The following three (3) funding methods are the most common options for Cryopreservation Members. Full funding is required for Cryopreservation Membership to cover the cost of Comprehensive Member Standby (CMS), Cryopreservation (cryonic suspension), long-term care, and recovery.
Infrequently, under special circumstances, an additional alternative funding arrangement not shown here may be considered. To assure Alcor’s ability to provide proper care, necessary components of any funding method must include security, reliability, and liquidity. In addition to funding, Cryopreservation Members have modest annual dues, and standby charges (Comprehensive Member Standby); see Required Costs and Cryopreservation Fund Minimums for details.
If you have any questions about funding your cryopreservation, please contact Alcor’s Membership Department.
1. Life Insurance
Used by the vast majority of Cryopreservation Members, this is the most popular funding arrangement. Alcor is designated as the beneficiary and owner of the life insurance policy (which is revocable if membership is terminated). The death benefit must equal or exceed the then-current cost of cryopreservation. Premiums are paid to the life insurance company, thus enabling the cost to be spread over an extended time. The life insurance policy pays Alcor after the legal death of the cryopreservation member. Only highly-rated insurance companies (rated “A-” or better by A.M. Best) are accepted.
Types of Life Insurance. There are four (4) types of life insurance to consider: Index Universal Life, Whole Life, Universal Life, and Term.
- Index Universal Life is a permanent universal life policy that enables the cash value to grow at higher rates. The interest credited to the cash value each year is determined by the rate of change in one or more major stock market indexes, like the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (S&P 500). The dollars are not invested directly in the index, but instead the change in the index over a year’s period defines the interest credited to the policy. There is usually a cap or maximum interest rate, for instance 12%, and floor or minimum interest rate of 0% or 1%. Even if the index is negative or minus for the year, your account does not lose money, but stays level. Because the account has most of the upside when the market index goes up, and does not go down when the market goes down, the long term average growth can be substantial, in the area of 6% or 8% a year. The cash value can go up in addition to the face amount of the life insurance policy, enabling the total life insurance proceeds to keep up with inflation if the policy is properly funded. Index Universal Policies have the advantage of accumulating more cash value as well as an increasing death benefit in the later years.
- Whole Life Insurance is insurance for the duration of a person’s life (no expiration date) and costs more than Term Insurance. It builds cash or equity over time, which is tax deferred and protected from creditors. In the case of a limited pay whole life or universal life policy, the policy can accumulate enough cash value to become “Paid up.” This means no further premiums are due and the policy will remain in place until the face amount is paid out. In later years of life, when earning power may be lower, this can be helpful, as it keeps the policy in force without making payments.
- Universal Life Insurance, also called Adjustable Life, can be thought of as an account in which money grows at current interest rates. Out of this fund, the insurance company deducts the cost of insurance. Payments to a Universal Life policy can be increased or decreased within broad limits defined by the policy. It is possible to “Pay up” the policy with a single payment lump sum or pay the policy off over 7 years. Modern Universal Life policies sometimes have an underlying guaranteed rider which enables these policies to have the safety of Whole Life Insurance, along with better cash accumulation and greater flexibility of payments.
- Term Insurance offers coverage for a “term” or period of time, such as 20 years. During the term, the cost of insurance does not change. Term Insurance is a low-cost option and can often be converted to a Whole or Universal Life policy, which will cost more but will not terminate after the term. If using a Term policy, the applicant should ensure that it can be converted or renewed. Otherwise, changes in health status during the term can leave a person uninsurable. If the policy terminates before being converted, Cryopreservation Membership will be canceled unless a new policy is secured.
See Insurance Agents who have experience with Alcor’s requirements. Alcor does not endorse any specific Insurance Agent.
