Cost & Coverage
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Life insurance provides a tax-free lump sum of money to replace lost income after your death, offering affordable financial protection — and invaluable peace of mind — to people whose friends or family rely on them.
The money from a life insurance policy can be used to pay expenses like a mortgage, utility and grocery bills, children's college costs, final funeral arrangements, and more.
Choose the best life insurance policy based on how many years you want your policy to last (the term) and the coverage amount that you want to be be paid out if you die (the death benefit).
You pay for your life insurance policy with monthly or annual premium payments. You can compare quotes from multiple life insurers first to see the different rates and requirements they may have. Learn more about buying life insurance.
If you die while your term life insurance policy is active, your beneficiaries can file a claim and the death benefit will be paid out to them. Learn more about filing life insurance claims.
Most people choose between two types of life insurance: Term life insurance, which expires after a set period of time (the term length), and whole life insurance, which doesn't expire and can include a tax-deferred cash value.
|Life insurance feature||Term Life Insurance||Whole Life Insurance||Universal Life Insurance|
|Does it expire?||Yes||No||No|
|Does it have a cash value?||No||Yes||Yes|
|Average Monthly Cost||$25-35||5-15x more than term||Varies; similar to whole|
Permanent life insurance, like whole and universal, can be good for complex financial situations, such as paying estate taxes. Term life insurance is the right choice for most shoppers because it’s cheaper and more straightforward.
And there are even more types of life insurance, each with benefits, drawbacks, and unique properties. Talk to an expert before choosing a more complex policy – a term life policy will work best in most cases.
The market, right here. At Policygenius, you can compare all of the nation's top-rated life insurance companies side-by-side in one place. Shoppers can save up to 40% by making sure they're choosing the right company at the right cost.
The right advice. Not sure where to start? Policygenius provides unbiased reviews and ratings, along with expert advice from licensed agents who don't work on commission.
Right in your corner. We always fight for you - not the insurance company. Our experts will always advocate on your behalf to find the right fit at the lowest price, and we'll be with you through every step of the process.
When you buy a policy through us, the insurance company pays the commission to Policygenius, not to the individual insurance agent who helped you. When your agent earns a salary instead of a commission, you can trust they're selling you only what you really need.
Because we work with all the biggest life insurance companies, we're not tied to any one carrier. Our goal is to match each person with the policy that's right for them - not matter who it's with. That means we're able to put shoppers first, every time.
Life insurance rates vary from person to person. The cost of an individual policy depends on the type of life insurance you buy (term or whole), your health, and the policy itself, like how long it lasts and additional features added. You can compare life insurance quotes online for free to get an estimate of how much you'll pay for your policy.
|Coverage Amount||Age 30||Age 35||Age 40||Age 45|
Whole life insurance rates are typically five to 15 times higher than a comparable term life policy. Whole life insurance doesn't expire, has a cash value component, and has additional fees that term life insurance policies don't have.
There are several factors that an insurance company will look at to determine the cost of your life insurance policy. During the underwriting process, the company will use these factors to determine how risky you are to insure and, in turn, the price of your policy.
The most common cost factors are:
A general rule of thumb in determining whether or not you need life insurance is to ask yourself one question: does anyone depend on your income? If the answer is yes, then you probably need life insurance. A 2019 report by the U.S. Federal Reserve Board showed that nearly 40% of adults would have trouble paying a $400 emergency expense, and 12% "would be unable to pay the expense by any means."
That means many would not be able to afford that would come with a loved one’s death, like funeral expenses, loss of income, and any other major financial obligations. Life insurance helps protect anyone who depends on your income or services from such emergencies.
Marriage complicates finances, and you’ll feel better knowing your significant other has a safety net for any shared debt or future financial plans.
Whether you’re paying for diapers or college tuition, kids are expensive. A life insurance policy ensures they’re taken care of from cradle to college.
Mortgages are the biggest, longest-lasting debt most people will take on. A good rule of thumb is to have a life insurance policy that lasts as long as your mortgage. It's not uncommon for a policy to last 20 or 30 years.
A smart business owner will have an insurance policy so their partners can keep the company going even after they’re gone.
You might consider buying life insurance even if you don’t fall into one of the buckets above. After all, the cash benefit doesn’t have any strings attached and can be used for whatever’s needed most.
Besides covering everyday expenses and payments, the money from life insurance policies can be used to cover:
The life insurance application process usually takes four to eight weeks from start to finish.
But you can complete it in just seven steps. Here’s how it works:
Comparing rates from different insurance companies allows you to make sure you’re getting the most affordable policy. You never have to pay for life insurance quotes.
Take into account the cost and how much coverage you need, along with the insurer’s reputation and average application time.
You can fill out your application online or call a licensed expert to get help. Either way, you’ll need to answer some basic income and health questions.
Life insurance medical exams are similar to a basic physical. The exam is free, and a technician will come to your home or workplace on your schedule.
An insurance agent will ask you a few simple lifestyle and health questions.
A life insurance underwriter will use all the collected info to decide on a final premium rate, which should be similar to the quotes you received.
After you sign your policy and send your first premium payment, your life insurance will be active and your loved ones will be protected!
The reviews are in. We make life insurance easy.
Want to know a secret? For most people, the cheapest life insurance policy is the best one. But some insurers differ in how they assess people of different ages or with different health conditions.
So which insurance company will offer you the most affordable option for the coverage you need? We’ve done the heavy lifting and reviewed the best life insurance companies in America:
Term life insurance is the cheapest option for most people, so that’s a good starting point when looking for the most affordable policy. Regardless of the type you buy, compare companies to make sure you’re choosing the one that’s best for your particular health details and financial situation.
Life insurance provides peace of mind for you and your family. Term life is an affordable form of financial protection, and it costs as little as $20-$25 a month for some people.
The death benefit is usually tax-free, so your family gets the entire amount.
Life insurance can be purchased online, and the entire benefit is available as soon as the policy is active - there’s no waiting period.
Policygenius is proud to provide industry-best life insurance quotes. But sometimes information uncovered during the application process means your policy will cost more than expected.
When this happens, we’ll shop your application around to our partner insurers and negotiate to get you the best possible price – guaranteed.
If your policy isn't active when you die - you outlived the term, let it lapse, or canceled it - you're no longer insured and the company won't pay the death benefit. Additionally, during the first two years of the policy the company can refuse to pay in cases of suicide, and can also investigate any death for evidence of fraud; if found, they may pay out only a portion of the benefit, or none at all.
Group coverage is a popular workplace perk but often falls short in two ways: It limits your coverage amount, and it isn’t transferable if you switch jobs. A private insurance policy allows you to customize your coverage and stay protected for as long as you need it.
Already have group life insurance? Let our experts help you find the right supplemental policy to complete your coverage.
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Yes, we have to include some legalese down here. Policygenius Inc. (DBA Policygenius Insurance Services in California) (“Policygenius”), a Delaware corporation, is a licensed independent insurance broker. Policygenius does not underwrite any insurance policy described on this website. The information provided on this site has been developed by Policygenius for general informational and educational purposes. We do our best to ensure that this information is up-to-date and accurate. Any insurance policy premium quotes or ranges displayed are non-binding. The final insurance policy premium for any policy is determined by the underwriting insurance company following application.
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