Direct life insurance is a type of life insurance policy that you can purchase on your own without using a third-party agent or broker to provide cover if you pass away or become terminally ill. You can take out this type of cover for yourself or create a joint policy with your partner. Direct life insurance is different from group life insurance, which is a policy that is purchased by an organisation (usually an employer or superannuation fund) on your behalf.

Many of us already have group life insurance through our superannuation fund, which is a great perk to take advantage of while we are still working. However, it’s important to know that group life insurance may not provide as much cover as a direct policy could and that a change in your work circumstances could impact your cover. If you’re making extensive plans for retirement and want to ensure that you and your family are financially covered into your later years in case you pass away or become terminally ill, then it might be worth looking into direct life insurance.

Direct term life insurance

A term life insurance policy covers you for a set period of time, such as 10 or 20 years, or until you reach a certain age. Some term life insurance policies are easy to apply for as you don’t need to go through any medicals or blood tests to get approved, just answer the health questions provided, which can make this a great option for those of us who are generally healthy and want to get covered quickly. Seniors Term Life Insurance has a high entry-age limit too, giving you the option to take out cover later in life when your situation and need may have changed.

Do I need direct life insurance?

If you already have life insurance through your super, it’s worth checking how much you’re covered for and whether this is enough to meet your needs and how your working status may affect this. Unfortunately, many of us don’t review our insurance coverage as often as we should, which could lead to an underinsurance gap. That’s why it might be worth considering direct life insurance.

The main benefit of purchasing life insurance directly is choice and variety; instead of being locked into a group policy chosen by your employer or superannuation fund, you can find a flexible policy that works for your individual needs.

Is direct life insurance suitable for older Australians?

Direct life insurance can offer you control and variety as you can tailor your policy to suit your individual needs. This is a great option for those of us who are still facing financial responsibilities as we get older and want to make sure our loved ones won’t be held back if we were no longer around to provide for them.

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Purchasing direct life insurance without a financial planner

Since you need to purchase a direct policy yourself, finding the right product requires both research and consideration. The upside is that you’ll be able to take advantage of some great features and benefits offered by direct insurers while also tailoring a policy to suit your individual needs.

Don’t be discouraged if you’re unfamiliar with insurance. There are very strict laws around selling direct life insurance in Australia  – every insurer needs to supply a Product Disclosure Statement which lists everything you are covered for (and the exclusions), as well as other relevant documents written in everyday language that is easy to understand. By law, policies also have a cooling off period, which means you can cancel your insurance for a full refund during that time if you decide it’s not right for you, provided no claim has been made.

If you’re unsure about anything, you can always call the insurer and ask for more information. With a little research and planning, you can find the right policy for you on your own.

Direct life insurance vs. buying with an advisor

The process of buying insurance will be different depending on whether you choose to do it yourself or go through a broker or advisor. Here are some things to keep in mind about each method:

Direct Advisor or broker
Yes No additional fees Yes Research and comparisons are done for you
Yes Can take out cover directly with insurer Yes Advice from dedicated licenced consultants
Yes Your choice of a variety of policies Yes Relevant options and advice will be presented based on your personal circumstances
Yes Can make your own decision Yes Can provide assistance with a claim
Yes No extra paperwork – just complete insurer's documents No Added cost of service if charging a fee
Yes Research at your own pace No Advisor may only offer cover with selected partners but where this occurs this should be fully explained
No Need to do your own research and comparisons  
No Will need to call each insurer to ask questions about the cover they provide  

What to consider when purchasing life insurance direct

If you’re thinking about protecting your family’s financial future, one of the most important things you need to consider is how much cover to get. It’s important you consider your own financial situation to establish how much cover you might need. This will depend on your individual circumstances. Some key things to consider include:

  • whether you are currently working
  • how long until you retire
  • any personal savings, investments, or other forms of income you have
  • your assets
  • your current and future health
  • the number of dependants that rely on you (spouse, children, or grandchildren)
  • the expected quality of life for your family after you pass away.

Keep in mind that your premiums will be based on your age and if you are a smoker – because getting approved for a life insurance policy requires answering health questions, it may be easier to take out cover while you are healthy. As you age and experience health issues, the likelihood increases that your insurer may apply a loading or special exclusion to your policy, or you may even find that some insurers will decline to offer you cover.

If you would like to learn more, you can read about the benefits of life insurance and what it can do for you and your loved ones.

How Australian Seniors can help

Seniors Term Life Insurance helps put you back in control of your family’s financial future, with up to $100,000 in cover right when it’s needed most.

Benefits of choosing Seniors Term Life Insurance

A flexible cover amount that suits you – choose how much you or your family will receive if you pass away or become terminally ill. You can set a benefit amount from $10,000 up to $100,000.

Cover for when you need it most. We know that the older you get, the more you have to protect. That’s why our cover is designed for people aged 45 to 79, protecting you for up to 20 years or until age 85, whichever comes first.

Immediate cover. Once your policy is set up, you’ll be covered straight away for death by any cause, and for terminal illness (excluding suicide for the first 13 months).

20% advance payout to cover funeral costs. When your family makes a claim, we’ll give them 20% of the benefit amount in advance, so they won’t have to worry about the cost of your funeral or other immediate expenses.

Triple payout for Accidental Death. Your family’s benefit amount will be tripled if you pass away from an accident, helping with any last-minute expenses they might face.

Easy to apply with no medicals. Simply answer eight questions about your medical history over the phone. Once approved, you can get covered in minutes.

We’ll keep your premiums manageable. Unlike some life insurance policies, your annual premium increase won’t be based on your age which will help with budgeting later in life. Plus, we offer lower starting premiums for non-smokers.

Your own Australia-based personal claims specialist. If you or your family need to make a claim, we’ll assign one of our local claims specialists to look after everything. No need to explain things to multiple people.

See more benefits

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