Most cryonicists don't have enough wealth to prepay or fund a trust
for cryonic suspensions.  We can't plan when we are going to die,
so we can't count on saving for some future eventuality that may
be closer than we think.  We need to make sure funds are available
whenever needed.  That is where life insurance comes in.  The funds
available upon death are called the death benefit.

With life insurance, you bet you will die before you have sunk a lot
into the policy.  The insurance company bets you will last long enough
for the company to earn more off your funds than it pays out.  If you
die young, you win the bet!

Term life insurance is the simplest type of life insurance.  The
insurance is available for a term -- say, 20 years, or to age 65.
Your premium every year buys a certain death benefit.  Each premium
represents a stripped-down mortality charge that buys only insurance
-- it does not have an investment component.  For this reason, the
premium for a given death benefit usually is low initially and rises
as you age.  If you discontinue the policy, or if you reach the end of
the term, you get none of your investment back.  You can buy a rider
that waives the premium if you are disabled, but what if you're broke?
The policy lapses, the death benefit is zero, and you won't be
cryonically suspended.

Term insurance with constant premiums also is available.  Low later-year
premiums are cross-subsidized by higher early-year premiums.

Insurance that has an investment component is appealing because the
earnings of the investment component accumulate tax-free.

Whole life insurance is a traditional type of insurance that has an
investment component.  In its simplest form, its premiums are level
throughout the life of the policy.  The amount paid in the early years
in excess of a stripped-down mortality charge is used to build up
guaranteed "cash value," which corresponds to the investment component.
If over time the company does better than its minimum expectation, the
cash value will yield earnings and grow faster than guaranteed.

When you purchase the policy, you specify how the earnings from the
cash values are to be used.  The earnings may be used in three ways:
paid out as cash; left to accumulate in the policy; or used to
purchase "paid-up additions" (PUA's), that is, additional insurance.
Accumulating earnings increases the death benefit gradually and
increases future compound earnings.  Purchasing PUA's also increases
your death benefit, by a greater amount, and the increased death
benefits themselves have cash value that grows over time.

Most whole life policies permit you to draw on cash values to pay the
premium if you are unable to, or choose not to, continue payment.  At
some point the premium "vanishes," that is, the policy will remain in
force permanently even if you do not pay any further premiums.  This
feature protects you if you are disabled or go broke after the vanish
point; therefore, you should purchase the waiver of disability rider
but discontinue it once you reach the vanish point.

With a typical whole life policy, when you purchase the policy you
may include a rider that permits you to purchase PUA's with an extra
payment over and above the premium.  An additional payment on the
order of 50 percent of the base premium is permissible under the
tax laws without incurring adverse tax consequences.  This feature
permits you to increase the death benefit more rapidly than by simply
purchasing PUA's with cash value earnings.  Since the PUA's have cash
value, you will reach the vanish point more quickly.  Faster growth in
death benefit and earlier premium protection are two advantages of the
PUA rider for the cryonicist.

Whole life policies also permit you to borrow the cash value.
However, a cryonicist is interested in the death benefit, which would
be reduced by the amount of borrowed cash value.

Whole life policies are conservative (low risk, low reward) because
they guarantee certain cash values but may earn less than other
investment vehicles or other types of life insurance that have an
investment component.  To provide a more aggressive investment
vehicle, hybrid types of policy have arisen that include an investment
component overlaid on a term premium structure.  Under these policies,
cash values, death benefits, and/or premiums may vary with earnings.
There is greater potential for high earnings, but also greater
potential for paying premiums after a hoped-for vanish point, or for a
less-than-hoped for death benefit.  These policies are less suited to
the basic need for a predictable or minimum death benefit.

If you need a conservative, forced savings vehicle to provide a
guaranteed minimum death benefit for cryonic suspension, whole life
with disability waiver fits the bill.  If you are cash-poor, term
insurance with disability waiver is probably the least expensive
alternative for you, but you should use it only as a stop-gap.  If you
are financially secure and less risk-averse, you should investigate
the hybrids as an investment vehicle.  If you are financially secure
but interested in investing elsewhere, term insurance may be for you.