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Whole Life Insurance 
Whole life insurance, or Whole of Life Assurance, refers to a policy that pays a lump sum on death or, in some cases, the earlier diagnosis of a critical illness whenever it occurs provided the contract is kept in force through the required payments being made. The level of payout can vary from a fixed sum to one that is wholly dependent on investment performance on what remains after mortality costs and other expenses are deducted. The level of premium payable may be a single, fixed periodic (e.g. monthly), or a periodic payment that may be reviewed subject to the underlying investment performance and sometimes changes in mortality cost. Some policies will permit a range of flexibility allowing the maximizing of potential payout over a set period (such as ten years). Once this period is over and the insured individual or individuals are older the cover can be continued for an increased premium or the cover reduced (or somewhere in between between limits). At any time the target benefit can be set for life. These policies are useful, for example, to those who want increased cover while they have dependent children and then want to reduce cover to last their life. An advantage of this over choosing a term policy and waiting until later to replace it with a Whole Life contract is that the individual is underwritten for life and are not restricted or prevented in future cover should they ever have a serious illness such as cancer.

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