Affordable Term Life Insurance for Seniors Over 70

Clifford PendellWritten by Clifford Pendell
happy retired husband and wife

Finding affordable term life insurance for seniors over 70 can be challenging, but it’s far from impossible.

As a trusted independent agency renowned for providing patient, personalized service, we've assisted thousands of clients with securing affordable life insurance from top-rated providers.

The article answers the most commonly asked questions from our clients, providing you with the guidance you need to buy the right policy for your situation. We've also provided some sample life insurance rates to help you estimate the cost of your coverage.

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Can A 70 Year Old Get Term Life Insurance?

Contrary to what your local home and auto insurance agent might say, affordable life insurance is available to seniors over 70. In fact, dozens of highly-rated insurers will offer you a policy until the age of 80, even if you are in less-than perfect health. However, it's crucial to note that as we get older, our options become more limited.

Term life insurance is the least-expensive form of life insurance available to seniors. It offers level rates and coverage for a fixed number of years. With many highly-rated providers, a qualified individual can purchase a 10 year term until the age of 80, and a handful of providers are willing to offer 15-year terms until age 78.

If you pass away during this period, the insurer will pay a tax-free death benefit to the beneficiary or beneficiaries listed on your policy. The majority of companies offer a minimum death benefit of $100,000, but you may be able to purchase less coverage depending on your needs and budget.

What is the Cheapest Life Insurance For Seniors Over 70?

Most financial advisers recommend term insurance because it is less expensive than other forms of life insurance. Additionally, you won't have to worry about paying additional fees down the road if the market doesn't perform well. In the tables below, we've included some sample term life insurance rates for a healthy male aged 70 to 79.

Term Life Insurance Rates for a Male in Excellent Health - 10 Year Term

Current Age$100,000 of Coverage$250,000 of Coverage$500,000 of Coverage
70$85.65$167.44$294.56
71$94.36$190.06$335.76
72$104.22$216.41$383.86
73$116.57$243.86$441.71
74$131.14$276.54$510.16
75$149.72$318.19$592.51
76$200.03$418.29$784.08
77$249.54$505.52$955.35
78$302.18$598.61$1,144.46
79$342.81$670.59$1,299.31

*Displayed monthly rates are accurate as of 12/04/2023 and are provided for illustration only.

Term Life Insurance Rates for a Male in Excellent Health - 15 Year Term

Current Age$100,000 of Coverage$250,000 of Coverage$500,000 of Coverage
70$119.71$233.69$439.16
71$150.70$281.71$530.11
72$181.47$342.51$646.11
73$207.25$414.44$778.36
74$243.09$473.81$934.71
75$273.81$562.64$1,096.06
76$323.60$715.28$1,377.43
77$374.09$819.19$1,578.88
78$435.97$956.46$1,844.50
*79*N/A*N/A*N/A

*Displayed monthly rates are accurate as of 12/04/2023 and are provided for illustration only.

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What Kind of Life Insurance is Best For Seniors?

Everyone's needs for life insurance are different, so the best policy for your friend or neighbor might not be the best option for you. Before making a decision, consider how long you want your coverage to last. Will your loved ones become financially independent within the next 10 to 15 years, or will they need financial assistance forever?

Most people's need for life insurance decreases as they age. By the time we reach our 70s, our children have usually moved out, and our mortgage balance is hopefully minimal, but individual circumstances can vary greatly. Some seniors may also need life insurance for less traditional purposes like estate planning or leaving an inheritance behind.

In these situations you will need to purchase a permanent life insurance policy that you cannot outlive. The best permanent life insurance policies for this situation are guaranteed universal life insurance and traditional whole life insurance. We've further explained these policies in the following sections:

What is Guaranteed Universal Life Insurance?

Guaranteed universal life insurance (GUL) is usually the best option for those in need of more than $50,000 of “permanent” life insurance. A GUL gives you the peace of mind that a traditional permanent policy can offer, but without the bells and whistles that typically over-complicate these policies.

With guaranteed universal life insurance, there is no required investing, no cash accumulation, no management fees, no stipulations, and no fine print. A GUL functions just like a term policy, except your "term" lasts to a specified age (90, 95, 100, 105, 110, or 120) instead of a set number of years.

