Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Insurance and Divorce
Q. What are the key issues regarding insurance and divorce?
A. First of all, just as with any other property, you need to determine who will be the owner of your various insurance policies. Secondly, if both spouses and children are covered under a group health plan, how will they be covered after the divorce? Thirdly, consider what will happen to the income from the support order or alimony if the provider should die.
Q. Why is ownership of the insurance policies important?
A. The owner controls the policy and has the right to name the beneficiaries. For instance, your spouse may be the current owner of a life insurance policy that has you named as the beneficiary. This means that your spouse could change the beneficiary at any time, contrary to what you might desire or need.
Q. If my children and I are currently covered under my spouseís group health plan, what are my options after divorce?
A. Divorce is a qualifying event for benefits under COBRA, so named after the act of Congress that created it. But, this is just an interim measure. Ask your attorney whether the divorce settlement can include a provision for health insurance, especially if either spouse can provide it at a reasonable cost through group coverage. Finally, you may need to purchase additional health coverage to protect yourself and your children.
Q. What will happen to the income from the support order or alimony if the provider should die?
A. You should ask your attorney whether the divorce settlement will include a provision for life insurance on the provider, to protect the support order or alimony. If not, you can obtain competitive life insurance quotes here.
Q. How much life insurance is needed to protect the providerís income?
A. Here is a life insurance calculator to figure the amount of insurance needed to replace the providerís income.
Q. How much does life insurance cost?
A. This life insurance estimator searches an industry database and returns your lowest rate.
Q. What health considerations are important in buying life insurance?
A. Your personal and family health history are big factors in determining the rate class under which you can purchase life insurance. You may not qualify for the lowest rate. Ask your agent to evaluate your underwriting profile.
Q. If I need to purchase life insurance, how do I get started?
A. You can find out more about life insurance, and apply online at BudgetLife.
Resources & Tools
ACCRUED VALUE -- Many life insurance policies may have accrued cash values that must be accounted for in the division of assets.
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Author: Mary L. Boland, Attorney at Law
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