Hundreds of life insurance companies are available in Virginia, but finding the policy you need at the lowest possible rate possible can be challenging. It also helps to know about Virginia's state laws governing life insurance, so you know your rights when you’re shopping for a policy.
We used industry data, pricing from Policygenius carrier partners, and third-party ratings like AM Best and J.D. Power to pick the best insurers on the market. Our independent recommendations will help you get life insurance coverage with confidence.
Here are the best life insurance companies available to Virginians, how to find an affordable policy that works for you, and all the state laws you need to know.
Best life insurance companies in Virginia
Best overall: Legal & General America
Cheapest: Legal & General America
Best term life insurance: Legal & General America
Best no-medical-exam life insurance: Brighthouse Financial
Best whole life insurance: MassMutual
Best for seniors: Prudential
Best for young adults: Brighthouse Financial
Best for people with pre-existing conditions: Lincoln Financial
Best for marijuana users: Lincoln Financial
Best for smokers: Legal & General America
Best overall life insurance
Most Virginians should be able to find the best rates and policies with Legal & General America, which also does business as Banner Life and William Penn. With low rates for applicants across a wide range of categories, shoppers can feel confident that they can find affordable coverage.
Legal & General America is also well positioned against its industry peers, with strong financial security ratings and a NAIC complaint rating of 0.35, which is well below the average nationwide rating of 1.00.
Cheapest life insurance
Legal & General America
Legal & General America also offers some of the lowest life insurance rates in Virginia to many types of applicants. Even shoppers with pre-existing health conditions aren’t necessarily out of luck when it comes to getting affordable coverage.
Best term life insurance
Legal & General America
Term life insurance covers policyholders for a set number of years, with coverage expiring when the term of the policy ends. It’s the most affordable and suitable life insurance option for the majority of Virginia residents. Legal & General America offers policies with terms as long as 40 years at competitive rates.
Best no-medical-exam life insurance
No-medical-exam life insurance lets applicants avoid the life insurance medical exam and uses their medical history to determine rates. It’s a more expensive option, but it can offer quick approvals, and it may cover applicants who can’t otherwise get coverage. Brighthouse Financial offers affordable rates for no-medical-exam policies with a quick application process and up to $2 million in death benefits.
Best whole life insurance
Like its name implies, whole life insurance covers the policyholder for the rest of their life, but because of that, it's five to 15 times more expensive than term life insurance. Whole life insurance also has a cash value component that lets policyholders invest and save, and some policies pay dividends in the form of an annual bonus if the insurance company performs well financially. Our pick for whole life is MassMutual, which pays higher dividends than competing insurers.
Best for seniors
Virginia seniors age 60 and over can find some of the lowest available rates with Prudential, even if they have certain types of pre-existing medical conditions that are common in older people.
Best for young adults
Young people qualify for cheaper life insurance because they tend to pose the lowest risk to insurers. Brighthouse Financial has some of the most competitive rates for young adults and offers a quick approval process, no-medical-exam policies, and less stringent income requirements for college students.
Best for people with pre-existing conditions
Virginians with certain pre-existing conditions will likely have to pay higher insurance premiums than policyholders without any health concerns, but Lincoln Financial offers applicants with certain pre-existing conditions some of the lowest rates in the country.
Best for marijuana users
Life insurance companies often lump marijuana users in with smokers and automatically charge them higher rates for life insurance, no matter how often the applicant actually partakes. But Lincoln Financial offers non-smoker rates to marijuana users that are 200% to 300% cheaper than the smoker rates available with other insurers.
Best for smokers
Legal & General America
Smokers have to pay two or three times more for life insurance simply because their health is at greater risk than non-smokers. But Legal & General America offers better rates to Virginia smokers than its competition, and policyholders who quit smoking for an entire year can apply to have their rates reduced.
Comparing the best life insurance companies in Virginia
Types of policies
5.0 / 5
No-medical-exam life, young adults
Term life, no-medical-exam life, whole life, short-term life, universal life
Legal & General America
4.9 / 5
Overall, cheapest, term life, smokers
Term life, no-medical-exam life, universal life
4.9 / 5
Term life, no-medical-exam life, whole life, universal life, variable universal life
4.8 / 5
Marijuana users, people with pre-existing conditions
Term life, no-medical-exam life, indexed universal life, variable universal life
4.1 / 5
Term life, no-medical-exam life, short-term life, universal life, indexed universal life
What is the average cost of life insurance in Virginia?
There are many factors that affect how much life insurance costs, from the policyholder’s age and medical history to the length of the policy term and the amount of coverage. Based on Policygenius data from 2023, the average monthly premium for a healthy 35-year old in Virginia buying a $500,000, 20-year term life insurance policy is $30.79 for men and $25.76 for women.
What happens if a life insurance company goes bankrupt in Virginia?
Policyholders don’t usually need to worry about their life insurance company’s ability to pay out claims. But if a life insurance company does go under, the Virginia Life, Accident & SIckness Insurance Guaranty Association will extend coverage to impacted residents as long as they continue to pay for their policy.
When an insurance company is ordered to be liquidated, policyholders will receive notice from the receiver. The guaranty association provides up to $300,000 in death benefits and $100,000 in cash surrender value to all affected Virginians.
When a Virginia policyholder moves out-of-state and their life insurance company goes bankrupt, they will need to receive coverage from the guaranty association with the state in which they currently reside.
How to find a lost life insurance policy in Virginia
Whenever a person dies, family members or the estate executor or administrator can search the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ Life Insurance Policy Locator Service to locate life insurance policies and annuity contracts in the decedent’s name.
Virginia life insurance laws
Virginia state laws dictate how life insurance policies must be managed in the state. It’s important to know these laws because they affect your rights as a consumer.
Free look period
In Virginia, life insurance companies must provide new policyholders at least 10 days to examine their life insurance policy and, if they wish, return it for a full refund of the premium that was already paid.
Guaranty Fund protection
The Virginia Life, Accident & SIckness Insurance Guaranty Association will cover up to $300,000 in death benefits and $100,000 in cash surrender value for Virginia residents whose coverage is affected by the insolvency and liquidation of their life insurance carrier.
Life insurance policies in Virginia are contestable for a period of two years from the date that the policy took effect. During this time, the insurance company can investigate and deny a claim if it can show that the applicant made fraudulent statements or misrepresentations on a life insurance application. After the two years are up, the policy becomes incontestable.
Time allowable to settle a claim
Life insurance companies are motivated to settle claims quickly in Virginia because interest starts accruing on unpaid death benefits from the date of death at an annual rate of 2.5%.
Grace period for missed payments
Virginia residents get 31 days to make up for a missed payment and pay an overdue premium without getting penalized or having their coverage canceled. The policy remains active during this grace period, and as long as the payment is made within that timeframe, the life insurance company will accept it as being paid on time.