Why should a firefighter purchase private life insurance?
I mean, life insurance is already provided by your employer—right? Well, If you don’t have any dependents, this could be enough. But if you have a spouse or a child, any death benefit they receive may not cover their needs for long. Surely, you’d want your family to have an extra cushion if the unthinkable were to happen. Private life insurance could provide for your partner, as well as your children all the way to their college years.
If paying for college or paying off any outstanding debts is a priority, it is certainly possible to pay a little more to get extra coverage. Such a policy would ensure your family can, say, pay off the mortgage or send the kids to school. Your employer-provided life insurance likely couldn’t do that!
Now let’s look at another reason why a firefighter should purchase private life insurance. As you age, you may feel the desire to move on from firefighting. Maybe, you want to move across the country, or get into a different professional sphere or perhaps the physical stressors of the job are catching up to you. In that case, you’re probably going to lose your life insurance coverage. Even if you retire, your job-provided life insurance does not go with you. When going life insurance shopping, you’ll see that it costs quite a bit more due to your more advanced age, especially if you have an illness or disability. If you already have private life insurance, you wouldn’t have to worry about such a scenario.
So, you’ve seen the light—we assume—and have decided to purchase private life insurance. The next step is to choose what kind of life insurance is best for you. Let’s explore some options.
There are two basic types of private life insurance – permanent and term.
Permanent life insurance will be with you your whole life and can accumulate cash value, thus increasing the death benefit for its beneficiaries. Since they become more valuable over time, they can be seen as a type of investment fund. How they become more valuable depends on the company and the plan. This accumulated value may even be taken out as a loan. Considering no credit check is required and repayment is guaranteed, it’s an easy way to get your hands on much cash when in a bind. The biggest downside is that these plans cost much more than term life insurance plans.
Term life insurance policies cover a certain time period and are very cut and dry. The dollar amount beneficiaries would receive is chosen by you and is set in stone. It would only be paid out if you died within that specific time period. If you die after the term is up, then the beneficiaries would receive nothing. These term life insurance plans are 10-15 times cheaper than permanent ones, making them quite attractive for those on a tighter budget.
As you navigate the complexities of protecting your assets and family, muddied even further by being a firefighter, it is especially helpful to have someone who is familiar with your type of situation to work through it with you. As a full-time firefighter myself, I know the confusion these topics can bring and I’m always willing to help carve a path that is right for you. Feel free to schedule a meeting to discuss any questions you might have.