Saturday, August 14, 2010

Divorce Insurance -- What Will be Next?

James Gross, who writes the Maryland Legal Crier blog, always comes up with interesting posts, and the following is one of the best. Here is a recent post by James:

"Want to buy some divorce insurance? Jennifer Saranow Schultz reports in the New York Times that SafeGuard Corp. of North Carolina is offering the world’s first divorce insurance called WedLock. For each $15.99 per month you pay, you can buy $1,250 in coverage. The benefit covers the costs of divorce such as lawyer fees or setting up a new home.

"Then, if you get divorced, you send Wedlock proof, and they’ll send you a check for the amount of insurance you purchased. You have to be married at least four years, however, before the payout. You can buy riders to shorten that to three years or get your premiums back if you don’t make it that long. Every year the company automatically adds another $250 to the coverage for each unit you buy.

"The company helpfully provides calculators on its site for Divorce Probability and Divorce Costs to help you figure out much insurance you need."

I don't know if the company is any good or if the insurance is worthwhile, but it's fun to use the calculators. You can do the calculations from your point of view and from your spouse's point of view. If you accurately record how your spouse would respond on the questions, you might be surprised at the difference in scores. It might get you thinking about things.

Since we now have these tools to predict the future, maybe someone will come up with a test you can take so you can learn how to correct your mistakes and fix any problems in your marriage. We can always hope!


insurance_guy said...

Thanks for the post.

Just some food for thought for your readers:

What are your odds of any calamity happening to you? 1 in 300 that your house will burn down in any given year. A little higher for flood damage over the life of your mortgage - 1 in 60. And Life Insurance actuaries using standard mortality tables peg the odds of you dying over any 20 years in your lifetime at 8 out of 1000 (or 1 in 125). Disability comes in even more frequent at 1 in 80 but too few people are smart enough to insure their income (which is what disability insurance actually does) even though their income is what pays for everything else.

Now let’s look at the odds of divorce, which BTW ordinarily results in a loss of 77% of your net worth according to a study done by Ohio State University and results in 44% of American families going below the poverty line for some period of time according to another study. The odds that you'll divorce if you're on your first marriage is about 1 out of 3 (32%). And don't feel safe just because you reached past that 8 year mark by which most 1st marriages fail, because there's a big spike right around year 20. Look at Al and Tipper Gore if you think you're immune.

And for people already on their second marriage? Chances are high they already know the devastation that divorce can cause but their odds of marriage failure are 2 out of 3 (67%). Third marriages are almost 3 out of 4 (72% fail).

The reality is that the risk of divorce is real and tangible. Is it for everyone? No, but if it were, maybe you and I as taxpayers wouldn't have to foot an annual bill of $112 BILLION dollars in Federal, State and Local taxes that go to support fragmented families every year.

houston divorce lawyer said...

Good writing and great idea i think.

How to File for Divorce said...

Interesting post. Although it's probably too early to tell whether or not WedLock is actually effective, but I'm really curious if people have signed up and have successfully divorced with the help of this service.

divorce online said...

Nice post about divorce.