Best life insurance companies in New Jersey

Learn how the best life insurance companies in New Jersey stack up so you can find the right carrier with the most competitive rate for your lifestyle and coverage needs.

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By

Brian ActonBrian ActonContributing WriterBrian Acton is a contributing writer at Policygenius, where he covers insurance and finance. His work has also appeared in The Wall Street Journal, TIME, USA Today, MarketWatch, Inc. Magazine, and HuffPost. 

Edited by

Adam MorganAdam MorganEditorial DirectorAdam Morgan is an editorial director at Policygenius who leads the life insurance team. Previously, he led editorial teams matrixed across multiple financial publications at Red Ventures — including Bankrate, NextAdvisor, Million Mile Secrets, and others. As a journalist, his work has appeared in Esquire, Scientific American, The Guardian, Los Angeles Times, and elsewhere.

Updated|5 min read

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New Jersey residents looking for life insurance companies have a long list of companies to choose from, and sorting through all the options can seem overwhelming. Ideally, you want to find a policy that provides affordable coverage no matter what stage of life you’re in, or what pre-existing health conditions you have. 

We pulled together the best life insurance companies available to New Jerseyans of all types, along with the state laws governing life insurance so you know what your rights are. 

Best life insurance companies in New Jersey

Methodology: How we chose the best life insurance companies in each state

We don't get paid for our company reviews and use an extensive rubric of criteria covering policy details, price, financial confidence, third-party ratings, and customer experience to assign unbiased ratings out of five stars. Any recommendations we make are based on internal and external expert opinions and data from our Policygenius Price Index, which uses real-time rate data from leading life insurance companies to determine pricing trends. Our ratings and reviews can help point you to an insurer you can rely on for your family’s financial protection, but the best life insurance company for you is dependent on multiple factors. A licensed agent at Policygenius can work with you through the application process so you’re getting coverage from the best insurer for your circumstances at the most competitive price.

Best overall life insurance

Most New Jersey residents should be able to find the most competitive rates with Banner Life, our pick for the best overall life insurance carrier in New Jersey. Banner Life provides the best rates to a broad range of people, and many applicants with pre-existing conditions can access affordable coverage. 

Banner Life also boasts strong financial security and a low NAIC complaint rating of 0.35, far below the nationwide average of 1.00, positioning it favorably alongside its industry competitors. 

Cheapest life insurance

Banner Life can offer life insurance rates among the most affordable in New Jersey to a variety of potential customers. New Jerseyans with certain pre-existing conditions won’t automatically be locked out of affordable coverage, either. 

Best term life insurance

Term life insurance is the most accessible and appropriate option for most people, with affordable coverage that expires after the predetermined term length of the policy ends. Banner Life provides policies with term lengths up to 40 years and competitive rates for a variety of New Jersey applicants.

Best no-medical-exam life insurance

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2023 Policygenius award winner

Brighthouse Financial

Brighthouse 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 starFull orange star

5.0

AM Best rating 

A.M. 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 ($$$$$).

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No-medical-exam option

Why we chose it

Brighthouse Financial offers competitive rates, comprehensive coverage, and application decisions in as little as 24 hours, making it a great choice for people who want to get life insurance coverage without having to take the medical exam.

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Extremely affordable

  • Instant-decision applications

  • Best-in-class no-med option

Cons

  • Traditional term life not available in CA, IL, LA, ME, or NY

  • Term life applicants limited to ages 25-50

New Jersey residents can bypass the medical exam portion of the life insurance application and get quick coverage by purchasing no-medical-exam life insurance, which uses past medical records to determine rates. Brighthouse Financial offers affordable no-medical-exam policies for up to $2 million in coverage, with application decisions made in as little as 24 hours.

Best whole life insurance

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2023 Policygenius award winner

MassMutual

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

4.9

AM Best rating 

A.M. 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 ($$$$$).

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$

$

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All 50 states

Why we chose it

MassMutual’s whole life insurance plan provides a lifetime coverage option that builds cash value with the potential to earn dividends.

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Strong financial stability ratings

  • Higher potential for dividends for whole life policyholders than many competitors

  • Good customer experience ratings

Cons

  • High term life premiums

  • Term life not available through Policygenius

Whole life insurance is five to 15 times as expensive as term life insurance because it covers the policyholder for their entire lifetime. In addition, whole life insurance policies have a cash value component that allows policyholders to invest and save. MassMutual pays higher dividends than competitors for its whole life policies. 

Best for seniors

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2023 Policygenius award winner

Prudential

Prudential 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 starEmpty gray star

4.1

AM Best rating 

A.M. 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 it

With nearly four million policyholders and 150 years to its name, Prudential offers competitive coverage options for seniors, as well as people with some of the most common medical conditions, including asthma, depression, and fibromyalgia.

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Good for people over 60

  • More flexible income requirements than some other insurers

  • Considers applicants with a variety of immigration statuses (visas and green cards)

Cons

  • Younger applicants will likely find better prices elsewhere

  • No-med option can end up requiring a medical exam most of the time

New Jersey seniors age 60 and over can get the most competitive rates from Prudential, even with specific health conditions that often come with old age. 

Best for young adults

Brighthouse Financial

As a general rule, young adults can get affordable life insurance coverage pretty easily from a lot of places. But Brighthouse Financial offers some of the best rates out there for young adults and provides fast approvals, no-medical-exam options, and looser income requirements for students enrolled in college. 

Best for people with pre-existing conditions

award icon

2023 Policygenius award winner

Lincoln Financial

Lincoln 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

4.8

AM Best rating 

A.M. 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 ($$$$$).

