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What is Final Expense Insurance and do I need it?

Apr 27, 2017 12:20:44 PM / by Stephanie Pogue

Stephanie Pogue

  • What is final expense insurance?
  • Is it different than life insurance?
  • Do I need something like this and if so, why?
All of these are great questions. Whether you have the money set aside for your funeral costs or not, you may want to at least consider a small final expense plan.

What is a final expense life insurance?

Final expense plans are actually just small whole life policies. They are also called “funeral insurance” or “burial insurance” because that is the primary reason people purchase them.

How would your family benefit from final expense insurance?

1. Think about it this way. Where else can you get such a good return on your money so quickly? You give an insurance company $25 each month and they give your family $10,000 when you pass away. (Based on a 50 year old, female, non smoker) It would take you almost 34 years to save $10,000 if you only set aside $25 each month! Why would you want to do that? You can spend a few dollars per month and instantly provide thousands of dollars for your family, literally.


2. If you don’t have more than $10,000 in a savings account set aside specifically for funeral expenses, you would benefit from a small burial plan. Many people think they can’t afford it but the cost is not as significant as most people think. However, if cost is a concern, talk to your family. They may be willing to help you make a small payment each month instead of owing a large lump sum if you pass away unexpectedly. Would they rather pay $25 per month to the insurance company or $10,000 at one time to a funeral home? 

3. If you already have enough set aside in a savings account for your final expenses. Great job! You are a planner and way ahead of the game! You can also benefit from a final expense policy. Why would you want to give your savings away to a funeral home when you could pay a small monthly amount and use your savings for something now? Again, you could spend less than $1 per day and get to use the $10,000 in your savings account right now. Wouldn’t it be more fun to spend the money with your family while you are living and still provide them with enough money to cover funeral costs later?

As a side note, unless someone else’s name is on your savings account with you, they may not have immediate access to the cash you have saved. Often, this is a problem when parents leave enough in savings for the family to pay for the funeral but don’t have a joint account. Keep in mind, the funeral home will want some sort of payment, or proof of life insurance early in the process. 

4. If you have some health concerns and don’t think you will qualify for a larger amount of coverage, a burial plan might be a good idea. Larger policies may not be quite as affordable as you want them to be but there are always options. One example is a guaranteed issue life policy. Even if you have been declined in the past, it’s worth speaking to an experienced insurance agent.

Related Post: Is Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance the right option?

 5. Some clients aren’t interested in burial plans because they already have, or believe they need, a larger policy. I can understand this, but remember, one of the first questions a funeral home will ask is if you have an insurance policy. It will be easier to give them proof of a $10,000 life insurance policy and limit the cost of the services. Although I don’t believe funeral homes take advantage of people, it is naturally easier for a grieving family to spend a larger amount when it’s available. A final expense insurance plan may help contain the costs when the family is not thinking clearly about finances.

Remember, something is better than nothing. There is no question, eventually we will all pass away and our friends, families or communities will have to pay for our final expenses.

619,268 projects currently listed on GoFundMe have the word “funeral” in it!

Don’t let this happen to your family.


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Topics: Life Insurance, Final Expense Insurance

Stephanie Pogue

Written by Stephanie Pogue

Stephanie has been primarily helping seniors and retirees with their healthcare decisions since 1995. In addition, she has recruited and trained agents, developed and promoted managers, and ranked in the Top 3% of Sales Managers at Bankers Life & Casualty while she was there. She is now the Director of the St. Louis Insurance Group and can be reached by email at