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Best Life Insurance of 2018

Best Life Insurance of 2018

We really struggled creating our best life insurance list this year because there are so many of them that do good work. Nobody denies that there are fraudster and crappy life insurance companies out there, but experience has taught us that the ratio of good-to-bad life insurance companies is rather favorable. We couldn’t decide which were the best of the best, so we have created a list of the best life insurance companies and given you their pros and cons.

The list is in no particular order. The list was randomized to try to avoid showing favoritism.

Most of the insurance companies are for people living in the USA, but many of them offer services all over the world.

A Word On Life Insurance Advisers And Negative Reviews

I am not defending life insurance companies, but some of the negative user reviews you read online are not due directly to the life insurance company, but are more to do with immoral insurance agents and advisers who screw people over in order to earn extra commission.

I am not defending life insurance companies on this point because it is up to life insurance companies to weed out the bad employees and make sure that unethical behavior is punished and punished severely.

However, as I look over quite a few negative user reviews, I see the acts of individuals being tied to large institutions, and that is fine in some respects because those larger institutions (life insurance companies) shouldn’t be hiring sleazeballs and letting them operate. Yet, you should approach positive and negative user reviews sensibly. Just because an agent had an old lady switch her policy to a worthless one and then laughed at her down the phone when she complained, it doesn’t mean the life insurance company hires people to do that or trains them to act like DC comic villains.

condiment king batman villain

Best Life Insurance – Phoenix

Phoenix – Pros

[+] It comes with riders at no additional cost
[+] Offers highly customizable policies
[+] Some of their riders come with living benefits
[+] They have flexible underwriting
[+] The electronic application process is very easy to understand
[+] Phoenix has express options available
[+] Offers a number of simplified products for clients in different situations
[+] Get up to $1,000,000 of coverage without giving a urine or blood sample
[+] Offer a higher cap on coverage than many other no-exam insurers

Phoenix – Cons

[-] Your options with regards to converting are not as lenient as with other insurers
[-] It has a cap on coverage
[-] The lower rates are only available to those who take medical exams
[-] It has more limits on age brackets than many other insurers
[-] Read the terms and conditions before assuming you will get a lump sum
[-] Beware of the conditions that state they may increase your premium amounts
[-] The customer service department are not life insurance professionals
[-] Phoenix has low financial strength
[-] It can take up to eight weeks to finish the underwriting process

Best Life Insurance – Penn Mutual

Penn Mutual – Pros

[+] They have a strong commitment to maintenance mutuality
[+] Well-established and with a superior A.M. Best rating
[+] Strong risk-adjusting and absolute capitalization
[+] Many plan options and a strong financial rating
[+] A reputable company history and many additional features are available
[+] Moody’s Investors Service Aa3 (Excellent) and Standard & Poor’s A+ (Strong)
[+] You can take a loan from their permanent life insurance
[+] The cash value of your permanent life insurance is protected in many states
[+] They are flexible when it comes to adjusting a death benefit or premiums

Penn Mutual – Cons

[-] We still cannot find their online payment options (Do they exist? Where are they?)
[-] There is no payment estimator (We couldn’t find this either)
[-] Penn Mutual’s website is out of date and ugly
[-] They make it difficult for you to cancel your insurable interests such as employees
[-] The company almost tries to force you into talking to an adviser so that it is easier to sell to you
[-] They offer middle-to-higher rates, but that is the price you pay for using a well-known and trusted insurer
[-] Insurance with deductibles often come with very high deductibles
[-] They could stand to pay their employees a little more
[-] Slow to upgrade technology or procedures and are growing out of touch with modern technology

Best Life Insurance – Prudential

Prudential – Pros

[+] The Prudential have simplified their online application process to help first-time buyers
[+] They offer coverage up to $250,000
[+] Customizable options such as those that allow you to accelerate your death benefits
[+] You can get a quick quote online that will not affect your credit rating
[+] A well-known company with a strong online reputation
[+] Prudential seems to excel with niche underwriting services
[+] They will happily insure non-US citizens or US citizens living abroad
[+] Offer good rates for people with unhealthy lifestyles or unhealthy-lifestyle-related issues

