Reasons why it’s important to take out a life insurance policy | FirstNationsFocus.com

Reasons why it’s important to take out a life insurance policy

By Robert E. Autre | Special to First Nation's Focus

Robert E. Autre

CARSON CITY, Nev. — Life insurance! The first thing that comes to mind with most humans is to run as fast as you can away from anyone that utters the words.

There are many reasons why, but the one that is obvious to me is the lack of information. Life insurance isn't one size fits all. Understanding the different types of life policies can clear the fog and set your life and the lives of your loved ones on a path of financial security for generations.

Life insurance is one of the most overlooked financial tools in any financial portfolio. Before I go into the different types of life insurance policies, I will share my experience with you.

I have spent 30 years in law enforcement. In that time, I have seen and experienced the sorrow and anguish of families that lost a loved one. After the emotions and grieving, the family members left behind are often faced with a huge financial deficit. Homes are lost, education hopes are postponed and dreams are crushed.

Depending on who you are, you can put up "gofundme" pages on a social media site and litter the highways with homemade signs asking for community help to support your family.

The simple unselfish solution is right before you. Think about this — if just the head of households purchased a life insurance policy to protect the financial wellbeing of their families, and the funds were passed on to the next generations, and each generation practiced the same habit of securing a life insurance policy, each generation could accumulate sustainable wealth if funded correctly.

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How is this possible, you might ask? With life insurance, I would answer! Here's why: The general rule to purchasing any life insurance policy is to purchase while you are young. Life insurance is based on actuarial tables that calculate life expectancies of men and women.

There are a lot of things to consider like heart disease and systemic conditions like diabetes, cancers, lupus, dementia, Alzheimer's, etc. This is especially true with Blacks, Hispanics and Native Americans. The premiums are traditionally less when a policy is activated at a younger age when these conditions are not present.

That aside, I will share this personal story with you that changed my family's life forever. Six years ago, my wife and I were preparing for retirement and downsizing. This was a happy time for us as we were getting ready to celebrate our 26th wedding anniversary and my retirement from law enforcement.

I celebrated my retirement on Saturday, when I had a conversation with our son Matthew to meet his mother and I on Sunday evening for our anniversary dinner.

On Sunday afternoon, I was in Reno when I received the worst call that any parent wouldn't want. I was advised by one of my law enforcement brothers that our son Matthew was in a horrific car crash and was en route to Renown via Care Flight.

As I was on my way to the hospital, I could see the helicopter overhead. My wife, Georgia, was transported by the sheriff's office watch commander to Renown because she was obviously in no condition to drive herself.

Long story short, Matthew passed away from his injuries on our wedding anniversary, and my wife lost her only child. Matthew did not have life insurance and this impacted other lives left behind, not only spiritually and emotionally, but financially as well.

I truly believe that everyone who possesses a driver's license should have a life insurance policy in place.

As I mentioned before, there are basically two types of insurance policies. "Term Life" is just like it sounds. Ten-, 20- or 30-year terms mean that the policy periods are good for a length of time terminating at the end.

"Whole Life" policies are a permanent life policy that accumulate cash values and have a death benefit to age 100. It is my personal mission to educate every interested person on the difference life insurance can make in his or her life.

I especially invite the Native American community to contact my office to schedule an appointment for a free, no-obligation consultation to learn how to use this awesome, life-changing tool.

Robert E. Autre is a Farmers Insurance agent based at 25 E. Long St. in Carson City. Contact him by calling 775-434-1608.