How to Use Life Insurance while Alive

Life insurance is commonly considered a financial tool intended to provide for loved ones in the case of the policyholder’s death. However, many must know that life insurance can provide substantial advantages while the policyholder is alive. From providing financial protection to serving as an investment vehicle, this article shows how to get the most out of your life insurance while still alive.

How to Use Life Insurance while Alive
How to Use Life Insurance while Alive

Life Insurance Benefits While Alive

Life insurance is for more than just after you’re gone. Here are ways to use it while you’re alive:

Cash Value Growth

Some policies, like whole and universal life, build cash value over time. This money grows tax-deferred and can be accessed while you’re alive. You can borrow from it or withdraw funds to help with retirement, education, or unexpected expenses.

Retirement Support

Need extra income during retirement? You can tap into your policy’s cash value without immediate taxes. Just remember, loans need repayment with interest, and withdrawals might reduce the death benefit.

Education Funding

Rising tuition costs stressing you out? Use the cash value from your life insurance to cover educational expenses. Take out withdrawals or loans to pay for books, tuition, and more, ensuring your kids or grandkids get the education they deserve.

Debt Management

Got loans or mortgages weighing you down? Use your policy’s cash value to pay them off or reduce the debt. This move can help you clear high-interest debt and open up cash flow for other financial goals.

Long-Term Care

Long-term care expenses can drain savings fast. Some policies offer options to cover these costs using the death benefit. This provides a safety net, ensuring you’re covered for medical expenses and caregiving if needed.

Estate Planning

Life insurance is key in estate planning. Use it to minimize taxes and distribute assets as you wish. With smart planning, you can cover estate taxes, ensure fair inheritances, or leave behind a legacy for loved ones.

Business Protection

Business owners can safeguard their ventures with life insurance. Key person insurance and buy-sell agreements funded by life insurance ensure continuity and financial stability if a vital employee or partner passes away unexpectedly.

By understanding these benefits and how to leverage them, you can make the most of your life insurance while you’re alive, providing financial security for yourself and your loved ones.

Sell Your Policy

While it may not be worth the effort or cost, selling your life insurance policy may be an option if you need cash. If you decide to take this route, you can do so through a trustworthy broker, but be prepared to pay brokerage costs. Depending on the broker, your costs might be as much as 30% of the sale proceeds.

You will also have to pay taxes on the amount received. You will not receive the entire benefit amount when you sell your coverage. The percentage you receive may vary depending on the broker you select.

Note: Selling a life insurance policy, also known as a life settlement, is often considered a last alternative for policyholders who can’t afford their coverage any longer. it is typically not recommended that you access your policy’s cash value another way or find another source of funding.

Following these steps and keeping up with your life insurance will help you use it wisely to reach your financial goals and take care of yourself and your loved ones while you’re still here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there any tax implications to accessing the cash value?

Withdrawals up to the amount paid in premiums are usually tax-free. However, withdrawals or loans over that amount may be subject to taxes and penalties, particularly if the insurance expires or is surrendered.

What happens if I do not repay my policy loan?

If you do not repay a policy loan, the remaining loan balance plus interest will be taken from your death benefit when you die. If the loan amount plus interest exceeds the cash value, the policy may lapse.

Can I cash in my life insurance policy?

Yes, you can surrender your policy and receive the cash surrender value, but this will terminate your coverage. Surrendering your policy may result in taxable income if the cash value exceeds the premiums paid.

How can I choose the best method to use my life insurance while still alive?

It’s important to discuss your financial condition, goals, and requirements with a financial counselor or insurance specialist. They can assist you in evaluating your options and determining the best approach for taking advantage of your life insurance policy while you are still alive.


While life insurance provides a death benefit when you die, you may also be able to use your policy while you are still alive. You may be able to withdraw accumulated cash value, borrow against your coverage, use a living benefit rider, or sell your policy.

However, selling your insurance is normally only recommended after you’ve exhausted all other options, as it will cost you in fees and taxes.

Using your living benefits can reduce the amount of death benefit granted to your beneficiary after your death. To fully understand the exact features, limitations, and requirements of your policy, you need to review the documents and consult with your insurance agent or financial advisor.

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