The key benefit to guaranteed universal life is that your rates are fixed, and they will not increase as you get older, regardless of how well the stock market does or what the interest rates will be in 15 or 20 years. However, unlike whole life insurance, guaranteed universal life insurance requires a medical exam for approval.

While some people are reluctant to complete a free in-home exam, it's important to note that life insurance providers review your medical records before they approve your policy. If you have a few minor health issues like diabetes, high cholesterol, or elevated blood pressure, they shouldn't prevent you from qualifying for an affordable life insurance policy.

What is Whole Life Insurance?

Traditional whole life insurance provides lifetime protection at fixed a cost. These policies offer up to $50,000 of coverage and they do not require a medical exam for approval. If you need a small amount of coverage, and don't want to take an exam, whole life insurance is the easiest way to secure a policy.

The downside to these policies is their cost. A whole life insurance policy can be two to three times more expensive than a guaranteed universal life insurance policy with identical coverage. Some whole life policies also build a small cash value overtime, but important to note that this can take years to accumulate.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Life Insurance Be Used For Estate Protection?

High net worth individuals commonly utilize life insurance to shield their loved ones from estate taxes. When the Federal Estate Tax exemption was raised to $13.61 million per individual in 2024, it prevented the vast majority of Americans from ever having to worry about their heirs paying estate taxes.

However, if your assets exceed this value, or if you live in a state with it's own estate taxes, your loved one's may still be subject to taxes. It's also important to note that the current estate exemption will reduce to roughly $6 million dollars per individual in 2026. In addition, some states impose their own inheritance and estate taxes.

To shield their heirs from this potential tax burden, many high net worth families purchase life insurance to fund an irrevocable life insurance trust which can be used to avoid or reduce estate taxes for future generations. To learn more about estate planning, please see our list of states with an inheritance tax.

Can I Use Life Insurance For Pension Maximization?

If you are approaching retirement and deciding whether to accept your full pension or the reduced joint pension plan from your employer. Many people accept a reduced monthly pension to ensure that their spouse is protected, but this reduced monthly payment can really put a damper on your retirement plans.

Depending on your age and health, buying life insurance could allow you to take your entire pension and provide equivalent income protection for your spouse. To make this process easier for you, we have created a simple 5-step guide for pension maximization.

Can Life Insurance Be Used To Leave an Inheritance?

The death benefit in a life insurance policy can act as an inheritance, allowing you to spend your retirement savings and still leave a legacy. Even better, life insurance proceeds are tax-free, making life insurance a financially savvy inheritance mechanism. Guaranteed universal life insurance is especially effective as an inheritance because it allows you to lock in coverage to age 90 or later.

Will Life Insurance Cover Medical or Final Expenses?

Final expense policies usually carry a death benefit of $5,000 and $25,000, and just like all other life insurance policies, the money is paid to your beneficiaries tax-free. Final expense insurance is very expensive most people will pay more in premiums than the policy will pay out when they pass away. This is why we if usually recommend a GUL insurance instead, but some coverage is always better than none.

A final expense policy can be used to cover the costs of end-of-life care and any medical bills that you may leave behind. During an already upsetting time, many families are overwhelmed to find that their loved one’s medical insurance does not cover hospice or palliative care. A final expense policy can make it a little easier for your family to cope knowing they have a means to pay your end-of-life medical expenses.

Where Do I Start?

We understand the comfort in going to a local agent, especially if you have been a customer of their's for other types of insurance. But, understand that agents at these companies will not be as thorough in meeting your life insurance needs. These agents specialize with home insurance and auto insurance because these are the main “money makers” for them and their company.

At JRC, we specialize in life insurance and life insurance only. We do not work for just one provider; instead, we shop 50 top-rated companies to find the best rates and coverage available. Our agents will walk you through the entire process from start to finish, with no obligations and no sales pressure. Call us toll-free at 855-247-9555, or get a free quote online using the button below.

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Written by:

Clifford Pendell

Clifford Pendell

Managing Partner and Co-founder

Cliff is a licensed life insurance agent and one of the owners of JRC Insurance Group. He has helped thousands of families of businesses with their life insurance needs since 2012 and specializes with applicants who are less than perfect health. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with family, traveling, and the great outdoors.

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