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Over 50s life insurance

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A simples guide to over 50s life insurance

Find out why it’s never too late to think about getting cover, and how life insurance works for over 50s:

This video information is available as a text transcript.

What is over 50s life insurance?

Over 50s life insurance is a type of life insurance you can take out between the ages of 50 and 80 to financially protect your loved ones if you die.

As long as you pay your premiums, this insurance pays out a cash lump sum when you die. Your beneficiaries can then use this to cover funeral costs, outstanding bills or spend as they please.

 

AMAZON.CO.UK GIFT CARD**

Buy your life insurance online through Compare the Market and claim an Amazon.co.uk Gift Card worth £50**

To claim the gift card, you must make three monthly payments in a row. You'll then be contacted within 45 days with instructions on how to claim.

Important things to note:

  • Offer available for policies applied for online through Compare the Market, or over the phone via Compare the Market's Over 50s life insurance advice partner, Howden Life & Health, from 3rd April 2023
  • You'll be contacted to claim your Amazon.co.uk gift card up to 45 days after paying your third monthly premium.
  • See full terms and conditions.
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How does over 50 life insurance work?

Over 50 life insurance works much like any other insurance premium, in that you pay monthly premiums. Then, when you die, your family should receive a guaranteed lump-sum pay-out.

Why have over 50s life cover?

There are several benefits to taking out life insurance over 50, such as helping cover your funeral costs.

Advantages of over 50 life insurance

  • It offers guaranteed acceptance – you’ll qualify for cover regardless of your health or lifestyle.
  • No medical checks needed.
  • It guarantees a lump-sum pay-out when you die (once you’re past the required minimum period).
  • Your monthly premiums are fixed.
  • Peace of mind that your funeral expenses could be covered once you're gone.

Disadvantages of over 50 life insurance

  • You can’t cash in your policy. It only pays out after you die.
  • It tends to offer smaller pay-outs than other types of life insurance.
  • If you live a long time, you risk paying in more than the policy pays out. It’s also possible that inflation will reduce the buying power of the pay-out.
  • There’s a qualification or deferred period. It’s unlikely you’ll get immediate over 50s cover. You’ll usually have to wait 12-24 months before a claim can be made. If you die within this ‘waiting period’, your policy won’t pay out.
  • You can rarely get joint over 50s life insurance – in most cases, you’ll need to take out separate policies.

     

Do I need an over 50s life insurance plan?

Your personal circumstances will determine whether over 50 life insurance is right for you.

  • It’s wise to research the different types of life insurance to make sure over 50s cover is the right option, especially if you’re a healthy person in your early 50s.
  • It might help to speak to a financial advisor to understand the types of policy available and how they could meet your needs.

How much cover can you get?

Life cover for over 50s generally ranges from £10,000 to £25,000. But exactly how much cover you’ll get depends on your age, the insurance provider and how much you’re willing to pay in premiums, for example.

The older you are when you take out a policy, the lower your cover amount will be. So, if you start a new policy in your 60s or 70s, you’ll inevitably pay more for a lower pay-out.

What’s the best over 50s life insurance?

The best life insurance if you’re over 50 depends on what you want from a policy.

If you have a pre-existing medical condition or other health issues, over 50s life cover may be the best life insurance policy for you. You’re guaranteed acceptance and you won’t need a medical check or to answer questions about your health.

A dedicated over 50s life insurance policy will pay out as long as you keep up with the premiums.

There are other types of whole of life insurance that can pay out no matter when you die, provided you keep up with the premiums. They can be expensive though.

Another option is term life insurance. This covers you for a set period of time but won’t pay out if you die outside of that period.

How much does over 50s life insurance cost?

The main factors that influence the cost of life insurance over 50 quotes:

Age

As you get older, you can expect to pay more for life insurance

Cover level

If you want your life insurance over 50 policy to pay out a larger sum, you’ll need to pay more each month.

Lifestyle

If you’re a smoker or have smoked in the past year, you’ll usually pay more than a non-smoker.

Insurance provider

Policies and cover can vary among insurance providers. That’s why it’s a good idea to shop around and compare to ensure you’re getting the best deal for you.

Compare over 50 life insurance quotes with us today. We compare policies from life insurance providers in minutes to help you find our cheapest life insurance for over 50s.

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Is acceptance for over 50 life insurance guaranteed?

One of the reasons that over 50s life cover is popular is that you’re guaranteed to be accepted. You won’t need to take a medical examination or even answer any health-related questions. This means that, regardless of your health, you’ll be able to find life cover that provides a lump sum for those who are important to you when you’re no longer around.

Author image Tim Knighton

What our expert says...

“The fact that over 50s life insurance offers guaranteed acceptance is a huge benefit. You don’t need to worry about passing any health checks and you can make sure your beneficiaries are looked after. Just make sure that you plan for inflation, otherwise you might leave your loved ones short when they need"

- Tim Knighton, Life, health and income protection insurance expert

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Over 50s funeral plans

Funeral plans are available for all ages. They offer a way to pre-pay for the cost of some elements of your funeral at today’s prices. You can either make a one-off payment upfront or make monthly payments over several years.

