I often questions about burial insurance for seniors over 85, or over 80, etc…so I wanted to give you some information on what you are buying, where to get the insurance, how much you would be paying, etc…And this is an understandable concern for seniors.
Currently, my Dad is 76 and he has this constant worry that he will be a burden to my brother and I when it comes to his final expenses. Paying for a funeral, even a modest one, isn’t cheap. When Mom passed away in 2015, we had a bill for $6,600 for the following…
- The cheapest casket we could find
- Laying her out for one day
That’s it. She had a life insurance policy that I was paying the premiums on (she was on Medicaid in a nursing home so all of her income went to the nursing home and the government to defray the nursing home costs) and cost for $10,000 of coverage was around $111 every 3 months.
It should be noted that when she got the policy she was 62 years old, so the cost of burial insurance for seniors over 85, 80, 75, etc…will be substantially higher. This is because when you buy life insurance you buy what is known as “units” of life insurance, which means that you buy in $1,000 increments. And as you get older, the amount of a policy per unit goes up.
Advantages of Having Burial Insurance for Seniors Over 85
The biggest advantage by far to having such coverage is peace-of-mind, for both the insured and their family. Both are relieved in knowing that there will be no financial burden when they pass away. This allows the family to rest easy (knowing the family doesn’t have to kick in to pay for the funeral) and also for the insured to know they will not be the cause of a financial burden on their family.
Disadvantage of Having the Life Insurance
By far the biggest disadvantage is the cost. Like I said, the cost are high, even if you are in good health. Because let’s face facts. The average life expectancy is the US currently is 78.74 years. If you are looking for burial insurance for seniors over 85 the insurance company knows you have already beaten the odds and lived longer than 50% of people out there.
And remember the numbers that I gave earlier for my mother’s policy, at age 62. She got a 10-year term policy for $10,000 and the cost was $111 for three months. It would have been around $40 a month.
My point is, if you end up getting a policy at 85 (and that’s normally the cutoff age for any insurance company to get a policy) you would probably be paying in the $100 a month range for the policy, or more, to get enough coverage to cover your funeral expenses. This is a big burden for seniors.
Other Options for Burial Insurance
Unfortunately, at this point in life, age 80 or 85, there really aren’t too many options available. Seniors are done working, not physically able to re-enter the workforce in most cases, and are long past their prime.
And the burial benefit from Social Security is only $255. So besides a burial policy, the only other option unfortunately is to self-insure. This means if you have enough money you put it aside and that cash is used for the funeral costs. This might be a little depressing for the senior, who wants to leave something to their loved one’s. But at the very least they will not have the burden of having to pay for the funeral.
Where to Get Burial Insurance For Seniors Over 85
As I said most insurance companies have the cutoff at age 85 for a life insurance policy. Additionally, insurance companies use your “insurance age” when calculating how old you are. What does this mean?
It means that when you get to 85 years and 6 months, your “insurance age” is 86, which means you can no longer qualify for just about any life insurance policy. So if you think you can wait until a few days before your 86th birthday, think again.
As far as actually getting a policy, there are companies that offer whole life insurance for seniors up to age 85. I have written about the pros and cons of whole life insurance already so there is no need to repeat myself here.
In reality, the best burial insurance for seniors over 85 is actually self-insure yourselves. Barring that, the information I gave on whole life insurance will enable to pick the right policy for you.