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Life insurance for mums

In this guide we look at the role of mums and how life insurance can help to support that by providing financial security.

A photo of Daniel Sharpe-Szunko, the author

By Daniel Sharpe-Szunko

Published on: 16 June 2022

8 min read

Life insurance for mums

Being a mum is extremely difficult at times but also can be the most rewarding experience of our lives. One of the most important things for mums is to make sure that their children are looked after. You want to take care of your children emotionally, nutritionally, physically and financially.

Life insurance for mums can provide financial security and peace of mind if the worst were to happen. We can’t begin to think about the emotional impact of losing a parent for any child. This event compounded by financial hardship can be catastrophic.

Mums life insurance statistics UK

Here are some figures to support the ever increasing need for mums to have life insurance in the UK.

  • Average age of mothers in 2021 was 30.9 (increasing from 27.7 in 1991)
  • 75.1% of mums work
  • 3 million single parent families (90% are run by women)
  • Average cost of raising a child is £202,660 (approx. £11,250 per year)

There’s no doubt that the cost of raising a child is high and you need to consider your budget carefully. Balancing your finances as a parent is difficult, especially for single mums. Life cover can start from as little as £5 per month to help protect your children should anything happen to you.

Why do mums need life insurance?

Life insurance pays out a cash lump sum to your beneficiaries if you die or if you are diagnosed with a serious illness (critical illness insurance). Policies are designed to work as a safety net. Insurance polices protect your children and provide financial security if something happens to you in the future.

The main reason that mums need to think seriously about life insurance is to make sure that your children are protected. A parent wants to be certain there is support in place if they can’t provide for their children anymore. This can be if a parent dies or becomes seriously ill and can no longer work. An insurance payout can help replace their income and keep them in the family home.

No parents like to think about what would happen to their children if they were no longer able to provide for them, but we can’t predict the future. The reality is that a child loses a parent every 20 minutes in the UK which is an alarming statistic.

Top things to cover with life insurance for mums:

  • Childcare costs which is just as important for mums that work as it is for stay at home mums
  • Mortgage or rent payments to make sure that your children can remain in their family home
  • Living costs and household bills if you’re no longer able to provide or contribute to these costs
  • Funeral expenses so that your family don’t have to pay out for expensive burials or cremations
  • School fees and further education costs so that your children can continue on their educational path

You’ll also need to consider who might end up caring for your children if you’re no longer able to do this or if you pass away. Making sure that your kids can maintain a similar standard of living and lifestyle is important to any mum.

Can all mums have life insurance?

Life insurance for mums can be extremely simple for most, but can also be quite difficult for some mothers. One of the main elements to life insurance underwriting is your health and medical history. These factors can cause issues for some women.

Some of the main medical disclosures for mums life insurance:

Life insurance will almost always be available to women with pre-existing medical conditions, regardless of how severe they might be. The main issues with life insurance for people with medical issues are time and affordability.

There are some medical life insurance specialists that are experts in dealing with women that have issues or medical complaints. You should speak to a specialist if you aren’t sure about getting life insurance because of your medical history.

Other reasons why life insurance for mums might be slightly more complicated:

  • High risk occupations
  • Extreme sports
  • Dangerous activities
  • Overseas travel

How much is life insurance for mums?

Life insurance premiums are essentially priced based on your age and the amount of cover that you need. Insurers will also consider your medical history during pricing.

One of the big developments with life insurance for mums in recent years is non-gender pricing. This means that female applicants now pay the same price as males. This was changed in an EU gender ruling (known as G-Day) in December 2012.

Here are some examples of premiums for mums life insurance:

Non-smoker£200,000 Level Term (family protection) over 25yrs£200,000 Level Term life insurance + £50,000 critical illness over 25yrs
Age 20£4.61£11.71
Age 30£7.22£16.14
Age 40£13.43£33.05

*All of the above life insurance premiums are calculated on 16/03/23 and are based on a person with no pre-existing medical conditions.

