Jeffrey Manola is an experienced life insurance agent and the founder of Top Quote Life Insurance. His mission when he created Top Quote Life Insurance was to provide online consumers searching for life insurance with the absolute best quotes for term life insurance, permanent life insurance, no medical exam life insurance, and burial insurance. Not only does he strive to provide you with the ...

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Written by Jeffrey Manola
Founder & Licensed Agent Jeffrey Manola

Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insur...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Farmers CSR for 4 Years Leslie Kasperowicz

UPDATED: Nov 4, 2020

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It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right life insurance coverage choices.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident life insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We are not affiliated with any one life insurance provider and cannot guarantee quotes from any single provider.

Our insurance industry partnerships don’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own. To compare quotes from many different life insurance companies please enter your ZIP code on this page to use the free quote tool. The more quotes you compare, the more chances to save.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about life insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything life insurance-related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by life insurance experts.

Top Quote Life Insurance | Basic Life Insurance Terms & Definitions

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Life Insurance Terms & Definitions

At Top Quote Life Insurance we have made it our goal to making life insurance simple for our online consumers. A part of this goal was to create a helpful life insurance guide of commonly used life insurance terms and definitions to give you a better understanding of the common terminology used when dealing with life insurance.

Be sure to reference back to this page if at anytime you run into any life insurance terms on this website that you do not understand. By understanding the basic life insurance terms and definitions, you will be better prepared in your search for coverage.


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Quick Reference Guide of Life Insurance Term & Definitions

Beneficiary: The person(s) who receives the payment of the amount of insurance after the death of the insured.

Cash (Surrender) Value: Is the sum of money an insurance company will pay to the policyholder in the event his or her policy is voluntarily terminated before its maturity or the insured event occurs.

Contingent Beneficiary: The person(s) who receives the payment of the amount of insurance after the death of the insured and assuming the primary beneficiary is no longer alive at the time of death of the insured.

Convertible Term Insurance: A term insurance policy that can be exchanged (converted) to a permanent insurance policy at the option of the policy owner without evidence of insurability.

Dividend: A refund to the policy owner of a portion of life insurance premium after the company meets such obligations as claims, expenses, and reserves.

Face Amount: The amount of the that the policy will pay at the death of the insured or when the policy matures.

Insurability: Is the acceptability to the company of an applicant for insurance.

Insured or Insured Life: The person on whose life the policy is issued.

Level Premium (Life Insurance): Life insurance in which premiums do not increase from year to year but instead remain constant throughout the premium paying period.

Loan (Policy Loan): An advance of money available to a policy owner from the policy cash values.

Paid-up Insurance: A policy that has been paid in full but has not yet matured.

Participating Policy: A life insurance policy that pays a return of premium as a dividend.

Permanent (Life Insurance): A form of life insurance (except term) generally that builds up a cash-value, such as universal life or whole life insurance.

Policy Owner: The person who owns a life insurance policy.

Premiums: Annual, semi-annual, quarterly or monthly payments to the insurance company to buy a policy and to keep it in-force.

Renewable Term Insurance: Term insurance which can be renewed at the end of the term without evidence of insurability. The rates generally increase at each renewal anniversary date as the age of the insured increases.

Term Insurance: A life insurance policy that pays death benefits only if the insured survive the specific term period.  Generally 1 – 30 year term lengths.

Universal Life Insurance: A life insurance policy that offers truly flexible premiums. The policy owner has the rights to withdraw part of the cash value without having the withdraw treated as a policy loan. Universal life insurance can provide lifetime protection.

Whole Life Insurance:  A basic type of permanent life insurance which can provide lifetime protection at a level premium. Premiums must generally be paid for as long as the policy is in force.

If at anytime you run into any life insurance terms that you are unfamiliar with, please contact us and we will help.

Looking to compare life insurance policies? We can help. Enter your ZIP code to get free quotes from multiple insurers.