Top 10 Life Insurance Companies Parents Should Look Into

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For many people who buy life insurance, the top priority is getting the lowest rates possible.

In fact, according to a study by research firm LIMRA, the top reason people don’t buy life insurance is they believe it’s too expensive.

Unfortunately, getting a cheap rate doesn’t always mean you’re getting a good deal. It’s important to consider the provider’s customer service, financial strength, and product selection.

The top 10 life insurance companies listed below have the best mix of those factors.

What to look for in a life insurance company

As you compare quotes from different life insurance companies, take a little extra time to compare the following elements.

Customer service

The best way to gauge customer service is to review surveys and complaints. For example, J.D. Power releases an annual study that ranks the top life insurance companies based on customer satisfaction.

The study compares the following factors:

  • Interaction with customers
  • Policy offerings
  • Price
  • Annual statement and billing
  • Overall satisfaction

To review complaints, go to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners website. You also can search for the insurer on your local Better Business Bureau website to find complaints and reviews. Reading individual complaints can help you understand whether an insurer has issues in areas that are important to you.

Financial strength

Depending on the type of life insurance policy you choose, you could pay premiums for decades, so it’s important to choose a company that will be around that long and can pay out future claims.

Rating agencies A.M. Best, Standard & Poor’s (S&P), Fitch, and Moody’s provide financial ratings for the top life insurance companies and more. Each has its own rating structure that gives investors and consumers a good idea of a company’s financial strength.

Price

Each life insurance company determines prices differently. Even the top life insurance companies might have different ways of calculating premiums.

Avoid falling victim to the idea that bundling your life insurance with your homeowners or car insurance to get a lower price is always best. In some situations, it might work out, but remember that price is just one important factor to consider.

As with any financial product, compare policies from different providers to make sure you’re getting a good rate.

Product selection

There’s no one-size-fits-all policy. Different needs require different policy structures and term lengths. Make sure you understand the different types of life insurance and which one is best for you. Then, pick a company that offers the type you need.

The top 10 life insurance companies

The top life insurance companies and policies will vary from person to person based on needs and preferences. That said, we’ve put together a list of companies that stand out based on the criteria above. Here they are, in alphabetical order.

1. Guardian Life

Guardian, which was founded in 1860, has been around for more than 150 years. It offers standard term and permanent life insurance policies and ranked around the middle of the pack in terms of its customer satisfaction score in J.D. Power’s 2016 study.

Guardian also offers other products and services. For example, you can apply for disability and dental insurance and set up annuities and other investments.

What’s more, Guardian, like many companies on this list, is a mutual company. That means it is owned by its policyholders and pays dividends to them each year. They also get to vote for the company’s board of directors.

The insurer received one of the top three ratings from each of the four financial rating agencies for the insurance sector:

  • A.M. Best: A++
  • Fitch: AA+
  • Moody’s: Aa2
  • S&P: AA+

Guardian doesn’t allow you to request a quote online. Instead, it suggests you search for a financial representative or request one contacts you.

2. MassMutual

Founded in 1851, MassMutual offers several standard life insurance policies, including guaranteed acceptance, a type of term policy that doesn’t require a medical exam.

The insurer also offers disability, long-term care, and Medicare supplement insurance as well as a wide selection of other investment products and services.

MassMutual ranked in the top five life insurance companies in J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction study. It received above-average marks for its customer service interactions. It also received strong financial ratings from the rating agencies:

  • A.M. Best: A++
  • Fitch: AA+
  • Moody’s: Aa2
  • S&P: AA+

As its name suggests, MassMutual is a mutual company. To get quotes for coverage, you can work with a MassMutual agent or apply online (term insurance only).

3. MetLife

MetLife offers both term and permanent life insurance policies, including guaranteed acceptance. The insurer, which has been around since 1868, also can help you with other insurance needs, including the following:

  • Auto
  • Home
  • Dental
  • Disability
  • Vision
  • Accident and health
  • Pet

Previously a mutual company, MetLife demutualized in 2000 and converted to a stock insurance company. That means stockholders, not policyholders, receive any annual dividends the insurer issues. Policyholders also don’t have any voting rights.

