Life insurance is one of those things that we know we need, but that we often avoid. We don’t want to have to think about our demise, even if it means we will be providing security for our family after we are gone. But that security is exactly why life insurance is essential and once you make that realization then that leaves one question:
What are the best life insurance companies and who offers the best policies?
Best Life Insurance Companies
The following companies are on this list because of our own personal rating system, which includes the experience of our team, and an algorithm that takes into account complaints, reviews, awards and more.
The problem with looking at any reviews for insurance companies (as well as banks and other major institutions) is that people tend to only leave a review when they have something bad to say. As a result, it’s hard to judge based on user reviews alone, but at the same time it’s important to understand that individual opinions and experiences are vastly different.
Our system goes to great lengths to avoid such issues and we believe that it creates a true list of the best life insurance companies out there. However, there may have been some companies that we didn’t include in the algorithm, so don’t assume that any companies omitted have failed to make the grade and should be avoided.
This is a controversial inclusion, because AIG just don’t have the customer service that you expect to find from big life insurance companies and they are a long way off the level of support provided by other names on this list.
However, they do offer many great policies, benefits, and more. And this is where it is important to provide balance. For instance, if your local store only sold half a dozen items and had the best customer support, but you local mega-mart sold millions and had terrible support, where would you shop?
AIG have poor customer support. There is no doubt about that and they scored very low on that part of our algorithm. But once you take that out of the equation they are a very solid life insurance company that also offers many other insurance policies.
9. John Hancock
Not the biggest, but definitely one of the best, John Hancock have received rave reviews for their customer support and while they may not feature on many lists of the best policies or the best features, they do have plenty of options and are deserving of their place this list.
8. Lincoln Financial
We have mentioned Lincoln Financial in several guides we have written on the best types of life insurance, including one we wrote about the Best Life Insurance with no Medical. They do a lot of things right, with solid customer support and an array of options for young and old, and that’s why they have been ranked highly on our list of the best life insurance companies.
The JD Power Customer Satisfaction survey ranked this life insurance company as one of the top five, and they have also received equally high ratings from equally credible providers. They didn’t score quite as highly in our algorithm as we found their options lacking when it comes to specific policies, such as no medicals and seniors, but they made their way onto this list nonetheless.
6. Mass Mutual
There are several areas in which Mass Mutual excel. They have great customer support, they are one of the quickest when it comes to making decisions and paying out, and they have great options on their term life insurance (see our guide to Term Life vs Whole Life to learn the difference).
It is also owned by its policyholders and is expected to payout more than $1.5 billion in dividends in 2018. But if you think that is impressive, wait until you see the entry at number 3 on this list.
We feel like Prudential don’t always get the respect that they deserve as a life insurance company. They haven’t been ranked very highly in the past, with most rating systems putting them between 15 and 20 overall, and they do not have customer support that is as reliable as other names on this list.
But they do offer extras and benefits that you may struggle to find elsewhere and they also try to push the boat out a little. They were the first ever insurer in this country to offer policies to people with HIV, and that’s the sort of extra-mile thinking that has earned them a place on our list.
4. Guardian Life
Guardian Life is owned by its policyholders and has paid a dividend every year since 1868. You won’t get access to a dividend simply by owning a policy, but you will get access if you buy a significant one, including a life insurance policy.
They offer a range of polices, have a wealth of great benefits and also have solid customer support, all of which ensures they feature high on our list.
3. Northwestern Mutual
One of the better providers out there, Northwestern Mutual have actually been ranked as one of the best life insurance companies by several rating systems. And not without reason. They have exceptional customer support and because they are owned by their policyholders, they are able to provide a host of additional benefits, including dividends.
And we’re not talking about small, token payments either. In 2018, they paid over $5 billion in dividends.
2. State Farm
State Farm is a great insurance provider that we feel doesn’t get the amount of respect that it deserves. It is often branded with the label of a heartless, mega-brand, and this leads customers to assume that the customer support is bad and that the organization is soulless.
But this is not the case, at least not where their life insurance sector is concerned. We found a lot of positives here, with a great mix of solid service and great feedback from customers, as well as a wealth of options for your life insurance.
1. New York Life
New York Life make it to the top of our list purely for their exceptional customer support. In terms of the best policies and the best options, they would likely only just scrape into the top five, but because of the customer support provided and the customer satisfaction this leads to, they have made it to the top of our list.
They have also been rated highly by many other sites and are often in the top 10. We have discussed them previously in our guide to the Best Life Insurance for Seniors and a few other of our guides, we have a lot of personal experience with them, and they also tick many boxes in our algorithm. If you want an exceptional life insurance provider, you would do well to focus on New York Life.