Wednesday, December 02, 2009

How to Estimate the Cash Surrender Value of Prudential Life Insurance Policies

All permanent life insurance policies accrue a certain amount of equity called cash value. This amount will vary depending on the type of policy you have (Whole Life, Universal Life, Variable Life), the amount of your monthly premium payments, and the interest rate earned on the cash value portion.

Not all permanent policies have guaranteed cash value performance, as is the case with Variable life insurance policies, which can actually lose value. When you surrender your policy, you may receive a refund check from the insurance carrier for the amount of your cash value, minus any applicable fees or penalties.

Figuring Out Your Prudential Life Insurance Policy

Determine the type of Prudential life insurance policy that you own. This is easily discovered by reviewing your original policy contract. If you own a Whole Life or Universal Life insurance policy, your cash value is guaranteed and the accumulation of this account should be relatively predictable.

Find out the interest rate the cash value account is earning. Your policy contract should specify the minimum rate of return that the account can earn. However, there is a chance that the interest rate may be higher if Prudential's investment performance has been good.

Calculate the additional earnings on your account using the minimum guaranteed rate listed in your policy pages and adding that to the cash value amount shown on your most recent statement. Subtract from this total the amount of the surrender charges listed in your policy contract.

Contact Prudential's customer service department to verify your calculations. The customer service representative is able to provide you with the most accurate and up-to-date values inside your account, along with an explanation of how interest is credited and surrender charges are deducted.

Tips & Warnings

Many permanent life insurance policies have surrender periods that last for several years. If you terminate your policy within this surrender period, a penalty is charged against your cash value. Depending on the size of the cash value accumulation and the amount of the penalty, you may receive a dramatically lower refund, if you get one at all.

References

Katt & Company: Life Insurance Issues to Be Wary Of
Insure.com: Cash Value Life Insurance
The CPA Journal: Disposition of Life Insurance Policies


Article originally published on eHow Money (12/02/2009)