Nothing beats whole life insurance for providing security and flexibility in estate planning. Perhaps that sounds like an overly broad and bold statement. But I believe it wholeheartedly, and 25 years of experience has proven it true time and again.
Why does it work so well, especially in estate plans for the affluent? There are a number of reasons, not the least of which is that whole life’s permanence creates a foundation upon which estate plans can be built today and amended tomorrow due to changing circumstances.
Typically, those plans seek to:
? Build and preserve wealth for use in retirement.
? Transfer wealth to family members or loved ones while minimizing confiscatory taxes.
? And do so all while retaining enough flexibility to respond to future unforeseen circumstances, such as rising inflation; declining interest rates; or higher income tax rates, not to mention change in relationships, reversal of fortune, or volatile family dynamics.
On all three points, whole life insurance answers the bell.
First, whole life, like other permanent insurance products, offers tax-deferred build-up of cash values. Those cash values can supplement income in retirement and, from a planning perspective, enable clients to be more aggressive with their investment assets. The whole life policy can represent the “bond” portfolio in an asset allocation study. For the client who has less than anticipated at retirement, the whole life policy also provides freedom to spend down savings if necessary and still be able to transfer wealth to children or loved ones via insurance.
Furthermore, whole life’s steadily increasing value grows along with a client’s assets and inflation over time – it is not static. This increased value is critical when we consider a level death benefit severely diminishes purchasing power 20 to 40 years in the future.