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Final Expense & Burial Insurance in Colorado

If you’re researching funeral options in Colorado, you’ve likely noticed that they are certainly expensive. Fortunately, final expense life insurance (also known as funeral insurance) can help protect your family from the high cost of end-of-life expenses. This type of life insurance covers things like the costs associated with a funeral, medical bills, final car payments, utility bills, and other debt left behind by the deceased. You can also instruct your family members to keep the extra cash for themselves after your expenses are paid.

When you purchase burial insurance for seniors in Colorado, the policy is like other life insurance policies. But you should understand the specific information associated with buying insurance in Colorado. We’ll talk about these specifics and also why Funeral Advantage is the leading insurance policy in Colorado.

Funeral & Burial Expectations in Colorado

According to the National Funeral Directors Association (NDFA), the average funeral with a viewing in Colorado costs $6,907. That price doesn’t include the casket, vault, flowers, transportation, or other items typically associated with a funeral. And in addition to price, Colorado has some other state-specific things you need to know about.

Death Certificates

In Colorado, a death certificate must be filed with the local or state vital records office within 5 days before a body is buried or cremated. The physician or person who cared for the person prior to death is responsible for completing the medical certification portion of the death certificate within 48 hours after death. If an inquiry is made into the death, the coroner should complete this portion of the certificate. Then, the person in charge of the deceased’s remains typically files the death certificate. This can be the mortuary, funeral home, crematory, or anyone responsible.

The state has some specific guidelines when it comes to who is able to make the arrangements for both burials and cremation. The people allowed to make arrangements are, in this order:

  • The person you designate in your “declaration instrument.” (This is a written statement made by you saying who you want to make disposition decisions. Then sign and date the document.)
  • A person you have appointed as the personal representative or special administrator of your estate.
  • Your surviving spouse. (This is not true if you are legally separated)
  • Your adult child. (If you have more than one child, the majority will decide on the arrangements.)
  • Your parents
  • Your siblings
  • If no one is responsible for your estate, the state will appoint a public administrator.

Embalming and Refrigeration

Colorado law dictates that if the deceased won’t be buried or cremated within 24 hours, the body must be embalmed or refrigerated. And if the body will be transported to another state by common carrier, Colorado law requires that it is embalmed or shipped in a hermetically-sealed container.

Burial

A casket is not required for burials in Colorado, although some cemeteries do require that one be used. In addition, the Colorado law allows for burials on private land as long as the burial is reported to the local county clerk within 30 days.

Cremation

The same people listed above can make arrangements for cremation in Colorado. In addition to traditional cremation, the state passed a law in 2011 that makes alkaline hydrolysis legal. (This is a chemical process that reduces a body to liquid and bone, and is considered a “greener” type of cremation.)

Average Funeral Costs in Colorado

While the NFDA states the median cost of a funeral with viewing is $6,907, this cost doesn’t include common funeral items like a casket, flowers, headstones, and transportation of family members. The average funeral cost in Colorado could be much more than that when these costs are taken into consideration.

In general, the cost of a funeral with burial has increased by almost 7.4% since 2014, according to the NFDA’s findings.

 

Boulder

Service Type Average Cost Price Range
Direct Cremation $1,450 $1,200 – $1,695
Immediate Burial $1,850 $1,795 – $2,070
Cremation Memorial $3,550 $3,295 – $3,790
Full Service $5,220 $5,095 – $5,330

 

Colorado Springs

Service Type Average Cost Price Range
Direct Cremation $948 $947 – $950
Immediate Burial $1,975 $1,475 – $2,375
Cremation Memorial $1,550 $1,547 – $1,575
Full Burial $3,075 $2,999 – $3,130

 

Denver

Service Type Average Cost Price Range
Direct Cremation $1,790 $725 – $2,420
Immediate Burial $2,350 $995 – $2,500
Cremation Memorial $4,517 $2,795 – $5,875
Full Burial $6,907 $1,995 – $9,895

 

Help with Funeral Costs in Colorado

Unfortunately, many families aren’t aware of just how expensive a funeral is until they’re faced with planning one. And most people don’t have enough money set aside to cover the expenses of their loved one’s final arrangements. Fortunately, there are several ways to prepare in advance for these costs, depending on your specific situation.

