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Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance: Benefits and Rates

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As a service member in the U.S. armed forces, you work hard to provide the best for your family. Unfortunately, active duty service can result in fatal consequences, putting your family at risk to not only lose a loved one but also their financial security.

Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance (SGLI) is a valuable program that ensures your family will have financial peace of mind if something happens to you. All active duty service members, as well as many other designations, are automatically enrolled for the maximum coverage. Read on to learn more about the SGLI benefits and rates you are entitled to.

Who is eligible for SGLI benefits?

Service members are eligible for full-time SGLI benefits if they fit one of the following roles:

  • Active-duty member of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Space Force, Marines, or Coast Guard
  • Commissioned member of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) or the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS)
  • Cadet or midshipman of the U.S. military academies
  • Member, cadet, or midshipman of the Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) engaged in authorized training and practice cruises
  • Member of the Ready Reserve or National Guard, assigned to a unit and scheduled to perform at least 12 periods of inactive training per year
  • Volunteer in an Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) mobilization category

Nonpay Status With the Ready Reserve or National Guard

If service members have a nonpay status with the Reserve or National Guard, they may be eligible for full-time SGLI coverage if:

  • You’re scheduled for 12 periods of inactive training for the year, AND
  • You’re drilling for points rather than pay

You must pay any premiums directly if you qualify.

SGLI Benefits

SGLI is a low-cost term life insurance option. You are automatically signed up for the maximum coverage amount of $500,000 at the beginning of your active duty service.

SGLI coverage amounts can be adjusted in $50,000 increments to meet your needs. Once you leave the military, you get 120 days of free coverage starting from the date you left. If you have a disability rating, your SGLI coverage may be extended for up to two years.

Another benefit is Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance Traumatic Injury Protection (TSGLI), which provides service members with financial support while recovering from a severe injury. If you are covered by SGLI and experience a qualifying injury, you can receive from $25,000 to $100,000 in short-term financial support.

It’s important to note you can change your coverage amount and beneficiaries at any time. If you don’t want SGLI, you can also opt out. All changes to your SGLI policy can be made using the SGLI Online Enrollment System (SOES) platform.

SGLI Rates

Compared to other insurance policies, SGLI rates are low and their benefits are high. To get the maximum coverage of $500,000, the monthly premium rates are $30 for SGLI and $1 for TSGLI, for a total of $31. Again, you can adjust this coverage, change beneficiaries or cancel your SGLI at any point through SOES.

Family SGLI

Spouses and dependent children of a service member with SGLI can also receive coverage under Family Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance (FSGLI). These family members are signed up automatically alongside their service members at the beginning of active duty.

With FSGLI, spouses can get coverage up to $100,000 so long as it does not exceed the service member’s SGLI coverage. The military spouse will pay for your FSGLI premium rates out of their base pay. FGSLI rates are standard, based on the amount of coverage you have and increase with age.

Each dependent child can get coverage up to $10,000, and as an added benefit, their coverage is free. Coverage ends once the child turns 18, but there are a few exceptions:

  • If the dependent child becomes a full-time student: Their FSGLI coverage may be extended until age 22.
  • If they are deemed totally disabled before the age of 18: Their coverage may be extended for a fixed or indefinite amount of time.

If you wish to alter or cancel your family’s FSGLI coverage, submit your changes online through SOES.

SGLI Coverage After Retirement

Once you leave active duty service, you are no longer eligible for SGLI. Your SGLI coverage will end 120 days after your last date on active duty. However, there are a variety of Post-Service Life Insurance options for Veterans.

You can apply for Veterans’ Group Life Insurance (VGLI) for up to the amount of coverage you had through SGLI. You must apply for VGLI within 1 year and 120 days from your discharge. Like SGLI, VGLI also includes family and disability coverage options.

SGLI is another unique benefit you are entitled to as a member of the U.S. armed forces. Life is unpredictable, but with SGLI, you can be sure your family will be supported no matter what.

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