Universal life insurance is best product for individuals, who:-
I.) are Planning for the long term (2 reasons - 1. need for permanent coverage & 2. need tax sheltered growth).
II.) have RRSP-contibutions - maxed out.
III.) are in higher tax brackets.
UL is offered by many insurance companies eg, Manulife, Canada Life, Sunlife, Industrial Alliance. Since the product is somewhat complex, illustrations play a very important role in demonstrating the features and advantages of UL products. A key issue in this regard is what kind of costs and assumptions are built into these various illustrations. the output vary on different input parameters like assumed interest rate, overfunding, cost of insurance ie YRT or Level. The costs of maintaining these policies ie Policy fee varies- some company has $100 a year, some have $120 a year. something to consider. You can put more than the minimum required amounts into the policy. For people who can pay a big lump sum of money upfront, or high contributions in the first few years, the tax deference provided by Universal Life can really be impressive.
When comparing illustrations for various Universal Life policies, the reality of assumptions the illustration is based on should be examined, keeping these points in mind:1. Cost of Insurance (Mortality Cost) - Is it Level or YRT or Yearly / Annual renewable term.
2. Guarantees if any for "Cash Value" or "Cash Surrender Value".
3. Is Return credited to your investments within a policy?
4. Currency exchange rate exposure can easily wipe out any returns on your investments if the price of the Canadian dollar goes up, if investing in global or US equity for example.
5. Policy fees and expenses differ very much from one Universal Life policy to the other.
6. Is guaranteed only for a few years? Is there a guaranteed fee?
7. The sensitivity and volatility of the whole projection of investment to be considered as well.
8. Participating Universal Life is like traditional whole life policy; they pay 'dividends'.
9. Which riders are available example (term life, disability, critical illness, long-term care, AD&D, child term)
10. Does your premium gets invested immediately when they receive it OR they wait until a certain amount is collected, reducing by this the time during which your money works for you.
11.Surrender charges - may apply in initial years.
12.Number of lives under one policy that can be insured.
13.Automatic rebalancing of investment portfolios
14.Preferred rates for people with good/ excellent health.
15.Check if company automatically deduct 2 % from every premium, in addition to the 2% premium tax they are obliged to deduct by law.