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A crisis of underinsurance

Posted September 25, 2013 in Advice Column, Boone

Fifty percent of the US population accounts for just 2.7 percent of all health-care expenditures, while 5 percent accounts for 49.5 percent of all health-care expenditures, according to Kaiser Family Foundation.

The life expectancy at birth of an average American was 62.9 years in 1940, five years after Social Security was created. Life expectancy today is 78.7 years (source: Center for Disease Control). As a result of this increased life expectancy, it will take $293,000 to pay for post retirement health care that’s not paid by Medicare, according to Kaiser. Are you financially prepared for this?

Are you financially prepared to raise your children? A child born in 2012 will cost a higher-income family (those making at least $105,000 of before-tax income) $399,780 in 2012 dollars (i.e., a present value amount) and $501,250 in inflation adjusted dollars through age 17, and this does not including college (source: Department of Agriculture). How will this be paid if you were to die or become disabled today?

Are you going to rely on your family business? Only 30 percent of family businesses survive into the second generation, 12 percent into the third and only 3 percent to the fourth and beyond. Many times this is due to a lack of planning and a lack of cash. You can provide the planning. Life insurance can provide the cash.

According to LIMRA Statistics from 2012, both men and women are less likely to own life insurance today than they were in 2004.  Only 61 percent of men and 57 percent of women have some sort of life insurance coverage-half as many in 2004. The likelihood of husbands having any life insurance has declined across every income level. Women of all ages average smaller amounts of individual life coverage than men of similar ages. On average, women have $129,800 of individual life insurance, while men have $187,100 of individual life insurance coverage. September is Life Insurance Awareness Month (LIAM), and it is time to take personal financial responsibility to determine if life insurance should be a part of your planning and how much is appropriate.

Information provided by Lora Ahrens Olerich, Farm Bureau Financial Services, 515-433-2000.

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