What is permanent insurance? Whole life insurance is a permanent form of life insurance. That means that coverage is in place for life. As long as your premiums are paid, your beneficiary will receive the death benefit regardless of how long you’ve been covered by the policy. The premium remains level throughout your life. You will never have to worry about increasing premiums due to age or health conditions. It also accumulates a cash value over time. The cash surrender value is what you get if you surrender the policy to the insurer. It is not added to the face value of the policy, which your beneficiaries get if you pass away..