Prudential – Cons

[-] Whole life options are not on offer
[-] Customer service is average at best
[-] Investors are not offered a great deal of flexibility
[-] Read the small print because early withdrawal fees are astronomical
[-] Make sure you get proof of what you request with customer support because they are not reliable
[-] They do not explain things such as withdrawals to people and customers get stung
[-] Double confirm that the documents you were supposed to send in were received because the Prudential will claim they didn’t receive them
[-] Be very careful of rate bumps after five years
[-] They may claim your medical was worse than it was, in which case you need to try another company

Best Life Insurance – Mutual of Omaha

Mutual of Omaha – Pros

[+] MoO seem especially good for people with unhealthy lifestyles and have some policies that do not include medical exams
[+] The website seems a lot more modern than most life insurance companies and is especially suited for millennials
[+] MoO offers a fair number of insurance options including medical insurance
[+] Prices are rather low for people with health issues, an unhealthy lifestyle, and those who are out of shape
[+] Their online reputation is rather good when you consider that they are a very large company with many customers
[+] You may get a better price on average if you take some of their other health-related insurance plans too
[+] They allow you to make adjustments online without having to call the customer service department every time
[+] Prices for people over 40 were (on average) good based on the research we have conducted into life insurance companies
[+] They are good at giving you the gist of their policies, but you will need to read all of the small print when you take up MoO’s life insurance

Mutual of Omaha – Cons

[-] The prices are too high for healthy people or people looking to live a long time
[-] Their customer support staff and agents are hard to fire, which means the iniquitous ones get away with very poor behavior
[-] If the policy holder dies of an accident, then you may have to hire a lawyer to get MoO to pay
[-] They payout and refund process is very slow
[-] Union bullies have made it cheaper for MoO to screw over a customer than to fire a member of staff for gross misconduct
[-] Be very careful to understand every loophole and condition within your life insurance policy
[-] Their locked-in rates almost always have a loophole, such as how the “Easy Start” policy for a child is changed to a “Whole life” policy at age 25
[-] Unforeseen rate rises are not common, but they are frequent enough to anger a small portion of MoO’s customer base
[-] You need to pay a few days in advance and check to see if it went through the day before or on the day the payment is due

Best Life Insurance – AXA Life Insurance

AXA Life Insurance – Pros

[+] Plans that run from 1 year, 10 years, 15 years, 20 years, or lifetime plans
[+] You can monitor your claim online after filing it
[+] AXA Life Insurance considers your commitment to health as well as your vital statistics
[+] They are a financially sound company that is unlikely to go anywhere
[+] Their rates are reasonable and they offer flexible investments
[+] AXA Life Insurance of a fair amount of varied riders
[+] They seem to offer good deals for people with high cholesterol levels
[+] Their height-to-weight are flexible enough so they may offer good rates to people with a larger build
[+] You can convert your policy from a smoker to non-smoker after one policy year
[+] Some of their advisers are very knowledgeable

AXA Life Insurance – Cons

[-] They want you to call them rather than encouraging you to apply online
[-] Are the customer support taught to read from a script or are they hiring robots?
[-] Their online support is not so great and we couldn’t find a way to file a claim online
[-] AXA Life Insurance forced us to go through a broker rather than allowing us to apply through them
[-] Their dumb marketing company posts online reviews about them and puts positive comments in the cons part of pros and cons sections
[-] Their dumb marketing company copies and pastes the same positive reviews on different review websites
[-] The AXA payment system needs a serious overhaul to bring it into the 2000-Teens
[-] Poor-quality advisers need identifying and eliminating more quickly
[-] They need to make it more difficult for broker’s assistants to obscure details and rush important points

Best Life Insurance – Transamerica

Transamerica – Pros

[+] They have unique leniences that means they can approve a wider range of applicants
[+] Transamerica is financially sound and is unlikely to go bust before your policy is due to be paid
[+] A wide selection of life insurance products are on offer including term, whole life, universal, indexed universal and variable universal
[+] They excel at cases for people over the age of 70
[+] People with high cholesterol and certain heart issues are approved more often than not
[+] The rates they give to smokers are very fair
[+] People with Hepatitis C and Schizophrenia are still approved
[+] Applicants with excellent health may find a very low rate with Transamerica
[+] They have accelerated death benefits for various illnesses
[+] (Transamerica is not a racist company, people who throw the word racist around in order to get what they want are disrespecting the generations of people who have generally suffered from racism).

