A: That’s a really great question. With all the factors involved with a divorce, it’s important to remember to review your insurance coverage. Protecting your income is even more critical now that only one income is available to pay bills and save for the future.
Before deciding on any changes to your coverage, talk to your attorney and make sure you’re acting within the guidelines of your divorce agreement. A financial advisor can also help you make sure that your coverage levels are appropriate under your new family dynamics.
How much insurance is enough
When trying to decide how much life insurance to get after divorce, try to anticipate the expenses that would be required by your children until an age at which they can support themselves. The USDA estimates the cost of raising a child from birth to age 17 — not including higher education — exceeds $250,000 over the lifetime of the child.1
While many financial planning experts recommend carrying a life insurance policy worth 6 to 10 times your annual income, a good online insurance needs estimator can help you determine the appropriate amount for your specific situation.
Include the other parent in the process
When you’re divorced, it's possible that you and your former spouse were ordered by the judge to have life insurance. If not, and if you’re still in contact with the other parent, urge him or her to carry insurance to help provide for the child(ren)’s future, too. You don’t need to provide specific details about your insurance; however, it is reasonable for you to suggest an amount of protection the children might need based on the research you have done.
Raising children as a single parent is not easy. By taking proper steps to help provide for your children’s future, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing they will be taken care of in the event of your untimely death.
We would be happy to discuss your needs more in depth — but hopefully this will help you get started thinking about life insurance after divorce. If you’d like to talk to us, please give us a call at 855 488-9536 weekdays 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Insurance products issued by TIAA-CREF Life Insurance Co., New York, NY. Exclusions, restrictions, limitations, and reductions in benefits will, in certain situations, apply to your policy. For full details, including costs, call us at 877 276-9429. Please note that TIAA-CREF Life has the right to contest the policy for misrepresentation by the applicant.
1 Estimate per USDA Cost of Raising a Child Calculator.
TIAA-CREF Life Insurance Company is domiciled in New York, NY with its principal place of business in New York, NY. Its California Certificate of Authority number is 6992.