Insurance products offered
- Term life
- Whole life
- Universal life
- Children’s whole life
- Accidental death
- Guaranteed acceptance
Seniors interested in protecting future generations may want to look into Mutual of Omaha’s standalone children’s whole life policy.
*J.D. Power’s 2020 Life Insurance Study. Based on a 1,000-point scale.
Further Reading on Prudential
Reviews.com scores products, services and companies using five quantifiable criteria to help readers choose the best one for them. For the life insurance companies, our editorial team compared financial strength, number of riders offered, coverage options, customer satisfaction scores and website functionality from each company to produce our very own Reviews.com score. These ratings were evaluated with you, our readers, in mind, and are meant to be a helpful tool to simplify the process of choosing which life insurance company is best for you. Since life insurance rates vary widely among different profiles, we encourage you to continue researching options that fit your specific needs.
Guide to Life Insurance for Seniors
Life Insurance Options for Seniors
Seniors can choose from several different types of life insurance that vary in coverage and cost. The policy you choose will depend on your budget and your financial goals.
- Term life: Term life insurance is a type of life insurance that lasts for a specific period of time, often between 10 and 30 years. This type of insurance isn’t as popular for seniors since the cost of coverage increases with age, but some companies are willing to issue policies up to age 80.
- Whole life: Most seniors choose whole life insurance as it’s the most affordable and lasts for your entire life as long as you continue to pay premiums. Whole life policies are often taken out to cover final expenses such as funeral costs.
- Universal life: Like whole life insurance, universal insurance lasts for the rest of your lifetime. While premiums are more flexible, the death benefit depends on market performance so it’s generally considered riskier.
- Variable life: This type of policy gives you both life insurance and a financial account that you can invest in stocks, bonds and mutual funds of your choosing. This is generally considered the riskiest type of life insurance.
- Long-term care coverage: If you’re worried about family members being burdened with expenses should you become seriously ill, a long-term care policy can ensure you’ll get the treatment you need.
- Guaranteed acceptance insurance: Also called guaranteed issue insurance, this type of whole life policy is useful if you’ve been diagnosed with a terminal illness and can’t pass a medical exam for a standard policy.
Life Insurance Riders and Features for Seniors
Not every life insurance policy fits every person or family’s unique needs. Riders are one way that insurance companies offer a greater variety of options to their customers. Each rider covers certain situations or circumstances that aren’t covered in base policies. For example, riders might offer financial benefits to policyholders if they get seriously ill, or waive monthly premiums in the event policyholders become disabled. Typically, these riders incur an additional cost.
- Accelerated death benefit: This benefit allows you to use some of your life insurance death benefits, tax-free, while you’re still alive. Some common circumstances that this benefit applies to include terminal illness, a life-threatening diagnosis, or confinement to a nursing home and requiring help with basic daily activities.
- Accidental death and dismemberment: Should you suffer an accident that results in death or causes a serious condition such as paralysis, this benefit typically offers additional benefits to the regular life insurance policy. Death due to an illness or other natural causes aren’t usually covered by this insurance.
- Waiver of premium: In an insurance policy, this clause indicates that the policyholder doesn’t need to continue paying the premium if they become disabled for an extended period of time.
- Chronic care: This rider allows policyholders to pay for serious, permanent illnesses. To apply for this benefit, a doctor may be required to certify the severity of the illness.
- Living death benefit: A living death benefit rider is another phrase for an accelerated death benefit and offers policyholders tax-free benefits while they’re still living.
Learn more details about riders and how they work on our full page about life insurance riders.
Do you need life insurance after 70?
If you’re over the age of 70, most insurance companies will still issue you a whole life policy – and some even offer term insurance. However, coverage gets more expensive as you age. If life insurance premiums don’t fit within your budget, you can also consider putting funds into low-risk investments to leave a legacy for the next generation.
Buying life insurance in your 20s vs. your 50s
If you purchased life insurance in your 20s, you probably looked for a term policy with a high benefit that would cover your financial obligations in case you passed away prematurely. When you reach your 50s, however, you may be more interested in covering future medical expenses and preserving wealth for future generations. Permanent life insurance is more affordable and better meets these needs in your 50s and beyond.
How easy is it to get life insurance after 50?
Getting life insurance after 50 is easier than you might think. Most life insurers offer specific policies tailored to seniors based on what you’re hoping to achieve with coverage. Typically, you’ll need to undergo a medical exam before the insurance company will issue you a policy. However, some companies (such as Mutual of Omaha) offer guaranteed acceptance life insurance, which doesn’t require an exam.
In most cases, it’s not too difficult to get life insurance over the age of 70. While you might pay higher premiums than individuals in their 50s or 60s, the majority of life insurance companies offer products that accept applicants up to ages 80 to 85.
If you have a term life policy, your insurance will expire at the end of the chosen time period. Whole life insurance, however, never expires as long as you continue to pay premiums.
According to our review, State Farm offers the best life insurance for seniors. However, you should shop around with multiple companies to make sure you’re getting the best coverage and rate.