$10 million life insurance policy: How much it costs & who needs one

If you have a high net worth and a significant need for financial protection, you may qualify for a $10 million life insurance policy. Here’s how to apply and how much it’ll cost.

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By

Katherine MurbachEditor & Licensed Life Insurance AgentKatherine Murbach is an editor and a former licensed life insurance agent at Policygenius. Previously, she wrote about life and disability insurance for 1752 Financial, and advised over 1,500 clients on their life insurance policies as a sales associate.

Edited by

Antonio Ruiz-CamachoAntonio Ruiz-CamachoAssociate Content DirectorAntonio helps lead our life insurance and disability insurance editorial team at Policygenius. Previously, he was a senior director of content at Bankrate and CreditCards.com, as well as a principal writer covering personal finance at CNET.

Updated|4 min read

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What is a $10 million life insurance policy?

A $10 million life insurance policy can refer to any type of life insurance with a coverage amount of $10 million. This means that if you die while the policy is active, your beneficiaries can file a claim for $10 million.

Who needs a $10 million life insurance policy?

High-net-worth individuals or business owners may need $10 million in life insurance. Below are some of the main reasons why you might need a multi-million dollar policy.

  • Income replacement: Even if you earn a very high income, it often makes sense to pay a nominal premium in order to protect it. This way, if something were to happen to you, your family would be able to maintain their lifestyle without sacrificing any other hard-earned assets. 

  • Estate planning: You can use life insurance to offset estate tax. If your estate is valued over $13.61 million, your beneficiaries can use the life insurance proceeds to pay any excess taxes in order to guarantee an inheritance. [1]

  • Key person insurance: If you’re a key executive at a large company, your employer may take out a high-value life insurance policy on you to protect the company from profit losses if you were to die.

  • Buy-sell agreement: This type of arrangement can guarantee that a business is able to continue if a partner dies. If one co-owner dies, the other partner can use the death benefit to purchase their portion of the company.

  • Charitable giving: You can also allocate part of your life insurance death benefit to a charity by listing a qualified organization as your beneficiary or using a trust. 

If you’re not certain if your financial needs warrant a policy with $10 million worth of coverage, it’s generally best to consult a financial advisor.

→ Learn more about how to calculate how much life insurance you need

Who can qualify for a $10 million life insurance policy?

If your financial protection needs add up to $10 million or more, you’ll likely qualify for a policy with that coverage amount. 

For high-value policies like these, the insurer will take a holistic look at your assets and financial profile to ensure that the coverage is a fit. 

Insurance companies also use income multipliers for financial justification, which places applicants into brackets that determine how much coverage they qualify for.

Usually, the younger you are, the more coverage you can buy. For example, if you’re in your 20s or 30s, you may qualify for a death benefit up to 30 times your income. If you’re in your 60s, you may do so for up to 10 times your income.

Below is an example of how much life insurance you’re likely to qualify for based on your age, though every insurer has its own guidelines.

  • Age 18 to 40: 25x to 30x income, or sometimes higher

  • Age 41 to 50: 20x income 

  • Age 51 to 60: 15x income

  • Age 60 to 65: 10x income

  • Age 66 and above: 5x income

For instance, if you’re 40 years old and making $500,000 annually, a $10 million policy equals 20 times your income. Therefore, you’d qualify for a policy with this coverage amount.

If you’re not certain you would qualify for a $10 million life insurance policy, a Policygenius insurance agent can help you look at your options across the country’s top insurers.

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What types of policies offer a $10 million payout?

Term life insurance and permanent life insurance — the two main types of life insurance — can both offer payouts of $10 million.

  • Term life insurance lasts for a set number of years before expiring. It’s one of the most affordable ways to provide your family with a financial safety net. Term life comes with few tax rules and restrictions, and it’s a popular option for people looking for basic coverage during the years when they have the most financial obligations. 

  • Whole life insurance is one of the most popular types of permanent life insurance. It’s a good option for people looking to use life insurance to diversify their investment portfolio, or people with permanent coverage needs, like dependents who require lifelong care. Whole life is much more expensive than term life, since it doesn’t expire and it also comes with a cash value component.

  • Universal life insurance is another type of popular permanent coverage. You can increase or decrease how much you pay toward premiums, and you can eventually use your cash value to cover your premiums entirely.

