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What is Dependent Life Insurance

No one likes to think about the death of a loved one. Especially a spouse or child. But just as life insurance for yourself protects your family, dependent life insurance alleviates the financial burden of a dependent’s untimely death.
Dependent life insurance is often offered as an add-on to your life insurance through an employee benefits plan. You can typically purchase varying amounts of coverage depending on your needs and budget.

Who Qualifies as a Dependent for Life Insurance?

Dependent life insurance plans typically cover your spouse and dependent children.
Spouse. Depending on your plan, a spouse is usually defined as the person to whom you are legally married. This can also include common-law marriages. A domestic partner may or may not be considered a spouse. If applicable, check your plan.
Children. Dependent life insurance extends to biological and adopted children, as well as children under your legal guardianship.
Your child’s age also plays a role in his or her eligibility. The specific age will depend on your plan. Some plans begin insuring children at a couple of weeks old. Others stipulate that a child must be several months old. Coverage typically extends to adulthood, covering children up to 19 or 21 years of age. However, like health insurance, some plans allow you to hold a dependent life insurance plan for adult children who are unmarried, still in school or under 26. Dependent children with a disability can also qualify for extended life insurance. Review the plan specific to your benefits package to determine the exact age requirements on your policy.
Most plans do not allow you to insure specific children. Instead, your plan covers all of your dependent children at a reasonable rate. So, while you can decide to purchase life insurance for your spouse and children, or just for your children (not your spouse), you cannot purchase life insurance for a specified child and not another.

What are the Benefits of Dependent Life Insurance?

The greatest benefit of dependent life insurance remains peace of mind. No matter how old or young, expected or unexpected, the loss of a loved one is devastating. It takes a huge emotional toll, followed by a financial toll. For many, worry about paying for large expenses keeps them up at night. Don’t let “what if” financial concerns about your family add to your stress levels. Dependent life insurance can alleviate worry… at least from a financial standpoint.
Dependent life insurance is typically used to help cover funeral expenses and medical bills not covered through health insurance. The average funeral costs between $7,000 and $10,000 dollars. No small amount. Having dependent life insurance can help eliminate some of the financial stress during an already highly stressful time.
Dependent life insurance on a spouse can also help supplement a separate life insurance policy that accounts for the income he or she brought in, or the income equivalent for a stay-at-home parent.
Just as life insurance for yourself is a smart idea, gaining dependent life insurance for your eligible depends, especially at the low premiums offered through employee benefits plans, make sense. You’ll gain the peace of mind of knowing that you and your remaining family will be covered in the event of the unimaginable.
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