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First Command: Military Families Good Life Insurance Customers

The men and women who risk their lives to protect the United States tend to be vigilant about insuring those lives.

First Command Financial Services Inc., Fort Worth, Texas, talks about military families' life insurance buying patterns in an analysis based on a survey of about 530 U.S. consumers ages 25 to 70 with annual household incomes of at least $50,000.

About 42% of the military families in that income range own permanent life insurance from commercial insurers, and 49% own term life from commercial insurers.

For members of the general population in the same income category, the ownership rates are 37% for permanent life and 39% for term life.

Active-duty members of the armed services are eligible for up to $400,000 in low-cost term life coverage through the government-sponsored Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance (SGLI) program.

First Command notes that, even though service members can get the SGLI coverage at an unusually low rate, only 73% of middle-class military families have life insurance coverage through the government.

Military personnel who leave the military can convert SGLI coverage to Veterans' Group Life Insurance coverage, with premiums based on the insured's age at the time of the conversion. Many military families buy commercial policies to provide protection that will stay in place after they leave the military, First Command says.

About 28% of the military families in the sample that do not have permanent life insurance said they are likely to consider buying it for themselves or their relatives. In the general population, only 20% of the survey participants said they are likely to consider buying permanent life, First Command says.

- Allison Bell

Other military market coverage from National Underwriter Life & Health:

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Nichole Morford

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