Is Inheritance Tax Due on Life Insurance Payouts?

Are Life Insurance Death Benefits Tax Free?

Actually, one of the big advantages of leaving money in the form of a life insurance benefit, is the fact that the US IRS grants it a very favorable tax treatment to these proceeds. Let me start off by admitting that I am not a tax professional. That is why I consulted the IRS website to get the full story on how death benefits would impact a beneficiary when they need to fill out their tax forms.

According to, the website that is run by the US Internal Revenue Service, you are not liable for insurance death benefits as a taxable expense, unless you purchased that benefit for money. This is true, even if those benefits were paid out by some type of accident or health insurance plan. You may, however, be liable for any growth to that death benefit.

Life Settlement Investors Must Pay Taxes

How do you purchase these benefits for money? These days, there is a transaction called a life settlement. In these, an investor actually purchase life insurance policies as an investment. The insured person gets a cash settlement which is somewhat lower than the actual death benefit. The investor becomes the new owner and beneficiary, and they hope to profit when they finally collect the proceeds.

So this is the exception, but otherwise, the IRS declare that life insurance proceeds are a tax free benefit. Again, that is why life policies are popular ways to leave an estate. It relieves the heirs, in many cases, of having to declare the money they get on their taxes.

Proceeds Are Tax Free, But Gains Are Not

Keep in mind, that the tax advantages only apply to the actual death benefit. If any gains are made on the money, these can be taxed. It is common for life insurance benefits to be paid out over time, and for the cash in the account to build up at a specified interest or market index rate. Another example might be a cash value policy that has actually accumulated a greater cash value than the death benefit. This growth may very well be taxable. So the tax advantage is limited to the actual amount of the death benefit.

Again, if you are unclear about the distinction, it is time to consult with a qualified tax professional.

Uses For Life Insurance Policies with Tax Free Death Benefits

People have a variety of uses for these policies because they provide a simple and tax advantaged way to leave an estate.

  • Leave money to children or grandchildren. Because of the reduced tax liability, this may be one of the best solutions for passing an estate on to the next generation.
  • Leave money to a favorite charity.
  • Compensate some heirs because a business will be passed on to only one heir. If Grandpa is only going to pass his bakery on to one son who has trained to be a baker, he can leave money to his two daughters to compensate them. This can be a fair way to avoid family disputes.
  • Compensate a family if a business partner will continue to own a business. Some partnerships purchase life insurance so that the surviving partner can continue the business. Meanwhile, the other partner’s family can get compensated or bought out with the proceeds from a life insurance policy.

Would You Like To Shop For Life Insurance?

If you think that a policy would help you plan for the future, it may be time to compare quotes and policies that meet your needs.

Tips on Buying Life Insurance When Overweight

Being an overweight person has many social challenges in today’s society. But did you know that being overweight can also significantly affect your life insurance policy premiums? Insurance companies look at a variety of factors when quoting you a life *policy, with the primary factors being: your age, height, weight, smoking status, gender, and any significant medical conditions. Together, these parameters allow the insurance companies to estimate your life expectancy.

Life expectancy is nothing more than a way to represent how long the insurance companies expect you to live using probabilities. If you are currently age 30, and based on your health parameters the insurance companies expect to you live to age 81, there is a very high probability that you will outlive your 20 or 30-year term life insurance policy. In other words, you will get a very good, fairly low premium rate on your term life insurance policy.

However, if you are overweight, your life expectancy can be reduced. A study by research health economists at RTI International showed that being obese can reduce life expectancy by five to eight years. Being obese and a smoker can reduce your life expectancy by up to 21 years. As your life expectancy decreases, the cost of your life insurance increases. It can increase dramatically if the life insurance company calculates your life expectancy around ages 60-70 as that is where many people target their life insurance term policies to align with the beginning of one’s retirement years. For example, a 35-year old person may purchase a 30-year term life policy, and a 40 to 45-year old person would purchase a 20-year term life policy.

