If you and your wife are 27 years old and looking to purchase term life insurance do you need a 20 or 30 year policy?

It depends on WHY you want the coverage.

Do you have children? How old are they?

What about your Mortagage?

Do you have Estate Tax Issues?

Who will be financially impacted by your death? For how long?

If you buy a 30 year policy - you can let it cancel anytime a premium is due.

Do you think term is cheaper that whole life? Term is sunk cost. Ask an agent for advice.

It depends on how long you expect to be earning. Some people invest financially in such a way that they have enough to cover them for an early retirement. In 20 years, you would both be 47, which is too early to retire. If you take a 30 year term policy, you would be 57 which would be more close to retirement age. Since life expectancies are increasing, you may want to extend your life coverage for a few more years. I would recommend that you take a term life policy that gives you renewability privileges at the end of the term. This way you have the option to renew your term policy without having to prove insurability. The premiums may go up, but it will still be cheaper than if you were to apply for a fresh term life policy.