There are a couple of distinct differences between term life insurance and cash value insurance. Term life insurance only offers a death benefit. This means that if the insured party should pass away during the time the insurance is held, the insurance would be paid. If the policy holder does not die within the term of the policy, no payout will ever be made. Term life insurance only has a value upon death. Cash value insurance on the other hand has an actual cash value. Over time the insurance policy will accumulate a value that can be used in any manner desired. Some choose to use the cash value to pay insurance premiums and others choose to keep the value in their account as a form of savings.