After the Purchase

After buying life insurance, keep in mind that you may have a "free look" period that entitles you to change your mind. If you do so, the company will return your premium, without penalty.

It is a good idea to provide your beneficiaries with your agent's name and a photocopy of your policy. If you have a lawyer, he or she should also have this information and know who your beneficiaries are.

Your beneficiaries should know where your policy is kept, because they may have to send it to the company upon your death, along with a copy of your death certificate, in order to get your policy's proceeds. It isn't necessary to keep life insurance policies in a safe deposit box, but the name of the company and policy number should be kept in a secure place in case the policy is misplaced or lost.

Your beneficiaries need not take your insurance proceeds in one lump sum. Many people select other options, such as a monthly income and a specific sum set aside for other purposes, perhaps retirement or college costs. Ask your producer about the settlement options available to you.