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Policy Types

Veterans life insurance: Which option is best for you?

This article discusses options active service members have when it comes to post-service life insurance coverage. There are life insurance options that are specifically designed for veterans.
Active service members are most likely very familiar with their SGLI (Service members' Group Life Insurance) policy, but might be less aware of what their post-service life insurance options may look like. If your time in the military is coming to an end, take the time to familiarize yourself with the different life insurance options available exclusively to veterans.

Veterans Group Life Insurance (VGLI)

When you leave the service, you may have the option to convert your SGLI policy to a VGLI policy. You can enroll for the same amount of coverage you had under your SGLI plan, or a lesser amount if you prefer, and you may have the opportunity to increase your coverage every five years. (The current maximum amount of coverage available under a VGLI policy is $400,000.) Your coverage will never expire, so long as you pay your premiums, but your premiums will increase with age. Having health issues should not prevent your ability to enroll, as no proof of good health is required. Be forewarned: you only have one year and 120 days to decide to convert your SGLI to VGLI. You can get an idea of how much your future VGLI premiums will cost by reviewing this VGLI premium rate chart provided by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance (VMLI)

This is a unique type of life insurance policy that only applies to veterans with a service-related disability and who have received a Specially Adapted Housing (SAH) grant to help build, remodel, or purchase a home, and also hold the title to that home and have a mortgage on that home. Your VMLI policy provides up to $200,000 in coverage, which pays benefits directly to the mortgage holder (your bank or lender) in the event of your death - not to a beneficiary. Keep in mind that the value of your policy will decrease over time as the balance of your mortgage continues to be paid off. You can calculate your prospective VMLI insurance premiums at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs website.

Service-Disabled Veterans Insurance (S-DVI)

If you have a service-related disability, you can apply for S-DVI if you meet certain criteria outlined here at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs website. In the event of total disability due to a service-connected injury, your premiums may be waived altogether. Policies have a value of $10,000, and policyholders under age 65 (who have not had their premiums waived) can now apply for supplemental coverage of up to $30,000, thanks to the Veterans' Benefits Act of 2010. The premium rates and additional info about the types of permanent and term SDVI policies available can be found in this downloadable pamphlet.

In addition to your offerings from the Department of Veterans Affairs, there are numerous commercial life insurance policies to consider as either primary or supplemental life insurance options. If you need a refresher course on the differences between commercial types of life insurance options such as Term Life Insurance, Whole Life Insurance, or Universal Life Insurance, visit the Protective Life Learning Center.



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All Learning Center articles are general summaries that can be used when considering your financial future at various life stages. The information presented is for educational purposes and is meant to supplement other information specific to your situation. It is not intended as investment advice and does not necessarily represent the opinion of Protective Life or its subsidiaries.

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