Hundreds of companies offer life assurance to the public and at first glance there would seem to be a bewildering choice of policies all with different names and benefits. Despite this, stripped of their corporate branding, it becomes clear that the plans are variations on a theme. With virtually all of these policies based on just four core contracts, Term, Whole of Life, Endowment, and Annuity.

Some commentators have called for "kite marketing" to determine the suitability of the plan, but the true test of suitability is the purpose for which the plan is recommended.

To illustrate the suitability of these plans the following eight categories of applicants are considered:-

  1. Single male age 22
  2. Single female age 21
  3. Single parent age 30-1 child
  4. Married couple both 32 no children
  5. Married couple in their 30's with 2 children aged 5 & 8.
  6. Married couple in their 40's with 2 children at school/university
  7. Married couple in their 50's
  8. Elderly couple past state pensions age