According to J.D. Power, MetLife received an average overall rating from customers. However, its easy-to-understand billing system was above average.

MetLife also received strong financial ratings:

  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Fitch: AA-
  • Moody’s: Aa3
  • S&P: AA-

To get a quote from a MetLife, you need to reach out to an agent directly or enter your information on the company’s website to have an agent contact you.

4.  Mutual of Omaha

A young buck compared to some of the other insurance companies on this list, Mutual of Omaha nonetheless has more than 100 years of experience under its belt.

Founded in 1909, the insurer offers term and permanent insurance policies. You also can get other types of insurance and financial services, including:

  • Accidental death insurance
  • Disability insurance
  • Medicare supplement insurance
  • Long-term care insurance
  • Critical illness insurance
  • Cancer, heart attack, and stroke insurance
  • Annuities
  • Investments
  • Mortgages
  • Banking

The insurer received average customer satisfaction across the board from J.D. Power. It also received good financial ratings from the top rating agencies:

  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • S&P: AA-

Mutual of Omaha is a mutual company, so its policyholders receive annual dividends. You can request a quote for both term and whole life insurance through the insurer’s website.

5. Nationwide

Founded in 1925, Nationwide offers a slew of insurance and financial products. If you need insurance of any kind, it’s likely Nationwide offers it. And if you like having everything in one place, you can also invest, bank, and borrow through the company.

Nationwide offers both term and permanent insurance policies. It also received good ratings for financial strength, even if it ranked just below some of the other companies on this list:

  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • S&P: A+

For customer satisfaction, Nationwide ranked second on J.D. Power’s 2016 list of life insurance providers. According to customers, the insurer was better than most in all areas.

To get a quote for life insurance, you can call Nationwide at 1-844-538-9998 or search for an agent online.

6. New York Life

Another old giant in the industry, New York Life was founded in 1845 as Nautilus Insurance Company. The insurer offers term and permanent life insurance as well as long-term care insurance. You also can invest for retirement and other goals with annuities, mutual funds, and more.

New York Life’s strong suit is its financial stability. Three of the four rating agencies gave the insurer their highest financial strength ratings:

  • A.M. Best: A++
  • Fitch: AAA
  • Moody’s: Aaa
  • S&P: AA+

New York Life ranked among the top 10 life insurance companies in J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction study, with average ratings across the board. It’s also a mutual company and pays annual dividends to policyholders.

To apply for a policy, you’ll need to work with a New York Life agent. You can do that by searching for local agents or sharing your information with the insurer online to have an agent contact you.

7. Northwestern Mutual

Like some other insurance companies, Northwestern Mutual offers much more than life insurance. In addition to term and permanent life policies, its products and services include:

  • Disability insurance
  • Long-term care insurance
  • Annuities
  • Investments
  • Education funding

The company was founded in Milwaukee in 1857, back when Wisconsin was considered the northwestern United States. It ranked third in J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction study, with above-average ratings across the board.

Like New York Life, it received the highest possible financial strength ratings from three of the four agencies:

  • A.M. Best: A++
  • Fitch: AAA
  • Moody’s: Aaa
  • S&P: AA+

Northwestern Mutual is a mutual company and pays dividends to its policyholders annually. You can get a quote and apply for life insurance through a Northwestern Mutual agent only. Simply do a quick internet search for one in your area.

8. Pacific Life

Founded in 1868, Pacific Life is a mutual company that offers several products, including life insurance, annuities, and mutual funds.

The insurer ranked seventh overall in J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction study. However, it’s one of only two companies on the list that received top marks for its customer service interaction.

Pacific Life didn’t receive the best financial ratings, but it remained in a strong financial position:

  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Fitch: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • S&P: AA-

To get a quote for life insurance, search the insurer’s website to find an agent in your area.

