Protecting Your Family With Life Insurance

For about two years, I have been a member of a wonderful women’s investment club.  The club consists of 20 women of varying occupations.  We get together once per month to eat some good food, drink some wine, learn about investing and have fun.  After our most recent meeting, one my friends approached me.  She and her fiance, who has a young son, have begun the process of discussing their estate planning and also life insurance planning.   She had several questions about life insurance which got me thinking that I should do a post on life insurance.

Life insurance is a great financial tool to protect your family and provide them with financial support if you should die.  I am not a life insurance agent, nor am I an expert on life insurance, per se.  Instead, I’ve done a little research around the web and have rounded up some life insurance information from various websites.  In my search, I ignored the websites of life insurance companies and sought out independent sources.

Life Insurance Basics

CNN has a great primer on life insurance basics in their Money 101 series, covering:

Similarly, MSN Money includes some useful articles on learning the basics of life insurance including:

Perhaps the most useful tool on the MSN Money site is the Life Insurance Needs Estimator. The estimator walks you through the process, step-by-step, of calculating the appropriate amount of life insurance coverage for you and your family’s needs.

Several sources discussed the differences and pros and cons of term life insurance and permanent life insurance:

Check Company Ratings

Finally, once you have found a life insurance policy that suits your needs, make sure to check the ratings of the insurance company. has a free online insurance company ratings tool that enables you to look up the Standard & Poor’s financial strength rating of over 3,000 insurance companies.

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