1. You Must Prove “Insurable Interest”
You have to be able to prove that you would somehow be financially impacted by your ex-husband’s death. If so, there is a legitimate need for insurance, or “insurable interest“.
By far, the #1 reason a woman takes out life insurance on her ex-husband is to protect her alimony income.
If the ex-husband dies, and your alimony payments stop, there’s a case where you need life insurance. Say you’re getting paid child support, or have children you’re both helping to put through school or college, his death would mean you have to bear 100% of the financial burden of raising your child/children. You too have an insurable interest.
2. Yes, He Must Know about the Insurance
Since your ex-husband will be the insured, he will need to answer questions about his health and sign an insurance application. You can’t take a life insurance policy out on your ex-husband without his knowledge. It’s impossible.
In fact, he will not only know about it, but he may have to take a medical exam so the insurance company will make an offer. I’ve run into some trouble here in the past, when the ex-husband doesn’t want to cooperate with answering questions or taking an exam. If you have children together, you might consider putting the children down as beneficiaries on the policy, and telling him so, to get his cooperation. If you don’t have children, sometimes a charity or religious organization will work.
Who are the Parties Involved in Purchasing the Policy?
In most cases, you would be the owner, payor, and beneficiary. Your ex-husband would only be the insured. Be sure to tell him he would not be liable for any missed payments – ever. As the owner, you have 100% control over the policy. You can change the beneficiaries, payment mode or frequency, or even decrease the face value (death benefit). For whole life or other cash value policies, the owner would also maintain complete control of the cash value, including having access to cash or loans. Your ex-husband would have no control or access to the policy, and structured like this, would in no way benefit from being the insured on the policy.
Can a Man Purchase Life Insurance on His Ex-Wife?
Yes. Everything written above applies to both cases.
Can I purchase life insurance on my boyfriend or girlfriend?
Yes, again – as long as there is legitimate insurable interest. I wrote an article on this question, which can be found here.
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