For non-Lifetime Cryopreservation Members, additional funding beyond the current cost of cryopreservation and CMS is strongly encouraged by Alcor. Funding over the minimum can be used to cover ground or air-ambulance costs from locations geographically distant from Alcor, to strengthen standby services, to aid a member’s unexpected legal defense, and to address unanticipated problems. Importantly, the cost of cryopreservation goes up overtime and funding over the current minimum helps Cryopreservation Members cover increased costs in the future.
After cryopreservation, any unused funds over the minimum are allocated per the member’s instructions in their agreement with Alcor. Additionally, a significant number of members have provided extra generic funding to aid and strengthen Alcor, because a financially stronger Alcor is better able to protect the patients entrusted to our care.
Country of Residence:
Alcor accepts members from all countries. Although the vast majority of Alcor’s members are from the United States and Canada, Alcor currently has members across the globe, including within Australia, Europe, and Asia. The treatment of certain financial instruments may be affected by the residence of an applicant. For your specific situation, discuss details with the Director of Membership Services.
Alcor accepts life insurance policies naming Alcor as the owner and beneficiary. Since insurance companies in countries outside the United States may not always name a US organization as the policy owner, Alcor may approve a life insurance funding option for residents of other countries outside the United States, with the following stipulations:
- Alcor is named the beneficiary.
- There should either be no collateral assignees, or Alcor must be named as the assignee.
- The policy is placed in absolute trust.
- A minimum of one Alcor representative is named as a Trustee.
- The Death Benefit (or Sum Assured) is permanently maintained equal to or in excess of the Cryopreservation Minimum, in equivalent United States Dollars.
- Alcor is to be notified if policy lapses.
- Premium is paid current.
Alcor requires a copy of the policy, Policy Schedule, stamped Trust Request Form (must be Absolute Trust), and stamped Deed (naming Alcor as an additional Trustee).
2. Refundable Prepaid
Alcor accepts a refundable prepayment option to cover the cost of cryopreservation. After receiving payment, Alcor places the funds in a federally insured bank account for Cryopreservation Members using this option. While the bank account does not produce enough interest to offset rising costs and inflation, Alcor must keep the funds liquid in the event someone requests a refund or is cryopreserved.
If a refundable prepayment is made in marketable securities or cryptocurrency, Alcor may liquidate them immediately. For credit card payments, a 5% fee will be added to cover the cost related to the charge.
The refundable prepaid option is usually the fastest method of funding, and therefore often provides the shortest path to completing the Cryopreservation Membership sign-up process. Refundable prepayment arrangements require little time investment for the applicant and typically are the most appropriate for those under severe time constraints (as with a last-minute membership).
3. Permanent Prepaid
Alcor support a non-refundable prepayment option, called Lifetime Cryopreservation Member, to cover the cost of cryopreservation, Comprehensive Member Standby (CMS), and lifetime dues. After receiving payment, Alcor sends the funds to a separate legal entity to professionally manage investments on behalf of all Lifetime Cryopreservation Members using this option. The funds are invested in such a way as to allow them to grow at the fastest rate that is consistent with a low level of risk.
If a prepayment is made in marketable securities or cryptocurrency, Alcor may liquidate them immediately so the professional organization can allocate the funds according to the investment strategy. For credit card payments, a 5% fee will be added to cover the cost related to the charge. Since these funds are subject to some degree of market risk, prepayment for Lifetime Cryopreservation Membership is non-refundable.
Lifetime Cryopreservation Members never need to pay dues, CMS, or the cost of cryopreservation. The separate legal entity managing these funds pays Alcor dues on behalf of all Lifetime Cryopreservation Members. Additionally, when the time comes to be cryopreserved, the entity pays Alcor for the cost of cryopreservation and CMS for the Lifetime Cryopreservation Member(s).
Permanent Prepaid is calculated individually based on actuarial tables in the same way life insurance providers calculate premiums. Prepayment for Lifetime Cryopreservation Members are based on the current cost of cryopreservation and/or dues in light of the actuarial tables. If you are interested in becoming a Lifetime Cryopreservation Member, please contact Alcor’s Membership Department for a quote.