Three in 10 American households are uninsured and half say they need more life insurance, according to the LIFE Foundation, a nonprofit organization that works to educate people about the importance insurance in protecting their financial futures.

Many people realize that life insurance is an important way to provide for their families, but buying life insurance can seem daunting. How do you know if you’re picking the best coverage for you and your family?

The American Council of Life Insurers offers the following tips to help you pick out the best plan:

  • Decide if you need permanent or term life insurance. Permanent policies will provide money to your family no matter when you die. Term policies will pay only if you die during a specific period of time.
  • When you’re trying to decide between life insurance companies, ask family and friends for recommendations. You can also meet with an insurance agent to talk through your options.
  • Ask for the outlines of several plans so you can compare the features of the various options you’re considering.
  • Always answer the questions on your application truthfully.
  • Once you select a plan, store the policy with your other important financial documents, but not in a safe deposit box. Upon death, boxes are sometimes sealed temporarily by the bank, which could delay your family’s access to the coverage.
  • Review and update your policy from time to time, especially after major life events like marriages or children being born.

Learn more about life insurance and what questions you should ask before buying a policy.

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