Term Life Insurance for Seniors: What To Know

Considering term life insurance but unsure the questions to ask? We can help. Start here to learn the basics so you can make an informed decision.
Life insurance application on a tablet screen

Term life insurance provides coverage at a lower rate. It’s a good way to insure for specific functions such as paying off debts, paying final expense, or providing for your spouse or children.

It is usually picked because it offers pure insurance, at a lower rate, for a specific amount of time. Let's dive in to the most commonly asked questions.

What Are The Types of Term Life Insurance

Guaranteed Level Term:
This type of policy offers predictable payments for a set payout—should you pass away within the term.

Annual Renewable Term:
This is a good option if you only need insurance for a short period of time, such as until you retire in a few years. It is important to know that each time you renew, your premiums will increase.

Decreasing Term:
The premium is level through the plan, but the death benefit decreases each year.

Do You Even Need Life Insurance

Life insurance is a hot topic for seniors. Many of the insurers are geared towards younger people who are paying off debt, building a career, raising a family and buying a home. However, you may want to have life insurance for a variety of reasons at 60 and beyond.

Three of the top reasons may be:

• Debt
If you’re deep in debt, you may need or want term insurance to help protect your heirs.

• Dependents
If your income is providing for someone such as a spouse or child, you want to have peace of mind and offer protection for them. If anything should happen to you, you would want to be able to replace your income.

• Diligence
Term life insurance is a hassle free option if you want to provide your heirs with a way to pay your final expenses.

A senior couple review a life insurance application
What Is Available As You Age

Looking for life insurance in your 60’s
You’ve got options. Most companies insure seniors up until 65 years old. Once you hit your 65th birthday, the pickings get slimmer. So, if you are between 60-65, now is the time to apply with most insurance companies. If you’re past 65, Mutual of Omaha offers applications up until age 74.

What if you’re over 70
In addition to Mutual of Omaha, some applicants may find a match with North American up until age 74. In your 70s, these two companies appear to be the best options, unless you’re looking to extend an existing policy with another insurer.

Alternatively, you may want to look at whole life insurance. These policies generally are more expensive, yet people with higher maximum ages may apply.

Into your 80s
You may be able to extend existing policies. However, it turns out that options for new policies are virtually nonexistent.

The key message here: if you want life insurance, start shopping early. You have the most options if you get life insurance before you hit 65.

What’s The Deal with Medical Exams

Many people say you should avoid medical exams—especially if you’re a senior over a certain age.

However, if you’re in good health, a medical insurance exam can save you money. These insurance exams are usually routine checks, looking for signs of serious future medical issues.

Whether to steer clear or embrace policies with medical exams depends on your current state of health and medical history.

If you are concerned about this, look for insurance policies that do not require a medical exam. You’re likely to find these when you are on the lower end of the age spectrum.

A comparison of term life insurance vs whole life insurance
Where To Comparison Shop

In addition to comparing quotes from friends and families, go online. You may want to shop for the policy that best matches your needs—before talking with a professional. An easy way to compare policies and buy insurance online is Policygenius.

Where To Find Qualified Help

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 the best life insurance.

Assistance Club Summary

The #1 idea: Get the coverage you need to protect your loved ones—early on. If you wait until later, your choices are fewer and may be more expensive.

Getting term life insurance may help you cover expenses, have peace of mind about loved ones, and offer a hassle-free way for heirs to cover final expenses. If you’ve been thinking about it…this may be a good time to check out your options.