Best Term Life Insurance Companies

Mutual of Omaha has the most customizable policies

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Term life insurance lasts for a certain length of time, such as 10, 15, 20, or 30 years. Because of its accessibility and affordability, term life insurance is a popular choice among many including young adults, those with families, and older individuals. 

The best companies offer riders, which are options you can add to your plan for a fee, to make the policy fit the user’s needs. They provide the most amount of coverage for the least amount of monthly premium, are highly rated, and give the option for online quotes and application, sometimes even without a medical exam. Term life insurance companies must also compete on price as the plans typically offer no cash value within the policy.

Best Term Life Insurance Companies of 2021

Best Overall : Mutual of Omaha


Mutual of Omaha

Mutual of Omaha

  • AM Best Rating: A+
  • No. of Plans Offered: 2
  • Issue Ages: 18 to 80
Why We Chose It

Mutual of Omaha was chosen as the best term life insurance policy because of its long history, no medical exam policy option, and rider options for both families with young children as well as seniors. It is also available nationwide, although coverage and options may vary depending on the state.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • No medical exam option for some policies

  • Competitive pricing for pre-existing conditions

  • Can receive quotes and apply online

Cons
  • Guaranteed issue has a 2-year waiting period

  • Not available in New York

  • Limited information online

Overview

Mutual of Omaha was founded in 1909 and offers two different term policies, the Term Life Answers and a simplified issue policy called Term Life Express. The Term Life Express doesn’t require a medical exam, but the coverage amount is only $300,000 compared to the $999,000 available with Term Life Answers. 

There are several riders available including: 

  • Disability waiver of premium: covers your premiums if you become disabled 
  • Accelerated death benefit: receive cash payouts for treatment and care if terminally ill 
  • Accidental death benefit: gives extra payout if your death is ruled an accident
  • Child protection: gives the option to add protection for the child onto the policy
  • Unemployment waiver of premium: covers your premiums if you become unemployed

Mutual of Omaha also offers competitive rates for those struggling with preexisting conditions such as anxiety, arthritis, polycystic ovary syndrome, and ulcerative colitis. Online quotes are available through their website, but not all plans and features may be available in every state. If you have questions about eligibility, you can contact a representative to see what your options are. 

Term policies can be issued in 10-, 15-, 20-, and 30-year terms and purchased up to age 80. You can receive quotes online for up to $999,000 in coverage and also start the application online. Both policies can be renewed up to age 95, and some can be converted into permanent policies.

Mutual of Omaha has an A+ (Superior) rating from AM Best, the world’s first credit rating agency founded in 1899. The ratings it gives are an independent and objective opinion of a company’s creditworthiness and financial strength.

Most Affordable : Legal & General


Legal & General

 Legal & General

  • AM Best Rating : A+
  • No. of Plans Offered: 1
  • Issue Ages: 18 to 75
Why We Chose It

We chose Legal and General as the most affordable term life insurance company based on online quotes received. Legal and General sells life insurance through two companies, Banner Life and their sister company William Penn, covering the entire U.S.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Affordable prices

  • Terms up to 40 years

  • Accelerated death benefits

Cons
  • $100,000 minimum benefit amount

  • Not available in New York

  • Limited online tools

Overview

Legal & General was founded in 1981 and acquired Government Employees Life Insurance Company (GEICO), whose name was changed to Banner Life Insurance Company. Then in 1989, Legal & General bought William Penn Life Insurance Company of New York. Together Banner Life and William Penn underwrite and supply life insurance policies to all 50 states under the Legal & General name. 

Legal & General offers the lowest quoted premiums out of 12 companies compared. Quotes obtained for a 35-year old male and female were $63.99 and $51.21/month respectively. Competitors ranged from approximately $64 to $99/month for the male and $53 to $72/month for the female.  

Term policies are offered to individuals up to age 75, and term policies are convertible to permanent until age 70. Coverage amounts start at $100,000 and go up to $10 million. 

Riders for policies include:

  • Children’s Term Rider: covers all children until turn 25 
  • Waiver of Premium Rider: can skip payments if disabled for at least 6 months
  • Stacking Term Rider: more coverage for a certain part of policy length
  • Accelerated Death Rider: can access a portion of benefit if terminally ill 

Legal & General has an A+ (Superior) rating from AM Best.

Best for Families : State Farm


StateFarm

StateFarm

  • AM Best Rating: A++
  • No. of Plans Offered: 3
  • Issue Ages: 18 to 75
Why We Chose It

We chose State Farm because of unique features and customization options for families including spouse and child riders, return of premium, and cash value term insurance. 

