New York Life Insurance Company is a Fortune 100 company founded in 1845. It is the oldest and largest mutual life insurance company in the United States. As a mutual life insurance company, it is completely owned by its policyholders. The profits are either retained within the company or are distributed among the policyholders in the form of dividends or reduced future premiums. With over 800 life insurance companies operating in the United States, New York Life is one of the two life insurance companies that have been awarded the highest possible ratings by all four major rating agencies.
Because it is a mutual life insurance company, the primary benefit of being a policyholder with New York Life Insurance is that you are a part owner in the company and receive regular dividends as a shareholder. It isn’t often that you encounter a life insurance policy that regularly pays you back, so shrewd investors may find this company worth some extras in premiums.
On November 16, 2017, the company announced that it expects to pay its policy owners a record dividend payout of $1.78 billion in 2018. This makes 164 consecutive years that New York Life has been paying out dividends to its policy owners. Dividend payouts have been increased by 36 percent since 2012. In fact, it is the only major mutual life insurance company to increase its dividend payout every year, despite changing economic situations and low-interest rates in the U.S.
A distinguishing factor for New York Life is its wide array of survivorship policies. In a survivorship policy, there can be more than one policyholder and each policyholder is also a beneficiary. This is ideal for couples, because if either one dies during the term, the other spouse receives the death benefit.
One of the major disadvantages to New York Life Insurance is the above-average premiums. While there are plenty of benefits to be enjoyed, including regular dividend payments and shares in the company, the bottom line is that the premium payments can turn many people away. When compared side-by-side with competitors, the other options will likely seem like better alternatives due to the premiums alone. However, you must take into account the fact that you are essentially purchasing shares of the company, becoming a part owner in New York Life, which certainly has its long-term advantages.
Additionally, the term policy lengths are much more limited than they are with other companies. While some competitors offer term lengths of 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 (and others offer term lengths down to the year), New York Life only offers yearly coverage or term lengths of 5, 10, and 20 years. While it is possible to renew after the term is over, the premiums will continue to rise every year. Therefore, this may not be the best solution for those seeking long-range term coverage.
Lastly, there are conflicting reviews on the customer service that you may receive. Depending on the agent you interact with, you may have a very good or a very poor support experience. In this case, it is important to do your research on the agent before engaging.
New York Life insurance company offers the following types of term life insurance policies:
This is an annual term life insurance policy that starts with an affordable initial premium. This policy can be renewed every year without providing any health information. Each year, the annual price increases by a guaranteed amount for 10 years. You can also convert this policy to a permanent life insurance plan during the first 10 years or renew this policy again after the term ends.
Level-premium term life policies are available in 10,15, and 20-year terms. The premiums remain fixed until the term ends. These policies can easily be converted to permanent life insurance policies.
New York Life also offers “simplified term life” which is a type of no medical exam life insurance. It is affordable, with no medical exam or lab work necessary. Additionally, it’s easy to apply for and obtain approval. You are only required to answer a few health-related questions.
New York Life offers four different policies in their whole life insurance plan, including one that allows its policyholders to customize their payment schedule. Through this feature, customers have the flexibility of paying off their policy as soon as they want, eliminating the premiums in later years. Other key features include:
Other products offered by New York Life include long-term care insurance and annuities. NYL Secure Care Coverage provides assistance for care in nursing homes, adult daycare centers, assisted living facilities, and at home. It also compensates family members who provide care at home.
A life insurance company is only as good as its financial strength. A poorly managed company that is likely to go bankrupt before your policy expires is not the best choice to make. While some state governments protect the customers of such companies in these cases, this is not the same across the board. It is vital to ensure that the company you choose is financially strong according to the leading indexes.
|Standard & Poor´s||AA+||Highest|
The reality is that New York Life offers some advantageous products that are perfect for certain individuals. If dividends are paid out regularly, your policy may be less expensive than it would be from other companies. However, the term lengths are limited and the premiums are not competitive, restricting options for individuals with a lower life insurance budget.
While it may seem daunting to choose a life insurance company, that’s only one part of the process. Deciding on policy type, term length, coverage amount, premium schedule, named beneficiaries, and riders all follow once you’ve chosen a company. While it may seem overly complex, it doesn’t have to be.
Purchasing coverage through a qualified life insurance agent is the best way to be sure you’re making the right choices when it comes to your policy. Here at LifeQuote, our agents will assess your financial, lifestyle, and health situation to help you find the policy that is perfect for you. Going it alone exposes you to the unnecessary risk of common life insurance pitfalls that the experts know how to avoid. Don’t leave the financial security of your loved ones to chance, contact us today for a free quote and a helping hand along the road to a better future for those closest to you.