A financial planner or insurance professional can help you determine which type of life insurance is best for you. If you have a high net worth, you might need a combination of both term life and permanent life insurance.

Best companies for a $10 million life insurance policy

The best life insurance company for you will depend on your unique circumstances and financial protection needs. 

The vast majority of Policygenius partners offer $10 million policies. Below are a few that could be ideal if you’re applying for multi-million-dollar life insurance policies.

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2024 Policygenius award winner

Pacific Life

Pacific Life logo

Policygenius rating 

Our proprietary rating methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the "methodology" section for more details.

Full orange starFull orange starFull orange starFull orange starHalf orange star

4.8

AM Best rating 

AM Best is a global credit rating agency that scores the financial strength of insurance companies on a scale from A++ (Superior) to D (Poor).

A+

Cost 

Using a mix of internal and external rate data, we grade the cost of each insurance company's premiums on a scale from least expensive ($) to most expensive ($$$$$).

$

$

$

$

$

All 50 states

No-medical-exam option

Why we chose itchevron icon

Pacific Life offers some of the lowest rates for term life insurance across age brackets. It also has the most competitive rates for many health conditions and builds.

Pros and conschevron icon

Pros

  • Extremely affordable across age brackets

  • Affordable guaranteed universal life insurance option for people who need lifetime coverage

  • Favorable underwriting for many health conditions

Cons

  • Traditional term life not available in NY

  • There are better carriers for active duty military, people who have a history of alcohol abuse, and people who have been through bankruptcy

Pacific Life is an A+ rated company according to AM Best. When it comes to applying for high coverage amounts, it’s particularly flexible. 

For example, it doesn’t require an EKG if you’re above a certain age or applying for a high coverage amount. This helps streamline the application process and gets you coverage faster. Pacific Life’s rates can also be cheaper than those from other insurers.

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2024 Policygenius award winner

Corebridge Financial

Corebridge Financial logo

Policygenius rating 

Our proprietary rating methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the "methodology" section for more details.

Full orange starFull orange starFull orange starFull orange starHalf orange star

4.6

AM Best rating 

AM Best is a global credit rating agency that scores the financial strength of insurance companies on a scale from A++ (Superior) to D (Poor).

A

Cost 

Using a mix of internal and external rate data, we grade the cost of each insurance company's premiums on a scale from least expensive ($) to most expensive ($$$$$).

$

$

$

$

$

30+ year terms

All 50 states

Why we chose itchevron icon

With competitive pricing and a range of flexible term periods for its Select-a-Term product, Corebridge is a solid option for many life insurance shoppers. Note: We are currently using AIG’s financial strength ratings until Corebridge has its own rating..

Pros and conschevron icon

Pros

  • Competitive pricing for all ages

  • Favorable underwriting for people with heart conditions and diabetes

  • Good for current and recently pregnant people, including people with gestational diabetes

Cons

  • Not the best for people with mental health conditions, including anxiety and depression

  • No no-medical-exam term option

Corebridge Financial is an A-rated, reputable company with affordable premiums compared to the rest of the life insurance market. If you’re applying for $10 million of coverage or more, you’ll fill out additional paperwork on your finances. On the other hand, the company only requires an EKG if you’re age 71 or older.

How much does a $10 million life insurance policy cost?

A 40-year-old woman might pay $500 per month for $10 million of term life coverage, but around $11,900 per month — or 24 times more — for $10 million of whole life insurance coverage. In general, whole life insurance is much more expensive than a term life policy with the same coverage amount.

Your rates will depend on your age, health, gender, lifestyle factors, and the specific type of policy you’re purchasing. 

A Policygenius agent can help you find the right coverage for you at the cost you’re looking for.

