Buying a life insurance policy can be a confusing process. There are multiple different types of life insurance policies with and without investment options. You also have to contemplate what life will be like for your loved ones after you’ve passed. To help make the process easier we have compiled a list of the top life insurance companies of 2022.We also have gathered information to explain the different types of life insurance, how the quote process works, and even how to buy.
Our Best Life Insurance Companies Rating
#1 Haven Life #2 Bestow #3 New York Life #3 Northwestern Mutual #5 Lincoln Financial #5 John Hancock #7 AIG #7 State Farm #9 Nationwide #9 Banner Life #11 Mutual of Omaha #12 Prudential #12 MassMutual #14 Transamerica #15 Guardian Life
Compare the Best Life Insurance Companies of 2022
COMPANYSAMPLE MONTHLY COSTAM BEST RATINGLEARN MOREHaven Life »4.4 out of 5$81.16A++Compare Quotes » Bestow »4.3 out of 5$56.00A+Compare Quotes » New York Life »4.1 out of 5$142.67A++See Review » Northwestern Mutual »4.1 out of 5N/AA++See Review » Lincoln Financial »4.0 out of 5$57.81A+Compare Quotes » Expand ListAny rates listed are for illustrative purposes only. You should contact the insurance company or insurance agent directly for applicable quotes.* Monthly costs are for a 35-year-old female for a $1,000,000 coverage policy of a 20-year term.
Best Life Insurance Companies of 2022 in Detail:
Haven Life »
Compare Quotes360 OVERALL RATING4.4 out of 5AM BEST RATINGA++ONLINE TOOLSAvailable for all policiesSEE REVIEWPros
- Can be purchased online
- No medical exam required for some applicants
- Only offers term life insurance
Haven Life is a digital insurance agency that offers two term life insurance options, Haven Term and Haven Simple. Haven Term is a term policy with durations of between 10 and 30 years and coverage of up to $3 million. Haven Simple is also a term-based policy but has lower coverage amounts and shorter offered durations of between five and 20 years. The upside for some people may be that it doesn’t require a medical exam for coverage. Both policies can be applied online without the aid of an agent.It should be noted that Haven Life doesn’t issue the policies it sells. Instead, the policies are issued by MassMutual, which also made our rating, or one of its subsidiaries.Read more in our Haven Life review.
Compare Quotes360 OVERALL RATING4.3 out of 5AM BEST RATINGA+ONLINE TOOLSAvailable for all policiesSEE REVIEWPros
- None of its policies require a medical exam
- Terms policies between 10 and 30 years in duration
- Only term life policies available
- Doesn’t offer any riders
Bestow sells one type of policy with terms between 10 and 30 years available in five-year increments. The policy has coverage amounts up to $1.5 million. The entire application can be completed online, and you can text or call Bestow’s customer support team with any questions. One of the things that set Bestow apart from the other companies in our rating is that none of their policies require a medical exam.Bestow doesn’t issue the life insurance policies it sells. Instead, the policies are issued by North American Company for Life and Health Insurance.Read more in our Bestow review.
New York Life »
Best Whole Life Insurance (tie)360 OVERALL RATING4.1 out of 5AM BEST RATINGA++ONLINE TOOLSNot AvailableSEE REVIEWPros
- Offers term, whole, and universal life policies
- Term policies can be converted to permanent
- Policies are more expensive than many companies in our rating
- Policies aren’t fully explained on the company website
New York Life
New York Life is the highest-rated company in our rating to offer both term and permanent policies. Its permanent life insurance options include both whole and universal policies. The term policies it offers can also be converted to a permanent policy.You also have the option of adding riders such as Disability Waiver of Premium, Accidental Death Benefit, and Living Benefits.The New York Life website doesn’t necessarily provide a lot of information on its policies, so you may have to contact a New York Life agent for more detail. Also, its term policies are more expensive than most of the companies in our rating.Read more in our New York Life review.
