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The shape of the American family is changing. According to a study by Pew Research, only about 46% of children in America live with married, heterosexual parents—what was once considered a traditional household. This shift has impacted the insurance industry as well. Although once uncommon, many of today’s insurance companies offer term life insurance for domestic partners and families.

» Compare: Term life insurance quotes

If you’re in a domestic partnership with children, we’d like to walk you through your options.

The Meaning of Domestic Partnership Related to Term Life Insurance

Although some states still limit the familial rights of unmarried and/or same-sex couples, many term life insurance companies offer the same protection to domestic partners as they do to heterosexual, married couples.

To understand how your family’s legal status impacts the term life insurance application process in the state where you live, you can talk with one of our helpful life insurance advisors. They will help you navigate the logistics of applying for the policy that is best for your family.

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How Term Life Insurance Protects Domestic Partners and Families

When preparing your long-term financial plan, you should factor in the possibility that existing state laws regarding familial benefits for domestic partners may become more restrictive.

In the event that only your children would be able to claim and/or manage your estate according to state law, your term life policy will insure that your partner is well-cared for after your passing, regardless of changes in the legal climate.

Here are three reasons why term life insurance is critical to your family’s financial security:

Federal Law Supersedes State Law

Even in states where domestic partners enjoy many of the same legal rights as married couples, existing federal law might not extend certain benefits that are not exclusively under state jurisdiction. According to the US Constitution, when state and federal law conflict, federal law takes precedent.

State Laws Regarding Domestic Partnership Inheritance Are Not All Equal

While many states grant numerous legal benefits to domestic partnerships, many others restrict one partner’s right to inherit their loved one’s estate if their partner dies without a will.

Domestic Partnership Recognition Is Not Universal

If you and your family move to a new state, your survivorship rights may change dramatically. Some states do not have existing laws that mandate recognition of domestic partnerships that originated outside of their jurisdiction, and they have no legal obligation to do so.

At present, the following states offer domestic partners most of the same legal protections and benefits that those in traditional marriages receive:

That means that if you reside in one of these states and move to another, you may not be afforded any of the legal benefits extended to you and your partner in the state where your partnership was originally registered, regardless of the length of your relationship.

Other states offer limited rights to domestic partners, with different legal privileges supported at the county and city levels of government. For example, your rights may be different if you move between cities in the same state, or maintain homes in different counties.

We know that being in a domestic partnership can initially sound like a complicated part of getting a term life insurance policy, but our insurance advisors are happy to help you understand how your partnership and insurance needs can co-exist.

Now let’s look at a simple way to determine how much coverage your family will need.

How Much Term Life Insurance Coverage Will We Need?

As a domestic partnership, you have the same needs married couples do when it comes to the financial security that term life insurance provides. A term life insurance policy can provide funds to take care of your outstanding debts, funeral and burial expenses, and provide for your loved ones for years to come.

» Calculate: Life insurance needs calculator

Rather than spending a few hours with a spreadsheet, there’s an easier way to determine the right amount of coverage for your family: you can simply use our life insurance needs calculator to get started.

At Quotacy we work with all kinds of families to provide them with the best term life insurance quotes in minutes. Plus, we’ll offer your family expert guidance in choosing the right policy for your needs. Get your life insurance quote today and find out how easy protecting your family’s future can be.

» Learn more: A Financial Planning Checklist for LGBT Couples

About the writer

Quotacy is the country’s leading broker for buying life insurance online. We are obsessed with making it easy for everyone who has loved ones who depend upon them to have life insurance.