Term life insurance may not exactly be top of mind as you settle into married life, but you’ve most likely discussed long-term goals with your partner well before your wedding, and financial security was probably high on your mutual list.
Selecting a term life insurance policy is an important step toward a secure future for your family—it’s a choice that you can make now, early on in your marriage, that will provide peace of mind for decades to come.
That said, there are thousands of insurance providers and researching which one can offer the right coverage for your new and/or future family is a task you might be tempted to put off—especially when you’re in the midst of new marital bliss, changing names, and starting your lives together.
If time’s an issue, we have you covered. We’ve got a simple tool to help you compare life insurance quotes online in minutes—so you can get back to addressing that mountain of thank you cards.
More importantly than simply saving you time, our policy quotes tool will get you what you need—objective information on life insurance premiums, coverage, and companies within seconds.
If a lack of information about life insurance is holding you back, we’ve got you covered there, too. Let’s review term life basics for married couples.
Life Insurance Facts for Newlyweds
1. Term life insurance is available to all married couples under federal law.
After the Marriage Equality Act, no married couple can be denied term life insurance because of a spouse’s gender identification. There are insurance companies that are happy to offer coverage to every married couple and even those in a domestic partnership.
The sooner newlyweds purchase a term life insurance policy, the better. Here’s why:
- If you’re young, your rates will be lower—term life insurance premiums are quite affordable for most families.
- Lock in inexpensive rates before any health conditions kick in to save money in the long run.
After buying a term life insurance policy, if you determine that you want lifelong coverage, you can convert your policy into a permanent plan. Most term life insurance policies include a conversion rider for free. You do not have to go through underwriting again if you choose to convert.
By purchasing a term life policy sooner rather than later, you can ensure that you won’t be denied coverage in the future—no matter what health changes you may encounter—and you’ll have peace of mind early on that your loved ones’ needs will be provided for in the decades to come.
2. Married couples may name each other as beneficiaries of their own life insurance policies or own policies on each other.
To phrase that another way: you can purchase a life insurance policy on yourself naming your spouse as a beneficiary, but you can also take out a policy on your spouse (or they can take one out on you) naming yourself as a beneficiary.
You also have a few choices when it comes to naming beneficiaries.
If you are the owner of your own life insurance policy (meaning you are both the policyowner and the insured), it is considered part of your estate, and if you pass away, it may be subject to tax.
However, if your spouse is named as your beneficiary, then the proceeds will be considered exempt from federal estate taxes under the current marital deduction law. These laws are subject to change and may differ across states.
If you work with Quotacy, then one of our insurance advisors can help you understand your life insurance options and any details specific to your state.
3. Term life insurance is often the best option for newlyweds.
Term life insurance is highly affordable and can be purchased in different lengths (called terms) and amounts of coverage at once, based on your family’s requirements.
This means that, as a young, potentially boot-strapped family, you can get less coverage in a shorter term now that covers the current expenses that your spouse would be responsible for if you were to pass away unexpectedly—such as rent and car payments—and buy another policy with a longer term that would help provide security for your future children.
By laddering your term life insurance policies, you’ll always have the right amount of coverage at an affordable rate.
However, if you, your spouse, or your child currently have a chronic illness or disability that you know requires long-term care, you may want to consider a whole life insurance policy that provides lifelong protection for your loved ones.
» Learn more: Term vs Whole Life Insurance
Quotacy can help you figure out which option is best, as well as, assist you with your search for the right whole life insurance policy.
As you can see, life insurance is a very personalized decision. There is no one-size-fits all policy when it comes to setting up your family’s financial security. What’s more, depending on where you and your partner are in your plans, you may not even know how much term life insurance you may need. Let’s take a look at a few quick tips to determine the right amount of coverage for your family.
Term life insurance is a highly affordable option for newlyweds to establish a secure financial future together.
