Life Insurance Company Reviews – Know The Company That’s Right For You

by Jeff Rose

It’s very common for consumers to not check the ratings of a life insurance company before they actually purchase their life insurance policy.

If you’re planning on paying on this policy, for the next 20 or 30 years, wouldn’t you want to know how strong the ratings are of the life insurance company that you’re getting ready to hand your money over to for the next couple decades?  One would think so.

life insurance by jeff broker

Yet people don’t do it. It doesn’t take much time to do some research and find out how solid the insurance company is. A simple Google search will yield you a wealth of information.

What Should You be Looking For?

If you want to find out some information about your potential insurance company, here’s a few things you’ll want to consider.

First, check to see if your state has what is called a “insurance guaranty fund“. At this time I’m not aware of any states that don’t have this fund so you should be in the clear. If you’re not sure, be sure to check our Insurance State Commissioner’s resource page for contact info for your state.

What the this guaranty fund covers is if something did happen to your insurance company and it became insolvent, the state fund would kick in and pay the life insurance death benefit.

But for that to happen, verify that the caps on payout limits are large enough to take care of your life insurance policy. If you are purchasing some sort of policy that has a cash value build up, make sure that amount is covered, too.

This a last resort option, of course, as the process can be a bear. Don’t expect a quick turnaround on getting your money.

The second place you can get information is visiting A.M. Best (note: Moody’s and S&P also rank insurance companies and you can that info below).
A. M. Best is one of the most recognized that companies that rates the financial strength of all the different life insurance companies that exist.

How long have they been around? Ummm…a while. In fact, they’ve been around over 100 years so they are definitely considered the leaders in this space.

If your company is rated A, A+, or A++, it’s on solid ground. If your company is rated B or worse, it’s time to move on. Below you’ll find more about A.M. Best’s rating scale.

How Does A.M. Best Insurance Ratings Scale Work?

For a professional company, using a basic method of grading insurance companies has proven to be an effective and helpful tactic. Here’s how the A.M. Best Insurance ratings scale works:

  • A++, A+, A, and A- all identify the top insurance companies. Receiving an A for the company shows how financially strong they are, how capable a company is of guaranteeing your policy and keeping it secure.
  • B++, B+, B, and B- ratings rank companies as good for those who can’t afford what higher ranked companies offer their services for. With a B ranking you can depend on the company to provide a secure policy for affordable rates and rely on them to help your family get the help they need once you’re gone. For client’s knowing that your family has something to fall back on during difficult times is a welcome relief.
  • C++ and C+ are the only two scores for the C category, indicating an average insurance company. No bells or whistles attached, just a straightforward policy with straightforward premiums, a great choice for the first time you buy life insurance.
  • A ‘D’ rank is only reserved for companies that fall below A.M. Best’s minimum standards, an E rank means the company is under state supervision, and an F rank is only for companies going into liquidation. Any rating below a C shows how unreliable the company is.

If you don’t know where to look to get up to date ratings and reviews of all the life insurance companies, look no further. Below in the table you will see a comprehensive list of all the life insurance company possibilities.

Moody’s Ratings Explanations

AAAExtremely StrongVery unlikely to be affected by adverse economic conditions.
AAVery StrongNot significantly vulnerable to adverse economic conditions.
AStrongLow expectation for interruption of payments.
BBBGoodMay be affected by adverse economic conditions.
BB Moderately WeakContractual obligations are now vulnerable.
BWeakSignificant risk for interruption of payments.
CCCVery WeakStrong likelihood for interruption of payments.
CCExtremely WeakInterruption of payments is probable.
CDistressedInterruption of payments is imminent.

Reviews of Life Insurance Company Ratings

Their are several different ratings agencies that review the stability and solvency of all the life insurance company ratings.   Of those, the most recognized is the  A.M. Best Rating Agency.

21st Century-AA+
AIG LifeA1A+A-
American GeneralA1A+A-
Banner Life-AA--
American National-AA--
Axa EquitableAa3AAAA-
Colonial PennBa2BB-BB+
Empire General---
Genworth LifeA2AA-
Hartford LifeA3AA-
Integrity LifeAa3AA+AA
Kansas City Life-A-
Jackson NationalA1-AA
Jefferson National---
John HancockAa3AA+AA
Liberty MutualBaa1A-A-
Lincoln NationalA2AA-A+
Mass MutualAa1-AAA
Midland National-A+A
Monumental LifeA1AA-AA
Mutual of OmahaAa3--
Nationwide LifeA1A+A
New York LifeAaaAAAAAA
North American-A+A
Ohio National---
Old MutualA1-BBB-
Pacific LifeA1AA-AA-
Penn MutualAa3--
Standard Life-AA+
State FarmAa1-AA+
The TravelersA2AA-AA
Transamerica A1AA-AA
West Coast LifeA2AA-A+
Zurich American-AA-A+

Below you’ll find links to all of our life insurance company reviews.  We’re constantly adding to these as things change in the industry.   If you don’t see an insurance company below that you think should be reviewed, please let us know.  We constantly want to provide value for customers.

Reviews of Our Top Ten Life insurance Companies

It is really hard to narrow down a top ten when it comes to life insurance companies.  There are a lot of great companies that did not make this list.  If an agent suggests a different company and you see the ratings are very good do not be afraid to do business with a company that isn’t here.

Other Company Reviews

Top Life Insurance Companies By Category

There are more than 850 life insurance companies in the United States. Finding the right one can be difficult. There are several factors to consider: policies, premiums, customer service, and much more. No life insurance company is perfect for everyone. It can be overwhelming when you begin your search.