Term Insurance

Term life insurance is one of the most inexpensive ways to help pay for your funeral costs – but it comes with some challenges. A term life policy is good for exactly that: a term. For instance, if you purchase a 10-year term life insurance policy, you will no longer have insurance the very next day after that 10 years is up. And because you are older and possibly in poorer health than you were 10 years earlier, your premiums will go up. What’s more troubling: If your health declines, you may not be able to quality for a term life insurance policy at all.

Final Expense Insurance

Whole life insurance is different from term-life insurance in that once you take out a policy and continue to pay your premiums, you will have continuous coverage at the same price. Your premiums will never go up, and as long as you pay your premiums, nothing will change – even if you get sick.

Final expense insurance is one type of whole life insurance policy that helps cover end-of-life expenses. A final expense policy – also called burial insurance or funeral insurance – helps protect surviving family members from common end-of-life expenses. Final expense insurance usually has a face amount of $20,000 or less, which is usually enough to cover funeral or cremation costs.

But if you purchase your burial expense policy from Lincoln Heritage, you will get even more protection. Funeral Advantage is a program offered by Lincoln Heritage that combines a burial insurance policy with family support services. It’s a smart choice for people who want to protect their families from rising funeral and cremation costs.

The family support services portion of the package includes a free membership to the Funeral Consumer Guardian Society® – a nonprofit, consumer advocate organization whose sole mission is to help its members save money on funeral costs. When arranging for a loved one’s funeral, most people don’t want to price-shop for funeral services. As a member, you can leave that to the dedicated representatives at the Guardian Society. They do all the comparisons to find the most affordable funeral homes in your area, and you simply select the best fit. Only Funeral Advantage has access to the Funeral Consumer Guardian Society.

Pre-need Insurance

If you want to plan your funeral down to the last detail – and then pay for it in advance – you can purchase a pre-need plan directly from a funeral home. When buying this type of plan, you can choose between a guaranteed plan and a non-guaranteed plan. A guaranteed plan ensures that the service you plan will take place, regardless of how much prices have gone up. The down side is that funeral directors factor in rising costs, making these plans pretty costly. If you purchase a non-guaranteed plan, your family may have to pay extra to get the funeral service you planned.

When purchasing a pre-need plan, you should talk to several funeral homes and ask about their prices and services. Look for a funeral home that offers competitive prices, and then ask some important questions. What will happen to your money if the funeral home goes out of business? What happens to the interest your money earns? If you change your plans and cancel the policy, will your money be refunded?

Government Assistance

Colorado offers a State Burial Assistance Program to low-income families. To qualify, the deceased, as well as their family and the person responsible for the deceased’s final arrangements, must have insufficient funds to pay reasonable burial expenses.

Additional requirements are that the deceased was receiving one of the following:

  • Medicaid
  • Aid to the needy and disabled
  • Aid to the blind
  • Old age pension
  • Colorado Works/Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)
  • Food assistance

To receive the above assistance, the burial expenses can’t exceed $2,500. The assistance ranges from $1,000 to $1,500.

 

Average Overall Rates for Final Expense Insurance in Colorado

Final expense insurance rates typically aren’t determined by where you live because most companies offer nationwide coverage. Instead, your insurance rate will depend on your sex, age, coverage amount, and overall health. While most final expense policies are between $10,000 and $20,000, you may be able to find a life insurance company that offers a $50,000 policy.

In general, females typically pay less than men because they tend to live longer. But the biggest determining factor for your rate is your current health and health history. Many life insurance companies follow nationwide underwriting guidelines, though some may offer state-specific plans. Check with your local life insurance agent to see what your options are.

If you’ve had any health events or take certain types of medication, you may not qualify for a standard final expense insurance policy. But many insurance companies offer final expense plans for people who aren’t healthy enough to qualify for a standard plan. If you qualify for one of these plans, know that your monthly premium will be higher. And you will also have a waiting period before the full benefit is eligible for payout.

Tobacco users, regardless of gender and current health status, almost always pay higher rates. In fact, tobacco use can cause your life insurance cost to go up as much as 30% or more depending on your age.