Transamerica – Cons

[-] The claims process is unclear in a way that makes preparing it more difficult
[-] You cannot start your claim online via their website
[-] The whole-life insurance option offers a comparatively low maximum death benefit that may not suit some people
[-] Their customer service department has the standards of a High School drama department
[-] Low rates, but you don’t get much for your money
[-] The way they handle dissatisfied customers is to lose them in the bureaucracy
[-] They put provisions in their policies that allow them to deny certain accidental death claims
[-] Claims, especially death claims, take longer than the industry average
[-] Transamerica expect you to understand your own policy and will continue to charge you for a policy you do not fully understand

Best Life Insurance – Northwestern Mutual

Northwestern Mutual – Pros

[+] The rates they offer to smokers and people over the age of 65 are better than average
[+] Northwestern Mutual has a fair amount of financial strength and will probably still be around when it is time to claim
[+] You may combine permanent and term coverage
[+] Rates are above average but are still competitive
[+] Universal life plans and whole life plans build a cash value
[+] Northwestern Mutual offers flexible payment terms
[+] There are return-of-premium, cash-surrender, and partial surrender options
[+] They have disability insurance for stay-at-home spouses and part-timers
[+] Northwestern Mutual offers term life, whole life and Universal life and long-term care insurance

Northwestern Mutual – Cons

[-] People with severe pre-existing conditions have more red tape to complete
[-] Term insurance policy lengths are a little limited
[-] Most of their policies require a full health work-up
[-] Premiums are higher because they sell their service through agents only
[-] Getting an online quote is impossible because you have to go through agents
[-] Term products are limited to variations on a 20-year term or annual renewals
[-] Inexperience buyers are thrown to the agents rather than being educated by Northwestern Mutual’s online content
[-] Their online services and administration is/are pretty poor
[-] The penalty fees for moving your money to another company are diabolical

Best Life Insurance – Haven Life

Haven Life – Pros

[+] Haven Life is often able to offer fast approval for people who want coverage quickly
[+] Healthy applicants under the age of 45 are approved the quickest
[+] The customer service department is above average
[+] Their rates are competitive for smokers
[+] Terminally ill people with 12-24 months left may collect part of their death benefit
[+] You can cancel your policy if you price goes up after your medical
[+] It takes around 25 minutes to complete your online application
[+] Haven Life insurance is available in 50 states and the District of Columbia
[+] There is a 30-day grace period for non-payment before your policy is canceled

Haven Life – Cons

[-] People over the age of 65 will often get a poor quality rate
[-] Rates are poor for people with per-existing conditions
[-] Not suitable for people who need more than $2 million in coverage
[-] They pander to extremists on the progressive left
[-] The riders they advertise are not available in all states
[-] Haven Life only offers term life insurance
[-] Additional reviews after death can take up to two years
[-] Claims made in the first two years may be contested by the insurer
[-] You can close your account with no penalties but your premiums are not returned

Best Life Insurance – Protective Life Insurance

Protective – Pros

[+] The company doesn’t discriminate based on ethnicity statistics
[+] They are smart enough to classify drug takers as high risk (especially marijuana)
[+] People over 50 can still get a good deal
[+] You can haggle with their agents and maybe get a better price
[+] They have agents who will talk you through stuff you don’t want to do online
[+] Their retirement annuities are paid late but are fair
[+] Protective offers fair notices about natural disasters and what they mean for your insurance

Protective – Cons

[-] They have a powerful marketing group that censors bad reviews
[-] Protective uses reputation managers to remove or edit negative comments on review websites
[-] The way they deal with claims is very slow and overly complicated
[-] Agents are not punished for ignoring the change requests that customers make
[-] They are slow making any type of payment
[-] The customer service department is able to get away with being rude and unprofessional
[-] They exploit people who do not understand life insurance
[-] Getting a low rate is possible but rather tricky
[-] Their website has its fair share of fluffy text

