How to borrow against your life insurance policy


SmartAsset: how to borrow against your life insurance policy

Life insurance is an important policy to protect your loved ones financially in the event of a tragic event. But if your policy has a cash value, you can profit from it if the cash value is sufficient. The exact details of this will vary depending on your policy, its terms and your own life expectancy. This can be a very useful source of short term cash when used wisely. But this comes at the cost of potentially higher premiums and a reduced safety net for your loved ones. We will discuss how it works.

An important part of any financial plan is life insurance. Talk to an advisor about your financial plan today.

What is life insurance?

Life insurance is an insurance plan that provides cash and benefits in the event of the death of the covered person. Only natural persons can take out life insurance. This means that you cannot buy a insurance policy for a corporation or other legal person. People typically use life insurance to support loved ones after their own death.

There are two main types of life insurance: permanent life insurance and term life insurance.

Term life insurance

Term life insurance covers you for a while. For example, you could get a policy that pays out if you die within the next 10 years. It’s more affordable and it’s not uncommon for people to use it in specific circumstances.

For another example, a new parent could get a term life insurance policy for 20 years in case they die before their children reach the age of majority.

Permanent life insurance

Permanent life insurance covers you all your life. Premiums for permanent life insurance are generally higher than for term life insurance because. Barring loss of coverage or medical miracles, this policy will eventually pay out.

However, this can be mitigated, potentially by a lot, depending on what start of life you get this policy. There are several types of permanent life insurance policies with varying benefits and costs depending on the needs of the individual.

What life insurance policies can you borrow on?

SmartAsset: how to borrow against your life insurance policy

You can borrow against the value of your life insurance policy under certain conditions. Most, if not all, of life Insurance conditions have the same basic requirements:

You can only borrow against a permanent life insurance policy

You cannot borrow against a term life insurance policy, only a permanent policy. This is because the insurer uses your life insurance cash value and its debt guarantee policy.

If you don’t repay the debt, they can take money out of your policy’s cash value and benefits. Since a term life insurance policy has no cash value and is not guaranteed to pay out, these policies effectively have no guaranteed coverage.

The policy must have a cash surrender value

Cash value is a feature of some types of permanent life insurance policies. More specifically, whole life insurance, universal life insurance and some variable life insurance policies provide this functionality.

With cash value, a portion of your premiums are set aside in an account in your name. This is usually measured as the amount that your monthly payments exceed the amount needed to secure your death benefits at any given time.

Cash management is one of the main differences between the types of permanent life insurance policies. Everyone has a different way of setting the interest rate for your policy’s cash account. Some policies use your cash value to supplement your death benefits, while others use it to supplement your insurance premiums later in life. The nature of this value varies.

In any case, however, you can only borrow against a life insurance policy with an existing cash value, which means your policy must both support cash value and have cash. on the account.

How to borrow against life insurance?

The borrowing mechanisms of a life insurance policy differ depending on your policy and your insurer. But in general, everyone will have a specific form or contact point that will allow you to apply for this loan.

Borrowing against life insurance isn’t like most ready. You don’t need to go through an approval process or credit check because the loan is secured by, and limited to, its cash value and death benefit. For most, if not all, insurance policies, you also don’t need to provide good reasons for borrowing against that money. This is different from, for example, borrowing from a retirement plan, which is generally only allowed in specific circumstances.

More Insurance conditions will allow you to borrow up to the current cash account value of your policy, or at least between 80% and 90% of that value. If you do not make payments or your policy expires, the insurance company will take payment from your policy’s cash account and collect any balance directly from you.

If you still owe money at the time of your death and the cash account is not sufficient to cover this debt, your insurance company will claim the remainder of your policy’s death benefit.

As with all loans, you do not repay taxes on the money you receive from a life insurance loan unless it is later forgiven.

Advantages and disadvantages of borrowing against life insurance

SmartAsset: how to borrow against your life insurance policy

There is the main advantage of borrowing against life insurance is liquidity. In effect, you are borrowing from yourself, since you are borrowing against the accumulated value of your own policy.

Interest rates are generally low. You therefore do not need to provide any additional guarantee. And your insurance company can return the money fairly quickly compared to many other forms of personal loans.

The downside is that borrowing against your life insurance policy reduces its value until you pay off the debt. Your insurance company gets a claim against the cash surrender value of your policy up to the present value of the loan (including all accrued interest).


You can borrow money against permanent life insurance policies which are associated with cash accounts. With a standard life insurance policy, you can borrow up to its cash value, but this will reduce the value of your policy until the debt is paid off. A life insurance loan can be a good source of short-term capital for specific needs. As with all loans, despite the low interest rates, do not use it as a source of funds for investing.

Insurance Planning Tips

  • Your choice of an insurance policy can have lasting effects on your overall finances, especially once you reach retirement. A financial advisor can offer valuable assistance. Finding one doesn’t have to be difficult. SmartAsset’s free tool connects you with up to three approved financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor for free to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, start now.
  • Looking for an easy way to see how much insurance you need? A free insurance calculator can give you a quick read on what would be good for you and your loved ones.

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