Guide to buying life insurance if you're over 50
As you get older, taking out life insurance can get more expensive. Even the fittest 50 something isn’t going to be around for as long as they were in their 30s and that makes you a greater risk to the insurer. Over 50s life insurance can offer a more affordable way to protect what matters at this stage in life.
By the time you reach your 50s, your life insurance needs may have changed. Where once keeping a roof over your family’s head was the priority, today the children may have flown the nest and the mortgage may be coming to an end.
These days, you may be concerned about how your loved ones may cope with funeral costs or want to leave a little something for them to remember you by and over 50 life insurance could be the solution.
What is over 50 life insurance?
It’s a whole-of-life insurance policy so unlike term life insurance, you’re covered for the rest of your life and a cash payout is guaranteed whenever you die.
It’s easy to apply for because you don’t have to provide any details of your medical history or lifestyle to qualify for cover. Most providers guarantee to accept any UK resident aged 50-80, and with the SunLife Guaranteed Over 50 Plan cover is available up to age 85.
How does our cover work
Important things you should know
- There is a waiting period of 2 years — You need to have paid in to the plan for 2 years or more before the full amount will be paid out on your death. If you die during the waiting period, all the premiums paid plus half as much again will be paid out, but if you die by accident the full cash sum will be paid.
- You must pay your premiums when due — If you don’t, your policy would be cancelled and you wouldn’t get any money back
- The effect of inflation — Inflation will reduce how much the fixed cash payout will buy in the future
- You could pay more in premiums than the cash payout on death - this will depend on how long you live
Here’s an example of the Guaranteed Over 50 Plan in action for a range of ages.
Remember, the cash payout and the premium you pay will never change.
|Cash payout on death after 2 years||£5,349||£4,033||£3,269|
|Payable for||26 years||23 years||19 years|
Quoted on 19.01.2018
Reasons why people choose it
- To leave money as a nest egg for loved ones
- To contribute towards the cost of a funeral
- To leave money to help settle unpaid household bills
- To leave a donation for a favourite charity
Rising funeral costs
Our research has revealed that on average, families have to find £2,356 to make up the shortfall in the financial provision made by their loved one1.
Planning ahead can make a difficult time a little easier for the people left behind, especially if they might struggle to pay for the entire funeral themselves.
Over the past 14 years the average cost of a funeral in the UK has risen 112% to £4,0781. And assuming costs continue to rise at the same rate every year, by 2022 it could be as much as £4,944.
How funeral costs add up
The average funeral cost is based on the average of quotes from a sample of funeral directors for standard funeral arrangements — made up of their services and fees for a cremation or burial, the doctor and the person conducting the funeral.
Bear in mind that any touches like flowers, venue hire, catering and memorials average out at almost £2,000 extra on the final funeral bill1.
Figures like these help explain why over 70%2 of our over 50 life insurance customers choose the plan to help with funeral costs and ease the financial burden on loved ones.
Want to help with funeral costs?
With our over 50 life insurance it costs nothing to add a funeral benefit option and you get an extra £300 put towards the cost of your funeral.
The way it works is simple. When the time comes, the cash payout from your plan will go directly to Dignity Funerals to take care of the arrangements. Your loved ones will only need pay the balance left after the cash payout and the £300 have been taken off the final funeral bill.
Straightforward answers to your questions
Term life insurance provides cover for a specified number of years (the ‘term’) and pays out if you die during this time. This type of life insurance is underwritten so your eligibility, premium and cash payout is based on your personal circumstances e.g. medical history.
Over 50 life insurance provides cover for the rest of your life and pays out whenever you die. It is not underwritten so does not depend on your personal circumstances. You only need to be a UK resident and within the given age range to get cover.
Life cover pays out a fixed amount of money when you die. This money could be used to help pay for your funeral or it could be used to pay other bills or left to a friend or loved one.
A funeral plan helps specifically with your funeral arrangements when you die. This help is usually practical as well as financial.
This will depend on what you would like the payout to be used for, for example, to help with funeral costs or a cash gift.
It’s important to think about how much you can comfortably afford to pay each month and see what the payout will be for this premium, based on your age. Remember, even leaving a small amount could help when it matters most.
Yes you can. You just need to make sure the total cash payout of all your SunLife plans combined, including any you already have, doesn’t exceed £18,000.
No, plans are set up in individual names. If your partner would also like a policy, they can take one out in their own name.
Yes. You have 30 days to change your mind and have any premiums you’ve paid refunded to you.
After 30 days, you can cancel your policy but you won’t get any money back.
No you can’t. If you stop paying your premiums, your Guaranteed Over 50 Plan would be cancelled and you wouldn’t get any money back.
Over time, prices go up which means the amount we can buy for our money goes down. This is the effect of inflation.
For example, £1 in 1980 could have bought you nearly three loaves of bread – but today you would be lucky to buy one*.
*Source: Office of National Statistics
Making a claim is simple. when the time comes, all your loved ones will need to do is call or write to us and we’ll help with the rest.
The process is quick and reliable too. We pay 9 out of 10 claims within 3 days of receiving the correct paperwork.
The smallest print
*Most popular whole of life guaranteed acceptance plan bought directly. ABI statistics — up to 31 December 2017.
**£3.90 is the lowest fixed monthly premium available at every age for this type of product, compared with the top 5 most popular providers, as at 24 April 2018.
1Source: SunLife Cost of Dying Report 2017.
2Source: New Policyholders Continuous Research, January - October 2017.