Military Life Insurance

In this article...
  • When you go into the military, protecting your loved ones at home and ensuring they're taken care of financially is important. Learn about military life insurance.

If you’re in the military or considering enlisting, you’re probably wondering what benefits you’ll receive and how they work. Making sure loved ones are cared for in the event of your death is a concern for everyone, especially service members, so military life insurance is often an important consideration when it comes to benefits.

Do Military Members Have Life Insurance?

Yes, active duty military members are enrolled in Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance (SGLI) as one of their benefits. This is a term life policy that you are automatically given when you join the military. It provides a cost effective life insurance option for service members, which is important given the sometimes hazardous nature of the job. The maximum coverage for SGLI is $400,000, and service members are automatically ensured with maximum amounts unless they request otherwise.

How Much Is Life Insurance in the Military?

For the maximum coverage limit, military members pay a premium of $25 a month. They have the option to reduce coverage in $50,000 increments. Generally, every $1,000 of coverage costs 6 cents a month.

There is also a $1 charge for Traumatic Injury Protection (TSGLI). This is an associated insurance that protects against financial loss due to injury and also provides financial assistance while the military member is recovering from certain covered injuries. TSLGI coverage ranges from $25,000 to $100,000 dollars in benefits. 

Do Veterans Get Free Life Insurance?

All veterans do not get free life insurance, but disabled veterans are eligible for certain life insurance benefits that can sometimes include free life insurance. Disabled veterans are provided life insurance through the Service-Disabled Veterans' Life Insurance (S-DVI) program.

Veterans must be rated by the VA as having sustained a service related injury within the past 2 years to qualify for S-DVI. Veterans that are entirely disabled may also qualify for free coverage. To qualify for benefits, disabled veteran may also need to be in good health other than the service injury.

Can You Cash Out Your SGLI?

SGLI is a term life policy and doesn’t accrue cash value over time, so you cannot cash it out. Whole life policies can be cashed out because the policyholder is essentially buying the policy. On the other hand, term life policy holders aren’t buying a policy. They’re paying for a service. Cashing out a term life policy would be like trying to sell a house you’re renting.