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Is life insurance actually part of an estate plan?

For many people, considering an estate plan is difficult, but not nearly as difficult as coming up with one. When individuals sit down with an attorney, they often feel overwhelmed with the amount of detail and consideration that must go into designing a plan that meets their needs. One common aspect of an estate plan is life insurance. Depending on your situation, a life insurance policy may actually be a very important part of you and your family's financial well-being.

Couples are no longer waiting to purchase life insurance until later in life, but often doing it after becoming parents. Children have a way of amplifying our own mortality and prompting us to plan further into the future. Knowing that our children are taken care of if we should die is the value life insurance offers.  Often, young parents will opt for term life insurance as a way to have the coverage they need without paying a huge premium. Term plans can still be as useful to an estate plan as whole life plans. Keeping the premium low allows individuals to retain as mush of their income as possible to keep debt down or possibly invest in something like retirement.

When older individuals make the move to convert their term plan into a whole life plan, they may be looking at a higher premium, but after years of working, they may also have the income to support it. Whole life plans usually offer some type of accumulating cash value that allows the insured to borrow against the plan. In later years, many couples have adult children looking to leave the nest or go to college. Whole life insurance plans offer a way to cover unexpected expenses that would otherwise come from savings or be borrowed.

To have a comprehensive and well-rounded estate plan, individuals should consider life insurance when discussing their needs with an attorney. Providing for the financial needs of your loved ones and taking care of your last financial obligations are just a few ways life insurance can help.

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