In Life Insurance

What do you want from your life insurance policy?  Are you looking strictly for death benefit, or would you be interested in a rider that could also help with expenses in the event of serious illness?  Would you be willing to pay higher premiums for a guarantee that you’d get all your money back if you outlive the term length of your policy?  Perhaps you worry how you would pay the premiums if you were to suddenly become disabled.  If any of these options sound like something you might be interested in, I have some great news for you:  There’s a rider for that!  While there are many different variations of riders offered by different life insurance companies, below is a list of seven common life insurance riders and the kind of protection they provide:

1.) Long Term Care (LTC) Rider

This rider allows you to take a portion of your death benefit to pay for the cost of long term care services such as nursing homes or home healthcare.    According to the NIH Senior Center, approximately 70% of people over the age of 65 will need some type of long term care.  Traditional LTC policies offer the most options and flexibility, but the pricing is generally not guaranteed and can go up at any time.  Adding a long term care rider onto a universal life policy is a good way to get LTC coverage that is locked in at a guaranteed price.

2.) Chronic Illness Rider

This rider is very similar to an LTC rider in that it allows you to a take a portion of your death benefit early in order to pay for the costs of care associated with nursing homes and home healthcare.  The difference is that in order to qualify to collect the benefits from the rider, your doctor must certify that you are chronically ill and that your condition is likely to last the rest of your life.  This means that you cannot collect benefits from temporary claims like certain cancers or a mild stroke that you are likely to recover from.  Many companies offer chronic illness riders automatically on policies at no additional cost.  You can find out more about the differences between LTC and chronic illness riders at LifeHealthPro.

3.) Waiver of Premium (WOP) Rider

A waiver of premium rider protects the policyholder from disability that makes it so they can no longer pay premiums.  For example, if you were to get into a car accident that rendered you unable to work for a year, a waiver of premium rider would keep your policy from lapsing due to not being able to pay premiums.  You would not be responsible for premium payments again until you recovered from your disability.

4.) Return of Premium (ROP) Rider

This is a rider that some people elect to add to their term insurance policies.  For an extra fee, you can receive 100% of your premiums back if you outlive the guaranteed term period.

5.) Accidental Death Benefit Rider

This rider provides for an additional payment if death occurs as a result of an accident.  It is often double the face amount of the policy.  This rider is also sometimes referred to as a “double indemnity rider.”

6.) Accelerated Death Benefit Rider

This rider is often provided for free on both term and universal life insurance policies.  It allows for a one time payment of a portion of the death benefit in the case of a terminal illness.  It can be useful in helping to pay for medical costs and/or hospice care.

7.) Child Protection Rider

This is a rider you can add on to your policy to cover the life of your child.  The rider is generally purchased in $1,000 increments.  There are generally options for the child to convert to his or her own policy at certain ages as well.  An example of the terms of a child protection rider can be seen on Prudential‘s website.

If any of these riders sound like something you would be interested in, contact Michigan Term today.  One of our life insurance experts can help you determine the type of coverage, riders, and company that are right for you.  Call (888) 242-9644 or email us at