Many people don’t think about life insurance until they think about starting a family – and it’s surprisingly common to arrange life cover during pregnancy.
It’s also understandable. A mother naturally wants to do all she can to protect her unborn child and that includes taking care of its financial needs in the event of her untimely death.
Peace of mind
Life insurance pays out a lump sum or a regular income to your family when you die. You can arrange a life policy to cover a debt such as a mortgage, or maybe to meet a particular commitment such as school fees. Or you might simply want to make sure your loved ones can cover the cost of their day-to-day expenses. Whatever you choose, it can provide peace of mind for all the family.
Cost of cover
The price of life insurance depends on the type of policy and your own circumstances. Some people are more risky than others and so pay higher premiums. For example, it’s often expensive to buy life insurance if you are elderly, in a poor state of health or have a pre-existing medical condition. A dangerous job or hobby can also have an impact on the cost of cover.
Don’t forget that e-cigarettes count as cigarettes even though they do not contain tobacco as the long term health benefits are as yet unclear
You should obviously tell your insurer if you are pregnant and it’s usually a good idea to arrange the cover as early as possible in your pregnancy as complications tend to arise in the later stages.
Conditions such as anaemia and hypertension are relatively common as the pregnancy progresses and are usually temporary. However, some insurers will postpone the cover until after the birth if you are experiencing medical problems.
If you are generally healthy, the pregnancy should not affect your premiums too much. But it might affect the way you answer some of the questions on the application form. The insurer will want to know your weight – and you should give your weight immediately before the pregnancy as your pregnant weight could distort the figures.
Questions about alcohol consumption commonly appear on life insurance forms. If you are pregnant, you might drink less than normal but the insurer will probably want to know about your alcohol consumption over a number of years, so just answer honestly.
You can usually ignore any questions about reducing your alcohol consumption on medical advice as all pregnant women are told to cut down or cut out alcohol. However, check with your insurer, just to be on the safe side.
Whether or not you smoke is a key risk factor when you buy life insurance. But you should be careful about categorising yourself as a non smoker if you have simply given up during your pregnancy as you must normally have resisted all nicotine products, including patches, for more than 12 months to qualify.
And don’t forget that e-cigarettes count as cigarettes even though they do not contain tobacco as the long term health benefits are as yet unclear.
Always compare premiums for life insurance as they can vary considerably from one firm to another. Remember also to check the terms and conditions. You might, for example, find that some insurers will not include waiver of premium if you are pregnant.
Waiver of premium covers the cost of the life insurance if you are unable to work because of illness or injury. Of course, pregnancy is not an illness but you might take more time off work due to morning sickness or other related conditions - hence the insurer’s reluctance to offer waiver of premium to pregnant women.