FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
RESEARCH UNCOVERS DISCONNECTS BETWEEN WHAT NEWLYWEDS
SAY AND DO REGARDING TOUGH INSURANCE CONVERSATIONS
New Insurance Survival
Guide and Interactive Game from the NAIC Help Couples Initiate "The
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Nov. 12, 2013) -Engagement season is officially here, with
couples around the country planning to join in matrimony.1 Trend
watchers say 39 percent of marriage proposals happen between Thanksgiving
and Valentine's Day.
But according to a recent survey by the National Association of
Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), for couples embarking on the journey to
combine their financial lives, the real adventure often begins after the
honeymoon is over. In fact, the survey cites notable discrepancies between
what couples know they should talk about before tying the knot,
and what they actually discuss.
Sensitive Insurance Topics Ignored
The NAIC survey found that before the wedding, many couples had not fully
probed topics that affect insurability. For example, while 71 percent of
newly married couples acknowledged the importance of sharing beneficiary
designations before marrying, nearly half never got around to addressing
their life insurance needs before saying "I do."
To help couples get smart about insurance together without tearing each
other apart, the NAIC created the Insurance Survival
Guide for Newlyweds, an easy-to-understand, downloadable resource
that offers facts and tips to encourage couples to ask these questions
early. And the NAIC's new "I Do
Adventures" interactive game uses lighthearted fun to drive home
valuable insurance lessons.
"This survey captures a sentiment we often encounter - that consumers
want insurance education, but often don't know where to begin," said Jim
Donelon, NAIC President and Louisiana Insurance Commissioner. "These new
resources provide an advantage for couples interested in addressing these
important decisions together. And the NAIC and state insurance
departments are available to help guide consumers through the process."
The survey highlighted several trends common to young couples:
- Though 61 percent of
couples ages 18-24 talked about combining auto policies before
marrying, only 30 percent cited their spouse's driving record - a
key factor in calculating premiums - as an important topic to discuss
before marriage. In fact, across all age groups, more couples viewed
"where we will spend the holidays" as more important to discuss before
marriage than their partner's driving record.
- 84 percent of
respondents ages 18-24 said it was important or extremely important to
share details about pre-existing health conditions before marriage.
But before the big day, only 73 percent had addressed the topic of
whose health insurance to keep.
- 62 percent of
engaged or newly married couples ages 25-34 rated designating a
beneficiary as important or extremely important to discuss
pre-wedding, but only 42 percent even broached the subject of whether
or not they will have enough life insurance before tying the knot.
The data suggests older newlyweds are just as likely to put off
- 85 percent of
engaged or newly married couples ages 55+ said a pre-marital
discussion about insurance beneficiaries was important, yet only 40
percent exchanged thoughts on life insurance coverage amounts before
exchanging vows. In fact, 33 percent of recently married couples ages
55+ had yet to discuss life insurance as long as one year after the
- Before tying the
knot, recently married couples ages 55+ were more likely to have
discussed their entertainment budget than their life insurance
coverage (50 percent vs. 40 percent, respectively).
Having "The Talk"
To avoid misunderstandings, the NAIC advises couples to schedule a
pre-wedding sit-down to directly address auto, home, health and life
insurance. Key questions to consider:
- How's your driving
Finding out your spouse has a lead foot after saying "I do" can be a
shock to your psyche and your auto insurance premiums. If your partner
has a less-than-ideal driving record, consider a named-driver
exclusion clause, or you may want to think twice about combining
- Can we afford to
renovate our home? As couples merge households, consider what that
starter home offers now and will offer in the future. A renovation
investment of $5,000 or more can change a home's replacement value and
- Which health plan
should we keep? The lowest premium isn't the only consideration
when deciding among health insurance options. To avoid a short-term
decision that results in long-term increases in out-of-pocket
expenses, review provisions related to cost sharing (deductibles,
co-pays and coinsurance) and consider what is not covered by the
- How much life
insurance is enough? Now that "I" actually means "we," couples should
insurance coverage. To arrive at a new amount, consider
future income potential, the cost of raising children and any
outstanding mortgage payments.
Newlyweds Radio Segment
(Manisha Thakor) [.mp3]
to access the resources and tips for engaged couples and newlyweds
including NAIC's Insurance Survival
Guide for Newlyweds and the new "I Do
Adventures" game. InsureUOnline.org also provides access to each
department for unbiased insurance information specific to where you
1 "9 Ways to Know
It's Engagement Season," WeddingChannel.com
About the NAIC
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is the U.S.
standard-setting and regulatory support organization created and governed
by the chief insurance regulators from the 50 states, the District of
Columbia and five U.S. territories. Through the NAIC, state insurance
regulators establish standards and best practices, conduct peer review, and
coordinate their regulatory oversight. NAIC staff supports these efforts
and represents the collective views of state regulators domestically and
internationally. NAIC members, together with the central resources of the
NAIC, form the national system of state-based insurance regulation in the
U.S. For more information, visit www.naic.org.