Simple Life Insurance Buying Tips

Insider Tips Make Buying Insurance as Easy as 1-2-3
Without a knowledge of industry terms, buying life insurance can seem complex and confusing.

A little research (and some guidance from your agent) goes a long way toward finding the policy you need without a lot of hassle.

When looking into life insurance, consider the following key components.

1. Determine your need for life insurance

Different people need different amounts of life insurance for different reasons. Do you need to pay for a child’s college education? Do you need to pay off your mortgage to help a nonworking spouse? Remember, the primary purpose of life insurance is to provide financial support for your dependents in the event you are not able to do so. Understanding what your life insurance should cover, before you begin shopping, will help you choose the right policy.

2. Know when to choose permanent vs. term life insurance

Term life insurance provides coverage for a limited period of time, such as ten, fifteen, or twenty years. This is different from permanent life insurance, which provides coverage for your entire life. Typically, term life insurance is less expensive than permanent life insurance. Depending on how long your dependents will rely on you financially, a term life policy may be the best option. For example, children eventually move out of the house and get jobs.

3. Know how much life insurance to buy

Finally, you’ll need to understand the needs of your beneficiaries. How much money do each of your dependents need, and for how long will they need it? Keep in mind that your spouse and children will likely have different needs. Additionally, if your children are different ages, each of them might have different needs.

It might help to calculate the life-insurance needs of each dependent, then add them together to determine your total coverage amount.


Health Care Infected with Medical Identity Theft
One consulting firm predicted health care spending would hit $5 trillion or more by 2022. These funds are simply irresistible to identity thieves.

In a recent report on patient privacy published in 2014, cyber-attacks on health care facilities increased 100 percent over a four-year period.

Your health care record may no longer be safe. Health care identity theft can take several forms. Imposter patients may use your health care information to obtain treatment or expensive procedures.

In one instance, a health insurer billed a man for a $19,000 medical helicopter evacuation. The problem was, this man never took that ride.

Many times, thieves perpetrate these frauds against Medicare recipients with stolen Social Security numbers. Alternatively, if your provider has an employee who illegally shares your medical information, that information can end up almost anywhere. Additionally, medical facilities are frequent victims of data breaches, and your medical information may become available on the black market.

With these facts in mind, take the following steps to protect your medical information.

  • Always review each Explanation of Benefits (EOB) you receive.
  • Watch for any inconsistent information in your medical record.
  • If you believe thieves may have compromised your medical history, order copies of your medical records. Dispute any inconsistency. Immediately file a written challenge of any charges you do not understand or any procedure you did not undergo. Copy your health insurer.
  • Request a copy of the “accounting of disclosures” from your health care providers. This discloses who received copies of your records from that provider. Your provider should provide you one free copy every year.
  • Access the Federal Trade Commission’s website for more information about access to your medical records and your rights as a patient.