What is supplemental life insurance? A supplemental life insurance policy is offered by insurance providers as a supplement to the already existing life insurance policy which may be term life or whole life insurance.
Insurance, in general, is a great solution to problems that may arise out of nowhere. Things that may occur in accidents. You get into an accident in your car while driving to your work, car repairs are expensive so your auto insurance has your back. Going out for a trip? Get Travel insurance. An unfortunate gas leak happens in your home and is blown to smithereens, call up your home insurance company and they will be able to work with you to get your home back up. You get sick and hospitals are notoriously expensive, you have a health insurance policy for that as well. You were bitten by a dog, here, dog-bite insurance. You are in your thirties, with a young family and you are the only provider and you worry about what will happen to them in the unfortunate circumstance that you were to pass. Worry no more as getting a life insurance policy on yourself will have your family taken care of. You lost your job, here, unemployment insurance. Yes! It costs some money every month, but the peace of mind that provides is more than enough.
But what if I tell you there are somethings that the existing insurance plans do not cover. What if you are so much in debt that your life insurance policy will be paid to the bank as debt payment before your family sees a penny of it. Or what if you have such a large family with children spread between multiple households that between them, the money will no longer remain significant in.
For this very reason insurance providers also offer supplemental life insurance policies.
The question is are they worth it?
What is a supplemental life insurance policy?
Supplemental life insurance is offered by companies as an add-on to the already existing life insurance plan. Almost 85% of companies offer the usual life insurance policy to their employees. The company usually pays for it. But in supplemental life insurance policies, these are merely add-on which you usually have to pay for yourself. Which might be worth it if it stays in place if you leave the job and mostly that’s not the case.
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The Difference between Life Insurance Policy And Supplemental Life Insurance Policy:
A life insurance policy is usually paid for by your employer at no extra cost to you. Supplemental Life insurance is a supplement that you will have to pay for every month even when it is offered by your own company.
Should you get a supplemental life insurance policy?
Getting a supplemental life insurance policy through your employer might be tempting but down below I have written the types of Supplemental life insurance policy and maybe reading that will give you some much-needed insight into this question.
Accidental Death And Dismemberment:
Just reading this word is gruesome enough but if you want the policy to kick in, the is one way to go about it. This means that in case of an accident where you either die, this policy will payout. Some policies also do payout if you lose an essential part of your body due to an accident like an eye or a hand. It is also worth it to note that if you are working a very risky job like a construction worker, accidental death and dismemberment insurance can be a good idea as places like construction sites are likely to have some of those.
Supplemental Spouse Or Domestic Partner Insurance:
Supplemental life insurance can also cover your spouse or domestic partner. Reading this might tempt you to get them one as well but if you do want to get your spouse one then get them the proper version of it. Supplemental insurance may cover them in addition to your existing one but you will never get enough payout to replace their income. This is why we recommend getting your spouse the proper standalone life insurance policy which will not only cover their income but the payouts will be in at least multiples of ten of the supplemental policy.
You are an emotional person. You care too much for your family and loved ones. You don’t want them to go through the hassle of shelling out for your funeral cost in the inevitable event that you die. Dying is a reality no one will avoid. So you shell out every month just so that your funeral is already paid for by you. Well, I have a better idea. What if instead of paying an insurance company you take out some 50 dollars every month and invest it in a mutual fund where the return is usually around 8-10% every year. Call it an emergency fund. By the time you have reached the average life expectancy of 70 good years, you will have about 40 grand in that fund which will not only cover your funeral but a lot of it will be available to cover any emergencies that come your way in that ripe old age. So invest and choose wisely.
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Okay so imagine. You buy a supplemental policy at your job where you have worked for at least 5 years. You have signed up for the supplemental spouse and AD&D insurance. You see premium payments going out of your paycheck every single month. You see your paycheck and feel satisfied that your family will be taken care of in case of anything that happens to you. One day all of a sudden you see that the company you worked for so hard has a new CEO and has fired you and your entire department as they want to take the company to a newer direction and they no longer need you. You are paid a severance check and you make your way home. It’s raining and it’s dark while you cross the street when all of sudden you slip and fall on the road and to your horror a motorcycle that did not see you crossed over your arm and dismembered you cutting your arm off. A dark and gruesome story but the question is does that thing you have paid for the last 5 years, does that payout now that you no longer have the job? Is that policy portable? The answer is most probably no, so now you have to cash that severance check to pay for treatment. For this very reason, a big recommendation is that you purchase a supplemental policy outside your work so that it stays portable and the terms are negotiated by you and not your employer.
Can Supplemental Life Insurance Policy be cashed out?
A life insurance policy even though you have paid a lot for it does not have any cash value when it does not meet its requirements. So the only way life insurance or supplemental life insurance policy is paid out is by actually dying or getting dismembered.
Getting Your Supplemental life insurance at work:
Most companies offer life insurance policies with optional supplements. The supplementals however have to be paid for by the employees themselves. The thing about jobs is that people sometimes get fired, and the thing about the company provided policies is that they only cover employees so that would be a negative. No, do not get a supplemental policy that your workplace provides.
Getting A Supplemental Life Insurance Policy:
After showing you those gruesome scenes in my earlier paragraphs and better options, I was sure that you wouldn’t want one but I know the peace of mind is priceless so if you really want to get a supplemental policy, how about you go and contact a carrier yourself. You can negotiate the terms and it doesn’t matter where you work or don’t work, your policy will follow you around like a weak little guardian angel.
What type of insurance is the best?
As you may have noticed that I think of supplemental insurance policies as gimmicks mostly by insurance providers but one thing that I do recommend is long term disability insurance. A long term disability insurance is basically a safety net in case the provider of a family faces an illness that renders them unable to work for a very long duration. This can actually save a family from financial devastation in case the provider of the family is rendered unemployable because of some illness. This is one insurance that I can recommend that can actually give you a lot of peace of mind.
Supplemental life insurances have mostly been called gimmicks by critics such as Dave Ramsey and I myself think the very same about it. But if you really do want to get one, be sure it is portable. I can’t stress that enough about it. Go private in cases where you do get one because once your job is gone, the coverage is gone.
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