If the insurance policy is a whole-life (or variable life) policy, it might have a surrender value that the owner of the policy might be able to get by surrendering the policy in whole; if it is a term life policy, it has no surrender value. In many cases, the owner of the policy is also the insured and so ask Uncle Joe whether he would be willing to surrender the life insurance policy and give you the proceeds now instead of making you wait till he passes away. If it is a term life policy, ask him to consider not renewing the policy and from now on, just give you the premium he would have been paying to the insurance company. Whether he will pay you increasing amounts in later years (as a renewable five-year level term policy might require) is a more delicate matter that you can negotiate with him. On the other hand, if the policy owner is Aunt Annie but the insured is Uncle Joe (and you are the beneficiary), talk to Aunt Annie instead; she is the one who can cancel the policy, not Uncle Joe. And for heaven's sake, don't grease the skids to facilitate Uncle Joe's first step onto the stairway to heaven; there are, depending on where you live, various laws prohibiting payments to beneficiaries who have had a hand in arranging for the happy event to occur.