Whether they are young couples, older couples, or same-sex couples, unmarried couples face the same financial issues and obligations as their wedded counterparts.
Unmarried couples make up around six percent of American households—almost 7 million households—according to the U.S. Census Bureau, and that figure has risen by 25 percent just during the past decade. Millennials, especially, are among those who don’t seem to be in any rush to get married. According to Gallup polls, only 20% of Millennials aged 18 to 30 are married. When Gen X-ers were that age, 32% were married, and among Baby Boomers, more than 40% were married by age 30.
And while they are postponing marriage, Millennials are not postponing having children, buying houses, or taking on many of the same financial obligations as their wedded friends. According to Gallup, almost half of surveyed Millennials age 34 have children but have never been married.
Unmarried couples are also growing among members of the older generation. Many older individuals choose not to remarry after a divorce or sudden death of a partner because it would entail the loss of Social Security, alimony, or other benefits they are currently receiving.
From a financial standpoint, the problem facing these unmarried couples is that they lack that one piece of paper—a marriage license—that grants them many legal benefits that unmarried couples do not have, especially if there is no will to be found. As an example, married couples may be entitled to receive some survivor benefits from Social Security for a period of time after one partner dies, but in an unmarried couple, the surviving partner gets nothing.
That’s where a life insurance policy comes in. Regardless of your age, a life insurance policy covering both unmarried partners is a simple and inexpensive way to provide a fiscal safety net. It can replace those survivor benefits you would get if you were married and can supplement them once you do walk down the aisle. It can prevent your loved ones from being in such dire financial straits that they turn to fundraising websites to ask complete strangers to donate money to a family who just lost a mother or father and had no life insurance.
You don’t want your family’s last memory to be about how you left them in crippling debt trying to pay for your funeral and final expenses. A life insurance policy puts you in control of the legacy you leave behind. And while it’s true that you most likely can look forward to living at least another fifty or sixty years, we never know when we will die. It could be 30 years from now, or it could be tomorrow. Life insurance isn’t something you should postpone because you don’t learn how important it is until it’s too late.
And it’s not expensive, either, especially if you start out with a term insurance policy. Depending on your age and general health, the cost can be quite reasonable. Talk with a professional insurance agent today to help you get a better grasp on how much coverage you need and how to best fit it into your budget.