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By Peter S. Gaytan
As part of the Veterans’ Benefit Act of 2010, effective April 11, 2012, veterans who have Veterans’ Group Life Insurance (VGLI) can increase their coverage without having to answer health questions. Here’s how it works.
If you are a veteran with less than $400,000 in VGLI coverage AND are under age 60 on any five-year anniversary of your VGLI effective date, you can now opt to increase your coverage by $25,000. You must apply for the increased coverage during the 120 days prior to your five-year VGLI anniversary. You can continue to increase your VGLI coverage in $25,000 increments every five years after that up to the legislated maximum, which is currently $400,000. You cannot purchase amounts less than $25,000 unless you have more than $375,000 in coverage and then you can purchase the amount necessary to equal up to $400,000. VGLI rates are based on age and the amount of VGLI coverage you have purchased. Your premium will increase as you increase your coverage. For an Insurance Needs Calculator to determine the amount of coverage you need, go to: http://www.insurance.va.gov/sgliSite/calculator/needsCalc.htm
For more information on VGLI and your eligibility to increase your coverage, go to: http://www.insurance.va.gov/sgliSite/VGLI/VGLI.htm
Peter S. Gaytan is the author of For Service To Your Country – Updated Edition: The Essential Guide to Getting the Veterans’ Benefits You’ve Earned (Citadel, 2011), available from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other booksellers. He has served as an advocate in securing and protecting the earned benefits of America’s veterans for more than a decade. Gaytan is the Executive Director of the American Legion, the largest veterans service organization in America.