- Life Insurance covers the expenses that arise when somebody passes away.
- A good life insurance policy can cover your mortgage payments, your child’s education, and even therapy for your loved ones should you pass unexpectedly.
- Wisconsin life insurance companies can help you find coverage levels to suit your needs and budget.
Wisconsin is known as the Badger State and is located in the northern Great Lakes region of the United States. It’s bordered by Michigan to the north, Illinois to the south, and Minnesota and Iowa to the west. With a population of 5.85 million people, it’s the 20th-most populous state. The largest city in the state of Wisconsin is Milwaukee which has a population of 592,025 residents. The state capital is Madison which has a population of 258,054.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the average life expectancy in Wisconsin is approximately 77.7 years which is lower than the national average life expectancy, which is currently around 79.05 years in the United States. Over the past few years, the leading causes of death in Wisconsin have been heart disease, cancer, and Covid-19. The homicide rate in Wisconsin is around 7.8 homicides per 100,000 residents, which is higher than the national average of 7.5.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in Wisconsin, the 90th percentile income is currently $94,850. The median income in the state is approximately $45,000. Most financial advisors recommend purchasing a life insurance policy that covers your loved ones for between 10X and 20X your annual salary. In Wisconsin, this works out to around $948,500 – $1,897,000 dollars for most high-income earners in the state.
How life insurance works in Wisconsin
Life insurance coverage is easy to understand. Basically, you pay a premium, and the insurance company promises to pay a lump sum to your beneficiary designations if you die. It’s like most other types of insurance like health insurance, in the sense that you are insuring against an unlikely but catastrophic event.
There are three main types of life insurance that you may want to consider: term life insurance, whole life insurance, and universal life insurance. Term life insurance pays a benefit to your beneficiaries if you die during the term of the policy. The term is typically 10, 20, or 30 years, and the benefit amount is fixed. If you die after the term expires, your beneficiaries do not receive anything.
Whole life insurance pays a benefit to your beneficiaries whenever you die, regardless of when that is. You pay a higher premium for whole life insurance than for term life insurance because the insurer knows that it will have to pay a benefit eventually. Whole life insurance also has a cash value that builds up over time. Depending on your policy, you may be able to borrow from this cash value as annuities or pay your premiums with it.
Universal life insurance is another type of whole life insurance that has some flexibility built into it. With universal life insurance, you can adjust your premium up and down as needed, and you can also adjust the death benefit amount up or down without having to cancel and reapply for a new individual policy.
There are also group life insurance policies offered by companies to their employees, and insurance plans through the Wisconsin retirement system (WRS).
Most people should stick to cheap and simple term life insurance. It’s easy to understand and it gets the job done. When in doubt, your best bet will be to consult with an independent insurance agent. A licensed independent insurance agent will be able to help you understand your options and find the best policy for your needs and budget.
10 Biggest life insurance companies in Wisconsin
Wisconsin life insurance companies ranked by premiums written in the state.
|2||New York Life||$220,669,092||6.61%|
|3||Thrivent Financial For Lutherans||$192,301,878||5.76%|
|8||Mass Mutual Life Ins||$96,552,181||2.89%|
|9||American Family Ins||$78,530,387||2.35%|
How much life insurance do you need in Wisconsin?
The 90th percentile salary in Wisconsin is approximately $94,850. As mentioned, most financial advisors recommend that you purchase a life insurance policy that will cover your beneficiary for at least 10X – 20X your average annual income. In Wisconsin that works out to around $948,500 – $1,897,000. This amount will ensure that your loved ones can continue to pay their bills, settle your debts, and cover the cost of your final expenses.
You may also want to purchase supplemental life insurance to cover:
- Your mortgage (if you want your spouse and kids to be able to live in the home without worrying about mortgage payments)
- Children’s education costs (if you want your child’s education to be covered without any additional stress to your spouse)
- Bereavement therapy costs for your spouse and dependent children (if you want them to spend time with a therapist after your unexpected death)
- Any other dependent coverage that may be unique to your family or lifestyle
Wisconsin life insurance laws
There are a few unique features with respect to Wisconsin Life Insurance Laws that have an impact on your specific policy if you are a resident of the state.
Here’s what you need to know:
- Free look period: This is the time you get to analyze your policy and a quote before committing to it. You can use this time to examine the policy and decide whether you want to continue with enrollment. If dissatisfied, you can terminate the policy without facing penalties and get a full refund. The free look period in Wisconsin is at least 10 days.
- Grace period for missed payments: Wisconsin mandates all insurers to give policyholders at least 30 days following a due date to settle any pending payment without penalty. During this period, your policy will remain active and your provider cannot cancel it for missing the payment.
- Time allowable to settle a claim: Once an insurance provider in Wisconsin receives proof of death documents and evidence of insurability, they have 30 days to pay out the claim. If they do not, they will be charged interest on the unpaid amount
- Contestable period: In Wisconsin, this is a two-year term during which a life insurance company may review the policyholder’s eligibility and refuse to pay claims if they find inaccuracies or misinterpretations.
Life insurance is an important financial tool for providing a death benefit to your loved ones in the event of your passing. A life insurance agency will pay money directly to your beneficiaries after you pass away from natural causes or another unfortunate circumstance. It’s one of those things that nobody likes to think about, but it’s important to have a solid financial plan in place in case something unexpected happens.
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Joshua Holt is a licensed insurance agent (License #2785989) and founder of Biglaw Investor and Sidebar Insurance LLC, an insurance agency created by lawyers, for lawyers. His insurance expertise lies in the areas of life and disability insurance, particularly covering lawyers, doctors and other high-income professionals. Prior to Biglaw Investor, Josh practiced private equity mergers & acquisition law for one of the largest law firms in the country.