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Life Insurance Riders, Part 3: Additional Insured Riders

Your life insurance policy doesn’t have to just cover you. In fact, you can simplify your life and budget by adding family coverage riders to your life insurance policy. These riders provide affordable coverage for your spouse and children.

Child rider coverage

You can buy life insurance for your children through a child rider on your policy. Generally, the purchase of one child rider will cover all children that you have, including those that you adopt. The rider generally offers $10,000-$20,000 (in increments of $5,000) in insurance coverage for each child and has a low premium expense. The rider is often convertible into individual policies once the children are of age. As you continue to have or adopt children, make sure you contact your insurer and supply them with the names of your children as well as dates of birth and social security numbers.

Spouse rider coverage

If you want to cover your spouse on the same policy you have, you can buy a spouse rider. A spouse rider pays a death benefit if your spouse should die before you do. It is important to understand that if your spouse dies after you die, there is usually no death benefit paid to your spouse’s beneficiary. In addition, they will have no access to cash value accumulation since the policy and cash values are owned by you, not the spouse. Spouse riders do not always offer the same extent of insurance death benefit as an individual policy would so it is important to make sure that it offers you and your family enough coverage to be financially helpful. Souse riders are generally not convertible into individual policies, unlike child riders. In the event of a divorce, a spouse rider will become invalid but you must still notify your insurer so that they do not continue to charge you the additional premiums.

Remember, every insurance company is different and has their own approach to offering a rider. This article series on riders is meant to give a general overview of options. It is not an exhaustive list of available riders and does not reflect the rules or policies of every insurer. Be sure you read the fine print and fully understand the riders you are thinking of adding to your policy before you commit to them. Remember to also explore the benefits of additional insured riders against the benefit of buying individual policies for your family members.




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