So what can you do? Here are some tips:

  1. Purchase a shorter-term insurance policy. If your family’s financial needs can be met with a 5, 10, or 15-year term life policy, it will cost you a lot less as the probability of you dying in the short-term is a lot less than 25 or 30 years from now.
  2. Commit yourself to a health and wellness program. If you are able to lose weight and expect to be in good health in the future, you can always surrender your life insurance policy and purchase a new one when your premium costs will be a lot less after you have lost weight.
  3. Maximize your employer’s group term insurance policy. Group policies average the risk amongst members of the group, so those in poorer health benefit from being on the “less healthy” side of the average. Employers often give you group term life as part of your core benefits, typically 1-2x your annual salary. Some employers will also have a supplemental insurance option where you can add up to 5x your annual salary.
  4. Add a spousal insurance rider to your spouse’s life insurance policy. This add-on to your spouse’s policy would insure your death. A spousal rider could cost less than an independent policy.
  5. Purchase an accidental death policy or add it as a rider to your existing policy. The cost of accidental is calculated separately from your health status. While this only covers accidental death, it is an expensive way to add more death benefit at a fairly low cost.

In the end, exactly how much life insurance you need is a personal decision. Don’t let your current health status deter you from buying life insurance. Just having a little insurance, even if it is less than your desired amount, can greatly ease your family’s transition should you pass unexpectedly.

Understanding What Is Life Insurance And Why You May Need It

What really is life insurance?
Life insurance and related financial subjects tend to be complex with an arcane world of their own, in fact they even have their own language.

Without a proper understanding of the subject, many who may need the benefits afforded by the service, simply avoid using and it, and the uninitiated are often taken advantage of and often persuaded to purchase unnecessary services.

The time-honored definition of life insurance is that it provides for a stipulated sum to be paid to a beneficiary upon the death of the insured person. In return, the owner of the policy agrees to pay a stipulated amount, either at regular intervals or in lump sums.

Life insurance is a way to form or accumulate capital that is paid to the beneficiary as death benefit. This amount is termed as the face value of the policy. The capital formed or benefit derived can be used to produce other goods, or it can also be used to produce income.

Life insurance produces capital on the demise of the insured, but depending on the type of insurance, capital may also be produced by borrowing against the accumulated cash reserves known as the cash-surrender value, or by using paid- up dividends that are paid by the insurance company. The capital can then used to provide income streams.

Your personal situation should help you to determine whether this is an appropriate vehicle to create capital that can be used for a variety of purposes including providing supplemental retirement income, or protection for your family.

Types of life insurance policies
Nothing in life, is really as simple as it may sound and there are several types of policies and and equal or larger number of things you can do with them.

Term insurance
When you buy term insurance, you only purchase protection. The premium paid provides coverage for a specified term or number of years. There are no living benefits from term insurance, because no cash reserve is built up. As a result, there is usually no cash-surrender value and no capital is formed before the demise of the insured.

There are three important components of the term insurance policy.

  • The premium or cost to the insured
  • The face value or the amount of the benefit to be paid on death of the insured
  • The term or length of the coverage

As if to keep things as clear and simple as possible, policies are often sold with various combinations of these components.

Whole life insurance
Whole life provides for a level or graded premium, and can pay dividends and cash value included in the policy guaranteed by the company. Guaranteed death benefits and cash values, fixed and known annual premiums are some of the advantages of whole life insurance. In addition, you can borrow from the cash reserve without paying taxes, as it is considered as a loan provided the required stipulation is met. The death benefit is reduced by the amount that is borrowed.

The primary disadvantages of whole life are that the premium are inflexible and the internal rates of return may not be as competitive as other alternatives. In some cases, paying higher premiums can increase the death benefit.

The dividends from whole life insurance cannot be guaranteed and may be historically different. Premiums are much higher than term insurance in the short term, but cumulatively all things are equal if policies are kept engaged through normal life expectancy.

Varieties of Whole life insurance
Whole life policies also comes in different flavors, and each should be examined to determine which is appropriate for you.

Which Life Insurer is Right For Me? Saving Money on Life Insurance

One of the more profitable modern day businesses is life insurance companies. The most influential corporations in the world sell policies.

These popular and larger companies have great prices that help customers. The insurance Industry enjoys economic stability, and that is why these companies are able to make the best use of the money which the consumers have put in and get an attractive cash return.

