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Over 60s life insurance

A few milestone birthdays can remind us of the need for life insurance to protect those we love when we're gone. Hitting the 60-year mark is certainly high among them.

Here, we look at what to consider if you're 60 years young and counting – like what kind of cover may suit as you continue to enjoy your life.

A senior couple driving a convertible on a sunny day, smiling, wearing sunglasses

What is over 60s life insurance?

The reality is few providers offer a specialist life insurance product for people over 60s. Most provide over 50s life cover policies instead, which may suit you when you reach the big six-o.

Over 50s life cover is generally whole-life insurance, which differentiates it from fixed-term cover as it's guaranteed to pay out upon your death regardless of how long the policy is in place.

While term life insurance is in place for a pre-determined length of time, whole life – as the name suggests – lasts from the point at which you take out the policy until your death. If you’re seeking affordable life insurance for someone over 60, an over 50s policy might suit your needs.

This makes it an appropriate option for people who are entering the latter part of their lives and who want to make provisions for a time when they’re no longer around.

Since many specialist life insurance policies for over 60s are guaranteed and don’t require a medical, they don't offer payouts of the size of fixed-term policies. Therefore most people take them out to help to cover funeral costs, to pay outstanding debts or to leave a gift for the next generation.

Put protection in place for those left behind

Why should I get over 60s life insurance?

Those in their 60s may still be in full-time employment and beginning to think about providing for their retirement. If you're over 60, you may want life insurance to cover the income you would have contributed to your family, to pay off remaining mortgage payments, to help towards care costs or any other costs of living when you're no longer around.

That’s not the only reason people opt for this type of insurance, though. Outstanding credit card bills or other minor debts might be covered by a payout, taking the financial responsibility off your loved ones.

An important feature of the Post Office Over 50s Life Cover is that the payment term (the period during which you pay the monthly premiums) is capped. The payment term ends at the policy anniversary once you have turned 95, but the cover runs until you die – even if that happens many years after you have completed your premium payments. Given the average size of over 50s and over 60s life insurance payouts, they are usually taken out to contribute towards funeral costs.

Fundamentally, this type of policy offers peace of mind. Provided you maintain your premiums, you will know the size of the payout your loved ones will receive. Knowing that it is impossible to outlive the term of your policy will also give you reassurance that your family may have some financial strain lifted when you pass away.

Can I use an over 60s life insurance policy to pay inheritance tax?

It is possible but unlikely that an over 60s life insurance policy will pay out enough to completely cover an inheritance tax bill.

According to HMRC regulation, inheritance tax is only due on estates valued at more than £325,000. The maximum payout for a Post Office Over 50s policy is £10,000, depending on age. If you had the maximum amount of cover available and your estate was worth no more than £350,000 then a payout could cover the tax bill, however this will only apply to a small number of people.

Calculating the value of your estate is always a worthwhile undertaking as it will help you to determine what level of cover you need. In turn, you might decide that an over 60s policy is right for you, or you might opt for a fixed-term policy.

Please note: these figures are illustrative examples and should not be used as a basis for financial decisions. While we try to ensure our content is up to date, changes to tax rules may be implemented before we have updated our pages. Professional financial advice should be sought for any queries you may have about inheritance tax.

Do I need to have a medical to qualify for over 60s life insurance?

Life insurance with no medical simply means taking out cover and having no requirement to complete any medical checks. This will depend on the insurer, their policies and on certain health and lifestyle factors.

When applying for life insurance, the insurer will ask you a few questions regarding your health and lifestyle. It’s how you respond to these questions which may affect whether or not you require a medical examination.

Some policies accept applicants without a medical. For example there are no medicals needed for Over 50s Life Cover with Post Office. If you are a UK resident between the ages of 50 and 80, you are guaranteed to be accepted.

What other types of life insurance are there?

The most relevant types of life insurance for someone aged over 60 years old are the three kinds of fixed term policy: decreasing term, level term and increasing term.

Decreasing is designed to pay off a repayment mortgage or other long-term reducing debt. Level term and increasing term insurance policies offer set payouts which are decided when you take out your policy. The difference between the two is that with Increasing policies, the amount of the payout goes up each year (to help mitigate the effect of inflation). However, increasing term policy premiums also increase annually, so this is something to factor in.

It’s important to bear in mind that these policies will involve a greater degree of medical scrutiny and for people over 60, the premiums for fixed-term insurance are likely to be significantly larger than a healthy person taking out a policy at age 30.

Enjoying life over 60

Having an over 60s life insurance policy offers peace of mind that you are able to do what you can to support those you care about when you’re no longer around. 

The right life cover for you will depend on what you need cover for, how much you need and over what period. Use our life insurance calculator and enter a few details to see how much cover you may need.

Safeguard your loved ones' tomorrows. Then focus on enjoying your todays

Post Office life cover options

  • Life Insurance

    Choose between level, decreasing or increasing term insurance, each designed to offer you peace of mind based on your circumstances.

  • Over 50s Life Cover

    If you're aged between 50 and 80, we could help you leave a cash sum for your family or towards your funeral costs.