Life Insurance - New York,NY

Updated on October 15, 2009
N.K. asks from New York, NY
14 answers

Can anyone tell me about Life Insurance? I'm 8 months pregnant and I would love to get this in place before my baby is born. I know my husband has some coverage through work, but I've heard that's important to have individual policies for him and myself. Can anyone provide some insight for me?

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answers from Rochester on

Yes you need life insurance before the baby comes. My thought always was just in case anything happens I want my daughters to still have everything i would have given them. AXA investments offers life insurance at a good rate. there's different types, and price levels so there is something that should fit in your budget atleast for the time being. Your husband's job may offer reduced rate life insurance for spouses also.But you should definately have enough to pay for a burial which costs on average 12k now a days, pay off all credit card debt/loans etc and the expense it would cost for someone else to care for your child if you a stay at home mom. Also make she that your child is the benefiticary but that someone else who won't profit from the policy is the over seer, I can't remember what it is called. Also I would recommend drawing up a simple will before or right after your child is born, for both you and your husband.

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answers from New York on

There's a lot to it. Don't know if I can really cover everything because it can be complicated. It just depends on your individual situation. First-- it's definitely important to get LI asap! Don't wait (like we did, which ended up in my husband getting denied.) It's a long process too so you'll want to start things right away. You'll also have to decide if you want term or whole LI. Also it might make sense to create a trust so that in the event (God forbid) something happens, your child will not have to pay so much in estate taxes. Talk to your financial advisor and lawyer about these things. They should be able to help you tailor a plan.



answers from Buffalo on

My husband went in and purchased term life insurance for 25 years when I was pregnant with my second child. The agent will talk with you to figure out how much you/husband makes a year, and how much you would want for insurance. We decided on getting the family term life policy (all of us are covered in some way). My husband has the largest amount of insurance (he works, I stay at home). The children both have insurance as well. The rule is if you get life insurance on one have to get it on ALL of your children. When a new child is born, they will automatically be covered.
LIFE INSURANCE IS NOT A WASTE OF TIME FOR CHILDREN. WHAT WE DIDN'T KNOW at the time was that my second child was going to have very big health issues (3 heart conditions). When she grows up and tries to get life insurance, now she CANNOT be denied (through this company) because she is grandfathered in. That is very good news considering she probably would have been denied later on if she tried to get it. Now, because we purchased it ahead of time, she can continue it when she is of age. Perhaps helping her family some day. Also, if a child does pass away, think about the possible medical bills before that happens. Life insurance on a child could take care of those bills.
It is great peace of mind. I suggest it.



answers from New York on

Good for you! My recommendation is to get term insurance, probably around $200,000, which for me (healthy 32 year old) costs about $225/year. My husband has whole life insurance, which has a savings mechanism, but we only keep it because his parents started him at age 18 -- otherwise it's a poor use of money.

Don't buy into any of the "insure your baby" things... it's really lost income that is needed in case of tragedy.

I highly recommend Thrivent Financial representatives -- I've found that they don't pressure, but they do give you a picture of your whole financial future. A not-for-profit company -- I know they've been on the Fortune 500 list in prior years, but haven't looked at the lists recently!



answers from New York on

one thing i can share is that yoy may be better waiting until after the birth, sice pregnancy is a serious health condition with some degree of risk your premiums will likely be higher if you obtain the policy while pregnant



answers from New York on

Great advice from the moms. The only thing I have to add is the life insurance for your kid. Why would you want that? It's a waste of money.



answers from New York on

Hi N.. I agree with most of the responses. Term insurance is the best. I'm a life insurance agent & I specialized in educating people about life insurance by doing an analysis of what your needs are and what's best for you. If want more information, I'll be happy to help you. You can e-mail me at



answers from New York on

Hi N.,
I would make sure that your SPOUSE not your child is your beneficiary. If your child is beneficiary, someone will be appointed to oversee their money, and it may be doled out in court appointed increments. Your spouse will need this money to bury you, pay whatever of the bills that your salary covers, continue paying daycare even though your salary may have paid it before, or pay a caregiver even if you never used one before because you didn't work. Usually when you have coverage through work, you get a certain amount such as 2 times your annual salary and truly that's often not a lot - it gets you through two years (if that, after the expenses). I would, however, ask the benefits person at work for the contact information for their insurance broker/agent - this person may be able to refer you to a good agent who deals with the personal end of things. Good luck



answers from New York on

I have life insurance through work but my husband and I also have individual policies. We got our insurance through a life insurance broker. The life insurer's representative came to our house and did a physical, which involved answering a lot of questions, giving blood and getting an EKG, blood pressure etc... They came to our house, so that made it easy. There are maximums you can buy. For instance, because I am the primary earner in my family, I have about $1 million more in coverage than my husband (b/c otherwise he would be worth more dead than alive and insurers don't like to give people incentives to have someone dead... moral hazard....)
It is a great idea to have life insurance and, as someone else said, the primary beneficiary should be your spouse. If you go to an estate planner, you could have a life insurance trust left to your "issue" (i.e. this child and any future children), but that is more complicated.

