Life Insurance: Some Options for Expatriates
In general, if you are an expatriate seeking life insurance whilst overseas, you have three options:
1. UK Life Insurance
Obtaining life insurance cover for UK expatriates from UK based is usually possible except in situations where the country of residence is considered unduly "risky" - with insurers often relying on the country travel warnings issued by the UK and other governments to make an assessment regarding the level of risk. Rather than being declined the cover may be subject to certain restrictions or exclusions, such as in relation to injuries or death or as a result of wars or civil disturbances.
2. "Host" Country Life Insurance
You can often choose to apply for life insurance cover in your host country from a reputable firm. This might be the preferred solution from a number of perspectives, including cost, if are likely to remain in the host country for a very long period of time and your future costs are likely to be in the local currency. If, however, on any premature death the family’s long term costs are likely to be more UK related (for education, housing, support) then you are taking a risk regarding exchanges rates. Additionally, in developing countries, the local premium rates are likely to reflect lower life expectancies and country risk.
3. International Life Insurance
There are circumstances where obtaining an international or offshore life insurance policy is the preferred or only available option. These are policies issued outside of national jurisdictions and are available in a range of major currencies. If you intend being overseas for a number of years these may represent a good fit, and sometimes they are sold in concert with investment products. Any purchase of these products should absolutely be the subject of advice from a recognised professional adviser to ensure that they match your personal circumstances and that there are no untoward tax or other consequences. Carefully review the premium rates against alternatives (they can sometimes be high) and consider the possible impact of any currency movements on both premium payments and final payouts.
Exfin provides access to advisers who can provide appropriate professional advice in respect of these products and quotations without any commitment. Please utilise the Inquiry Form below and we will respond as promptly as possible.