9. Principal Financial Group

Primarily an investment management company, Principal began in 1879 as Bankers Life Association. Over the years, the company has expanded its products and services to the following:

  • Life insurance
  • Disability insurance
  • Estate planning
  • Trusts
  • Individual retirement accounts
  • Annuities
  • Mutual funds

Principal earned a high rank in J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction study, standing out for its customer service interactions. As a publicly traded stock company, it does not offer annual dividends to its policyholders. It received the following financial ratings:

  • A.M. Best: A1
  • Fitch: A+
  • Moody’s: A+
  • S&P: AA-

To get a quote for life insurance, fill out some information about yourself and your needs on the insurer’s website.

10. State Farm

State Farm took the top spot in J.D. Power’s study, as customers ranked State Farm the best in every single category.

The mutual insurance company started insuring cars in 1922 but now offers more than 100 products and services, including insurance, banking, loans, credit cards, and investing.

State Farm boasts top financial strength ratings, but it doesn’t share any details. Instead, it recommends that you reach out to an agent to get more information. To get a quote, simply fill out some information online.

Which of the top 10 life insurance companies should you pick?

It’s not easy to choose between two insurance companies that seem similar. As you’re comparing the top 10 life insurance companies, review what matters most to you.

Consider how much insurance you need and how each company can accommodate that need. Then, pick the insurer that offers the best all-around products and services that fit those needs.

Interested in refinancing student loans?

Here are the top 7 lenders of 2019!
LenderVariable APREligible Degrees 
Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
1 Important Disclosures for Earnest.

Earnest Disclosures

To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.

Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.45% APR (with Auto Pay) to 6.99% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 1.81% APR (with Auto Pay) to 6.49% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of November 6, 2019, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.

Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.

The information provided on this page is updated as of 11/06/2019. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at hello@earnest.com, or call 888-601-2801 for more information on our student loan refinance product.

© 2018 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved. Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries, including Earnest Operations LLC, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.


2 Important Disclosures for SoFi.

SoFi Disclosures

  1. Student loan Refinance: Fixed rates from 3.46% APR (with AutoPay) to 7.61% APR (without AutoPay). Variable rates currently from 2.31% APR (with AutoPay) to 7.61% (without AutoPay). Interest rates on variable rate loans are capped at either 8.95% or 9.95% depending on term of loan. See APR examples and terms. Lowest variable rate of 2.31% APR assumes current 1 month LIBOR rate of 2.31% plus 0.75% margin minus 0.25% for AutoPay. If approved for a loan, the fixed or variable interest rate offered will depend on your credit history and the term of the loan and will be within the ranges of rates listed above. For the SoFi variable rate loan, the 1-month LIBOR index will adjust monthly and the loan payment will be re-amortized and may change monthly. APRs for variable rate loans may increase after origination if the LIBOR index increases. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account.

3 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.

Laurel Road Disclosures

Laurel Road is a brand of KeyBank National Association offering online lending products in all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. Mortgage lending is not offered in Puerto Rico. All loans are provided by KeyBank National Association.
As used throughout these Terms & Conditions, the term “Lender” refers to KeyBank National Association and its affiliates, agents, guaranty insurers, investors, assigns, and successors in interest.

ANNUAL PERCENTAGE RATE (“APR”)
This term represents the actual cost of financing to the borrower over the life of the loan expressed as a yearly rate.

FEE INFORMATION

There are no origination fees or prepayment penalties associated with the loan. Lender may assess a late fee if any part of a payment is not received within 15 days of the payment due date. Any late fee assessed shall not exceed 5% of the late payment or $28, whichever is less. A borrower may be charged $20 for any payment (including a check or an electronic payment) that is returned unpaid due to non-sufficient funds (NSF) or a closed account.