Northwestern Mutual »
Best Whole Life Insurance (tie)360 OVERALL RATING4.1 out of 5AM BEST RATINGA++ONLINE TOOLSNot AvailableSEE REVIEWPros
- Offers term, whole, and universal policies
- Offers a single-payment universal policy
- Can only be purchased through an agent
- Limited online pricing information
Founded in the 1850’s Bestow offers both term, whole, and two universal policy options. One of its two universal policy options, Custom Universal Life, gives you options to customize both your death benefit and your premiums. While its Single Premium universal policy is exactly what it sounds like, you can make a single premium payment for a universal life insurance policy.Something to keep in mind is that all policies must be purchased through an agent, although you can begin the application process online. We were not able to find much information on the pricing of Northwestern’s policies.Read more in our Northwestern Mutual review.
Lincoln Financial »
Compare Quotes360 OVERALL RATING4.0 out of 5AM BEST RATINGA+ONLINE TOOLSAvailable for all policiesSEE REVIEWPros
- Offers term and universal policies
- Some policies may not require a medical exam
- Doesn’t offer whole life insurance policies
- Applying for policies requires working with a Lincoln financial professional
Lincoln Financial Group
Lincoln Financial Group offers both term and universal policies. Its two-term policies, TermAccel and LifeElements, have durations of between 10 and 30 years with coverage starting at $100,000. Depending on your application, you may not be required to take a medical exam.Lincoln offers three types of permanent life insurance: universal life, variable universal life, and indexed universal life.Applying for a policy requires reaching out to Lincoln Financial.Read more in our Lincoln Financial Group review.
John Hancock »
Compare Quotes360 OVERALL RATING4.0 out of 5AM BEST RATINGA+ONLINE TOOLSAvailable for some policiesSEE REVIEWPros
- Offers term and universal life insurance policies available
- Offers higher coverage levels than many of the companies in our rating
- Doesn’t offer whole life insurance
- Some policies have high minimum coverage amounts
John Hancock offers both term and universal policies. One thing that sets it apart from other companies in our rating is its terms policy, which offers coverage up to $65 million. The downside is that the policy’s minimum coverage amount is $750,000. Both the minimum and maximum are higher than many of the companies in our rating. For example, Haven Life’s Haven Term policy starts at $100,000 and maxes out at $3 million.The company’s permanent life insurance options are universal life, indexed universal life, and variable universal life. It doesn’t provide any whole life insurance options.You may be able to save money with John Hancock’s Vitality Plus program where you can save money on your premiums by recording healthy activities in the company’s mobile app or program website.Read more in our John Hancock review. How much does life insurance cost?AgeGender---FMZIP codePolicy length 10 yrs15 yrs20 yrs25 yrs30 yrs35 yrs40 yrsCoverage amount $500KMonthly estimates for Best health$--Good health$--Average health$--COMPARE QUOTESon Policygenius
Cheapest Life Insurance Companies of 2022
According to LIMRA, a life insurance trade association, the top reason most people don’t purchase life insurance is they believe it to be too expensive, while over half of Americans overestimate how much a life insurance policy is. To help you find a less expensive life policy here is our rating of the Cheapest Life Insurance Companies of 2022.COMPANYSAMPLE MONTHLY COST - WOMENSAMPLE MONTHLY COST - MENA.M BEST RATINGLEARN MOREBanner Life »3.8 out of 5$46.63$61.85A+Compare Quotes » AIG »3.9 out of 5$46.91$62.21ASee Review » Guardian Life »3.2 out of 5$57.00$65.00A++Compare Quotes » State Farm »3.9 out of 5$54.79$69.59A++See Review » Transamerica »3.4 out of 5$57.62$74.82ACompare Quotes » * Monthly costs are for a 35-year-old female and 35-year-old male, respectively, in the Standard Plus risk category, or equivalent, for a $1,000,000 coverage policy of a 20-year term.
