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Most term life insurance companies don’t sell to people over the age of 75. However, there are a handful of companies that will provide shorter term life policies for seniors. 

You likely won’t find a 30-year policy if you’re over 60, but you should be able to find one for five or 10 years. 

Why won’t insurers accept a senior for term life insurance? It’s all about risk and people’s life expectancy. If you’re 70, there’s a good chance that you won’t live another 30 years even if you’re a healthy person now. You obviously have a much better chance of living at least five or 10 years, which means you would outlive a five- or 10-year term life policy. Life insurance companies like that risk, which is why you can find shorter term life policies. 

However, you can still qualify for permanent life insurance, such as whole life. Permanent life insurance covers you for the rest of your life, no matter when you die. But you’ll pay much higher rates than younger applicants, especially if you have health problems.

The bigger question is whether you should buy life insurance, period. There is a point where the returns from a policy aren’t worth the expense. Talk to a trusted financial adviser about your options.

Many people who purchase life insurance as seniors buy small, whole life policies to pay for final expenses. That way, their families aren’t burdened with the funeral costs. These small policies, marketed as “funeral insurance” or “burial insurance,” provide guaranteed acceptance, which means you don’t have to undergo a medical exam or answer medical questions. They might be appropriate for someone who doesn’t qualify for other life insurance or the costs are too high. 

You might also hear about “preneed insurance.” This is a whole life policy sold by funeral homes in conjunction with the services you choose. In some cases, the funeral home locks in the prices of the services you want when you buy the policy, so you don’t have to worry about funeral costs exceeding the policy’s death benefit.

For more, see Are you too old to buy affordable life insurance?




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Les Masterson


Les, a former managing editor, insurance, at QuinStreet, has more than 20 years of experience in journalism. In his career, he has covered everything from health insurance to presidential politics.