Term life rates vs. whole life rates

Age

Gender

$10 million coverage amount, 20-year term life

$10 million coverage amount, whole life

30

Female

$288.72

$8,100

Male

$392.24

$9,509

40

Female

$500.25

$11,914

Male

$631.13

$14,294

50

Female

$1,189.19

$18,953

Male

$1,620.54

$22,185

60

Female

$3,504

$31,755

Male

$4,892.17

$37,649

Collapse table

Methodology: Average monthly rates are calculated for male and female non-smokers in a Preferred health classification obtaining a $10 million life insurance policy. Life insurance averages are based on a composite of policies offered by Policygenius from Legal & General America, Corebridge Financial, Foresters Financial, Lincoln Financial, Mutual of Omaha, Pacific Life, Protective, Prudential, Symetra, and Transamerica. Rates may vary by insurer, term, coverage amount, health class, and state. Sample monthly whole life rates are calculated based on male and female non-smokers in a Preferred health classification obtaining a $10 million whole life insurance policy fully paid up at age 100 offered through MassMutual. Not all policies are available in all states. Rate illustration valid as of 01/01/2024.

→ Learn more about life insurance rates

Ready to shop for a $10 million life insurance policy?

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How to buy a $10 million life insurance policy

The application process for multi-million dollar policies may have a few extra requirements than policies with lower coverage amounts.

  1. First, you’ll connect with a licensed agent. You can compare life insurance quotes and complete your application. This includes filling out some basic identifying information, plus details about your health and financial needs.

  2. Next, you’ll complete a medical exam. The medical exam is a standard part of the application process. Most insurance companies require the exam for policies over $3 million. The exam is similar to an annual physical at your doctor’s office and it takes about 30 minutes.

  3. The insurance company will typically request additional information to confirm your health status and finances. You’ll fill out a few extra forms about your finances and your tax information. Many companies require an EKG (also abbreviated ECG, or electrocardiogram) in addition to the standard physical.

  4. After that, you’ll wait for the insurer to review your application and exam results. This is called underwriting, and the process takes about four to six weeks on average.

Once you have your final policy offer, you can sign the policy documents to activate your coverage

What are the requirements for a $10 million life insurance policy?

  • Financial questionnaire or tax transcript form (4506-C). Insurers often require income verification or additional details on your finances to ensure that the coverage is appropriate. Your agent or broker can help you along the application process if the insurance company requests extra documentation.

  • Attending physician statement (APS). An APS is a form from your doctor that summarizes your health. If you’re applying for $10 million of coverage and are over the age of 60, many insurers automatically require an APS so they can accurately assess your health risk and determine your premiums.

  • Electrocardiogram (ECG/EKG). If you’re over the age of 50 and applying for $10 million worth of coverage, it’s common for insurers to request an EKG in addition to the medical exam.

Each company has slightly different guidelines, but a Policygenius agent can help you compare top insurers in one place to find the one that’s best suited for you.

Our experts are licensed in all 50 states and can walk you through the entire life insurance buying process while offering transparent, unbiased advice.

Frequently asked questions

Should I ladder $10 million life insurance?

Laddering life insurance is a strategy where you buy multiple life insurance policies with different term lengths. This way, you only pay premiums for the coverage you need at different stages in your life. Depending on your personal situation, buying multiple policies with different term lengths can help lower your premiums. A financial or insurance professional can help you decide if laddering is right for you.

How much is a $10 million life insurance policy?

A healthy 40-year-old woman could pay $500 per month for a $10 million term life insurance policy with a 20-year term. A 40-year-old man with a similar profile could pay $631 per month for the same coverage. Your rates will depend on your age, health, gender, and lifestyle factors.

How do you get a $10 million life insurance policy?

You can apply for a $10 million life insurance policy by contacting a licensed agent or broker, submitting an application, and taking a medical exam. The insurance company will verify your financial profile to make sure the coverage is appropriate. At Policygenius, we can help you compare top-rated life insurers in one spot to help you get the right policy for your needs.

References

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Policygenius uses external sources, including government data, industry studies, and reputable news organizations to supplement proprietary marketplace data and internal expertise. Learn more about how we use and vet external sources as part of oureditorial standards.

  1. Internal Revenue Service

    . "

    Estate Tax

    ." Accessed December 28, 2023.

Author

Katherine Murbach is an editor and a former licensed life insurance agent at Policygenius. Previously, she wrote about life and disability insurance for 1752 Financial, and advised over 1,500 clients on their life insurance policies as a sales associate.

Editor

Antonio helps lead our life insurance and disability insurance editorial team at Policygenius. Previously, he was a senior director of content at Bankrate and CreditCards.com, as well as a principal writer covering personal finance at CNET.

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