Best Term Life Insurance Companies of 2022
Not everyone needs a life insurance policy to last their whole lives. For example, you may only need a life insurance policy to last as long as it takes to pay off a mortgage. This is where term life insurance can come in handy, you can choose how long you want your policy to last, usually for periods ranging from five to 30 years and it is frequently one of the less expensive life insurance options. Here is our rating of the Best Term Life Insurance Companies of 2022.COMPANYSAMPLE MONTHLY COSTA.M BEST RATINGLEARN MOREHaven Life »4.4 out of 5$81.16A++Compare Quotes » Bestow »4.3 out of 5$56.00A+Compare Quotes » New York Life »4.1 out of 5$142.67A++See Review » Northwestern Mutual »4.1 out of 5N/AA++See Review » Lincoln Financial »4.0 out of 5$57.81A+Compare Quotes » Expand List
Best Whole Life Insurance Companies of 2022
Whole life insurance policies are a type of permanent life insurance, that is they are meant to last for as long as you live as long as you continue to pay your premiums. This type of policy includes not only a death benefit but also a savings component, called the cash value, that can be borrowed or withdrawn from as needed. Here is our rating of the Best Whole Life Insurance Companies of 2022.COMPANYSAMPLE MONTHLY COSTA.M BEST RATINGLEARN MORENew York Life »4.1 out of 5$142.67A++See Review » Northwestern Mutual »4.1 out of 5N/AA++See Review » AIG »3.9 out of 5$46.91ASee Review » State Farm »3.9 out of 5$54.79A++See Review » Nationwide »3.8 out of 5$59.94A+See Review » Expand List
Best Universal Life Insurance Companies of 2022
Universal life insurance is another type of permanent life insurance that includes a cash value component. The difference between universal and whole life insurance is that with many universal policies you can alter your premiums or death benefits while the policy is active. Here is our rating of the Best Universal Life Insurance policies of 2022.COMPANYSAMPLE MONTHLY COSTAM BEST RATINGLEARN MORENew York Life »4.1 out of 5$142.67A++See Review » Northwestern Mutual »4.1 out of 5N/AA++See Review » Lincoln Financial »4.0 out of 5$57.81A+Compare Quotes » John Hancock »4.0 out of 5$70.16A+Compare Quotes » AIG »3.9 out of 5$46.91ASee Review » Expand List
Best No-Exam Life Insurance Companies of 2022
A no-exam, or no medical exam life insurance policy, is exactly what it sounds like, it is a policy that doesn’t require you to take a medical exam to be approved. One of the ways an insurance company determines your premiums is by having you take a medical exam, this helps them to determine how much of a risk you are to insure. Many companies are now offering you the option of a life insurance policy without this requirement. Here is our rating of the Best No-Exam Life Insurance Companies of 2022.COMPANYSAMPLE MONTHLY COSTA.M BEST RATINGLEARN MOREHaven Life »4.4 out of 5$81.16A++Compare Quotes » Bestow »4.3 out of 5$56.00A+Compare Quotes » AIG »3.9 out of 5$46.91ASee Review » State Farm »3.9 out of 5$54.79A++See Review » Nationwide »3.8 out of 5$59.94A+See Review » Expand List
How to Choose the Right Life Insurance Company for You
To choose the right life insurance company, first consider why you are buying life insurance, what sorts of policies and riders will best help you meet those goals, and which companies offer those products.Policies: Not all companies offer all types of insurance. For example, Haven Life and Bestow offer term life insurance policies but don’t offer permanent policies such as whole or universal life. Conversely, companies like Nationwide, MassMutual, and Prudential offer all three of those product types as well as policies that don’t require a medical exam.Coverage: Think about how much life insurance coverage you need. This can help narrow your search. Companies with high minimum coverage amounts could have you paying for more coverage than you need. For example, if you are young with limited or no debt and no dependents, then a policy from a company with a minimum coverage amount of $750,000 might not make much sense. But, if you have a mortgage, a partner who doesn’t work, and/or several dependents who want to go to college, a policy that maxes out at $50,000 might not provide ample financial security.Riders: Life insurance riders are typically add-ons that help customize a standard policy to better meet your needs. Here is a short list of some typical riders and what that they do:
- Accelerated death benefit — a rider that allows you to access the money in your death benefit before you die, typically in the case of a terminal illness.