Met Life Insurance Metropolitan Life Insurance***, Transamerica Occidental Insurance Company and American general Insurance Company*** AIG, also known as American International Group These are some of the brands that are recognized in the USA. These companies apportion typically with Life Insurance. Term and whole life insurance policies are both handled with ease and comfort by them.

Major insurance companies work on these principles only. Life coverage policies are needed by their customers so they offer them. Coverage plans and the terms are not the same, though.

Met Life Insurance offers definite service factors, simple policy administration and reliable operations. For financial planning, they can provide the services and solutions that their clients need. With a market share that includes $2 trillion worth of policies, MetLife is among the largest insurers in America. Metlife offers financial holdings with a nationwide-chartered banking institution.

MetLife, under Reinsurance Group of America, also provides services in both Europe and Asia. When MetLife implemented the traveler’s life and allowance group in 2005, they were then awarded the certification of biggest life insurer in the United States. MetLife offers term and whole life policies with low prices and no riders.

Another big insurance company in the United States, according to press releases, is American General Insurance Company. A leader in the world the company has dealings in financial services ,such as insurance,retirement planning and investment. Internationally spread over most parts of the world known this company is known as AIG ,It has presence all over Asia,North America, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East. AIG, also known as American International Group.

Savings on life polices of AIG provides affordable rates Customers encounter less stress when using online quotes while shopping. AIG offers plans which involve term, whole, and universal life insurance coverages. The thing is that their term life policy is the most used when you compare it to the others.

The corporate parent of many life insurance and investment companies is Transamerica Corporation. The largest insurer of all these firms is Transamerica Occidental Life Insurance company. The company handle all types of policies with comfort and affordable of customers policies like term, whole and universal policies with the customers 100% satisfaction

Every one of the aforementioned companies sell life insurance policies at affordable prices and can guarantee security to their customer. Major players in the industry share some of the same qualities. The premiums that customers pay generate gigantic profits for the companies.

This kind of premium is referred to as floating, and its status determines the life insurer’s success or lack thereof. The financing companies rated as from A to Z for certain rules and positions and performances and their achievements. A status of life insurance companies is evaluated annually by M Best, Fitch, Diamond Bond, Standard and Poor. The four largest companies, according to these sources, are AIG, TOIC, MetLife, and Prudential.

Larger companies are frequently chosen because of the confidence and security they offer, as opposed to seemingly sketchy, unknown brands. For an estimate of associated costs, please click on one of the below links.

Provide Your Child With the Ultimate Protection: Life Insurance

The longest 9 months of anyone’s life is waiting for the day when their child is finally brought into the world. It is absolutely love at first sight when that little one arrives, and all that most parents can think of at that moment is all the steps they will take to protect that child, no matter what comes their way throughout the course of their life. It’s a noble thought and one that is backed up by the annual International Day for the Protection of Children that comes each June 1st.

That day brings light to some of the troubles children experience around the world, which most of us don’t think about, since we are so caught up in looking after our own. Oddly enough, though, most parents think of protection as being in the here and now, but what about the future? What would happen to your child if you were to pass tomorrow? Would they be properly looked after, and do you have a life insurance policy that would help make sure they were?

Life insurance is not a major strain on the budget, especially if you buy a policy in your younger years. Not having a policy of any kind can actually end up being a lot more costly to those left behind. They may find themselves placed in a financial position that is hard to dig out of, and which stays with them long after your passing. When you think of it in terms of your children, just imagine what being left financially secure could do for them in the future:

* They can have the funds available to continue their education. Many kids are forced to give up their dreams of college when a parent passes with no life insurance policy in place. They often take on the role of breadwinner in the home in order to dig out of the financial burden left behind.

* They will be able to see you off in a fitting manner. Losing a parent is hard enough for a child, but if you combine that with the expense of a funeral, it can be devastating. A good life insurance policy will mean that there is more than enough money to give you a funeral that everyone can feel good about in some small way.

* They will get to maintain their lifestyle. Parents work hard to put a roof over the head of their family, but that can all go away when a parent passes. The money that is paid out on a life insurance policy is usually more than enough to ensure that the family can stay where they are and cover all costs.

When June 1st arrives and you hear about International Day for the Protection of Children, think about the steps you take to protect your own. If life insurance is not part of that protection, it might be time for you to get the ball rolling on that.