LOAN AMOUNT

For bachelor’s degrees and higher, up to 100% of outstanding private and federal student loans (minimum $5,000) are eligible for refinancing. If you are refinancing greater than $300,000 in student loan debt, Lender may refinance the loans into 2 or more new loans.
For eligible Associates degrees in the healthcare field (see Eligibility & Eligible Loans section below), Lender will refinance up to $50,000 in loans for non-ParentPlus refinance loans. Note, parents who are refinancing loans taken out on behalf of a child who has obtained an associates degrees in an eligible healthcare field are not subject to the $50,000 loan maximum, refer to https://www.laurelroad.com/refinance-student-loans/refinance-parent-plus-loans/ for more information about refinancing ParentPlus loans.

ELIGIBILITY & ELIGIBLE LOANS

Borrower, and Co-signer if applicable, must be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident with a valid I-551 card (which must show a minimum of 10 years between “Resident Since” date and “Card Expires” date or has no expiration date); state that they are of at least borrowing age in the state of residence at the time of application; and meet Lender underwriting criteria (including, for example, employment, debt-to-income, disposable income, and credit history requirements).

Graduates may refinance any unsubsidized or subsidized Federal or private student loan that was used exclusively for qualified higher education expenses (as defined in 26 USC Section 221) at an accredited U.S. undergraduate or graduate school. Any federal loans refinanced with Lender are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that federal loan program offers such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment.

All loans must be in grace or repayment status and cannot be in default. Borrower must have graduated or be enrolled in good standing in the final term preceding graduation from an accredited Title IV U.S. school and must be employed, or have an eligible offer of employment. Parents looking to refinance loans taken out on behalf of a child should refer to https://www.laurelroad.com/refinance-student-loans/refinance-parent-plus-loans/ for applicable terms and conditions.

For Associates Degrees: Only associates degrees earned in one of the following are eligible for refinancing: Cardiovascular Technologist (CVT); Dental Hygiene; Diagnostic Medical Sonography; EMT/Paramedics; Nuclear Technician; Nursing; Occupational Therapy Assistant; Pharmacy Technician; Physical Therapy Assistant; Radiation Therapy; Radiologic/MRI Technologist; Respiratory Therapy; or Surgical Technologist. To refinance an Associates degree, a borrower must also either be currently enrolled and in the final term of an associate degree program at a Title IV eligible school with an offer of employment in the same field in which they will receive an eligible associate degree OR have graduated from a school that is Title IV eligible with an eligible associate and have been employed, for a minimum of 12 months, in the same field of study of the associate degree earned.

INTEREST RATES

The interest rate you are offered will depend on your credit profile, income, and total debt payments as well as your choice of fixed or variable and choice of term. For applicants who are currently medical or dental residents, your rate offer may also vary depending on whether you have secured employment for after residency.

DISBURSEMENT OPTIONS

The repayment of any refinanced student loan will commence (1) immediately after disbursement by us, or (2) after any grace or in-school deferment period, existing prior to refinancing and/or consolidation with us, has expired.

POSTPONING OR REDUCING PAYMENTS

After loan disbursement, if a borrower documents a qualifying economic hardship, we may agree in our discretion to allow for full or partial forbearance of payments for one or more 3-month time periods (not to exceed 12 months in the aggregate during the term of your loan), provided that we receive acceptable documentation (including updating documentation) of the nature and expected duration of the borrower’s economic hardship.

We may agree under certain circumstances to allow a borrower to make $100/month payments for a period of time immediately after loan disbursement if the borrower is employed full-time as an intern, resident, or similar postgraduate trainee at the time of loan disbursement. These payments may not be enough to cover all of the interest that accrues on the loan. Unpaid accrued interest will be added to your loan and monthly payments of principal and interest will begin when the post-graduate training program ends.

We may agree under certain circumstances to allow postponement (deferral) of monthly payments of principal and interest for a period of time immediately following loan disbursement (not to exceed 6 months after the borrower’s graduation with an eligible degree), if the borrower is an eligible student in the borrower’s final term at the time of loan disbursement or graduated less than 6 months before loan disbursement, and has accepted an offer of (or has already begun) full-time employment.