The Guess-Free Way to Find Out How Much Term Life Insurance You Need
You’ve made a solid commitment to sharing a mutual future together. As you happily look forward to some of the surprises that your new life may hold, there are a few decisions you can make now to shape your future together.
Having those decisions in mind as you make financial choices makes it easier to scope out your family’s needs now and down the road, even if your approach to reaching your objectives change. Here are a few important questions to consider as you develop your financial strategy as a couple:
- Will we have children?
- If we already have children or are planning on it, do we plan to pay for college or support them until they’ve established their careers?
- Are we planning on starting a business in the next few years? If so, will we finance through debt, savings, or taking on extra jobs?
- Do either of us have medical conditions that involve significant expense now, or may require us to pay for long-term care with age?
- Are we planning to support our parents (or relatives) who may require full-time care in their golden years?
- Do we have debt that may prove a challenge for our families to cover, if one of us were to pass away?
- If one of us becomes unable to work because of an accident or illness, will we be able to cover household expenses and meet our savings goals on a single income?
- As our family’s financial needs evolve, will our current income keep pace with those changes?
One of the few things in your family’s life that won’t change over the years is the need for financial security—and it isn’t just a matter of working hard to build up a nest egg.
If you were to pass away, then your family’s savings (even if quite substantial) and your household income could be impacted significantly, if debts and unexpected costs have to be paid out-of-pocket.
That means that your plans to pay for your children’s college or a comfortable retirement may be vulnerable, if you don’t have a term life insurance policy that can provide enough coverage for your family’s short-term expenses and long-term needs.
Here are two steps to take to get a better picture of how much life insurance you may need:
1. List your current and projected debts.
If your goal is make sure that your family will not be burdened with debt after your passing, then it’s wise to have a clear picture of how much debt you are responsible for now and how it will change over time.
If you have a mortgage, student loans, and/or plan to take on more debt (to buy property in the future), then you’ll need to factor in the possibility of rising interest rates and potential upticks in costs (college tuition increases).
Write a detailed account of household expenses and determine if they may change significantly in the future. If you plan to buy another home, change jobs, or have children in the near future, then allow yourself a bit of breathing room when calculating long-term household costs.
2. Create a budget for the unexpected.
While experts’ estimates of how big your family’s emergency fund should be varies, many suggest that it should be able to cover at least six months of household expenses.
The easiest way to be certain that the amount of coverage that you select will be sufficient to cover the above expenses (while preserving your savings) is to use our free term life insurance needs calculator.
No number-crunching and long hours spent pouring over bank statements needed.
Just enter a few details about your expenses, and you’ll have an estimate of how much term life insurance coverage will protect your family from the burden of debt, take care of household expenses, and provide for their future.
How to Compare Life Insurance Quotes in Minutes
You may not have agreed on the name of your first child just yet, but it should be easy (and take a lot less time), to be on the same page when it comes to having term life insurance.
Grab your better half (although you can easily do this on your own as well) and head on over to our free term life insurance quotes tool.
Without entering any personal contact details, you’ll be able to compare life insurance premiums and coverage amounts from leading life insurance companies in seconds. You’ll also be able to look at important consumer and business ratings on each provider—we always make sure we are transparent about who we work with and how they stack up when it comes to providing you with great service and the coverage you need.
After you compare life insurance quotes and decide to apply for coverage, you’ll be able to complete your application in under five minutes. You’ll be done long before you’ve found the perfect place for all those wedding gifts in your loveshack.
» Calculate: Life insurance needs calculator
About the writer
Writer, Editor, and Co-host of Quotacy's Q&A Fridays
Natasha is the content manager and editor for Quotacy. She has been in the life insurance industry since 2010 and has been making life insurance easier to understand with her writing since 2014. When not at work, she's probably studying and working toward her Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) designation while throwing a tennis ball for her pitbull mix, Emmett, or curled up on her couch watching Netflix. If it’s football season, the Packers game will be on. Connect with her on LinkedIn.