Smoker£200,000 Level Term (family protection) over 25yrs£200,000 Level Term life insurance + £50,000 critical illness over 25yrs
Age 20£6.95£14.21
Age 30£11.92£26.06
Age 40£29.52£71.14

*All of the above life insurance premiums are calculated on 16/03/23 and are based on a person with no pre-existing medical conditions.

Note: life insurance premiums for mums can vary depending on your health and the insurance provider that you apply to. You can save hundreds on your life insurance premiums by speaking to a mums life insurance specialist.

Best life insurance for mums

There are four main types of life insurance for mums and the best cover for you will depend on what you need to protect or attitude to risk.

Four types of life insurance:

  • Family life insurance (Level Term) pays out a level lump sum to your beneficiaries if you die to protect your family and their financial future
  • Mortgage life insurance (Decreasing Term) is specifically designed to protect a repayment mortgage and cover reduces as you pay off your mortgage
  • Family Income Benefit (FIB) is a less common type of cover that is designed to pay out an annual income to your family if you die
  • Whole of Life Insurance pays out a guaranteed lump sum when you die to cover expenses such as Inheritance Tax and funeral expenses

Will I pay Tax on life insurance for mums?

You will not pay tax on your life insurance premiums because they are exempt from Insurance Premium Tax (IPT) and VAT.

Life insurance pay outs don’t attract tax as well unless they form part of your estate which can happen if your policy is not in trust. Your family may have to pay Inheritance Tax on your life insurance pay out if it forms part of your estate and is above your personal allowance.

Note: you can reduce the risk of paying Inheritance Tax on your life insurance benefits by writing the policy in to trust which should be free to set-up.

Life insurance for single mums

A common situation is single mums that need life insurance to protect their children when they are still financially dependent and beyond potentially. These policies are important regardless of whether you are working or not working, to provide care for your children.

As a single parent, your children will be far more reliant on you financially so if anything happens to you then it will have a significant impact on them, both financially and emotionally. You can protect your children financially with life insurance for single mums that will be a single policy just in your name.

Life insurance for working mums

As a working mum, regardless of whether you are in a relationship or single, you will be contributing financially to your household. Your income will need to be replaced if you di and so will the care that you provide for your children.

Getting the right life insurance for working mums can give you peace of mind that your children are protected if anything happens to you. Your income should be replaced or you could provide your children with a lump sum to help them financially in the future.

Life insurance for self-employed mums

If you have your own business then you might be able to take out a life insurance policy that is tax-efficient. There are policies that are available for self-employed business owners and company directors that can be paid through your business and reduce tax liability.

Life insurance for stay at home mums

It is a common misconception that stay at home parents don’t need life insurance because they generally don’t contribute financially to the household. This is completely wrong and anyone caring for a child or dependent should be financially protected.

Other types of life insurance for mums

There are several other types of life insurance for mums that you might want to consider to protect you and your children.

  • Critical illness insurance to protect against serious illness such as cancer, heart attack, stroke, MS and permanent disability (sometimes referred to as critical illness cover)
  • Income protection insurance is not taken out by enough people and should be more common than it is. It covers you for anything that leaves you unable to work and is extremely flexible
  • Over 50s life insurance covers you later in life. This can be used to provide your family with a lump sum that can be used for funeral expenses and other minimal costs
  • Personal accident insurance can also come with a funeral benefit and an accidental death benefit to protect your family
  • Joint life insurance can be used to provide life insurance for both you and your partner. This will often be for a lower overall cost than two single policies.

There are lots of different options when looking for life insurance for mums and it can be confusing to know which is best and cheapest. The best option is to find a life insurance specialist that has access to the whole market of insurance providers. Almost all specialists would not charge a fee for their services so you should get expert advice for free.

You can also apply direct to insurance providers which can sometimes seem like a good option. You could also apply via a price comparison site.

You should be careful with this approach to applying. It can seem like the cheapest option for buying a policy, but that’s not always the case. This route might not also be the best option for mums that need advice or guidance to get cover.


Legal and General – Life Insurance When Pregnant

Royal College of Nursing – Women’s Health  

British Nutrition Foundation – Common health issues in women

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