Do Children Need Life Insurance?

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Contributor, Benzinga
January 25, 2022

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One of the most thrilling moments in a young couple's life is becoming a parent for the first time. There will be times of unimaginable delight and excitement, but there will also be times of concern and uncertainty about everything you need to do to prepare for your little one's birth. 

Consider how much time and effort you've put into planning for your child's future schooling, but how much time and effort have you put into preparing for their future? How important is it to think about that?

Keep reading to find out how child life insurance works so you can make an informed decision about whether it is the correct type of life insurance to protect your child. 

Why Do Children Need Life Insurance?

It's a terrifying thought for any parent to consider they might outlive their child. However, purchasing a life insurance policy for your child can provide several advantages, including a more secure financial future once they reach age 18.

When you buy a life insurance policy for your child, you'll reap the following advantages:

(1) Higher chances of being insured as you get older. Life insurance can be costly if your child becomes seriously ill or disabled later in life. However, your child will be covered as long as you pay your premiums if you purchase whole life insurance now.

(2) Borrow against the cash value of the policy. As your child gets older, the cash value in your whole life insurance policy will grow. Cash-value benefits may be used for key expenses like education or homeownership when your child reaches a specific age.

(3) Peace of mind. Losing a child is one of the most devastating and traumatic experiences a parent can face. However, if something happens to your child, a low-cost life insurance policy can assure that you'll be able to cover burial and living expenses while you grieve.

Should I Buy Life Insurance for My Child?

According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), most insurance advisers recommend buying parents’ life insurance and disability income insurance first because the impact of a parent’s death has a more significant financial consequence on the family income.

However, there are some excellent reasons to consider purchasing children’s life insurance, including:

  • Guaranteed insurability later in life
  • Teaching financial responsibility to the child because you can transfer the whole life policy to your child at age 21
  • Decreasing any financial impact caused by burial expenses if a child dies

Types of Life Insurance for Children

Once you've decided to get life insurance, you'll need to decide what type is best for you and your family. Several types of life insurance are available, such as whole life insurance. However, term life insurance is the most fundamental type of insurance. Here's a quick rundown of what each is.

Whole Life Insurance

Whole life insurance protects you for life. This type of life insurance coverage provides a death benefit to your dependents while also providing a savings plan or cash value alternative. The majority of life insurers offer whole life insurance for children from the time they are 14 days old until they are 17.

Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance provides coverage for a particular period of time, such as a 20- or 30-year term. One advantage of term life insurance is that it is significantly less expensive than whole life insurance. In addition, some term life insurance policies can convert to a whole life insurance policy at the end of the term of the policy. You can’t purchase term life insurance for a child, but you can add a child rider to your own term life insurance policy to provide coverage for your child.

Eligibility Requirements

Specific eligibility conditions for life insurance for children vary from company to company, such as the minimum age at which coverage is available. However, up to the age of 17, most life insurance companies will allow you to acquire life insurance for a child at least 14 days old. 

Because term life insurance policies are not available for babies, you will need to acquire your child’s whole life insurance policy. The optimum time to purchase life insurance for an infant is as soon as possible after the child is born. The best practice is to inquire with individual life insurance companies about their eligibility requirements.

Compare Child Life Insurance Options

You need a company you can trust to provide excellent coverage at affordable prices when it comes to life insurance. Benzinga researched the best companies for children's life insurance and created this comparison list to help you find the best life insurance for you and your family.

Is Children’s Life Insurance Right for You?

In most cases, you won't need to buy a whole life insurance policy for your child unless you have a family history of serious medical conditions that develop early in life. When it comes to acquiring affordable life insurance in their 20s and 30s, most folks have no trouble finding coverage within their budget.

If you need to protect your child’s life, adding a child rider to your term life insurance policy may be more convenient and less expensive. You can also use this option to pay funeral expenses in the event of the untimely death of a child.

Using a child rider, you can receive a death benefit if any of your children die without having to worry about the complicated investing component. Additionally, if your child requires permanent coverage, the child rider can be converted to a permanent policy in the future.

A child rider is cheaper than a full child life insurance policy, costing approximately $5 per year for every $1,000 in coverage value or an additional $50 per year for a $10,000 child rider. 

Are you looking for the best life insurance policy to safeguard you and your family? Then, return to Benzinga's insurance content frequently to learn more about your life insurance options and to obtain insurance quotes for any form of insurance protection you may need.

Frequently Asked Questions


Benzinga crafted a specific methodology to rank life insurance. To see a comprehensive breakdown of our methodology, please visit our Life Insurance Methodology page.