Congratulations—you’re having a baby!
Are you ready? You’ve probably already decorated the baby’s room, stocked up on diapers & wipes, checked out car seats and strollers, and started discussing baby names. Maybe you’ve even signed up for childbirth classes and thought about nannies and daycare, but there’s one more thing you need to think about now that you’re adding another member to your family.
Insurance. That’s right. Have you thought about how having a baby is going to change your insurance needs? While insurance may not be the first thing on your mind as you prepare to welcome Junior into the family, it is important to plan ahead and consider the impact a new baby will have on your insurance needs.
First on the list is health insurance. Now is the time to make sure your health insurance not only covers the cost of maternity care, labor and deliver, but how it will cover a new family member. If you have group insurance through your job, find out now from your HR department how you add baby to your health insurance policy, what will be covered and how that will change your premiums. If you have an individual health insurance policy, now is a good time to call your agent and find out what you need to do to make sure your baby will be covered right from the start. If you and your partner have separate health plans, it will be even more important to determine whose health plan will cover the baby and how it will all work. Don’t wait until after the baby arrives or you may find yourself with some unanticipated expenses.
The birth of a child is one of the primary motivators for people to buy life insurance. Knowing that you are responsible for another human being for at least the next 18 years is a powerful incentive to make sure they will be financially cared for no matter what happens. Life insurance can help to replace your income, help surviving members of your family stay in the family home, or help pay for your child’s education. There are many options when it comes to buying life insurance. To make sure you get the policy that provides the benefits you want for your family, you will definitely want to consult with an independent insurance agent. While some employers offer life insurance as one of their employee benefits, it is usually not enough insurance to take care of your family’s financial needs and this benefit can go away if you change jobs.
Now that you have another human being dependent on you—and your income—for support, disability insurance is something you need to consider. As with life insurance, disability insurance may be a benefit offered by your employer. But will it be adequate to cover your family’s financial needs if you are sick or injured and unable to work? Your independent insurance agent can help you sort through the many different options for short-term and long-term disability insurance, explain the differences between each policy and how they work, and assist you in choosing the plans that will coordinate with any existing benefits to best meet your needs.
Have you reviewed your homeowner’s (or renter’s) insurance lately? If you’ve made renovations or improvements to your home to prepare for your new arrival, it may be time to check your coverage limits on your homeowner’s insurance policy. Not only do you want to be sure that your home and its contents are adequately protected, but you should also review your liability limits. Once your baby arrives, there are sure to be more visitors and eventually play dates and other events that raise the possibility of accidents and injuries. Making sure you have enough homeowner’s insurance will protect you from the financial risk that may arise.
Meeting with your insurance agent for a review and checkup of your insurance needs will give you peace of mind and help you be prepared for some of the financial changes a new baby will bring to your life and allow you to focus on the changes your insurance agent cannot help you prepare for.