Research the Company
Some 1,700 U.S. companies sell life insurance. Make sure you choose a company in sound financial shape and licensed in your state. Contact your state's insurance department. A number of organizations rate the financial health of insurance companies. Many libraries have publications listing these ratings.
Points to Remember:
- Take your time. Make sure you understand what the policy offers and that you are comfortable with the product, agent, and company.
- Make your check payable to the company issuing the policy, not the agent. Get a receipt.
- When you receive your policy, there is often a cancellation period.
- Notify the company or the agent of any errors in your policy.
- It can be expensive to surrender one policy and buy another.
- Contact the company's customer service department with complaints. If you remain unsatisfied, contact your state insurance commission.
- Review your policy periodically, especially when your situation changes, to ensure adequate coverage.
For More Information:
- American Council of Life Insurers, Web: www.acli.com/public/media/mainframe_med.htm
- National Insurance Consumer Helpline (NICH) 1-800-942-2424
- Books and periodicals on personal finance and insurance in your local library
- Consumer affairs division of your state insurance commission