Share Your Story Submission: I Wish I Had Not Canceled My Life Insurance Policy

I wish I had not canceled the life insurance policy that I bought early in my career. At the time, it didn’t make sense for me to have a plan because I do not have immediate dependents. However, as an immigrant and dollar earner in my family, I now realize that there are people whose lives will be impacted should I leave this world.

My father used up most of his assets for his medical care, near the end of his life. On his sick bed, he said he hoped that I would be there for my siblings should they need financial assistance. One of them has ongoing health issues.

My story is not unique. In my extended family of 36 first cousins on my mother’s side there is cousin #18, now a successful B&B owner, who put cousin #35—whose father passed away at a young age—through college in our hometown, Cagayan de Oro. Cousin #35 then proceeded to earn her master’s degree in Manila on a merit scholarship and is now an associate professor at a Jesuit-run university in the Philippines.

Among good friends from high school there is Beth, a chemical engineer and single mother of one, who used to send her parents $300 a month for various expenses; and Rhesa, who regularly shipped $600 of groceries and medical supplies to her father.

Like in my family, many Americans include first-generation immigrants. Many new arrivals come here to live their dreams of freedom and a quality of life matched only by a few other countries around the world. Among us are many who send financial assistance back home, especially if home is a developing country where dollars go a long way.

I believe it is time for consumers and policymakers to consider this when they think about products that may be uniquely appropriate for many immigrants and first-generation Americans looking to build a strong financial safety net. I regret that I let my life insurance policy lapse because of the security it would have offered for me and my family. So, I am looking into plans that will fit my unique needs and help me keep my promise to my father.