Cutting the cash and death benefit in half means your wife has $42,500 and will add $2,700 / year to get a $250,000 benefit. If you assume a 4% investment return / discount rate, that's 27 years before you reach $250,000. If 4% is the right number (for say the conservative opportunity cost of you taking $42,500 now and adding $2,700,) then mom and dad would need to pass away 27 years from now to break even. If they pass away soon / later then keeping the policy in force would mean you come out ahead / behind. I don't know if these are the right assumptions, but it gives you an idea how you might look at it. I also ignored the tax free "growth" that life insurance provides, so you probably come out ahead even if they live beyond 27 yrs. On the other hand, you have the risk that brother doesn't pay his half and you're unwilling/unable to make his payments, and the policy could lapse before they pass away. And if someone lives to be very old, then the insurance won't be bad, but won't give you a huge net gain.