The Big Questions About Final Expense Insurance

Do you need final expense insurance? It's being peddled everywhere but is it a smart choice? Let's roll up our sleeves and ask some of the big questions!
Advertising billboard with text Funeral Costs Ahead

“In this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”
—Benjamin Franklin

Let’s face the obvious.

No one really loves talking about expenses related to death, caskets, burial, plots and funerals. We don’t like the whole idea of dying to begin with…let alone the costs.

Yet, it is certain and there are insurance policies made for covering these expenses. Even the names reveal how we’d like to distance ourselves from discussing the topic. “Final Expense” sounds more delicate than the same policy by the no-nonsense name of “Burial Insurance.”

What Makes Final Expense Insurance Attractive?

There are 3 big reasons:

Practical: Funerals cost money. You are taking care of the bill, in advance.

Peace of Mind: You can rest assured that your wishes and necessities are handled.

Protection: Your loved ones have an easy way to cover the expenses.

Now, let’s roll up our sleeves and ask the big questions…

What Is Burial Insurance?

This is a type of insurance used to pay for funeral services and merchandise costs after death.

What Does It Cover?

You might not think that there are many things to purchase—but you’re wrong. Consider the many items needed for a funeral: casket, burial plot, funeral service, flowers, food, and transportation are among the must-haves.

Keep in mind, these costs are not fixed, but subject to inflation.

Do You Really Need It?

If you have a substantial estate, you may be planning on covering funeral expenses with a savings account or special account for this purpose.

However, many people don’t have this luxury. Additionally, many people believe their savings will cover expenses, but medical costs and unexpected expenses eat at their savings before they pass away.

Can You Still Get It?

Burial insurance is usually available online or by phone. There is no medical exam needed. Applicants are asked about their age, tobacco use and whether they have serious conditions.

Some policies do not ask medical questions and acceptance is guaranteed. These are called guaranteed issue life insurance. These policies usually require that no death benefit is paid for the first 2-3 years the policy is in place. However, this means that premiums have to be high relative to the benefit.

Older woman examines urn in a funeral home shop
What Does Burial Insurance Cover?

Some of the costs covered by this insurance include the funeral service, cemetery plot, headstone, casket, funeral procession and other miscellaneous costs. Burial insurance can be purchased for small amounts such as $5000 or $10,000.

What Are Alternatives?

If the primary concern is paying for burial, cremation or memorial services, it may be possible to arrange pre-payment with a funeral provider.

Alternatively, consider setting up a savings account with joint access for the designated survivor. This may be either a trust or a joint account. Money from this account can be withdrawn without needing to wait for insurance check or estate settlements.

Finally, there are other ways to make sure your final expenses are covered. A life insurance policy, either term life or permanent life insurance may be purchased. Checking out these alternatives may help you and your loved ones qualify for policies that provide better benefits than Final Expense Insurance.

Is It A Good Deal?

It’s hard to determine if Final Expense insurance is a good deal. You may be paying high premiums for benefits that are lower than some other insurance policies.

It can be a good deal to cover funeral expenses and settle your bills. Many people prefer to comparison shop Final Expense Insurance with other insurance policies. You can do this by talking with a financial professional.

A smiling man measures himself with tape measure inside a funeral casket
Who Should You Talk To?

Check out your local resources to find trustworthy help. You may find a directory at your local Agency on Aging (AAA). The AAA assists seniors in understanding and maximizing the benefits of their insurance.

Additionally, you can look for referrals from The Society of Financial Service Professionals. If you have close relationships with friends or family in your area, ask for personal referrals.

Most experts advise getting quotes from several providers to find the best price for Final Expense Insurance.

Assistance Club Summary

The #1 idea: Don’t leave final expenses up to chance.

You’ll have peace of mind knowing that your expenses are covered. There is a sense of comfort in being proactive.

With this instrument, your heirs have a hassle-free way to cover final expenses. If you’ve been thinking about it…now may be a good time to check out your options.

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