Insurance policies with rising or re-appearing premiums can often cause their owners problems, especially when those owners' financial needs or obligations change.Is it a better investment to continue paying a policy that you have already paid into in hopes of a gain at maturation, or to recoup some of the investment by trading the policy for its cash surrender value? Corporate policyholders often face additional dilemmas when dealing with departing executives with key-man or split-dollar policies, or insurance purchased as part of a buy-sell agreement.

Another option is to sell the policy for cash. With a life settlement, the policyholder realizes an amount much greater than the cash surrender value in exchange for the ownership of the policy, thus increasing immediate revenue for companies holding unprofitable policies.

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