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May 5, 2019

Accidental death insurance vs term life: which is better?

term life vs accidental death insurance

According to a report by the National Safety Council, accidental injury has become the third most common cause of death in the U.S. With these increasing numbers, many people may look to insurance for financial protection.

First, accidental death is a form of insurance, but is not the standard life insurance people typically take out such as whole or term life insurance. There are significant differences between an accidental death policy (ADP) and a term life policy, which may help you determine which coverage is right for you.


Accidental death insurance typically is added to a life insurance policy as an additional rider or clause. This coverage usually offers a lump sum payment for a policyholder who passed from an accidental death covered by their policy, such as automobile accident or drowning. While it covers most physical injuries, illnesses are not normally insured by this type of policy. The specifics of what may or may not be covered will be specific to each policy. It can be purchased through a group plan at work, as an individual policy, or as a rider on your life insurance policy.


Term life insurance is just what it sounds like – life insurance for a specific amount of time, usually one to 30 years. These policies are typically bought for financial protection at a certain time in someone’s life such as buying a new house or having a child. Many companies may offer additional add-on insurance such as an ADP to ensure the coverage is meeting the needs of the customer.


There a few primary differences in the two products in terms of coverage, limitations, and cost.

Term life and accidental death insurance coverage

When it comes to coverage, life insurance will cover instances of death resulting from illnesses, diseases, and natural causes. Conversely, accidental death will only cover accidents such as:

  • Poison*
  • Motor vehicle accidents*
  • Plane/train accidents
  • Falls
  • Drowning
  • Choking
  • Because coverage is unique to each situation and policy, it’s important to reference your personal accidental death policy to know exact details regarding exclusions and eligibility for payment.

    Though all of these policies cover accidental death, each has its own special features that should be considered when browsing for coverage. There is no “one size fits all” when it comes to insurance coverage. Your needs, habits, job, and health history all play a role in determining what coverage is right for you.

    If statistics have shown us anything, it’s that accidents happen. They’re unexpected and could potentially end in financial hardship. When it comes to insurance, you may want to work with a professional who is knowledgeable about the products and has your best interest in mind.

    *exclusions may apply

    Categories: Accident Insurance, Insurance, Term Life Insurance

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