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settlement options

In life insurance, how proceeds are paid to the designated beneficiaries. Most life insurance policies provide for payment in a lump sum. The four most common alternative settlement approaches are: the interest option, under which the insurer holds the proceeds and pays interest to the beneficiary until such time as the beneficiary withdraws the principal; the fixed period option, under which the future value of the proceeds is calculated and paid in installments for a specified number of years; the fixed amount option, under which a fixed dollar amount is paid in periodic installments until such time as the principal and interest are exhausted; and the life income option, under which a stipulated amount is paid periodically to the beneficiary throughout his or her life.


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