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Universal Life

Understanding Universal Life Insurance:

Like Whole Life, Universal Life Insurance (UL) includes a savings element that grows, tax-deferred. A portion of the premium is invested by the insurance company in very conservative vehicles such as bonds or treasuries. If the insurance company does well with these investments, the interest rate return on your accumulated cash value will be higher than the policy guarantee (usually around 4%). It works like this:

  • From each premium payment, an expense charge (usually 5%) is deducted. The balance (95%) is added to the policy Account Value.
  • Next, the actual cost to the insurance company for all insurance benefits and expenses related to the policy for that premium period are deducted from the Account Value.
  • The Account Value earns interest in that premium period which is credited to the account (but not less than the minimum).

A major potential advantage of UL is that if the company does very well with its investments, you may have excellent growth in the cash value of the policy. UL is also more flexible than whole life in that the death benefit and commonly the premium payment are flexible. Unlike other whole life policies, you can increase (subject to insurability) or decrease the death benefit without surrendering the policy or getting a new one. Also you may choose from a variety of premium payments options.

On the other hand, there are some added risks to a UL policy. In a whole life policy, the death benefit is guaranteed to be paid if all premium payments are made. In a UL the policy will lapse if the cash values combined with premium payments are not enough to cover the cost of insurance. Insurance companies are not interested in having policies lapse, so generally there are multiple safeguards against this happening.

Many people use UL Insurance as a source of cash payments to the owner of the policy, including loans, withdrawals, collateral assignments, split dollar agreements, pension funding, and tax planning.  Contact us now to learn more about how this works.

Our Location

ISU Bob Gabriel Company Insurance

2325 Wilshire Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90403
Main office: 310-736-2863
Toll free: 800-432-9198

Our Providers


I had the pleasure of doing business with R.J. Laguda at Bob Gabriel Insurance. He is very knowledgeable about insurance companies/policies and made sure I had exactly what I need. Highly recommend this Company and their staff.
Diana B.
I have had a wonderful experience working with Carol Hirahara at Bob Gabriel. She goes out of her way to provide excellent customer service and research the best rates around. She also makes it easy to compare policies and prevents you for paying for things you don't really need. She responds to questions quickly and has made shopping for auto and renters' insurance a breeze.
Gabrielle H.
" ..Honored as the Business of the Year for the 28th Senate District and In Appreciation of Your Commitment to providing Outstanding Customer Service and Your Extraordinary Dedication to Community Involvement."
The California State Senate
Thanks ,Bryan, Pat, Susan and staff for making sure my professional and personal insurance needs were met. I wish i came to you sooner!
Mark G. Esq.
I can't say enough positive things about the staff at Bob Gabriel Co., The service was outstanding, they took care of me like family. Thanks Pat, Susan and Bryan!
Jim P.
As a business owner, every penny counts. Not only did Bob Gabriel Co. place me with a great company, i saved money on all my Business policies and they corrected the mistakes my past agent had previously made. Thank You!
Paul A.
I have been with Bob Gabriel Co, for 10 years. I love that they are a community staple for so many years, they treat me like family, there knowledge and expertise is second to none, and i always feel looked after. If i ever need anything there is always someone there to help. The owners, Pat and Susan are wonderful to do business with.
Paula G.
Bob Gabriel sold me my first house in 1964. At that time his firm began to cover that house and my cars. Bob also mentored me to become acquainted in how Santa Monica worked and get involved in community service. I was proud to sponsor him into the Rotary Club of Santa Monica. The same level of service has survived his passing by his daughter, Susan Gabriel Potter and her capable staff. ISU Bob Gabriel Insurance will continue to handle my insurance needs for many more years. I am proud to honor a 46 year relationship.
Bill C.
Ken and I just wanted to thank [Louise Mucha]. [Louise] has been organized, helpful, reliable and kind while figuring out our insurance policies, and we are so grateful. In the past 6 months we have dealt with so many people who don’t put their clients first, and it was so nice to have [Louise] checking in and taking care of everything so expertly and efficiently. Thanks again!
Ken & Laurie V.