- You May Name More Than One Person As Beneficiary Of A Life Insurance Policy
- You May Name A "Class" Of Individuals As Beneficiary Of A Life Insurance Policy
- You May Have Primary And Contingent Beneficiaries
- A Beneficiary Of A Life Insurance Policy May Be "Revocable" Or "Irrevocable"
- Different Types Of Beneficiary Designations May Be Combined
- Understand The Consequences If You Want To Name A Minor As Beneficiary
- If You Want To Name A Spouse Your Beneficiary, Be Clear Whether It Is The Relationship That Controls
- You Can Name A Significant Other Or Life Partner As Beneficiary With Discretion If You'd Like
- You Can Name Your Estate As Beneficiary Of A Life Insurance Policy
Naming A Beneficiary For Your Life Insurance Policy
There are a number of factors to consider when choosing a beneficiary or beneficiaries of a life insurance policy. For instance,
- You may name more than one person as beneficiary of a life insurance policy.
- You may name a "class" of individuals as beneficiary of a life insurance policy.
- If you name a spouse as beneficiary, clarify whether it is because of the relationship.
- You may have primary and contingent beneficiaries.
- A beneficiary of a life insurance policy may be "revocable" or "irrevocable."
- Different types of beneficiary designations may be combined.
- A minor can be named beneficiary -- so long as you understand the consequences.
- You can name a significant other or life partner as beneficiary with discretion if you'd like.
- You can name your estate as beneficiary of a life insurance policy.
Don't rely on the insurance company to review the beneficiary designation for you. If you have a question how to word what you want to do, speak with an attorney or financial planner.
If there could be a question whether you are currently competent to name a beneficiary, consult your doctor.
If you have or are going to create a durable power of attorney (see Durable Power of Attorney), review information about your life insurance with the person who will act with your power of attorney if you become incapacitated.
Review your designation of beneficiary at least once a year to be sure it is continues to be up-to-date. Tax time is a good time to do this.
NOTE: You must be mentally competent to designate a beneficiary of a life insurance policy. If there is a question about whether you are mentally competent when you name or change a beneficiary, speak with your doctor to find out if he or she is willing to testify that you are competent if the question is raised. If there are still questions, speak with an attorney.