Here is a summary of what you can expect to pay in premiums based on your age and sex:

 

Monthly Premium Rates for Men*

$5,000 Death Benefit
Age Determined ‘In Good Health’ by Insurer No Health Questions Asked
50 $16 $20
55 $19 $24
60 $23 $29
65 $29 $35
70 $38 $44
75 $51 $63
80 $65 $82

* Estimated rates do not reflect the rates of any particular life insurance company.

$10,000 Death Benefit
Age Determined ‘In Good Health’ by Insurer No Health Questions Asked
50 $30 $40
55 $35 $46
60 $43 $57
65 $56 $68
70 $74 $88
75 $100 $125
80 $126 $162

* Estimated rates do not reflect the rates of any particular life insurance company.

 

Monthly Premium Rates for Women*

$5,000 Death Benefit
Age Determined ‘In Good Health’ by Insurer No Health Questions Asked
50 $14 $15
55 $16 $18
60 $18 $24
65 $22 $28
70 $28 $35
75 $38 $46
80 $48 $64

* Estimated rates do not reflect the rates of any particular life insurance company.

$10,000 Death Benefit
Age Determined ‘In Good Health’ by Insurer No Health Questions Asked
50 $25 $28
55 $28 $36
60 $33 $45
65 $41 $55
70 $53 $69
75 $72 $90
80 $93 $126

* Estimated rates do not reflect the rates of any particular life insurance company.

 

Leading Causes of Death in Colorado

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the following are the leading causes of death in Colorado (based on data from 2017):

  1. Cancer
  2. Heart disease
  3. Accidents
  4. Chronic lower respiratory diseases
  5. Stroke
  6. Alzheimer’s disease
  7. Suicide
  8. Diabetes
  9. Chronic liver disease/cirrhosis
  10. Influenza/pneumonia

 

Even if you have one of these serious conditions, you can still get coverage from some insurance companies. For example, if you have heart disease, you can qualify for a modified plan but will have to pay higher premiums and face a waiting period before your policy takes effect. If you pass away during this waiting period, all of the premiums paid into the policy are returned plus a small additional percentage.

No matter what health conditions you may have, it’s never too late to apply for a final expense life insurance plan to help protect your loved ones from the financial burden that will come with your passing.

No Exam in Colorado

Depending on your current or past health conditions, you may decide that it’s best not to take a medical exam in order to qualify for life insurance. If you would prefer to keep your health status to yourself, you will find many companies that offer a guaranteed final expenses product. These types of policies don’t require a medical exam, and you won’t have to answer any health questions. But you will pay the highest premiums for these types of plans because the insurance company agrees to assume the risk of covering someone without knowing how sick they may be.

Other insurance companies – like Lincoln Heritage Life Insurance Company – offer standard, whole-life final expense life insurance without a medical exam. To qualify for this type of insurance coverage, you simply answer a few health questions on the application. And you will pay less for these types of policies because the insurance company assumes less risk.

 

Free Look Period

A free look period offers consumers the chance to change their mind after they purchase a policy for a full refund. Many states require this, but Colorado is not one that does. Even though the state doesn’t offer this protection for its citizens, most insurance companies will offer a 7- to 21-day period for consumers to read the policy and cancel it for a refund. If this flexibility is important to you, be sure to inquire before signing any contract with your chosen insurer.

If you’re thinking about the future and want to plan so that you can protect your loved ones from experiencing the financial burdens associated with final expenses when you pass, you should get a free, no obligation burial insurance quote from Lincoln Heritage Funeral Advantage – the leader in final expense insurance. Every Funeral Advantage plan comes with free funeral planning through the Funeral Consumer Guardian Society. This benefit is only available through Funeral Advantage and can help save your family hundreds – even thousands – of dollars on your funeral costs.

 

How to Get Burial Insurance

The best and most reliable insurance companies are those that have been in business for years and built up a reputation of trust among consumers. That’s the number one thing you should look for when buying final expense insurance. Doing so will give you the peace of mind that your planning will benefit your loved ones after you pass.

But finding the right insurer isn’t enough. You should also make sure that the policy you choose will cover your final expenses and leave enough for your beneficiaries. Compare premiums to ensure that you get the right policy that fits your budget.

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