While death may not be a pleasant topic for you, it’s important to plan for the inevitable. One day you will die, so make a plan to prepare for the financial security of your loved ones. Black Enterprise sat down with State Farm agent James Brown for an explanation of why life insurance is so important.
BLACK ENTERPRISE: Why is life insurance important?
JAMES BROWN: Life insurance is an affordable way to help plan for and protect a family’s financial situation upon a loved one’s passing. It can help ensure the family’s financial needs are taken care of during times of financial or emotional stress. The death benefit of life insurance is a very important factor in providing proceeds to make sure financial obligations are met. It can help make sure a family’s financial situation doesn’t have to shift dramatically due to the loss of a loved one. I have also seen how living benefits from permanent life insurance, or cash value of life insurance, can help a family realize dreams as well.
BE: When is the best time to purchase life insurance?
BROWN: It’s never too early to purchase life insurance. Insuring children is a cost effective way to ensure they will have coverage in the future regardless of their financial or health situation. In some cases, the coverage can be completely paid for by the time they finish school, become an adult, or start their own families. The earlier the better, but State Farm also has affordable policies available for individuals who get a late start on seeking out coverage. As we say, coverage is important no matter what side of the “hill” you are on.
BE: How much life insurance should someone have?
BROWN: The coverage amount needed varies by individual. That is why it is important to have a conversation with a licensed agent who can review your needs and circumstances. As State Farm agents, we have access to many tools and resources to help work with customers to determine the type and amount of coverage that is needed. One of those tools is the Life Needs Calculator. It demonstrates in a laid-back but informative way how much coverage is recommended.
BE: What other types of insurance are necessary?
BROWN: Health insurance is another important way to protect a person’s family. Agents are always the best resource for someone to get the most accurate coverage and rate information in regard to health insurance. A thorough review of each situation is needed to determine what plan is best. Online, State Farm provides information about available products including individual medical plans, disability and long term care, to name a few. There are also other helpful facts to help individuals realize exposures they may not aware of.
BE: Anything else you’d like to add?
BROWN: Consistently reviewing your situation will allow you to evaluate and address your needs as your personal situation changes. The important things, such as life and health insurance, as well as financial service products help round out a family’s plan. As a State Farm agent, I have been blessed to encounter many instances to help individuals turn what would be obstacles into opportunities and be a resource to them. It’s not always about selling the product a customer requests, but more about creating meaningful relationships to help inform and encourage people in our community. That allows us to meet and exceed our stated mission of “help people manage risks of everyday life, recover from the unexpected, and realize their dreams.” It’s about being able to express to them that they and their families are important to us and we are here to help them succeed!