Accidental death is an unfortunate event that can happen to anyone at any time, regardless of age or physical condition. It’s a scary thing to think about, as humans have known since at least the invention of fire, which probably coincided with the invention of catches on Fire.
Unfortunately, accidental deaths are relatively common in the United States. Most years, according to the National Safety Council, accidents are the third leading cause of death in the United States, after heart disease and cancer. (COVID-19 has outpaced accidents in recent years.) By 2022, nearly 225,000 people in the United States died from unintentional causes.
The financial stakes of accidental death can be significant for the victim̵7;s family. The sudden loss of a loved one can result in lost income and unexpected expenses for funeral expenses, medical bills and more. For many families, losing a loved one can also result in significant emotional and psychological trauma.
Having a good life insurance policy in place can help mitigate the financial consequences of accidental death, as life insurance provides a death benefit to your beneficiaries in the event of your death. This benefit can provide financial support to your family in the days and years to come.
But there are some limits you should be aware of. The details vary by policy, but some types of accidental death may not be covered by your policy. Here’s what every family should know about life insurance and accidental death.
What is accidental death?
Accidental death is exactly what it sounds like: a death that occurs due to an unexpected and unintended event. The causes can be falls, drowning, fires, car accidents and poisoning, not to mention natural disasters and other severe weather conditions. Motor vehicle accidents are particularly common – it is estimated that more than 1.3 million people die in road accidents each year, with millions more suffering serious injuries.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention that there are several ways to reduce accidental deaths:
- Safe driving: Avoid distracted driving, obey traffic laws and wear seat belts.
- Home security: Install smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers.
- Outdoor Safety: Wear protective equipment when participating in recreational activities, such as a helmet when riding a bicycle, and observe safety rules when swimming or boating.
- Fire Safety: Practice fire safety by keeping flammable materials away from heat sources and having a fire evacuation plan in place.
- Poison Prevention: Keep household chemicals and medications out of the reach of children and keep the National Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) phone number handy.
- First aid and CPR training: Knowing how to perform first aid and CPR can help prevent accidental death in emergency situations.
- Regular health checkups: Regular checkups and screenings can help detect and prevent diseases and conditions that can increase the risk of accidental death. (For example, a heart attack that occurs behind the wheel, resulting in the death of other drivers.)
By following these safety precautions and being aware of potential hazards, individuals can reduce the risk of accidental death and ensure that they and their loved ones are protected.
What does life insurance cover?
Life insurance is a type of insurance designed to provide financial support to the policyholder’s beneficiaries in the event of their death. Life insurance aims to provide a safety net for loved ones and help cover expenses such as funeral expenses, outstanding debts and ongoing living expenses.
There are two main types of life insurance: term life insurance and permanent life insurance. Life insurance provides coverage for a specific period, usually from 10 to 30 years. If the policyholder dies during the term of the policy, the beneficiaries will receive a death benefit, which is the amount of money paid out to the beneficiaries.
Term life insurance is usually less expensive than permanent life insurance and is often used to provide coverage during the policyholder’s working years, or until some major debt (such as a mortgage or a child’s college education) is paid off.
You can get a quote here, and see below for a selection of quotes for a 20-year Haven Term life policy, issued by MassMutual or CM Life, for people in excellent health:
Term life insurance quotes
|Woman||$10.87 USD||$15.16 USD||$19.60||$24.55|
Estimate based on pricing for qualified Haven Term applicants in excellent health. Price differences will vary depending on age, health status, coverage amount and term length. These rates do not reflect rates for applicants in DE, FL, ND, NY and SD.
Permanent life insurance provides coverage for the policyholder’s entire life. There are several types of permanent life insurance, including whole life insurance, universal life insurance, and variable life insurance.
These policies usually have higher premiums than life insurance because they include coverage for your later years, when you are older (definitely) and less healthy (probably). Many people no longer desire life insurance during these years, as they no longer have dependents who can count on them to pay for life’s necessities.
Does life insurance cover accidents?
Accidental death is a common concern for many individuals considering purchasing life insurance. While traditional life insurance policies provide coverage in the event of the policyholder’s death, there is often confusion about whether accidents are covered or not. The answer to this question may vary depending on the type of life insurance purchased.
Most traditional life insurance policies provide coverage in the event of an accident. If the policyholder dies due to an accident, the death benefit will be paid to the beneficiaries. Accidental death is often covered by whole life insurance and permanent life insurance.
However, it is important to note that the definition of an accident may vary between insurers. Some providers may define accidental death as any death resulting from an accident, while others may have more specific definitions. For example, some providers may exclude deaths resulting from certain activities, such as skydiving or bungee jumping. It is important to carefully review the terms of the policy to determine what is considered accidental death and what is excluded.
At Haven Life, your beneficiaries will generally receive the death benefit if you die in an accident. That said, if you die while participating in a risky hobby — say, skydiving — that you didn’t disclose during your application, your payout could be in jeopardy. (Another reason to be truthful during the application process.)
What about accident insurance and dismemberment insurance?
In addition to traditional life insurance, there is also a type of insurance specifically designed to provide coverage in the event of an accident, known as AD&D insurance. Accident insurance covers in the event of an accident that results in the policyholder’s death and in the event of specific injuries, such as loss of limbs or paralysis. This type of insurance can provide additional peace of mind for individuals who are concerned about the risk of accidental death.
There are a few factors to consider when deciding whether or not to purchase AD&D insurance. Firstly, it is crucial to consider the policyholder’s lifestyle and activities. If the policyholder participates in high-risk activities, such as skydiving or mountain climbing, they may want to consider purchasing an AD&D policy to ensure they are covered in the event of an accident.
Second, it is important to consider the policyholder’s overall insurance needs. If the policyholder already has life insurance, they may not need additional coverage in the event of an accident. Finally, it is important to consider the cost of the AD&D policy, as it can be more expensive than traditional life insurance policies.
It’s also worth noting that some employers may offer AD&D insurance as part of a group life insurance policy. This coverage is often included as a standard employee benefit, and the amount of coverage may be based on the employee’s salary. Employer-sponsored AD&D insurance can be a cost-effective way for individuals to obtain coverage in the event of accidental death, but note that it is often not enough for many families.
In summary, life insurance provides a death benefit to the policyholder’s beneficiaries in the event of their death. This benefit can cover expenses such as funeral costs, medical bills and other expenses. It can provide financial support to the family in the years following the policyholder’s death. Although the coverage offered by life insurance can vary, it is generally an affordable way to provide long-term financial protection for loved ones.
To determine whether your life insurance covers accidents, you should start by reviewing your policy documents. The most comprehensive information about your life insurance can be found in the policy documents you received when you purchased the policy. These documents will outline the coverage and exclusions of your policy.
You can also contact us if you have questions about this, or anything else. (Well, maybe not something Other…)