If Lender agrees (in its sole discretion) to postpone or reduce any monthly payment(s) for a period of time, interest on the loan will continue to accrue for each day principal is owed. Although the borrower might not be required to make payments during such a period, the borrower may continue to make payments during such a period. Making payments, or paying some of the interest, will reduce the total amount that will be required to be paid over the life of the loan. Interest not paid during any period when Lender has agreed to postpone or reduce any monthly payment will be added to the principal balance through capitalization (compounding) at the end of such a period, one month before the borrower is required to resume making regular monthly payments.

KEYBANK NATIONAL ASSOCIATION RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.

This information is current as of November 8, 2019 and is subject to change.


4 Important Disclosures for Splash Financial.

Splash Financial Disclosures

Terms and Conditions apply. Splash reserves the right to modify or discontinue products and benefits at any time without notice. Rates and terms are also subject to change at any time without notice. Offers are subject to credit approval. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet applicable underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. Lowest rates are reserved for the highest qualified borrowers.


5 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.

CommonBond Disclosures

Offered terms are subject to change. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900). If you are approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your credit profile, your application, the loan term selected and will be within the ranges of rates shown. All Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) displayed assume borrowers enroll in auto pay and account for the 0.25% reduction in interest rate. All variable rates are based on a 1-month LIBOR assumption of 1.9299999999999997% effective October 10, 2019.


6 Important Disclosures for LendKey.

LendKey Disclosures

Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it  endorse,  any educational institution.

Subject to floor rate and may require the automatic payments be made from a checking or savings account with the lender. The rate reduction will be removed and the rate will be increased by 0.25% upon any cancellation or failed collection attempt of the automatic payment and will be suspended during any period of deferment or forbearance. As a result, during the forbearance or suspension period, and/or if the automatic payment is canceled, any increase will take the form of higher payments. The lowest advertised variable APR is only available for loan terms of  5 years and is reserved for applicants with FICO scores of at least 810.

As of 11/07/2019 student loan refinancing rates range from 1.90% to 8.65% Variable APR with AutoPay and 3.49% to 7.75% Fixed APR with AutoPay.

 


7 Important Disclosures for College Ave.

College Ave Disclosures

College Ave Student Loans products are made available through either Firstrust Bank, member FDIC or M.Y. Safra Bank, FSB, member FDIC. All loans are subject to individual approval and adherence to underwriting guidelines. Program restrictions, other terms, and conditions apply.

1College Ave Refi Education loans are not currently available to residents of Maine.

2All rates shown include autopay discount. The 0.25% auto-pay interest rate reduction applies as long as a valid bank account is designated for required monthly payments. Variable rates may increase after consummation.

3$5,000 is the minimum requirement to refinance. The maximum loan amount is $300,000 for those with medical, dental, pharmacy or veterinary doctorate degrees, and $150,000 for all other undergraduate or graduate degrees.

4This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms for a refi borrower with a Full Principal & Interest Repayment and a 10-year repayment term, has a $40,000 loan and a 5.5% Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): 120 monthly payments of $434.11 while in the repayment period, for a total amount of payments of $52,092.61. Loans will never have a full principal and interest monthly payment of less than $50. Your actual rates and repayment terms may vary.

Information advertised valid as of 09/23/2019. Variable interest rates may increase after consummation.

1.81% – 6.49%1Undergrad
& Graduate

Visit Earnest

2.31% – 7.36%2Undergrad
& Graduate

Visit SoFi

1.99% – 6.65%3Undergrad
& Graduate

Visit Laurel Road

2.43% – 7.60%4Undergrad
& Graduate

Visit Splash

2.02% – 6.30%5Undergrad
& Graduate

Visit CommonBond

1.90% – 8.65%6Undergrad
& Graduate

Visit Lendkey

2.74% – 6.24%7Undergrad
& Graduate

Visit College Ave

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print to help you understand what you are buying. Be sure to consult with a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time.

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