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Online quotes available

  • Superior rating from AM Best

  • Long company history

Cons
  • Not available in Massachusetts

  • More expensive than some providers

  • Online quotes not available for all plans

Overview

State Farm was founded in 1922 and in addition to life insurance, provides home, auto, small business, and other types of insurance along with several discounts for its customers. 

Although the company offers term, universal, and whole life insurance, the term life is a popular choice as it allows buyers to convert the policy to permanent (whole) life insurance if they choose, without having to take another health exam. 

To receive a quote, potential buyers can look online and also speak to a representative, either over the phone or in person. They offer three different term policies including: 

  • Select Term: 10-, 20-, or 30- year level payments with minimum of $100,000 of coverage
  • Return of Premium Term: 20- or 30- year policies; policy builds cash value you can borrow against; can get return of premiums if you outlive initial term
  • Instant Answer Term: Available to ages 16 to 45, $50,000 of benefit with no medical exam; covered for 10 years or until age 50 (whichever is higher)

Rider options for State Farm include: 

  • Children’s Term Rider: can add coverage for a child
  • Guaranteed Insurability Option: can add on more coverage without another medical exam
  • Waiver of Monthly Deduction for Disabilities: covers your premiums if you become disabled 
  • Level Term Rider/Additional Insured: can add term coverage or additional people to be insured 

Of these riders, the Children’s Term rider is especially beneficial to families. Children can be added to a parent’s policy before they are born, with coverage starting once they are 15 days old. If a family has multiple children, they can all be included, with a death benefit up to $20,000 per child. Once the child turns 25 the coverage will end, or they can convert the coverage to their own permanent policy without a medical exam, up to five times the amount of the rider coverage. 

State Farm life insurance is not available in Massachusetts, New York, or Wisconsin. It is rated A++ (Superior) from AM Best.

Best for Seniors : John Hancock


John Hancock

John Hancock

  • AM Best Rating: A+
  • No. of Plans Offered: 2
  • Issue Ages: 18 to 80
Why We Chose It

John Hancock is our choice for the best for seniors due to its strong financial rating, smaller level term policy options, unique wellness discount program, and seniors can apply for insurance up to age 80.

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Coverage offered to those with diabetes

  • Lots of rider options for customization

  • Guaranteed Acceptance Policy

Cons
  • Can’t be converted to permanent insurance

  • $25,000 limit on Guaranteed Acceptance Policy

  • Online quotes unavailable

Overview

John Hancock was founded in 1862 in Boston, Massachusetts. Named after the patriot John Hancock, the company was acquired by the Canadian company Manulife Financial in 2004. 

John Hancock offers a guaranteed acceptance program, and term insurance policies can be purchased in 10-, 15, or 20- year terms with up to $3 million in benefit. Those 18-80 years of age are eligible for John Hancock’s policies. 

John Hancock also offers the following riders to supplement their policies:

  • Accelerated Benefit: receive up to 50% of benefit early if diagnosed with a terminal illness
  • Disability Payment of Specified Return: covers your premiums if you become disabled
  • Long-term Care: provides funds for long-term care by accelerating your death benefit up to 4% of the benefit amount 
  • Vitality PLUS Program: earn credits by participating in healthy lifestyle choices and use these to lower premium amount or get other rewards
  • Return of Premium: can get premium refunded

In addition to riders available, John Hancock also offers the Aspire program, which helps individuals with type 1 or type 2 diabetes obtain life insurance. 

To obtain a quote you can fill out a form online and a representative will contact you. John Hancock offers insurance across the entire U.S.

John Hancock is rated A+ (Superior) by AM Best.

Best for Young Adults : Haven Life


Haven Life

Haven Life

  • AM Best Rating: A++
  • No. of Plans Offered: 2
  • Issue Ages: 20 to 65
Why We Chose It

Haven Life was chosen as the best choice for young adults because not only is it backed by a long-time leader in the life insurance space, but it offers online quotes and application process, no medical exams, and high policy limits. 

Pros & Cons
Pros
  • No medical exams needed

  • Quick online quotes and application

Cons
  • Maximum $3 million in coverage

  • No in-person representatives to meet with

Overview

Haven Life was founded in 2014 but is backed by C.M. Life, a subsidiary of MassMutual in all states except CA and NY, which will still be issued by MassMutual. The founder created Haven Life when he was looking for an easier and faster way to obtain life insurance after having children. 

Term policies are available in 5-, 10-, 15-, 20-, 25-, and 30- year limits to those ages 20 to 49 and 10-, 15-, and 20-year terms for those 50-65. Benefit amounts starting at $200,000 and going up to $3 million. 