While people who are in good health can pretty much use the form on this page and find a good match, people who are “high risk” can have troubles.  To help everyone we put together this list of common categories and matched the companies that we have had the easiest time getting clients approved.

Category: Seniors

Our Pick: Mutual of Omaha
Founded: 1909
Headquarters: Omaha, Nebraska.

With over 3.5 million individual product customers in 2014, Mutual of Omaha is one of the most well-known and respected insurance companies in the field. Founded in 1909 they have had a few years to become good at what they do.

Through the last 100 years Mutual of Omaha has developed policies that work well for most elderly customers. Mutual of Omaha is an excellent place to start for seniors. If you are between the ages of 45 – 85 you cannot be rejected for coverage. You will not have to take a medical exam or answer ANY medical questions and they can’t reduce any of your benefits due to your health or age.

Because you don’t have to take a medical exam or answer any questions, that may cause your premiums to be higher.


Category: Overweight

Our Pick: Genworth
Founded: 2003
Headquarters: Richmond, Virginia.

Genworth is considered to be the leader in providing life insurance for customers that are typically classified as “overweight”. Their policies have a generous view on what is considered to be “overweight” or “obese.” Their liberal standards are important in receiving a preferred plus rating in the underwriting of the policies, which leads to lower monthly premiums. With Genworth applicants are allowed a few more pounds before being considered overweight for their height.

Another reason to choose Genworth is their customer service. In 2013 Genworth won the DALBAR Life & Long Term Care Service for customer service award.


Category: 5 – Year Term

Our Pick:Minnesota Life
Founded: 1880
Headquarters: St. Paul, Minnesota.

Minnesota Life boasts an impressive $1 trillion in life insurance protection and is highly rated from all independent agencies. They are also one of the few life insurance companies that offer a 5- year term policy. These types of policies are great for short-term coverage and can help you save money with their lower premiums. A 5-year term policy is popular among young married couples who want to cover death expenses and can’t afford a higher coverage.

Category: Universal Life

Our Pick: Protective Life
Founded: 1907
Headquarters: Birmingham, Alabama

Protective Life is becoming known for their Universal Life policies. Universal Life policies are relatively new to the insurance industry. These policies are created to last throughout your life as opposed to a term policy. Protective Life’s Universal Life policies offer several ways for you to customize the plan to fit your needs. They allow you to adjust coverage amounts and premiums of the plan and make changes to the savings portion of the account. Protective Life has competitive prices compared to other companies that offer Universal Life policies.

Category: No Medical Exam

Our Pick: American National Insurance Company (ANICO)
Founded: 1905
Headquarters: Galveston, Texas.

The Moody family established ANICO in 1905, and the family still plays an active role in the company. ANICO was named to Forbe’s “100 Most Trustworthy Companies” list in 2009.

ANICO offers a wide variety of products and policies, but they specialize in policies that don’t require a medical exam or health questions. They offer several different policies with varying coverage amounts, premiums, and terms. Their Legacy Whole Life insures people ages 50 – 80 and is guaranteed approval with a fixed premium. These policies are great for people who need life insurance immediately, or do not have the time to go through a medical exam. In most cases you can be approved with a policy in less than 20 minutes with ANICO.

The premiums are going to be higher when a medical exam is not required. They also have tighter limits on the amount you can be insured for. You also must be careful of a two year graded death benefit. Which means that if the insured person dies within the first two years of the policy, the company will pay 110% of premiums paid, but not the payout of the policy.

Category: Cancer Survivors

Our Pick: Prudential
Founded: 1875
Headquarters: Newark, New Jersey.

Prudential is famous for covering several “high-risk” groups that most other insurance companies won’t. With an estimated 14 million cancer survivors in the United States, Prudential has become one of the leaders in providing insurance for this demographic.

Although your premium will be higher, Prudential offers great rates for cancer survivors. The type of cancer and the length of remission will play a huge part in the premium and coverage amount they offer.

Category: Tobacco Users

Our Pick: Banner Life
Founded: 1949
Headquarters: Frederick, Maryland.

Banner Life is an excellent company for almost any type of policy, but especially for tobacco users. Most life insurance companies don’t specify between the types of tobaccos when underwriting a policy. Banner Life is different. They offer “preferred tobacco” and “standard tobacco” depending on the type and frequency. Banner Life has become specialists in covering tobacco users for lower rates.

Yes, you are still going to be paying a higher premium than someone that does not use tobacco, but Banner will help you get a lower price than almost all other companies.

Category: Diabetics

Our Pick: American General
Founded: 1919
Headquarters: New York, New York.

In the early 2000’s American General became a part of the larger and well-known American International Group (AIG). American General insures more than 88 million consumers worldwide, but we chose them because of the excellence in serving the diabetic community.

American General is great at serving several groups of “high-risk” applicants, but specifically those with type 2 diabetes. Once again, anyone with diabetes is going to pay more than someone without it, but American General will help give you a lower premium.

With American General you can also take advantage of their accelerated death benefit rider that lets you receive some of the benefits while you are alive.

Each person and policy is different. Make sure you receive several quotes before deciding on a plan that works for you. All of these companies are financially stable; you shouldn’t have any concerns about these companies paying out for the policy. Each state has it’s own “insurance guaranty fund”, which would help you recover your insurance pay out if an insurance company became insolvent.

To get a free analysis of quotes from the best life insurance companies, use the form on this page or call us at 8888-836-7071. We are here to help you get the cheapest term quote from the best insurance companies.

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Life Insurance Company Reviews - Know The Company That's Right For You
Our in-depth life insurance company reviews will help out your decision on the best life insurance company to handle your insurance needs.