There are a lot of life insurance products out there... term life, whole life, and combos thereof. Your broker should guide you through it all. Term life only lasts for a specified number of years, but is cheaper to buy than whole life. It depends on your needs. If you want the insurance just for next 20 years b/c you assume by then your child will have his/her own job and won't need the money, term life is a good option. Some of them can be converted to whole life policies during the pendency of the term. If this sounds confusing, it IS. So get a good broker and learn more about it.



answers from New York on

You should definitely have your own policy if your husband's income and your combined personal savings will not cover the basic costs of mortgage, food, daycare, etc.

re. who should be your beneficiary, I would suggest making your husband the primary (so he can pay for mortgage food, etc.), and making your child the secondary. THE MOST IMPORTANT THING, THOUGH, is that you need to also have a will that designates someone who can receive the payout on behalf of your child because (at least in NJ) life insurance policies cannot be paid out to minors. My friend is an insurance agent for Prudential (and a mom of 2), and she recently had a heartbreaking case where one of her clients failed to do that and her husband had passed away a few months before she did, and her sister had legal custody of the child, but couldn't access the life insurance money that she needed to care for the child. My friend helped her through all this legal stuff to get the money months and months later.



answers from New York on


I agree with the other mom's on here - Get a term life insurance policy for you and your husband. Life insurance is not needed for the child and is a complete waste of money. Life insurance is intended for the adults in the child's life to be able to take care of that child (or other loved ones) should anything happen. (God forbid!!)

Whole life policies are more of an investment than anything, and are quite costly.

Don't let the Gerber Grow up Plan 'sucker' you into getting a plan for your child. You'll be paying through the 'nose' for something that isn't even worth it.

good luck..and congrats on the new addition to your family!



answers from New York on

Well, my cousin works at NY Life (based in Rye) and we just sat down with him last week. I can give you his information if you are interested. He is very nice and understanding of financial situations if that is a concern. We're going to be getting term life insurance because it is much more affordable. Whole life insurance seems to be much more expensive than I originally realized. But you can get term insurance for 20 years which would cover your child into adulthood. If you're in good health, term insurance can be quite affordable.



answers from Syracuse on

Speak to an agent. My agent explained that pregnancy and delivery are very high risk times for a woman. Therefore you are unable to obtain life insurance until the delivery is completed. Blood testing is usually a requirement for life insurance and cholesterol is naturally elevated during pregnancy and the postpartum period. This elevated cholesterol would have a negative affect on your rate.



answers from New York on

Hi there... I am an agent for a company in NY...

I can tell you that being married you can get a joint policy for different amounts - for example you can be covered for $300,000 and your husband for $500,000 and you can even add a rider for your children - for as little as $6 a month.

I recommend term policy for everyone as its the least expensive as you only need it for a short time anyway. Its there to protect us when we need it most - when we are young, have young kids, mortgages, debts... etc. When the 'term' has ended you should have your retirement money. Pay less now so you can put more away for later.

Having insurance thru a job is great but be sure your the beneficiary and not the job. It has happened! Also in the event of job loss you still have your personal policy to cover you. Placing a spouse as a beneficiary is important along with another adult just in case - in every state a child can not collect the funds until they are 18 - you could also open a trust and name it the beneficiary that will pay out a certain amount if you feel you need that.

An easy way to figure out a dollar amount is this... Take your monthly expenses lets say its $2500 multiply by 12 which gives you $30,000 multiply by 10 which gives you $300,000 - this is just a ball park as everyone has different needs. You should figure you need to live on about 10% of the total amount of covered so you dont 'run out' - this is just an idea on how to come up with a number - Ive come across people that have $50,000 in covered and that would only last a year maybe ... its tough out there if you need some help I would be happy to come over and assist you. Im not pushy.. lol

Where ever you go - dont allow someone to push you into a whole life type policy - cause life insurance is not a type of investment or retirement or college fund... its life insurance and thats it.

Good Luck

Some people ask about insurance for kids... here are my thoughts..

Getting insurance for your kids can sound morbid - but your not getting $100,000 for your kids... for example I have a rider on my policy that costs me $6 a month for as many kids as I have - they are covered for $10,000 each.. remember expenses for funerals are just going up and up and while I would never hope to use it its there in the event I had too... my brother lost his infant son and was passing a hat to collect the money to pay for everything. Its not something anyone should have to do.

Another good reason - God Forbid - if your child is ever diagnosed with an illness as a child - they will never be able to get insurance as an adult. My half brother was diagnosed with Diabetes at 2 years old - he will never be able to get insurance as an adult. However - had his parents gotten the insurance as a child before it was diagnosed, he would be able to carry the policy over into adult hood.

There are pros and cons to everything.

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