What if something happens to me, or someone I love?

Life Insurance for New Yorkers

It’s a thought we all have at one time or another. Maybe it was a close call with a cardiac event. Or that semi-tractor trailer driver who cut you off on the parkway. Or even the recent CDC study on the alarming rise in pregnancy-related mortality in the U.S. Life Insurance can protect your family from financial disaster and help them maintain their standard of living should the unthinkable happen.

Pregnancy-related deaths have steadily increased from
7.2 deaths per 100,000 live births in 1987 to 18 in 2014.

What is Life Insurance?

A life insurance policy protects your family and others who depend on you for financial support. It provides a payout to your beneficiaries after your death to help cover funeral expenses, pay off your mortgage, replace your income and provide college tuition for your kids. Life insurance can also play a role in building wealth and investments. Determining the amount of coverage you need can be confusing, but that’s what we’re here for. Your HCP agent can guide you through the key questions and help you find the right amount of coverage and type of policy that fits your needs.

How much do you need? A general formula used by life insurance agents is somewhere between 7-10 times your annual salary.

Who needs life insurance?

Anyone with a family or loved ones who depend on you. Oftentimes an important life event, like pregnancy, causes you to take action. If you’re a working or stay-at-home parent, a homeowner, or starting up a business, it’s important to make sure your assets are protected. If you need to protect the interests of a special-needs child who will need financial support after you’re gone, life insurance is a good tool. A good question to ask yourself: “will someone in my life be adversely affected from a financial standpoint by my untimely death?”

70% of Americans consider life insurance a necessity for themselves, but 41% have no life insurance at all.

How does life insurance protect me?

Life insurance is a very versatile financial tool. It can:

  • Provide income replacement for the family breadwinner(s).
  • Provide funds for funeral expenses.
  • Cover the cost of paying for services a parent does for “free” such as child care, cooking, cleaning.
  • Cover the support payments a divorced parent makes.
  • Support a dependent special needs child for their lifetime.
  • Cover mortgage payments so your family doesn’t have to move after you’re gone.
  • Cover the cost of co-signed debt, such as student loans.
  • Can provide funds for heirs to pay estate or inheritance taxes.
  • Provide a small inheritance.
  • Pay off business debts if you’re a business owner.
  • Provide a supplemental source of retirement savings if you choose a cash value option.
  • Serve as an estate planning tool.

More than 80% of life insurance purchasers of all ages choose it to cover burial and other final expenses.

Life Insurance Quick Facts

What kinds of policies are there?

There are two main types: whole and term.

  • Whole Life:

    • Provides lifelong coverage
    • The death benefit is guaranteed, no matter when you die.
    • Builds cash value at a guaranteed rate that you can access while alive. Cash value builds slowly, tax-deferred.
    • You can borrow money against the account or surrender the policy for cash.
    • Some policies also earn annual dividends which you can take in cash or use to decrease your premium.
  • Term Life

    • Covers you for a set amount of time. If you die during the term, your beneficiaries receive the payout.
      Offers a choice of policy length; common terms are 10, 20, or 30 years.
    • Many people purchase term life to cover them until their mortgage is paid off, until their last child finishes college, or until they retire. Ideally, your family’s need for term life will end around the time the term expires: your kids will be on their own or you’ll have paid off your house, or you’ll have retired and built up savings to serve as a financial safety net.
    • Is often a popular choice, especially in the family-formation years when you’re on a tight budget. It allows you to buy high levels of coverage when the need for protection is the greatest.
    • You cannot cash in a term policy.

What if I have a medical condition?

It’s true that the younger and healthier you are, the better rates your rate will be. Red flags include obesity, diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure or high cholesterol. Cancer can lead to high rates or even a denial. But don’t assume you’ll be turned down if you have a chronic health problem. Different companies have different standards, your HCP agent can guide you to your choices. And if you’re accepted but charged a high rate, you can ask for a new medical exam and lower premium once your condition is under control.

What if I have a group policy through my employer?

The policy through your employer is likely not a large amount of coverage, so it’s still a good idea to have your own life insurance policy outside theirs. And if you leave the job or get fired, your policy ends.

What information is needed when applying for term life insurance?

You’ll need details about your current and past health conditions and your family health history. Some insurers may ask for your consent to get your medical records or may ask you to take a life insurance medical exam covering height, weight, blood pressure, pulse, blood and urine test, and in some cases an EKG. Insurers will also check other data sources to determine term life insurance quotes – be sure to check with your HCP agent about the policy you’re considering.

Why is life insurance important?

We hate to think about it, but we’re all going to die at one point or another. You read the news: mall shooter, bizarre train accident, falling down an open manhole cover…one minute you’re here, the next you’re gone.

Life insurance is an investment in the ones you love, a lasting gift you leave behind in the event you die unexpectedly. It’s inevitable that family income will drop immediately and remain lower, likely for an extended period. Your HCP agent can help you pinpoint risks based on your lifestyle (are you a weekend bungee jumper?) and help you choose coverage that lets you sleep a little easier.

The top 15 causes of death in New York:

  1. Heart Disease
  2. Cancer
  3. Accidents
  4. Lung Disease
  5. Stroke
  6. Influenza-Pneumonia
  7. Diabetes
  8. Alzheimer’s
  9. Blood Poisoning
  10. Hypertension/Renal Failure
  11. Nephritis/Kidney
  12. Suicide
  13. Liver Disease
  14. Parkinson’s
  15. Homicide

A machine used to make egg rolls exploded in Chinatown and a worker was crushed by the machine’s enormous cylinder, suffocating him to death.

What other coverages might I need?

  • Property – provides financial reimbursement for your property and possessions in the event of damage, theft, or other covered peril.
  • Personal Umbrella – gives you extra liability coverage to cover damages that exceed your primary policy limits, such as a pricey car accident. It can also help cover defense costs, attorney fees and other charges associated with lawsuits.
  • Auto – if you have an auto, New York State law requires that motorists carry a minimum amount of liability insurance of $25,000 for bodily injury to one person, $50,000 for bodily injury to all persons, and $10,000 for property damage in any one accident. Mandatory “no-fault” coverage of $50,000 is also required. (https://www.dfs.ny.gov/consumer/faqs/faqs_auto.htm)

Honig Conte Porrino provides the following types of Individual Insurance Options:

  • Annuities
  • Dental Insurance
  • Individual Disability
  • Individual Health
  • Individual Life
  • Individual Long-Term-Care

Why should I choose HCP?

Some insurers will offer you exactly what you ask for when you call for a quote. We think that’s only half our job. HCP has worked with New Yorkers for more than 100 years, and we understand the risks you face. We’ll focus on the big picture then ask detailed questions to discover where your individual risks are, including the concerns that prompted you to reach out to us. We’ll offer comprehensive guidance that will help protect you with the right level of coverage.

We’ll pair you with an agent who knows your neighborhood and understands what keeps you up at night. Your agent is your advocate, providing personal service before, during and after you choose your policy. Many of our employees have been with us 15, even 25 years, and make their career here so you get to work with the same person year in, year out. No need to initiate someone new.

What if I have a claim?

We know how important it is to have someone who gets it when everything else is going wrong, especially when it comes to life insurance. Your Honig Conte Porrino agent is your advocate, ready to help you navigate the claim process, no matter which coverage is impacted: one agent, one call. We want you to be delighted every time you connect with us.