$

$

$

$

$

No-medical-exam option

Why we chose it

Lincoln Financial offers a diverse array of life insurance policies, including competitive no-med and high-net-worth options.

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Affordable rates

  • Good for many existing health conditions, including depression, stroke, and heart conditions

  • Good for marijuana users, including daily users

Cons

  • Term life not available in New York

Some pre-existing conditions like high blood pressure and diabetes may cause New Jersey residents to pay more for life insurance because the carrier views them as higher risk. But Lincoln Financial offers some of the most competitive rates to people with many types of health conditions. 

Best for marijuana users

Lincoln Financial

Life insurance companies often assign marijuana users smoker rates, which are several times more expensive than non-smoker rates. New Jersey marijuana users can get 200% to 300% cheaper non-smoker rates with Lincoln Financial, which does not automatically qualify marijuana users as smokers. 

Best for smokers

Smokers generally pay two to three times more for life insurance because of the health risks associated with smoking. Banner Life offers lower premiums to New Jersey smokers than competing carriers, and policyholders who manage to quit smoking for a full year can apply to reduce their rates.

Comparing the best life insurance companies in New Jersey

Company 

Policygenius rating

Best for

Types of policies 

Banner Life

5.0 / 5

Overall, cheapest, term life, smokers

Term life, no-medical-exam life, universal life

Brighthouse Financial

5.0 / 5

No-medical-exam life, young adults

Term life, no-medical-exam life, whole life, short-term life, universal life

MassMutual

4.9 / 5

Whole life

Term life, no-medical-exam life, whole life, universal life, variable universal life

Lincoln Financial

4.8 / 5

Marijuana users, people with pre-existing conditions

Term life, no-medical-exam life, indexed universal life, variable universal life

Prudential

4.1 / 5

Seniors

Term life, no-medical-exam life, short-term life, universal life, indexed universal life

What is the average cost of life insurance in New Jersey?

Many factors influence how much life insurance coverage will cost, including the policyholder’s age, medical history, and the term length and coverage amount of the policy. Based on Policygenius data from April 2023, the average monthly premium for a healthy 35-year old in New Jersey buying a $500,000, 20-year term life insurance policy is $30.81 for men and $25.78 for women.  

What happens if a life insurance company goes bankrupt in New Jersey?

Most policyholders will never need to worry about what happens if their life insurance company goes bankrupt. But in the rare case they do, the New Jersey Life & Health Insurance Guaranty Association will protect affected residents and offer coverage for as long as the policyholder continues to pay their premiums. 

When an insurance company is found to be insolvent and is ordered liquidated, policyholders will be notified by the receiver and/or the guaranty association. The guaranty association will cover up to $500,000 in life insurance death benefits and up to $100,000 in cash surrender value to all affected New Jersey residents. 

If a policyholder moves out-of-state and the life insurance company becomes insolvent, they will receive coverage from the guaranty association in the state where they currently live. 

How to find a lost life insurance policy in New Jersey

When a person dies, their family members or the person managing their estate can search the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ Life Insurance Policy Locator Service for life insurance policies and annuity contracts in the decedent’s name. 

New Jersey life insurance laws

New Jersey has laws that govern how life insurance companies and policies must operate in the state. 

Free look period

In New Jersey, new policyholders must receive a minimum of 10 days to review their new life insurance policy and “return” it to cancel their policy and receive a full refund. 

Guaranty Fund protection

The New Jersey Life & Health Insurance Guaranty Association covers up to $500,000 in death benefits and $100,000 in cash surrender value for New Jersey policyholders affected by the insolvency and liquidation of their life insurance carrier. 

Contestable period

The contestable period is the amount of time during which a life insurance company can challenge and deny a claim if they can demonstrate that the applicant lied or made misrepresentations on their policy application. In New Jersey, the contestable period lasts for two years from the date the policy took effect. 

Time allowable to settle a claim

In New Jersey, life insurance companies must settle a claim by paying out the death benefits within 60 days after receiving proof of death and other required documents. 

Grace period for missed payments

New Jersey policyholders get a 30-day grace period to settle up a missed payment before the life insurance company can cancel their coverage. If a claim arises during the grace period and the policyholder hasn’t yet paid their overdue premium, the amount owed may be deducted from the death benefit.

Frequently asked questions

What is the number one life insurance company in New Jersey?

We named Banner Life as the number one life insurance company in New Jersey because it offers affordable coverage to a wide range of New Jerseyans and features a variety of term lengths for term life policies.

What is the life insurance free look period and grace period in New Jersey?

New Jersey allows at least 10 days from the date a new life insurance policy takes effect for the policyholder to cancel their policy and get a full refund. You also get a 30-day grace period to settle overdue premiums before the life insurance company can cancel your policy.

What types of life insurance are available in New Jersey?

Term life insurance and whole life insurance, the two most common policy types, are both freely available in New Jersey. Residents can also purchase the other main types of life insurance, including no-medical-exam policies with quick underwriting, and final expense insurance policies as well.

Corrections

No corrections since publication.

Author

Brian Acton is a contributing writer at Policygenius, where he covers insurance and finance. His work has also appeared in The Wall Street Journal, TIME, USA Today, MarketWatch, Inc. Magazine, and HuffPost. 

Editor

Adam Morgan is an editorial director at Policygenius who leads the life insurance team. Previously, he led editorial teams matrixed across multiple financial publications at Red Ventures — including Bankrate, NextAdvisor, Million Mile Secrets, and others. As a journalist, his work has appeared in Esquire, Scientific American, The Guardian, Los Angeles Times, and elsewhere.

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