A Guide to Life Insurance in Montana (MT)

When you are considering getting some Montana Life Insurance Quotes it is important to give some thought not only to general questions about life insurance, but also specific questions relating to life insurance in Montana.

In this article I am going to take a look at Montana Life Insurance both from a consumer’s point of view, and also from the wider viewpoint of the contribution that Life Insurance makes to the state economy as a whole.

First let’s start by getting some background on Montana. (If you would like to get a Montana Life Insurance Quote right now, then simply put your zip code in the box above and click "Start")

 

Montana – A Little Background…

Montana is a state of contrasts. It covers an enormous land area of some 147,042 square meters (255 miles wide by 630 miles long), which makes it the fourth biggest state in the union. But on the flip side it has a population of under a million people (989,415 in 2010) which ranks it as the 44th most populated state, and the 48th in terms of population density (only Wyoming and Alaska are less densely populated.)

Have a wander around Montana, and in every square mile you will find less than 7 people on average, compared to a US wide average of 87, and 1,196 in New Jersey, and you are unlikely to meet an African American because Montana had one of the smallest populations of African Americans (0.4%) of any of the 50 states in the 2010 Census.

The Capital City of Montana is Helena, and had a population of 29,939 in the city area, and 73,412 people in the metropolitan area in 2009. The city was founded in 1864 after gold was discovered, and the town was originally called “Last Chance”, but was soon renamed.

It has been estimated that in the first 20 years of gold production the equivalent of $3.6 billion was taken out of the ground at Helena, and in 1888 Helena had the distinction to being home to more than 50 millionaires, which at the time was the most per capita of any city worldwide.

The top 5 biggest counties in Montana in 2010 (US Census) were:

Yellowstone County – 147,972
Missoula County – 109,299
Flathead County – 90,928
Gallatin County – 89,513
Cascade County – 81,327

(The ‘Madison County’ which was made famous by the film ‘Bridge Over Madison County’ had a population of 7,691 people in 2010.)

The largest city in Montana is Billings, which is the only city in Montana to have over 100,000 people (104,170 according to the 2010 US Census), and 155,000 in the metropolitan area.

One of the big highlights of the area for nature lovers is Yellowstone National Park, which was set up in 1872 and which covers parts of Montana, Idaho and Wyoming and was the 1st National Park in the world. It covers an enormous area of some 3,468 square miles, which, to put into some kind of perspective is about a third the size of Belgium (11,787 square miles), and larger than Singapore (710), Hong Kong (1,104) or Luxembourg (2,586). Over 3 million people visit Yellowstone National Park every year.

In purely economic terms Montana has one of the smallest gross state products with an estimated $37.2 billion in 2010 ranking it in 48th place ahead only of North Dakota ($33.4 billion) and Vermont ($26.4 billion). And a median household income of $42,322 in 2009 seeing it lag in at 44th place out of the 50 US States for family income, some $7,899 dollars behind the average US household earnings of $50,221; and trailing $26,950 dollars behind the highest state, Maryland at $69,272.

The biggest drivers of economic prosperity in Montana are agricultural crops, farming, tourism and ranching. Natural resources such as forestry and mineral extraction, and a little oddly (for such a small population) micro-breweries have also flourished in Montana, with the third highest total of any of the states.

 

Montana Life Insurance – The Facts…

The life insurance industry in Montana is still relatively big business, and there are 467 Montana Life Insurance Companies who are licensed to sell life insurance in Montana, and two of those are actually domiciled in Montana.

The insurance sector as a whole is the 3rd largest industry in Montana according to the Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance.

It is also pretty big employer with approximately 2,000 people being directly employed by the Montana life insurance companies, and a further 2,000 non-insurance jobs being supported through financing, mortgages or asset purchases by the same companies.

In fact, looked at as a whole the life insurance companies in Montana have about $10 billion of their assets invested in the state through bonds and stock, as well as real estate and business development in Montana. So, the amounts of money involved are considerable.

If we then see how Montana residents use life insurance then we get a clearer idea of its importance.

The residents of Montana have 360,000 individual Montana Life Insurance Policies, with an average amount of cover of $110,000 per policy-holder and cumulatively over $60 billion in death cover according to the American Council of Life Insurers.

In practical terms this meant that $4 billion worth of Montana life cover was purchased in 2009, and over $690 million in death benefits, policy dividends, endowments that had matured and surrender values was paid out during the same year.

 

Montana Life Insurance Quotes – Getting A Good Deal…

It is important to think through exactly why you are getting life insurance BEFORE you finally commit to a policy.

This might seem like common sense, but in the cold light of day what people typically do when they are looking to get some life insurance is to pluck a figure out of thin air, and then life quotes based around that.

Before you get any Montana Life Insurance Quotes you should make sure that you have properly thought through all the consequences of both the type of life insurance (Montana Term Life Insurance or Montana Whole Life Insurance?) And the amount of cover that you will get.

Obviously, once you have got a few competitive quotes then you may well decide to modify this. For example, term life insurance is generally considerably cheaper, and so you may not be able to afford the amount of life insurance you need if you buy whole life insurance, but can if you get term life insurance.

The difference between the two is as follows:

Montana Term Life Insurance – This is based around a fixed term, say twenty years, or ten years (you can choose). And you specify the death benefit that will be paid out, for which you will have to pay a certain premium. There is no savings element or annuity, but this type is usually cheaper as a result.

Montana Whole Life Insurance – This is designed to be for your whole life, not just a term. It will start off by being considerably more expensive than term life insurance, but gets more competitive as the years go by that you have the policy. These have a savings element to them, but realistically this is heavily-weighted to many years into the policy. So, unless you have had the policy a lot of years, you may have ended up being better off going for term life insurance instead.

You are better off doing a little thinking up front, and then getting some affordable Montana Life Insurance Quotes to mull over the differences between the different life insurance providers.

 

Montana Life Insurance – The Details…

In terms of the regulatory and legal framework which governs life insurance in Montana you need to look at The State Insurance Code of Montana.

This lays down all the different rules and obligations of Montana Consumers, and Montana Insurance Companies who wish to sell to them.

You can find a copy of the Montana Insurance Code here:

http://data.opi.mt.gov/bills/mca_toc/33.htm

Montana Life Insurance Resources

Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance

The MT Commissioner of Securities and Insurance is the department which deals with enforcing the rules that I linked to above.

Their website also deals with issues of compliance by Montana Insurance Companies, and Montana Insurance Agents. As well as helping to keep consumers informed about the latest changes to insurance in the state, and acting as a final arbiter for complaints against insurance companies in Montana.

http://www.sao.mt.gov/


Find A Montana Insurance Agent


This is a rather useful page on the Montana Insurance Departments website which allows you to do a search for a Montana Insurance Agent, Montana Insurance Agency or Montana Insurance Company that you have either got a life quote from, or are considering using for advice.

The company search actually enables you to search ALL of the states in the US, so is useful even if you don’t live in Montana.

http://svc.mt.gov/csi/apps/sas/query.aspx


Montana Life & Health Insurance Guaranty Association


If there is an insolvency with a Montana Life Insurance Company then the Montana Life and Health Insurance Guaranty Association would step in in order to safeguard consumers in Montana who had a life policy (or health insurance) in Montana.

http://www.mtlifega.org/



 

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