Taking out a funeral plan could allow you to make your own arrangements and take the burden off your loved ones at a difficult time.

Can over 50s life insurance help pay off a funeral?

Yes, some life insurance policies come with a funeral benefit option, but it’s not the only way to pay for a funeral.

If you’re trying to decide between a funeral plan or life insurance, consider:

  • Life insurance with funeral cover may not pay out quickly enough to cover the costs upfront.
  • If you’re considering using life insurance to cover the cost of your funeral, your family may need to pay, then use the life insurance pay-out to reimburse themselves.
  • Many insurance providers offer policies designed to cover funeral costs. Read the policy carefully, though, as there may be exclusions: for example, the funeral director’s services.
  • If you’ve opted for a prepaid funeral plan, you can lock in some parts of your funeral at today's prices.

Find out more about dedicated funeral cover

Where can I compare over 50s life insurance?

Look for life insurance quote for over 50s with Compare the Market and we’ll show you a range of policies.

When you compare over 50s life insurance deals, the policy that suits you best will depend on your requirements. Check each quote closely to see what the insurance provider offers before you buy.

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Frequently asked questions

What’s the difference between life insurance and over 50s life insurance?

A term life insurance policy covers you for a specific time period. Over 50s life insurance covers you for the whole of your life – as long as you keep up with your premiums.

Unlike term life insurance, over 50s life insurance policies offer guaranteed acceptance without medical evidence.

Is it worth having life insurance at 55?

Life insurance is worth thinking about at any age. Because there’s no medical check, over 50 plans could be suitable if you’re in poor health and don’t expect to live a long life.

If you have family members you want to look after or you simply want to leave behind a gift, a life insurance policy is worth considering.

What happens if I miss a payment on my over 50 life insurance policy?

If you miss a payment on your policy, it could lapse. This means you won’t be covered should the worst happen. If your policy lapses, you won’t be refunded any of your previous payments.

Over 50s life insurance isn’t a savings or investment product. It has no cash value, which is why your plan may be cancelled if you stop paying your premiums.

When you miss a payment, a ‘grace period’ activates. This gives you time to meet your payment before your policy lapses. If you don’t make your payment in time, your policy will be invalid.

Read your documents carefully and make a note of your grace period. If you’re at all unsure, speak to your insurance provider as soon as possible.

What is the benefit amount of an over 50s life insurance policy?

The benefit amount is the amount a life insurance policy should pay out when the policyholder dies.

Different life insurance policies have different benefit amounts. When you take out a policy, it’s important to consider the benefit amount versus the monthly premium.

This is especially worth doing if you’ve only just turned 50 and are considering an over 50 life insurance policy. If the policy isn’t cashed in until you’re much older, will you end up paying in more than the policy pays out?

What is a life insurance qualification period?

With some life insurance, particularly over 50s policies, there’s usually a waiting time – or qualification period – during which you won’t be covered if you die. This varies among insurance providers but is usually between 12 and 24 months.

Once the qualification period is over, you’ll be fully covered.

Some life insurance providers cover accidental death immediately.

How long is the qualification period for over 50s life insurance?

The qualification period for over 50s life insurance is typically between one and two years.

If you die during that time, the pay-out to your beneficiaries will be calculated using the amount you’ve paid in. The pay-out will vary, depending on your insurance provider, so make sure you know the specifics of a policy before taking it out.

How does inflation affect my life insurance pay-out?

It’s worth considering inflation when buying an over 50 policy because any pay-out is fixed.

If you take out a policy when you turn 50 but live to 80, your pay-out won’t have the same value. For that reason, it may be worth increasing your cover, but as no one knows what’s in the future you’ll need to use your own judgement.

What does it mean to write a life insurance policy in trust?

Writing a life insurance policy in trust allows you to legally separate your policy pay-out from your estate. Depending on the value of your assets, this could protect it from inheritance tax.

Choose your trustee(s) carefully, though, as they’ll be responsible for making sure your pay-out is used as you intended.

If you already have a life insurance policy you want to put in trust, you can usually arrange this through a solicitor or financial advisor.

Is there over 60s life insurance? Or over 70s life insurance?

There are plenty of providers who offer senior life insurance policies for people between the ages of 50 and 80. But while over 50 life insurance offers guaranteed acceptance if you’re aged between 50 and 79, specific over 70s life insurance policies might require you to give more detailed information.

Can I get over 50s life insurance if I am terminally ill?

You can get an over 50 life policy if you’re terminally ill because you don’t need to provide health information when you apply.

But the policy may not pay out if you die before the qualification or waiting period ends. This is typically one or two years after you take out your policy.

Page last reviewed on 31 OCTOBER 2023
by Tim Knighton