Is "Life Insurance for Less" Really a Good Deal?

Ask the Experts by Dan H. Tripp CLU

Q: I've seen several ads for touting life insurance for less if I call an 800 number. I know I need life insurance, but is this the way I should go?

A: My initial response to this question is that you should do what is the most comfortable or convenient for you. If you don't have the time or the inclination to meet with an agent, then perhaps this is for you.

But before you do, here are some things to consider:

  • The new policy most likely will only save you lots of money if you currently own permanent or whole life insurance, which can be substantially more money. Actuarially-speaking, each company prices their term insurance based on things like experience, mortality tables, etc. However, they do not have a separate set of policies for the internet crowd.
  • The price advertised is for a 10-year level term policy at the company's most preferred rate classification. A very small percentage of the public has good enough health to get these "walk on water" rates, meaning your rates might be higher, and you will still need to go through underwriting, including blood and urine testing, before approval.
  • Life insurance is intended to take care of your family if you die. A local agent knows exactly, with the knowledge and compassion, how to get the claim filed properly and expeditiously. This allows your spouse and family to deal with the emotional stress, funeral arrangements, etc., not which keypad option to choose, and what paperwork to file.

When it comes to your family's well-being, you should do the very best you can. You'd never let a doctor diagnose you over the phone or an attorney represent you without all the facts. The same should apply to your family's financial protection.

Dan H. Tripp is an independent agent with over 27 years' experience helping individuals, families and small business navigate the complexities of life, disability and long-term care insurance. He holds a CLU designation from The American College, and is a member in good standing with NAIFA and the Society of Financial Service Professionals. He can be reached at 313-478-4337 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Tripp is a member of The Family Center's Association of Professionals.

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