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No matter if you’re single or married, in your twenties or your forties, a parent or not, life insurance coverage is important in ways you may not realize, and costs less than you’d expect. And experts now stress that employer-sponsored coverage typically isn’t sufficient to cover most people’s needs.
“Living your best life comes with risks, but don’t let uncertainty deter you from buying a house, traveling or starting a business,” says Sean Scaturro, director of Life and Health Insurance Advice at USAA. “Take the necessary steps to protect loved ones from financial burden in the event of tragedy.”
Whether the money is used to replace your income, pay debts, pay for education or burial expenses, life insurance affords financial safety to loved ones.
The 2018 Insurance Barometer Study published by Life Happens and LIMRA indicates that 44 percent of millennials overestimate the cost of life insurance by five times the actual amount and 42 percent believe they wouldn’t qualify. But, in reality, premiums are typically lowest when you’re younger, so it’s a smart decision to get some coverage, and reevaluate as life changes. For many young adults, student loans and housing costs sit atop the list of financial priorities. Without life insurance, the responsibility for these debts could fall to family members.
Mind the Gap
Just because you signed up for life insurance coverage through your employer doesn’t mean you’re adequately covered. Scaturro cites LIMRA data that shows that American households currently have a $200,000 life insurance needs gap. “If 60 percent of people have life insurance and 33 percent of those have group life insurance only, one in five people only have group coverage, which usually doesn’t provide enough,” he says.
Most employer-sponsored coverage provides either a set death benefit, such as $50,000, or a multiple of your base income, and many plans aren’t portable. That means, without a separate individual policy, it could be costly or too late to get coverage if you leave your job.
So, sign up for your employer’s low-cost or free life insurance, but don’t stop there. USAA believes you need enough life insurance to replace five years of your income, plus cover all debts. To determine how much coverage you need, take advantage of a free online calculator, like the one provided by USAA at USAA.com/life.
Protect Your Family
Families are especially vulnerable following the death of a primary wage earner. In fact, 35 percent of households would feel the financial impact within a month, according to research from LIMRA. That figure rises to nearly 50 percent at six months. How will your spouse pay for extra child care? Can they afford to keep the house? Will your children’s needs be covered?
Experts say that it’s important to review your life insurance needs, discuss them with your loved ones, speak to a financial professional and take action.
In Montgomery, Alabama, Rosa Parks is jailed for refusing to give up her seat on a public bus to a white man, a violation of the city’s racial segregation laws. The successful Montgomery Bus Boycott, organized by a young Baptist minister named Martin Luther King, Jr., followed Park’s historic act of civil disobedience.
“The mother of the civil rights movement,”as Rosa Parks is known, was born in Tuskegee, Alabama, in 1913. She worked as a seamstress and in 1943 joined the Montgomery chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
According to a Montgomery city ordinance in 1955, African Americans were required to sit at the back of public buses and were also obligated to give up those seats to white riders if the front of the bus filled up. Parks was in the first row of the black section when the white driver demanded that she give up her seat to a white man. Parks’ refusal was spontaneous but was not merely brought on by her tired feet, as is the popular legend. In fact, local civil rights leaders had been planning a challenge to Montgomery’s racist bus laws for several months, and Parks had been privy to this discussion.
Learning of Parks’ arrest, the NAACP and other African American activists immediately called for a bus boycott to be held by black citizens on Monday, December 5. Word was spread by fliers, and activists formed the Montgomery Improvement Association to organize the protest. The first day of the bus boycott was a great success, and that night the 26-year-old Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., told a large crowd gathered at a church, “The great glory of American democracy is the right to protest for right.” King emerged as the leader of the bus boycott and received numerous death threats from opponents of integration. At one point, his home was bombed, but he and his family escaped bodily harm.
The boycott stretched on for more than a year, and participants carpooled or walked miles to work and school when no other means were possible. As African Americans previously constituted 70 percent of the Montgomery bus ridership, the municipal transit system suffered gravely during the boycott. On November 13, 1956, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Alabama state and Montgomery city bus segregation laws as being in violation of the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. On December 20, King issued the following statement: “The year old protest against city buses is officially called off, and the Negro citizens of Montgomery are urged to return to the buses tomorrow morning on a non-segregated basis.” The boycott ended the next day. Rosa Parks was among the first to ride the newly desegregated buses.
Martin Luther King, Jr., and his nonviolent civil rights movement had won its first great victory. There would be many more to come.
Rosa Parks died on October 24, 2005. Three days later the U.S. Senate passed a resolution to honor Parks by allowing her body to lie in honor in the U.S.Capitol Rotunda.
It can be easy to feel overwhelmed by the busyness of the holiday season — from perfecting your home décor to searching for gifts for everyone on your list to creating a delicious holiday menu.
To help simplify the holidays, Dollar General is offering easy tips, so you can spend more time enjoying the most magical time of the year.
Deck the Halls
Get festive this season by creating a holiday wonderland in your home. Pick a color theme like red and green or blue and silver — whatever best fits your taste. Carry the theme throughout your home as you decorate the tree, holiday table, mantle and gifts. Consider adding a wreath to greet guests as soon as they arrive, as well as candles. With varieties like salted caramel and amber spice, those from Dollar General’s private brand trueliving will capture the scents of the season. Small touches like a table runner or a floral centerpiece can also make your home feel like the perfect holiday escape during this busy season.
Holiday Meal Prep
Cooking for a big crew can certainly be stressful. This year, use digital recipes to help you plan for the big event. Holiday sweets are always a favorite, so consider gifting your favorite desserts. If you plan to spend a lot of time prepping for a big holiday party or just a special dinner for your family, don’t forget the snacks to tide everyone over as you await the main course. For snacking you can feel great about, consider wholesome choices like roasted almonds or granola with less sugar.
The holidays are the perfect time to gather with friends and loved ones to exchange presents in celebration of the season. If you’re worried about finding something affordable for everyone, consider shopping at a discount retailer, like Dollar General. With deals throughout the store on picture frames, books, candles, coffee mugs and more, you can treat everyone on your list without breaking the bank. Plus, they are offering an instant 25 percent savings on any qualifying toy purchase of $75 or more through December 24, 2018. By downloading the store’s app, you can access DG Digital coupons. New customers automatically receive a digital coupon for $1 off their first purchase of $1.01 or more.
Don’t forget the giftwrap! Get creative with your gift trimmings by choosing a unique theme for each person on your list. With so many wrapping paper, gift bag and ribbon options, you can make every gift as special as the person receiving it.
This season, keep your sights on the essentials. Simplify your shopping by creating a signature theme for home décor, finding deals on gifts for everyone on your list, and baking up something easy and delicious for the whole crew. Plan ahead this year and enjoy the extra time celebrating the season with friends and family.