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If you want to treat your life insurance policy as a cash asset, you may be looking at a whole life insurance policy. In addition to providing a guaranteed payout to your loved ones when you die, these policies build cash value over time at a fixed interest rate.
Best Whole Life Insurance Companies 2021
To create this list of the best whole life insurance companies, our experts focused on financially sound insurers with low levels of customer complaints. Next, we delved into the important features of whole life insurance policies, such as brokers, potential for dividends, and how much coverage you can buy.
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Insurer rates at the company level, not at the policy level. This means that our star rating reflects the company as a whole, not specifically its life insurance policies.
Life insurance ratings are based on consumer experience, National Association of Insurance Commissioners Complaint Index scores for individual life insurance and a weighted average of financial strength ratings , which indicate a company's ability to pay future claims. Within the consumer experience category, we consider ease of communication and website transparency, which look at the depth of policy details available online. To calculate each insurer's rating, we adjusted the scores to a 5-point curved scale.
These ratings are a guide, but we recommend that you check out and compare life insurance quotes from multiple companies to find the best rate for you. No compensation is received for any review.
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Learn more about each company on our list by reading the brief summaries below and checking out the review links.
Ratings are determined by our editorial team. The scoring formula takes into account consumer complaints and customer satisfaction data.
Our Take: MassMutual has a number of whole life policies to choose from, all of which earn cash value at a generous 4% interest rate (up to 100 years). Depending on your policy, you may be able to customize your coverage with different users. These include a long-term care rider and an annual term purchase rider, which allow you to direct your dividend payments toward a term life insurance policy.
As a permanent policyholder, you can receive dividends based on the insurer's profits. MassMutual estimates it will pay out about $1.85 billion to its permanent policyholders by 2022.
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Mutual collective MassMutual approved an estimated policyholder dividend payment in 2022 of approximately $1.85 billion. Accessed November 1, 2022. See all sources.
Our take: Guardian has a wide range of whole life insurance policies, including a survivor policy that insures two people, usually spouses. You can choose a level premium or "capped payment" policy that allows you to pay off your policy over 10, 15 or 20 years. After that, there is no cost to maintain your coverage.
The company also offers life insurance for people living with HIV. To qualify for these term and whole life policies, you must demonstrate that you are under the care of a specialist and are successfully receiving antiretroviral therapy. In addition, the insurer offers a variety of benefits, including premium waivers for disability, long-term care and the Index Participation Facility (or IPF). The IPF allows you to link a portion of your cash value to the performance of the S&P 500 Price Return Index and profits are paid out in dividends.
Guardian does not guarantee dividends, has paid them to its permanent policyholders every year since 1868, and will pay out $1.13 billion in 2022.
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Whole Life Insurance Options: 121 Paid Life, 99 Paid Life, 95 Paid Life, 65 Paid Life, 10 Whole Life, 15 Whole Life, 20 Paid Whole Life, EstateGuard.
Our take: Through a partnership with New York Life, AARP makes it easy for members and their families to buy whole life insurance. AARP offers two whole life policies, neither of which require you to undergo a physical. The company sells standard whole life policies as well as guaranteed acceptance life insurance, both of which are open to AARP members and their spouses. You can buy a policy online for up to $50,000, but you can contact New York Life if you want more coverage.
To apply for a basic whole life policy, you need to complete a questionnaire about your health and lifestyle. The guaranteed acceptance policy skips both exams and quizzes.
Eligibility age range: 50 to 80 for AARP members (45 to 80 for spouses) and 50 to 75 for members and their spouses in New York.
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Maximum amount of coverage: $25,000 for a guaranteed acceptance policy; $50,000 ($5,000 in Washington) for a standard whole life policy.
Our take: New York Life sells two whole life policies, including a custom policy that offers flexibility with premium payments. You can choose to pay for your policy over a minimum of five years or schedule payment times and amounts to suit you.
The insurer offers different types of life insurance, including chronic care rider, premium waiver and accelerated death benefit.
As a mutual company, New York Life will pay $1.9 billion in dividends to policyholders by 2022.
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New York life New York Life announced the largest dividend in the company's history. Accessed November 1, 2022. See all sources.
Our Take: Northwestern Mutual sells a whole life policy with a variety of payment options. You can choose to pay premiums for 15, 20 or 25 years, or until age 65 or 100. The insurer offers flexible coverage starting at $50,000 and up to $70 million for qualified applicants.
To increase your coverage, you can add advancements to your policy, such as an accelerated death benefit that pays a portion of your payout if you need long-term care. There is also an additional purchase benefit, which allows you to increase your coverage at a later date without having to undergo another life insurance medical exam.
Northwestern Mutual is a mutual company, one of the largest individual life insurers in the United States and is scheduled to pay a dividend of $6.8 billion in 2023.
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Northwest Mutual. Northwestern Mutual will offer a record $6.8 billion in dividends to policyholders. Accessed November 1, 2022. See all sources.
Our take: For flexible payment options, it's worth looking at State Farm's schedule. The company's standard whole life policy has flat premiums, meaning you pay the same amount each month. But if you want to adjust when and how much you pay, you can buy a single premium or limited payment policy.
Coverage typically starts at $10,000 for whole life policies. And if you're healthy, between the ages of 18 and 50, and applying for a $100,000 to $1 million policy, State Farm can fast-track your application and issue your policy without the need for a medical exam . If you want to exclusively cover your funeral, burial and end-of-life expenses, the insurer offers a Last Expense policy to applicants age 50 to 80 (50 to 75 in New York). Policy features aside, State Farm tops J.D.'s list of life insurers. Power for the best customer satisfaction.
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The 7 Types Of Life Insurance Policies: What's The Best One For You?
Traditional term life insurance is suitable for most families. Term life, which does not generate cash value, is much cheaper than whole life insurance. A term life policy lasts for a set number of years, at which point you may not need life insurance.
If you're sure you want lifetime coverage, you can also consider other types of permanent life insurance. Some options are:
Learn more about whole life policies before you buy. Here are some resources to help you understand your options.
Complaints received by state insurance regulators were investigated and reported to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners in 2018-2020. To assess how insurers compare to each other, the NAIC calculates a complaint index each year for each subsidiary, measuring its share of total complaints relative to its size or share of total industry premiums. To assess a company's complaint history, a similar index was calculated for each insurer weighted by each subsidiary's market share over a three-year period. Performs data analysis and reaches conclusions independently and without the support of the NAIC. Ratios are determined separately
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