- Term conversion rider — This lets you convert your term type policy to a permanent type of life insurance.
- Accidental death and dismemberment — Pays a set amount of money for accidental death in addition to the regular death benefit.
- Waiver of premium rider — If you become disabled this rider lets you waive the premiums for your policy.
Financial Strength: Another thing to consider is whether the company will be able to pay the death benefit to your beneficiary when you die. One way to assess that is by looking at the company’s financial rating. A number of rating agencies, such as AM Best, provide a credit rating score. A credit rating is an indication from the rating agency of whether a company is likely to default on its debts. The less likely a company is to default on its debts the better its credit rating. All the companies in our rating have a credit rating of A or better from AM Best. A high credit rating can indicate that a company is financially strong and will likely be around to pay the death benefit to your beneficiary when you die.For more information on selecting a life insurance company read our guide on How to Buy Life Insurance.Find the best life insurance for youGet free quotes and compare life insurance policies without your contact information.Compare Quotes
What Is Life Insurance?
Life insurance is a type of insurance that provides money to your chosen beneficiary when you die. You choose a life insurance company that offers a type of policy and death benefits that you want, apply, and if you are accepted the insurance company promises to provide the specified amount of money to your beneficiary (this can be a relative, loved one, or even an organization) when you die, as long as you paid the required premiums.This money is often used to cover burial expenses and replace lost income. For example, if the primary wage earner in a family dies the money would help the remaining family members pay their bills.If you want more information read our guide on how life insurance works.
Types of Life Insurance Policies
There are generally two types of life insurance: permanent and term life. Examples of permanent life insurance policies are universal and whole life. Read on for information on the various types.
What Is Term Life Insurance?
Term life insurance is a kind of temporary life insurance. A term life insurance policy is defined by how long it remains active, or its term. A term can generally be as short as a year or may last 30 years. Term policies may also provide the option of being converted to a permanent life insurance policy or renewed for another term.For more information, read our term life insurance guide.
What Is Permanent Life Insurance?
A permanent life insurance policy is designed to be a life insurance policy for the long haul. These policies generally contain two parts, the death benefit and the cash value. The cash value can work as a kind of savings component or type of investment, depending on the exact policy. Examples of permanent life insurance include whole and universal life policies.
What Is Whole Life Insurance?
A whole life policy is a type of permanent life insurance that contains both a death benefit and cash value. The cash value can grow if the company you buy insurance from pays dividends into it. Mutual life insurance policies and some policies sold by stock insurers frequently contain dividend options. Dividends can be based on things like the financial performance of the company.For more information, read our whole life insurance guide.
What Is Universal Life Insurance?
Universal life insurance is another example of permanent life insurance. One of the key differences between whole and universal life insurance is in the policy’s flexibility. With many universal policies, you can adjust your premiums and the death benefit while the policy is active. There are also several different types of universal life policies, including indexed universal life (IUL), variable universal life (VUL), and guaranteed universal life insurance.For more information, read our universal life insurance guide.
What Is No-Exam Life Insurance?
A no-exam life insurance policy is a type of policy that doesn’t require you to take a medical exam when applying. These policies can be either term or permanent policies. The approval process for these types of policies is often brief because you don’t have to schedule and undergo a medical exam as part of the application process.For more information read our guide on What Is No-Exam Life Insurance?Available Policy TypesCOMPANYTERM LIFEWHOLE LIFEUNIVERSAL LIFESURVIVORSHIPNO MEDICAL EXAMHaven Life »Bestow »New York Life »Northwestern Mutual »Lincoln Financial »Expand List
How Much Does a Life Insurance Policy Cost?
