort that is coordinated by the LIFE Foundation.

About LIFE

The Life and Health Insurance Foundation for Education (LIFE) was founded in 1994 in response to the public’s growing need for information and education on life, health, disability and long-term care insurance. LIFE also seeks to remind people of the important role insurance professionals perform in helping families, businesses and individuals find the insurance products that best fit their needs. To learn more about these topics, please visit http://www.life-line.org.

September’s Life Insurance Awareness Month Calls Attention to the Need for Financial Protection