insurance

Legal to keep life insurance policy on ex?

Jack HungelmannDear Insurance Adviser,
My wife and I are obtaining a divorce. We took out a life insurance policy on me that covers her and our two children. Although we are divorcing, she wants to continue to pay to maintain the policy on me. Is that legal?
-- Maurice

Dear Maurice,
Yes, it is legal for your soon-to-be ex-wife to continue a life insurance policy on you, even after divorce, provided that she is the owner of the policy.

Sad children with parents fighting in background © wavebreakmedia/Shutterstock.com

The owner is the only one authorized to make changes, pay premiums, etc. You can find out who the owner is by looking at the original application attached to the back of your policy. If she is the owner, she pretty much can do whatever she wants.

However, if you -- the person who is insured -- also are the policy owner, then it's up to you whether or not to keep the policy. She can maintain the policy only if you are willing to transfer ownership to her or if she is able to get a court order in the divorce that would mandate that ownership of the policy be transferred to her.

I hope that helps.

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