As you surely know by now, life insurance is an important safety net for anybody who thinks they might die sometime in their life. (That’s everybody, in case you’re not picking up what we’re laying down here.) It provides a way to pay for any funerary expenses, reduces money taken from your estate for any debts, and helps those you’ve left behind.

We can get a little bit more specific though. Who needs life insurance, and why is it important to those people?

Married Without Children

You might think you don’t need life insurance until you’ve got kids, but that’s not the case at all. You and your spouse are probably used to having a dual income, so what’s going to happen to your significant other if your income suddenly gets slashed? Rent or the mortgage, car loans, credit card debts, even regular expenses like the bills will be much harder to pay unless your spouse has a really good job and you’re living well below your means.

Married with Children

Take everything mentioned above and add child expenses to it: clothes, activities, camps, college tuition and the list goes on. Life insurance can help make sure your family’s standard of living doesn’t drop significantly, or sometimes even at all. Even if your kids are out of the house already and on their own, unless your spouse has an amazing retirement plan, life insurance can help them live comfortably after you’re no longer there.

Stay-at-Home Parent

Whether you’re a stay-at-home mom or a stay-at-home dad, you may not be bringing in a paycheck but that doesn’t mean your contributions don’t have monetary value. You are probably the one who takes care of the kids before and after school, takes care of the house, makes dinner, gets the kids where they need to go and all sorts of other daily tasks. Life insurance can help make sure your spouse is able to continue bringing in that paycheck while the household carries on as best it can.

Unmarried with Children

If you’re a single parent you are the primary, if not only, caretaker for your kids. Maybe you have a contingency plan in place as far as who will take care of your kids if you were no longer there. Many people choose their parents, but your parents are probably close to retirement if they’re not already there. Life insurance would help them be able to take care of your children if you’re no longer there.

Unmarried

You’re unmarried and have no kids, so you’re probably in the category that doesn’t need life insurance, right? Not so fast. If you’ve got debt, that’s going to be passed on to your next of kin. Maybe you help take care of your parents or you contribute to taking care of a disabled family member. If so, life insurance can help take care of the people you care for. As an added bonus, if you’re young and healthy you’ll get better rates for your life insurance.

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