Best Life Insurance – Assurity

Assurity – Pros

[+] The Assurity website keeps it simple
[+] You can pick from a strong set of individual insurance solutions
[+] They have a state-specific quotation tool on their website
[+] The website offers concise explanations through clickable help “?” icons
[+] Their website also has video explanations of their policies
[+] Assurity has a good reputation considering that they don’t use reputation managers
[+] The company has $2 billion in assets
[+] Has a good range of options for small and middle sized businesses
[+] Their accidental death policies are pretty good

Assurity – Cons

[-] Features and price seems to vary quite a bit from state to state
[-] The website looks cheap and in desperate need of updating
[-] The online side of their website is pretty poor by modern standards
[-] They rely heavily on a range of mixed-quality agents
[-] May be a little too small for some people to feel comfortable
[-] The customer service department is poorly trained and ill equipped
[-] Read your policy carefully because there are loopholes that help them get out of paying
[-] Their customer support will not answer questions with direct answers
[-] Exclusions seem to change all too often

Aren’t These Types Of Articles Redundant Thanks To Comparison Websites

If you are looking for car insurance, then a comparison website is probably your best bet unless your car cost you tens of thousands and you want to protect it. When it comes to things such as life insurance, articles like this are vital.

We Tell You Things That The Comparison Websites Won’t

It is a comparison website’s job to sell you a service because they get an affiliate fee if you do. Articles such as this one may also be motivated with affiliate fees, but with articles such as these, you get details that comparison websites do not tell you.

Let’s say you find an article on Google that compares life insurance companies, even if it is motivated by affiliate money, it will give you details such as one-off fees, penalty fees, terms and conditions.

Online Articles Lie Too

Even the most manipulative articles can tell you things that you things that comparison websites won’t. Let’s say that the article is obviously promoting one life insurance company over all the others, you can ignore the biased editorializing about the supposedly good life insurance company, and you can read about the flaws with the other life insurance companies. What’s more, if the writer really has to scrape the bottom of the barrel to criticize one of the competitors, then that life insurance company may be a good one.

There Are Many Flaws With Comparison Websites

The owner of the comparison website will prefer/favor the life insurance companies that pay the biggest affiliate payments. Ergo, the web master may exclude life insurance companies that offer a better deal than the one the web master is trying to promote.

Plus, comparisons websites are very easy to manipulate. For example, you can enter your prices so that the low price that appears on the comparison website is only for preferred customers, or maybe the price is for one week of coverage, or the rate you give to the comparison website may be the preliminary price before the extra fees and service charges are added at the end.

A Few Dishonorable Mentions

We came across a few poor quality life insurance companies and life insurance policies, but most of them were small-time operators and many were limited to small areas or states. The three listed below are large companies that offer coverage in many states, but we couldn’t include them in our article for one reason or another.


We didn’t add ANICO (American National Insurance Company) because the group operates in a way that makes it difficult for us to evaluate them fairly. Do not rule them out if you are looking for life insurance.


We couldn’t try this company so they didn’t appear in this article. We even tried to Google them to see what other people thought and all we found were posts after posts of ex-employees ripping them apart. Ameritas has over £25 billion in assets, has nobody told them about SEO (Search Engine Optimization)?

Guardian Life

The “Guardian” or “Guardian Life” insurance didn’t appear on this article because they are crap. They target people with lower intelligence and should be avoided.

Honorable Mentions

These companies offer life insurance plans that are average-to-good. They are not good enough to appear in the main part of our “Best Life Insurance” article, but you may like to look them up if you are trying to shop around.

  • Lincoln Financial
  • Voya Financial
  • American National
  • Banner
  • New York Life Insurance Company
  • China Life Insurance
  • MetLife
  • Foresters
  • MassMutual
  • UnitedHealth Group
  • Minnesota Life
  • American International Group (AIG)
  • SBLI
  • Allianz SE
  • Japan Post Holdings
  • Sagicor
  • Assicurazioni Generali Group

About The Author

Ash The Great

After a varied career in different industries from the hospitality industry to the financial consultancy industry, Ash now spends his days working as a professional writer.

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