Life insurance guide: What type, how much and who benefits

Source: Tara Siegel Bernard, N.Y.Times (Paid Registration)

Most people don’t think about life insurance until they absolutely have to. That usually happens when their financial well-being becomes increasingly intertwined with someone else’s, which can come with getting married, buying a home or, the big one, bringing a child into the world.

Below are answers to some of the most common questions that are likely to arise:

What type do I need? Most people are best served by a plain-vanilla term insurance policy. At least that’s what many financial planners — who are paid a fee for their advice — will recommend. As the name suggests, these policies pay a set amount if the policy owner dies within the boundaries of the term, typically somewhere between 10 years and 30 years.

How much to buy?

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