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Key man life insurance is used to protect a business when the CEO or head of the company dies, as well as any important persons in a business. Often this includes accountants, vice presidents, head scientists, presidents and others.
Like any life insurance policy, when the policy holder passes away, the beneficiary, in this case the company, receives the lump sum payment. This money is then used to pay off creditors or buy out the deceased's share of the business. By having this financial security, the company then has time to decide how to replace the deceased.
When you first set up a company, many banks will refuse to offer a business loan unless you have life insurance on the key members of that business. While you may think the expense is too great, you may not have a choice.
Using the Internet, you can get started researching life insurance policies and finding rates. This is one of the best ways to look into it because the companies will be competing for your business. Competition helps drive prices down.
The insurance companies will need to know about the business so that they can help you determine how large the policy needs to be. They will require, in many cases, a health examination, medical history, the family's medical history and then information on the key man's hobbies. Things like sky diving, SCUBA diving, piloting and other sports can negatively impact your insurability driving rates up.
Most insurance policies are required to be whole life policies. This does not always have to be the case. It is important to check with the business loan agent if the insurance policy is a requirement. Otherwise, you may find some term life policies that are much more affordable (cost less).
If the life insurance policy isn't required for the business loan, you still must consider how much potential business loss would occur if the key man passed away. You will need enough to cover what he or she was paying into the business, the loss of work that will result from his or her death and any expenses that might arise if he or she died. These factors will help you decide on the benefit amount.
Once you have a firm costs figure, make the most of your insurance shopping by spending time searching for the best deal. Make sure you read the fine print so that there are no riders that catch you off guard later. Many times, people forget to read the riders and this can be costly in the long run!