It’s becoming an increasingly common and troubling problem: people pass away, and their relatives find they don’t have the money to pay the funeral costs.
An article in US News & World Report1 asks the pressing question: “If you’ve been struggling with money your entire life, who wants to consider that after a lifetime of scrounging, you (or your loved ones) can’t afford to pay your final bill?”
Adding to the economic struggles of millions of Americans is the continuously rising cost of funerals.
According to the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA), the cost of an adult funeral has increased 28.6% over the past decade.2
The costs — which may include the casket, vault, the minister or rabbi’s services, moving the body to the funeral home, embalming, grooming and dressing, viewing and ceremony in the funeral home, flowers, hearse, burial plot, headstone, and cemetery labor charges — can be considerable.
The national median cost of a funeral in 2014, including the vault, was $8,508.3 That cost does not include headstones, monument, or marker costs or miscellaneous charges, such as floral arrangements or placing an obituary.
And what if you don’t have the money to provide the type of funeral you want to provide for your loved one? Where will you get the money to pay for it? “There is no charity or government organization that will pay off any debt you’ve accrued if you arrange a funeral that’s beyond your means,” says Josh Slocum, Executive Director, Funeral Consumers Alliance.” 4
Worse, funeral homes are not required to let you pay for funeral costs in installments — and an increasing number are asking for payment in full up front.
The inability to pay for funeral expenses has led to a growing number of bodies going unclaimed by families who cannot afford to bury or cremate their loved ones.
In Los Angeles, for example, the number of unclaimed bodies in the morgue increased by 25% in just one year, from 2008 to 2009, according to an article in the LA Times.5 “The families just tell us flat-out they don’t have the money to do a funeral,” says David Smith, a coroner’s investigator.
The good news is that there is insurance which can help you pay for a dignified and proper burial or cremation for you or your loved one: guaranteed acceptance life insurance.
“Guaranteed acceptance life insurance is designed specifically to pay for all your final arrangements, so you do not leave relatives to shoulder the financial burden,” explains James Cordero, Sales Manager, TZ Insurance Solutions.
Because the payouts are modest, meant only to cover the costs of a burial, and not for the purpose of leaving behind an inheritance, the monthly premiums are also typically affordable, says Cordero.
Policies can provide a beneficiary between $2,000 and $25,000 of death benefit. In Cordero’s experience, $7,500 is the most commonly chosen coverage amount.
A 50-year-old female could get a guaranteed acceptance life insurance policy with a death benefit of $7,500 for $30.75 per month, or $10,000 for $40.50 per month.6 And the younger you are when you buy the policy, the lower your premium will be.
Even better, there is no medical exam and no medical questions required to apply. Guaranteed acceptance life insurance is available to everyone between the ages of 50 and 75 years old, regardless of your health status.
Plus, your monthly premium is locked in and will never go up, while the amount of your death benefit is also locked in and will never go down.
“Guaranteed acceptance life insurance is whole life insurance, which means it remains in force without change in rates or payouts for your whole life,” explains Cordero. Your coverage will remain active as long as your premiums are paid.
This guaranteed coverage is in contrast to term insurance, for which premiums and coverage may vary depending on age and health status.
With term insurance, “the policy is only good for a specific term, after which it expires,” says Cordero.
Many men and women buy term insurance when they are young and have not had health issues, because they feel it’s relatively cheap at that time.
Then, when the insurance expires, they are left without coverage, unless they renew. But by then, they may be much older, and may have had illnesses. As a result, the policy premium may skyrocket to the point where they can’t afford it. If the health issues are serious enough, they may be denied coverage altogether.
“In today’s economy … many families simply do not have the means to pay 7 to 10 grand for a funeral out of their own pocket,” says Cordero.
“A guaranteed acceptance life insurance policy offers the best protection against unexpected funeral expenses, giving both the policyholders and their loved ones peace of mind and freedom from financial worry,” says Cordero.
One other important fact is that, while guaranteed acceptance life insurance is designed to cover funeral costs, the policy beneficiaries are under no obligation to use the money for that purpose. They may spend the money however they see fit.
To get a free, no-obligation rate quote on a guaranteed acceptance life insurance policy, just click here now: