Insuring the Times of Your Life

If someone depends on you financially, you probably need life insurance.  Here are some examples of specific life stages or life events that might trigger the need for life insurance.

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What type of Life Insurance is right for you?

The most basic feature of a life insurance policy is the death benefit:  the lump-sum payment your beneficiaries would receive if you were to die.  It’s the core reason to own life insurance – but not the only one.  Some types of life insurance offer riders or other features that can play an important role in your financial strategy, such as the ability to accumulate cash value that grows over time.

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Who Needs Life Insurance?

If someone will suffer financially when you die, chances are you need life insurance because it provides cash to your family after your death.

This cash, known as the death benefit, replaces your income and can help your family meet many important financial needs like funeral costs, daily living expenses and college funding. What’s more, there is no federal income tax on life insurance benefits.

To help you understand how life insurance might apply to your particular situation, we’ve outlined a number of different scenarios below.

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Life Insurance for Your Child

Shot of an adorable infant with their father in the backgroundFor the majority of us, discussing life insurance can be an uneasy conversation to have, especially when we are discussing a policy to cover a child or grandchild. Here are three reasons why you should have this discussion anyway.

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What is a Credit Freeze?

CreditFreezeYou may have heard about the recent data breach of a national medical records company, MIE (Medical Informatics Engineering), which took place on May 26, 2015. MIE houses electronic medical records for several medical companies and individuals, including RediMed. It is estimated that 1.5 million Indiana residents have been affected by this security breach.

If you received a letter from MIE indicating that your information may have been part of this breach, STAR urges you to take advantage of the free monitoring service being offered for 2 years.

Last week, in light of this breach, the Indiana Attorney General publicly urged all Indiana residents to freeze their credit. So, what is a credit freeze?

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Tax-Related Identity Theft

Tax return check on 1040 form background

The IRS recently released a report showing that the 2015 tax filing season saw an unprecedented number of tax-related identity theft cases.  Affected taxpayers should know what steps they can take to protect their identity.

Tax-related identity theft occurs when a fraudulent tax return is filed using a taxpayer’s Social Security number to obtain a refund from the IRS.  Most fraudulent returns are filed early in the filing season.  Affected taxpayers often do not learn of the fraud until the IRS rejects their legitimate return on the grounds that a return is already on record.  However, in some cases, the IRS suspects identity theft and issues letters to taxpayers requesting authentication of a filed return.

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Your Wallet: A Loser’s Guide


How to protect your money, your credit record — and your sanity — if you become a victim.

Consider this: Your wallet is stolen. You immediately call your bank and credit card company to report it, close old accounts and open new ones. You even remember to call the Social Security Administration to notify them that you had your Social Security card in your wallet. At the end of the day, you feel confident the incident is behind you.

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Fixed vs. Adjustable Rate Mortgage


Buying a home is a big decision.  How to finance your home can be an even bigger one.  Options you should consider include, but are not limited to, fixed-rate mortgages, adjustable-rate mortgages, and government-sponsored offerings such as FHA and VA loans.  Having many options available can make it easier to get financing; however, it can also create some confusion about which option is right for you.

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Smart Money Tips for Brides to Be

BridePlanning a wedding can be exciting… and stressful. You have a lot of details to oversee. Before you walk down the aisle, sit down with your fiancé and have an honest conversation about your finances. It may save you some headaches after the honeymoon is over.

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The Benefits of Disability Insurance


In a blink of an eye, our lives could change. Often, change can be joyous and welcomed, as would be the case with the birth of a child or a job promotion. Life changes aren’t always a welcomed occurrence, however. An illness or injury could leave us unable to work or enjoy our normal lifestyle.

Per a 2014 study conducted by the Council for Disability Awareness, one in four 20-year-olds entering the workforce will suffer some income-interrupting disability during their working career. An income is a person’s most important financial resource. It pays the bills and makes financial security possible. It needs protection.

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