When an adult is diagnosed with cancer, the fallout is life-changing; however, when the medical emergency strikes a young person, the impact is often even more overwhelming. Apart from the emotional toll of a child struggling with an illness, parents have to manage new challenges to their work/life balance, learn how to be patient advocates and find the financial support to enable the best treatment possible. Though no one anticipates their children will be diagnosed with cancer, it is important to plan ahead for the worst-case scenario, such as through life insurance for children with cancer.
Life insurance can be a vital resource for those who are facing a serious illness. For instance, Life Credit’s Living Benefits Loans allow policyholders to borrow against their death benefit to pay for costs associated with conditions like cancer. There are also ways parents can extend the value of their life insurance to their children.
One option is for a parent or guardian to purchase a standalone life insurance policy in the child’s name. Typically, these policies are structured as whole-life policies and build cash value over the years. Many allow policyholders to borrow against the value, which can be a source of help for cancer patients and their families; often, families with young children don’t have significant savings at their disposal, so being able to tap into life insurance for children with cancer can ease many of the financial worries families have so they can focus on helping their child get well. However, parents need to fully research the provisions of such policies, as many require children to be healthy for a certain number of years in order to be eligible.
Another potential path is through a child rider on a parent or guardian’s policy. This added benefit on an adult’s individual policy allows families to skip the underwriting step, which significantly eases the qualifications for enrollment. There are some drawbacks to this approach, particularly that a rider can only be added to a new applicant’s policy, which could pose problematic for parents who already have life insurance and are hesitant to get another policy. However, a rider typically is cost-efficient and, in some cases, can be converted to an individual policy when the child reaches adulthood.
If parents are considering the options that exist within life insurance for children with cancer, it’s important to do the research, read the fine print, evaluate all the possibilities and make the decision that will help their family financially and enable them to prioritize the health of their little one.