Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Benjamin Carr was a licensed insurance agent in Georgia and has two years' experience in life, health, property and casualty coverage. He has worked with State Farm and other risk management firms. He is also a strategic writer and editor with a background in branding, marketing, and quality assurance. He has been in military newsrooms — literally on the frontline of journalism.

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Reviewed by Benji Carr
Former Licensed Life Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Feb 26, 2021

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The Facts of Life

  • Term life insurance policies expire at the end of a set term, so it is possible to outlive your life insurance policy
  • Return of premium riders are designed for people who outlive their life insurance policies
  • This type of insurance rider pays you back a portion or all of your premium payments in the event you outlive your policy

A return of premium rider is a common facet of life insurance policies. Riders give you the ability to customize your term life insurance or whole life insurance policy.

Return of premium life insurance policies help incentivize good health choices and can act as another type of savings. The return of premium rider ensures that you get some or all of your money back if you outlive your life insurance policy.

Let’s take a closer look at the return of premium riders traditionally offered by life insurance companies and explain it in more detail.

If you’re ready to buy life insurance with a return of premium rider, enter your ZIP code above to compare life insurance rates with a return of premium rider.

How does the return of premium rider work?

When you buy a term life insurance policy, it has a set period or term. Typically, these terms last anywhere from 10 to 30 years. You make premium payments every month or annually for your life insurance coverage.

Term life insurance is popular because it is generally one of the cheapest and most comprehensive types of life insurance you can get.

Average Monthly 20-Year Term Life Insurance Rates by Age, Gender, and Coverage Value
Age and Gender$250,000 Policy Average Monthly Life Insurance Rates$500,000 Policy Average Monthly Life Insurance Rates$750,000 Policy Average Monthly Life Insurance Rates$1 Million Policy Average Monthly Life Insurance Rates$2 Million Policy Average Monthly Life Insurance Rates
20-Year-Old Male$18$29$40$47$86
20-Year-Old Female$15$22$30$35$64
25-Year-Old Male$17$28$39$46$86
25-Year-Old Female$15$22$30$35$65
30-Year-Old Male$18$29$40$47$89
30-Year-Old Female$15$23$31$37$69
35-Year-Old Male$19$31$44$52$99
35-Year-Old Female$17$26$36$43$79
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What happens if your term ends, but you are still alive? This is where your return of premium rider kicks in. With this rider in place, if you outlive your term life insurance policy, your insurance company will refund or return all or most of the premium payments that you made during the duration of your policy.

The exact details of how much of your premium payments your life insurance company will return to you depend on the company you choose and the language of your return of premium rider.

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What type of insurance would be used for a return of premium rider?

The return of premium rider will only be offered to people who are buying term life insurance policies. These policies have expiration dates, whereas whole life insurance policies have no expiration date and last for the duration of a person’s life.

The Insurance Information Institute has more helpful information regarding the different types of life insurance policies and the differences between them.

What is the advantage of a return of premium rider?

A return of premium rider offers you a savings component to your term life insurance policy. Typically, term life insurance carries no cash value, but with a return of premium rider, you could potentially get cashback.

If you’re ready to compare term life insurance quotes with a return of premium rider, enter your ZIP code below.