The cost of a life insurance policy can vary widely, even among policies for people in the same demographic. Some of the factors that go into determining the cost of premiums for a life insurance policy include the life insurer, age, sex, health, and policy add-ons (also called riders).If you just look at a person’s sex, the difference in cost for a 35-year old female and male in the Standard Risk class with a $1,000,000 20-year term life policy from Banner Life is just over $15 per month. If you take those same two people and type of policy and apply it to New York Life the difference is almost $50 per month.Age is another important factor. The difference between a 35-year-old female in the Standard Risk Class and the same female and risk class at 65 years old with a $1,000,000 20-year term policy from Haven Life is almost $975 per month.Individuals in high-risk groups, such as those who use tobacco products, will often have higher premiums. For information on inexpensive life insurance companies visit our rating for the Cheapest Life Insurance Companies of 2022. And for more information on life insurance premiums visit our Life Insurance Quotes guide.
Female Life Insurance Policy Cost
Male Life Insurance Policy Cost
For more information on how much life insurance policy costs read our guide to Life Insurance Quotes.
Do I Need Life Insurance?
Whether or not you need life insurance is a highly personal decision that will depend on a number of factors. To help you decide if you need life insurance, here are some questions to ask yourself:
- Do you have any children or a partner that depends on your income?
- Do you have any outstanding debts?
- Will your dependents be able to pay your final expenses?
For the first question, think about whether your partner or children would be able to make ends meet without your income. Could they pay the bills for housing, utilities, food, etc.? Will they have expenses such as college tuition in the future?For the second question, look at your current financial situation. Do you have a mortgage, car loan, or credit card debt? Will your dependents be able to pay those off without putting a strain on their finances?LIMRA says that 83% of consumers list paying burial costs as a reason for purchasing life insurance. According to a 2021 National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) study, the average cost of a funeral with viewing and burial is $7,848. If you add in the burial vault the total rises to almost $9,500. Between 1986 and 2017 the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics recorded a 227.1% increase in funeral expenses.For all of those questions, think about how long those expenses will impact your beneficiary.A financial professional can be a good resource to help you determine whether you need a life insurance policy and what it should account for. They’ll also be able to help you review a variety of policy options and determine which will best meet your needs.
Life Insurance FAQ
Who is the beneficiary?
The beneficiary is who or what you select to receive the money from your life insurance policy after you pass. This could be a person such as a family member or friend or it could be an organization like a charity.
Who is the policyholder?
The policyholder is the person who purchases the life insurance policy. This may be the same person who is being insured, the beneficiary, or someone else like a spouse.
What is a death benefit?
The death benefit is the money paid to the beneficiary after the person insured has passed away. The death benefit is usually paid only when the policy is paid up.
What is the cash value?
The cash value is the portion of your premium that is set aside in a separate account in your permanent life insurance policy. The cash value can do a number of different things. Depending on the type of policy you have, it can earn interest or be invested. You can also borrow money from it or in some cases use it to pay your life insurance premiums.
Do life insurance policies pay dividends?
Some whole life policies pay dividends. This will depend on your policy and you should check with your insurance company or agent to see if your current policy or the policy you are considering pays dividends.
How long do you have to claim life insurance?
Generally, life insurance companies need to adhere to state laws on how long a beneficiary has to claim insurance benefits. Talk to your agent or the company that the policy was purchased from if you have questions.
Does life insurance pay for death by suicide?
Some companies will pay the death benefit for death by suicide. There are sometimes suicide clauses or waiting periods within a life insurance policy, which generally expire two to three years after the policy was purchased.If you or anyone you know is contemplating suicide, help is available. Call any time of day for free, confidential support from the National Suicide Prevention Line at 800-273-8255. The organization also operates more than 150 crisis centers that offer encouragement and local resources. Please reach out to them if you are in crisis.
Can you get life insurance if you have cancer?
This will likely depend on both the insurance company and your particular policy. Many life insurance policies require a medical exam as part of the application process. This may preclude you from getting a life insurance policy, but not always. This will depend on the stage and type of cancer, treatment, and whether or not you’re in recovery.There are also policies that don’t require a medical exam that may be available.