Life insurance is designed to replace a family's income in the event that a primary breadwinner passes away for any reason - including warfare.
Experts say it's important servicemen and women consider purchasing a term life insurance policy to protect their family financially while they're serving the country. In the past, a "war exclusion" meant it was often more difficult for military men and women to purchase life insurance, but those exclusions have largely been phased out. Today, military families can often buy a term life insurance policy for rates competitive with those of average civilians, though they are still advised to apply when they are not in a war zone.
"Most companies will write new lines of insurance on active military personnel, unless they are being sent to a place like Afghanistan. In that case, they would wait until the military member leaves the war zone before writing a policy for them," said Brian Ashe, spokesperson for the Life Foundation.
Additionally, military personnel who have been discharged should find out how a potential re-enlistment could affect their life insurance coverage and plan accordingly, experts say.
Military members can also qualify for a free burial, complete with military funeral honors, as long as they were not dishonorably discharged.