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 Benji Carr

UPDATED: Apr 6, 2022

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The Facts of Life

  • A family term rider is a temporary family rider you can add to a whole life insurance policy
  • A family income benefit rider will provide a steady flow of income for your family members in place of your regular monthly income
  • A child term rider provides a death benefit if the child dies before a certain age and carries the option of converting it into a permanent life insurance policy once the child has matured

When you start to look for the perfect insurance policy, you may begin hearing a lot of terms you have never heard before. Life insurance riders for policies are among those unknown terms for many people, but they are fairly intuitive, and they may help you turn a standard life insurance policy into one that meets your needs perfectly.

Insurance riders are created to offer supplemental coverage to an insurance policy. A family term rider is a temporary family rider you can add to a whole life insurance policy. Depending on your needs and the needs of your family members, adding a family term rider or a child rider to your life insurance policy may be a good idea.

As you shop for whole or term life insurance, you may find that a lot of the policies do not meet your specific needs. While it is a good idea to consider adding a rider to your policy, it’s also smart to shop around with multiple companies to compare quotes and coverage options. This will give you a good idea of what’s out there, and you may find coverage that works well and offers affordable rates.

You can use our free quote tool above to find and compare life insurance rates in your area today.

What is a rider in insurance?

If you have ever found yourself asking, “what is an insurance rider,”? you are not alone. The term “rider” is a foreign one for many people, but its purpose is both unique and helpful.

Insurance riders offer different types of supplemental coverage to make your policy a bit more unique to your life and needs. Some of the most common life insurance riders are included in the table below.

Common Life Insurance Riders
Accidental Death BenefitIncreases the death benefit if the insured dies as a result of a qualifying accident
Terminal IllnessGives early access to a percentage of the death benefit if diagnosed with a terminal illness
ChildPays a death benefit to the insured parent if their child dies
SpousePays a death benefit to the insured person if their spouse dies
Waiver of PremiumWaives the policy premiums if the insured becomes completely disabled
Disability IncomePays a monthly income of 1 – 2% of the face value if the insured becomes disabled
Guaranteed InsurabilityGuarantees you the right to buy additional insurance, without proof of good health, at specified dates in the future
Return of PremiumThe insurer will return all or some of your premiums if you outlive the policy
ConversionAllows you to convert term life insurance into whole life insurance with no medical exam
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All of these riders listed above offer supplemental coverage based on the topic at hand. If you are purchasing a life insurance policy, and you have a family, then a family life insurance rider might be a good fit for you.

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Types of Riders for Families

The two most common types of riders that appeal to families, especially those with young children, are a family income benefit rider and a child rider.

It is difficult to purchase life insurance for family income alone. Depending on how your family is set up, one spouse may take on more financial responsibilities than the other. A family income benefit rider can help to protect your spouse and children if you pass away by providing a steady flow of income in the place of your regular monthly income.

A child term rider provides a death benefit in the event that a child dies before a specified age. Once the child meets the specified age, the term plan can then be converted into a whole life insurance policy or another form of permanent life insurance coverage without having to take a medical exam.

Life insurance for a family can be difficult when it comes to making specific decisions. There are other less common options, like a spouse term rider, which offers specific coverage to the spouse of the insured, but only if the two share a life insurance policy.

As you consider which type of rider might be most beneficial on your life insurance policy, be sure to do your research to learn which offers the types of protection your loved ones would need the most if something unexpected happened.

How much is a family income benefit rider?

While a family income benefit rider may increase the premium payments of your insurance policy a bit, it is not likely to make a huge difference when it comes to your monthly rates.

In some cases, insurance companies will add certain riders to a permanent life insurance policy without increasing your rates. You can ask an insurance company how much it would cost to add a rider before deciding whether it is something you want to do.

Do riders work with all life insurance policies?

It is most common to purchase riders with a whole life insurance policy. The riders you add to your policy could last until you pass away, or they could last only for a specific amount of time. Most term life insurance policies do not add riders as the policy has an end date that is already fixed.

If you are shopping for a whole life insurance policy, then you may want to consider the types of riders that are available with your policy and ask whether the riders would ultimately increase your insurance premium.

The table below shows the average whole life insurance rates for different people based on age, gender, and the coverage amount.

Whole Life Insurance Rates by Age, Gender, and Policy Limit
Age & Gender   $250K Policy Limit$500K Policy Limit$750K Policy Limit$1M Policy Limit$2M Policy Limit
25-Year-Old Female$156    $307    $458    $600      $1,196    
25-Year-Old Male  $178    $351    $524    $688      $1,179    
30-Year-Old Female$189    $374    $558    $733      $1,462    
30-Year-Old Male  $213    $421    $629    $827      $1,650    
35-Year-Old Female$219    $433    $647    $852      $1,699    
35-Year-Old Male  $261    $517    $773    $1,020    $2,035    
40-Year-Old Female$264    $523    $782    $1,032    $2,059    
40-Year-Old Male  $328    $652    $975    $1,289    $2,574    
45-Year-Old Female$329    $653    $978    $1,293    $2,581    
45-Year-Old Male  $416    $827    $1,239  $1,641    $3,277    
50-Year-Old Female$421    $837    $1,254  $1,661    $3,317    
50-Year-Old Male  $531    $1,057  $1,584  $2,101    $4,198    
55-Year-Old Female$544    $1,084  $1,623  $2,153    $4,302    
55-Year-Old Male  $678    $1,351  $2,024  $2,688    $5,372    
60-Year-Old Female$705    $1,406  $2,107  $2,799    $5,593    
60-Year-Old Male  $865    $1,725  $2,586  $3,437    $6,869    
65-Year-Old Female$935    $1,865  $2,796  $3,717    $7,429    
65-Year-Old Male  $1,123  $2,241  $3,360  $4,468    $8,932    
70-Year-Old Female$1,274  $2,544  $3,814  $5,074    $10,143   
70-Year-Old Male  $1,518  $3,031  $4,544  $6,047    $12,090   
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Adding a rider to your whole life insurance policy may increase your monthly rates, so you will want to factor that in if you get quotes for life insurance online.

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How can I pay less for life insurance riders?

One of the best ways to pay less for your insurance coverage is to ask about discounts. A lot of life insurance companies offer discounts for various reasons, like bundling a policy or being a preferred customer. You can ask an insurance representative whether you are eligible for any discounts that would help you save on your monthly life insurance rates.

You can also shop around for coverage to make sure you have the most affordable policy out there. Compare quotes from several companies, so you know you aren’t paying too much for your life insurance policy.

The Bottom Line

A family income rider (or FIRA) is an addi­tion to a life insurance policy providing the beneficiary with an amount equal to the insured’s monthly income in the case of death.  It specifies the term of the additional coverage and expires if it’s not renewed by the death of the person covered.

A Life insurance agent can provide more details and help determine which optional riders might work best for you.

And be sure to use our free quote tool below to find and compare rates from some top life insurance companies in your area today.