Uncertain Bequest Needs and Long-Term Insurance Contracts
AbstractWe examine how long-term life insurance contracts can be designed to incorporate uncertain future bequest needs. An individual who buys a life insurance contract early in life is often uncertain about the make up of his or her future family, much less their financial needs. Ideally, the individual would like to insure the risk of having high future bequest needs; but since bequest motives are typically unverifiable, a contract directly insuring these needs is not feasible. We derive two equivalent long-term life insurance contracts that are incentive compatible and achieve a higher welfare level than the naïve strategy of delaying the purchase of insurance until after one's bequest needs are known. We also examine the welfare effects of such contracts and we show how third-party financial products, although beneficial to the individual in the short run, can be welfare decreasing over one's lifetime.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by CIRPEE in its series Cahiers de recherche with number 0742.
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Life insurance; Bequest needs; Asymmetric information;
Other versions of this item:
- Wenan Fei & Claude Fluet & Harris Schlesinger, 2008. "Uncertain Bequest Needs and Long-Term Insurance Contracts," CESifo Working Paper Series 2505, CESifo Group Munich.
- D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
- D91 - Microeconomics - - Intertemporal Choice - - - Intertemporal Household Choice; Life Cycle Models and Saving
- G22 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Insurance; Insurance Companies; Actuarial Studies
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Pauly, Mark V & Kunreuther, Howard & Hirth, Richard, 1995. "Guaranteed Renewability in Insurance," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 143-56, March.
- Cochrane, John H, 1995. "Time-Consistent Health Insurance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 445-73, June.
- B. Douglas Bernheim, 1992.
"How Strong are Bequest Motives? Evidence Based on Estimates of the Demand for Life Insurance and Annuities,"
NBER Working Papers
2942, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Bernheim, B Douglas, 1991. "How Strong Are Bequest Motives? Evidence Based on Estimates of the Demand for Life Insurance and Annuities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(5), pages 899-927, October.
- Eytan Sheshinski, 2003.
"Optimum and Risk-Class Pricing of Annuities,"
CESifo Working Paper Series
873, CESifo Group Munich.
- Mattias K. Polborn & Michael Hoy & Asha Sadanand, 2006. "Advantageous Effects of Regulatory Adverse Selection in the Life Insurance Market," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 116(508), pages 327-354, 01.
- Campbell, Ritchie A, 1980. " The Demand for Life Insurance: An Application of the Economics of Uncertainty," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 35(5), pages 1155-72, December.
- Lewis, Frank D, 1989. "Dependents and the Demand for Life Insurance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(3), pages 452-67, June.
- Villeneuve, Bertrand, 2000. "Life Insurance," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/5369, Paris Dauphine University.
- Igal Hendel & Alessandro Lizzeri, 2000.
"The Role of Commitment in Dynamic Contracts: Evidence from Life Insurance,"
NBER Working Papers
7470, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Igal Hendel & Alessandro Lizzeri, 2003. "The Role Of Commitment In Dynamic Contracts: Evidence From Life Insurance," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(1), pages 299-327, February.
- Jean Pinquet & Montserrat Guillén & Mercedes Ayuso, 2011.
"Commitment and Lapse Behavior in Long-Term Insurance: A Case Study,"
- Jean Pinquet & Montserrat Guillén & Mercedes Ayuso, 2011. "Commitment and Lapse Behavior in Long‐Term Insurance: A Case Study," Journal of Risk & Insurance, The American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 78(4), pages 983-1002, December.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Johanne Perron).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.