Single Parents Lack Life Insurance

Most single parents, regardless of income, who have children living at home have no life insurance.

The Genworth Financial Life Jacket Study, developed in collaboration with Gregory B. Fairchild of the University of Virginia's School of Business, found that 69 percent of single parents with dependent children have no life insurance, while 45 percent of married parents with dependent children have no life insurance.

According to the study, about half of the general US population is without life insurance. Single people, both with and without children, are 36% below the national average in terms of insurance coverage.

Researchers were surprised at this finding. "Single parents--arguably the most in need of life insurance--are among the highest uninsured people in the United States," said Gregory Bucko, of Gentworth Financial companies, in a statement.

The study also found that single fathers who did not own a home were more likely than single mothers in the same circumstances to be uninsured. 79 percent of single fathers with an income under $250,000, as opposed to 66 percent of single mothers with an income under $50,000 and 56 percent of single mothers with an income up to $250,000, don't have life insurance.

"We find that many single parents are simply too busy--or even too scared--to properly evaluate their life insurance needs," said Gregory B. Fairchild. "This is an understandable fear because the first level of financial safety--the other parent--isn't there. The study revealed the severity of this situation, not just among single parents, but married ones, too. The insurance industry has an opportunity to better educate consumers and give them the tools and resources to help protect themselves and their families."   Ruf Strategic Solutions gathered data for the study via telephone, online and mail from more than 23,000 adults over 15 months.
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