Personal - FAQ's For Life Insurance

What is life insurance?
Life insurance protects those who depend on you,  such as your wife, children and possibly, your parents. If you die prematurely, life insurance can settle your outstanding debt and provide ongoing income to your dependents, until they are able to live comfortably without it.

It can also provide for everyday expenses as well as potential  legal, medical and funeral costs, should family savings not be sufficient to cover them.
Why do I need life insurance?
In reality, insurance is something everyone should have. In the unforeseen event of your death  ; what would the immediate impact on your family be? Are they counting on your  income in the years ahead to cover basic needs and future expenses? Could they afford the funeral costs? Who would pay the bond?

At this stage in your life, if you still don't have life insurance, maybe it's time to consider getting some -  for your and your family's peace of mind.
Am I eligible for life insurance?
Everyone is eligible for personal life insurance.
How much life insurance is enough?
Life cover is a cost effective way to replace your income earning potential should you pass away and therefore provide for your family or loved ones should you not be there to provide for them. It is also an effective way of clearing  your debt liabilities should you pass away, preventing your family from taking over this debt - or if the debt relates to your house – from being evicted if they can't pay the instalments.

As a rule of thumb to replace your income earning potential you could use the following as a guideline:
  1. Take your gross monthly income x 12 = annual income before tax
  2. Calculate the number of years left to your expected retirement age, i.e. retirement age – current age = number of income earning years left
  3. Multiply your gross annual income x the number of income earning years left = the life cover required to replace your income
  4. Add the amount of debt/liabilities you currently have to 3
  5. Subtract any current life insurance you have = how much life cover you should potentially have
What is a beneficiary?
A beneficiary is the person nominated to receive the payout in the event of your death.
Who should be my beneficiary?
This is entirely up to you. You might want to have your wife as the sole recipient. If you have kids, you might choose to distribute the policy amongst multiple beneficiaries. Review your plan periodically to ensure that it's up to par with the changes in your life.
When does my coverage begin?
Your coverage does not begin until your policy is approved and your first premium has been paid. Assuming certain conditions are met, most companies provide some temporary conditional coverage during the application process.
Do I require a medical exam to qualify for a life insurance policy?
In most cases, only an HIV test is needed. It will be performed at the expense of the insurance company, at a time and place that is convenient for you.
What happens if I can't afford my premium anymore?
Failing to pay a premium may mean that you will not be covered for the specific month. It is important to contact your life insurer to make alternative arrangements. The policy may lapse if more than one premium is not paid.
How is my life insurance premium calculated?
Your premium is based on your specific risk profile (each client is different) and this will have an impact on how much you will pay. The factors that will affect your risk profile are:
  • Age – younger individuals will pay a lower premium, due to the decreased likelihood of dying from natural causes at a young age
  • Gender – the premiums are slightly lower on average for women, as statistics have proven that there is an increased likelihood that they live at least six years longer than men
  • Health – if you have a current health condition or a history of illness, the risk is much higher compared to someone who is healthy
  • Lifestyle – if you participate in dangerous sports, such as regular sky diving, the risk of injury is higher and this would have an effect on your premium
What constitutes a high-risk client for an insurance company?
It's a given that smokers pay higher premiums than non-smokers, but not many are aware that this same increase would apply to anyone who had used any tobacco in the past five years.

Similar premium increases await those with a hazardous job or hobby, with a past dependency on alcohol or drugs.

Although your lifestyle may qualify you as a high-risk client, make sure that you're completely honest about your health and medical history when applying for life insurance.

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