Colonial Penn life insurance review: Low coverage amounts
Colonial Penn offers no-med whole life policies to Americans 40 and over, but coverage amounts are low and complaint rates are high.
Logan SachonLogan SachonSenior Managing Editor, Life Insurance & ResearchLogan Sachon is a former senior managing editor of life insurance and research at Policygenius. As a journalist, her work has appeared in The Guardian, Business Insider, CNN Money, BuzzFeed, Money Under 30, VICE, New York Magazine, and elsewhere.
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.
Our proprietary ratings methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the “Ratings methodology” section for more details.
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).
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 ($$$$$).
The bottom line
Colonial Penn offers people age 40 and over whole life insurance up to $50,000, and people age 50 and over guaranteed issue life insurance up to $16,000. No med exam is required, but coverage amounts are low, an accelerated benefit rider is extra, and the company’s complaint rate is much higher than expected for a company its size.
Note: Colonial Penn products are not available through the Policygenius marketplace.
Accelerated death benefit for terminal illness rider: For an additional cost, Colonial Penn offers three accelerated death benefit rider options: A heart attack and stroke benefit rider, which pays part of the death benefit early if the insured has a heart attack or stroke; a cancer benefit rider, which pays out if the insured is diagnosed with cancer; or a chronic illness benefit rider, which pays out of the insured is diagnosed with a chronic illness that impedes two of the seven activities of daily living. All three riders also will pay out if the insured is diagnosed with a terminal illness.
Our price rating scale compares insurance companies’ life insurance rates for a sample $1 million 20-year term policy for a 35-year-old female non-smoker with a Standard Plus health classification. Colonial Penn does not have a price rating, as it does not offer term life insurance.
Our customer experience scale uses data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) complaint index. Colonial Penn has a score of 3.06, which means it receives three times the complaints that would be expected for a company of its size. (That number would be 1.0.)
Our transparency rating scale measures how easily shoppers and policyholders can find information about an insurer on its website. Colonial Penn gets points for having clear contact information, policy details, and financial strength posted. But it loses points for not having average rates clearly posted outside of its quoting tool and not having a chat feature or online support hub.
Our financial strength rating is a weighted combination of three industry-leading metrics to measure a company’s financial health: A.M. Best, Standard & Poor’s, and Moody’s. Colonial Penn has an A rating from A.M. Best, an A- rating from Standard & Poor’s, and an A3 rating from Moody’s.
A closer look at Colonial Penn
Who is Colonial Penn best for?
People who need a low coverage amount and need it now may find what they are looking for with Colonial Penn. But most people will find better rates elsewhere.
What makes Colonial Penn unique?
For its guaranteed issue whole life policies, Colonial Penn sells coverage in units and prices those units based on your age and risk profile. For this reason, it’s unclear how much insurance you can purchase until after you have a quote, which is rare in the industry.
Who should consider a different life insurance company?
Most people, even people looking for guaranteed issue policies, will find their best rates with another company.
Colonial Penn life insurance rates
Colonial Penn does not publish its life insurance rates.
Colonial Penn’s history, reputation, and social responsibility
Colonial Penn was founded in 1957 in Philadelphia. It specializes in selling insurance directly to people 50 and over, and markets its products directly to customers. 
The company was purchased in 1997 by Conesco Inc., now CNO Financial Group. CNO is a publicly traded stock company. 
Colonial Penn in the news
In June 2022, Colonial Penn was recognized by the American Heart Association for making a transformational gift toward its 2024 Impact Goal, which aims to improve cardiovascular health for all people. (AHA)
Colonial Penn is a subsidiary of CNO Financial Group.
Is Colonial Penn a good company?
Yes, Colonial Penn has high ratings for its financial stability, including an A from A.M. Best.
How do I contact Colonial Penn?
To contact Colonial Penn, including the claims support team, call 800-523-9100 or visit the Colonial Penn website.
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.
Logan Sachon is a former senior managing editor of life insurance and research at Policygenius. As a journalist, her work has appeared in The Guardian, Business Insider, CNN Money, BuzzFeed, Money Under 30, VICE, New York Magazine, and elsewhere.
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.