Seniors’ #1 reason for life insurance is life, not death, survey shows

Retirement planning is the primary reason Americans over 55 buy life insurance, using it to combat “longevity risk” as well as death risk, according to a Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance survey.

Using a survey pool of 2,097, one-third of those age 55+ cited retirement security as the main reason for buying life insurance, whereas only 19 percent of those age 44 and under cited this as the primary reason.

"Individuals have long recognized the importance of life insurance in terms of providing financial protection to loved ones in the event of their death,” said David Simbro, senior vice president of life and annuity products at Northwestern Mutual in a company release. “However, these new study results show that people of all ages are also leveraging the flexibility of permanent life insurance to help meet long-term financial goals.”

Life insurance is playing a larger role in senior financial planning, especially as people continue to live longer after retirement, Simbro added.

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