Universal Life is permanent life insurance along with an attached investment component. It is a very flexible policy that allows you to vary your premium payments, increase and decrease the face amount, and change the ownership and beneficiaries of the contract. You may also insure your spouse and children under the same contract.
As life insurance rates increase with age, Universal Life allows you to lock in the cost of insurance for the life of the contract. The premiums are guaranteed to remain at a level cost throughout the policy years, unless you decide to make changes to the contract such as increasing or decreasing the death benefit.
Some Universal Life policies allow you to insure up to five lives under a single contract. This may include your spouse, children, and even business associates. Each insured person is allowed to have their own beneficiary. You also have the option to remove or substitute any of the lives insured at any time during the life of the contract.
WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES OF UNIVERSAL LIFE?
- It pays a death benefit to the beneficiary of your choice and offers you a low risk cash value account and tax deferred accumulation.
- It offers separate account for you to invest in such as guaranteed interest options, bond funds, and stocks.
- It allows you premium flexibility.
- It allows you to make withdrawals or to borrow from the policy during your lifetime.
- It offers face amount flexibility.
- It stipulates that if you terminate the contract in early years you will receive less cash value total return than in a whole contract.
WHAT ARE THE DISADVANTAGES OF UNIVERSAL LIFE?
- The policy’s long term success is contingent on the investment choices you make.
- It does not work well with small premium amounts because your premium must cover the cost of the insurance as well.
- The surrender charges are significantly high during the first few years of the policy.