Should I buy the double indemnity rider?


Although it is relatively cheap and the prospects of receiving double the face amount of life insurance might be luring, purchasing the accidental death benefit rider (ADB), also known as double indemnity rider, is not recommended for the following reasons:

  1. The requirements for collecting benefits are hardly satisfiable. In order to qualify for the collection of the proceeds, the beneficiary must prove that the death has been caused directly and by accident.

    Note that double indemnity does not cover death from other causes, such as a disease or other sudden conditions, such as a heart attack.

    The second requirement, i. e. that death must occur within 90 days of the accident, makes payment of the double indemnity benefit even more improbable. However, some insurance companies have taken into account the technological progress in medicine that has resulted in prolongation of patients' lives, and are now using longer periods, such as six months or even a year.

    And finally, insurance companies impose an age limit, meaning that the insured's death must occur before some specified age, such as 60, 65 or 70.

  2. Another objection as to why you shouldn't buy the accidental death benefit rider is that one is more likely to die from an illness rather than as a result of an accident.

    Therefore, instead of purchasing the double indemnity rider that only covers death by accident, you can make better use of the money by buying additional life insurance that will pay off regardless of the cause of death.

  3. Very often people who have purchased the ADB are under the wrong impression that they have more coverage than they actually do. Because the double indemnity rider doubles, and in some cases, triples the face amount of life insurance in the event of death by accident, some people might erroneously take the doubled/tripled amount as the actual amount of life insurance they own.
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