Knowledge Center


Life Insurance Basics.

Do I need life insurance?

If you have a partner, children, or elderly parents who depend on you for support (financial or otherwise), then it’s a wise decision to purchase life insurance to provide them with a financial safety net, should something unexpected happen to you.

What does life insurance cover?

Life insurance benefits are paid in full in one lump sum to your beneficiaries when you die. Your beneficiaries can choose to use the money however they please. Some people use the funds to pay off a mortgage. Often, life insurance benefits are used to care for children, fund college expenses, and cover day-to-day living expenses. They can be used to settle unpaid medical bills, taxes, or co-signed debt. In special circumstances, life insurance proceeds can be used to cover estate taxes your family would pay to inherit your other assets.

When is the best time to get life insurance?

The best time to get life insurance is when someone depends on you. Also, the younger you are, the more affordable your life insurance is likely to be. It’s a smart move to lock in a low monthly price now, which will stay flat for the entire term of your policy. As your needs change over time, you can change your insurance. If you have another child or buy a bigger house, your needs might increase, and you can apply for more coverage. As you save money or earn more over time, your needs might decrease, and with Pine Valley you can decrease your coverage (with no fees or penalties).

Can I get coverage, even if I've had some health problems?

At Pine Valley Planning, every customer is underwritten individually and receives a price based on many factors. Health history, current health, age, sex, and use of tobacco all go into the underwriting decision. Unfortunately, in certain cases, health problems can result in being declined for coverage, however, health problems in no way preclude you from applying. We have several happy clients who have had a history of health challenges.

Determining Your Needs.


How much life insurance do I need?

Big picture: consider how much financial support you’d like to provide for your beneficiaries and how much debt you have. Then, subtract your savings and existing life insurance. The best way to answer this question for your personal situation is to take a few minutes to fill out our Calculator. Remember, with Pine Valley you have flexibility. If you get more coverage than you need, you can decrease it anytime (with no fees or penalties). On the other hand, if your needs grow, you can apply to layer on more coverage.

What length term is right for me?

There are a few factors to consider when determining the length of your term. Start out by looking at when your mortgage term ends, when your last child will graduate from college, and when your partner plans to retire. It generally makes sense for your term to last through these events. You’ll also want to consider your own savings. If you’re a person who saves quite a bit each month, you may need insurance for a shorter term, as you’ll sooner rely on your savings instead. Lastly, the price of your insurance can be a consideration. Longer terms are a bit more expensive per month than shorter terms, which could affect the decision you make.

How much will my life insurance cost?

Your monthly payment is determined based upon your personal situation, taking into account your age, sex, health, family medical history, and other factors. In addition, your monthly payment also depends very much on the length of your term and amount of your desired coverage. Our customers are often pleasantly surprised when they see their monthly price. Fill out an application. There’s no obligation to accept an offer—the choice to proceed is always up to you.

I already have life insurance with my employer - isn't that enough?

Oftentimes not. Many people are surprised to learn that the life insurance included as part of their benefits package is only one or two times their salary. Visit our Calculator to understand your needs. We find most people need far more than 1-2x salary. Not only is life insurance through an employer often not enough, it generally doesn’t move with you, if you change jobs.

Do people who stay-at-home need life insurance too?

It’s a good idea. Those who stay-at-home provide all kinds of unpaid work to keep a household running. If something were to happen to a stay-at-home partner, it can be expensive to hire external help for things like child care, driving, cooking, cleaning, and managing household finances. It’s a wise decision to insure both adults in your household, regardless of whether they bring in income.

How often should I revisit my insurance needs?

Life is dynamic. As your needs change, so, too, should your coverage. For instance, if you have another child, purchase a home, or incur new debt, you might apply for more life insurance to cover these things. On the other hand, if you pay off your mortgage, a child graduates from college, or you’re able to save a large amount of money, you might decrease your coverage. By and large, it’s a good idea to check in with yourself on a quarterly or annual basis and adjust your coverage accordingly.

Is there someone who can answer a few questions I have?

Absolutely. Everyone on our support team is licensed and happy to help with your questions. Reach out any time at

What's Different About Pine Valley.


What is Pine Valley, and who is it for?

Pine Valley is life insurance built to be instant, simple and smart. We offer direct-to-consumer, term life insurance online. We do not charge fees, and we do not employ commissioned sales agents. Pine Valley is for people who value a streamlined process. Pine Valley offers coverage to U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents who have lived in the country for more than 2 years. Applicants must be between the ages of 20 and 60 as of their nearest birthday. (For example, if you were born on March 11, 1985, and today’s date were November 21, 2016, your application age would be 32, since you are closer to your next birthday than your last birthday).

What type of life insurance does Pine Valley Planning offer?

Pine Valley Planning provides the most simple, straightforward, and affordable type of life insurance to our customers: term life insurance. The “term” is the length of coverage. You can choose a 10, 15, 20, 25, or 30 year term. If something happens to you within the term, your beneficiaries will receive the payout benefit. There are no fees, and you can cancel at any time. Another main type of life insurance is called whole life, which is a bundled insurance/investment product. Pine Valley doesn’t offer whole life insurance. It can be more complex than term and a lot more expensive. Whole life insurance provides lifelong coverage instead of coverage for a pre-set term. Prices are significantly higher than term rates; in fact, whole life policies can be many multiples of the cost of a term policy. Part of that higher price for whole life coverage is invested on your behalf by the insurance company for a fee. We believe it is better to buy the more affordable term insurance and then invest the rest yourself. You can earn higher returns (dividends, interest, and appreciation)—all with complete access to your own savings the whole time.

Will I need a lab appointment?

At Pine Valley, every customer is underwritten individually. That means that it is impossible to predict whether you will be asked to complete a lab appointment or not. What we can tell you is that any required lab appointments are free. A traveling technician will come to your home or office—wherever it’s convenient for you. During your appointment, the technician will ask you a few questions, measure your height and weight, take your blood pressure and pulse, and collect a urine and blood sample.

Can I trust Pine Valley Planning?

Pine Valley has partnered with Fidelity Security Life Insurance Company, which has been rated A- (Excellent), the fourth highest rating out of fifteen categories, based on an analysis of financial position and operating performance by A.M. Best Company, an independent analyst of the insurance industry.

What's unique about Pine Valley's approach?

Our Easy, Online Application & Instant Decisions You can apply for life insurance coverage with Pine Valley right now via our online application, get approved, and even be immediately covered within the next few minutes. This represents a sea-change in the life insurance industry. With other companies, you usually need to find a sales agent, learn about all their various products, determine your needs, submit application paperwork, complete an in-person medical exam, have a phone interview with the insurer, then wait a number of weeks for an underwriter to approve your application. The insurance you need today may be quite different than what you’ll need five years from now. For this reason, we designed the ability for you to ‘ladder’ easily: you can apply for more coverage or decrease your coverage, right on your My Account page. So, for instance, if your child graduates from college or you pay off your mortgage, you can eliminate the amount of your coverage that was intended to provide for those things and subsequently lower your monthly price. In fact, regularly laddering your coverage down over the years can save you thousands of dollars. Customer Service Without a Hidden Agenda You can always reach out to one of our licensed insurance professionals if you have questions at any point. That’s another thing that makes Pine Valley different: our support people are salaried employees, not commissioned sales agents, so you can trust they have your best interests at heart.