Haven Life is available in all 50 states and has the following rider options:

  • Accelerated Death Benefit rider: receive cash payouts for treatment and care if terminally ill
  • Haven Life Plus rider: access to health and wellness subscriptions for free/reduced price

The two term policies available are Haven Term and Haven Simple. The Haven Term policy offers up to $3 million in coverage and may require a medical exam. The Haven Simple policy, however, doesn’t require a medical exam but only offers up to $500,000 in coverage. 

Haven Life does not have an AM Best rating, but MassMutual is rated A++ (Superior).

Final Verdict

There are many great options when it comes to choosing the right term life insurance. From newer companies like Haven Life that let buyers obtain insurance completely online to veteran companies such as John Hancock, there are options for each type of buyer. However, based on our research, we selected Mutual of Omaha as the top term life insurance provider. 

Mutual of Omaha was chosen because of its long history, strong financial ranking, online quote option, the plethora of rider options to customize a plan, and the ability to obtain coverage with pre-existing medical conditions or without a medical exam. 

Compare the Best Term Life Insurance Companies

Company AM Best Rating  Coverage Limit  Online Quotes  No. of Plans  Rider Options 
Mutual of Omaha
Best Overall
A+ $300,000 for Term Life Express Yes 2 6
Legal and General
Most Affordable 
A+  $10 million  Yes 
State Farm
Best for Families 
A++  $50,000 for Instant Answer Term  Yes 
John Hancock
Best for Seniors 
A+  $65 million  No
Haven Life
Best for Young Adults 
A++  $3 million  Yes 

How to Choose the Best Term Life Insurance Companies

While there are many factors to consider when shopping for the best term life insurance, there are a few to pay extra attention to. Here are some key factors to consider when narrowing down your choices:

  • Cost: The cost of term life insurance includes the death benefit coverage amount as well as the cost of any riders you’ve added on. In addition, there will be additional costs such as administrative fees, that are wrapped into the premiums. 
  • Medical exam: Medical exams can sometimes give you more coverage options, but many companies extend insurance without any. You might be able to get lower premiums or higher coverage amounts if you opt for a medical exam but if you have any conditions like cancer that may preclude you from coverage, no medical exam policies are a good choice.
  • Ability to purchase online: Some prefer to purchase life insurance over the phone or online while some prefer to meet with a representative in person, but not all companies offer both options. Determine which method you prefer and search for companies that fit that need. 
  • Rider availability: Riders are important features to consider when applying for life insurance. If you’re looking for certain customization, compare which companies offer the riders you’re interested in and select the company that provides them. 

Term Life Insurance vs. Whole Life Insurance

When shopping for life insurance, you'll come across both Term Life and Whole Life insurance policies. While they each have their advantages, they are both very different in how they operate. 

Term Insurance

Term life insurance is only purchased for a certain length of time such as 10-, 15-, 20- or 30- year terms. Because they only last for a certain term, these policies have lower premiums than whole life insurance. Typically term life insurance policies include rider options to expand coverage and may be available without a medical exam. 

There is no cash value accumulated on a term life insurance policy, although some may be converted to a permanent policy at the end of the term.

Whole Life Insurance

Unlike term life insurance, in which your coverage only lasts for a certain amount of time, whole life insurance covers an individual for the length of their life. Whole life is more expensive than term, but typically has a cash balance building inside the policy, with the option to take it out or borrow against it. 

There are several different time periods in which whole life can be paid for, including for a certain number of years (such as 10 or 20) or until the individual reaches a certain age (such as 65 or 100). After the policy is paid off the insurance benefit still remains. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Do Term Life Insurance Companies Offer Instant Quotes Online? 

Many term life insurance companies offer instant quotes online, but you will need to go to a company’s website and determine if they offer the option. 

Do Term Life Insurance Companies Offer Discounts for Healthy Individuals? 

Typically term life insurance policies are cheaper the younger and healthier an individual is, so makes sense to purchase a policy before any potential health issues arise as you age.

There are discounts available for individuals to make healthier choices, such as John Hancock’s Vitality PLUS Program. Most companies also allow individuals to obtain a lower rate after they have quit using tobacco products and without having to obtain another medical exam. 

What Are the Costs Involved with Life Insurance Companies?

Life insurance premiums cover more than just the policy itself. When you agree to pay the premium, you are agreeing to pay for the cost of your insurance and any riders you added on. In addition, your premium will also cover other fees and expenses such as mortality and expense risk charge (the fee to cover if an individual dies sooner than estimated) and other administration fees. 

Methodology

We reviewed 15 of the best term life insurance companies based on factors such as affordability, company financial strength ratings, and the ability to receive quotes or apply online. 

We also narrowed down our search to include companies that offered policies with no medical exam, making it easier for more individuals to get the coverage they need, as well as the option to add on riders. 

Ultimately we chose companies that offer several different plan options, as well as competitive pricing, strong ratings, and customizable options for young and old.

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