RICHMOND, Va., Aug. 31, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Taking care of the American family now goes beyond bringing home a paycheck and providing a safe place to live. It requires planning and making sure financial needs will be met in the event of an unplanned illness or death. Many Americans find themselves at odds when a life event upsets the family dynamic. Genworth's 2011 LifeJacket(SM) Study pointed out weaknesses in consumer behavior and recognized that many are underinsured or uninsured. "Research shows that most long-term financial decisions are heavily tied to emotions and life events, like marriage, a birth, or a job change, with marriage being the most common trigger," said Anthony Vossenberg, senior vice president of life and annuities product sales at Genworth. "Unless confronted with one of these events, consumers tend to ignore the possibilities and delay important financial purchases; it's human nature to think about today rather than planning for the future." Vossenberg added, "We offer three simple personal finance basics that can get people thinking about how to develop a well-balanced plan for today and tomorrow." Look at the Big PictureWhether there are two income earners or one, take into account the impact of losing that salary. How would that affect the ability to pay monthly expenses, save for college, retire, and cover the high cost of aging? Remember, life insurance is affordable and a must-have for families with minor children. This is especially true for single parents. The Genworth LifeJacket Study found that 69 percent of single parents with children living in the household are uninsured, constituting the highest percentage of uninsured Americans. Unfortunately, these children of the uninsured may be left with few or no options when faced with an unexpected death. To get a better understanding of the coverage needed and to demystify the purchasing process, visit Genworth's Life Insurance Calculator at genworth.com/life. Policy ReviewHere is an alarming fact – 26 percent of consumers said that they had not reviewed their coverage since the day they purchased their policy. Only 29 percent of policyholders interviewed for the LifeJacket Study revealed they do review their policy annually. The remaining 45 percent if insured said they review their policy anywhere between two to 10 years. By not reviewing their policies and keeping in step with life changes – a birth, death, purchase of a home, or a job change, any of which would require changes to insurance coverage, many may be underinsured or uninsured, relying on a policy that may be decades old and virtually ineffective.