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Last updated on Jun 11, 2020

The Best Life Insurance Companies in 2020

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Life insurance gives surviving loved ones a financial safety net to fall on in the event of your death. We’ve taken a look at the top five life insurance companies you can put your trust in based on customer satisfaction ratings from J.D. Power and the Better Business Bureau, and financial strength ratings from AM Best, Standard & Poor’s, and Moody’s. This article also highlights who each life insurance provider may or may not be a good fit for. 

The 5 Best Life Insurance Companies in 2020


Reviews.com ScoreCustomer Experience Score /5Financial Strength Score /5
Northwestern Mutual4.954.7
State Farm4.854.3
Principal Financial 4.23.74.3
New York Life4.44.34.7
Prudential 2.82.34.3

Northwestern Mutual

Best for
Best for Term Life Insurance
Northwestern Mutual
Northwestern Mutual


No matter how you look at it, Northwestern Mutual scores top marks across the board for its customer satisfaction, financial strength, and longevity.

It also has affordable and flexible term life insurance policies. For about $1 a day, Northwestern Mutual advertises that a 35-year-old healthy male can secure a $500,000 policy covering him until the age of 80. And if you change your mind and want whole life insurance, you can easily convert your policy during the conversion period.

To find out how much a policy might cost you, you’ll have to contact an agent, as Northwestern Mutual doesn’t offer online quotes.  

For more details, see our Northwestern Mutual review.

Best For: Term life insurance

Not For: Online quotes

  • AM Best: A++
  • J.D. Power: 5/5
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA+
  • Moody’s: Aaa
  • BBB Rating: A+

State Farm


Best for Customized Policies
State Farm
State Farm


Between its term, whole, and universal life insurance offerings, State Farm has a plethora of products to choose from. If you’re looking for whole life, for instance, you can choose from a standard whole life policy, a policy that covers you for life with only limited premiums, a single-premium policy, or a $10,000 final expense policy. 

You can also customize your policy to include the entire family, convert your term insurance to whole life, add death benefit options, add a long-term care conversion, and more. But you’ll have to contact an agent to make any policy changes. 

For the full picture, read our State Farm life insurance review

Best For: Customized policies

Not For: Digital-only service

  • AM Best: A++
  • J.D. Power: 5/5
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA
  • Moody’s: Aa1
  • BBB Rating: A+

Principal Financial

Best for
Best for Fast Approval
Principal Financial
Principal Financial


Eligible individuals who are between 18 and 60 and in good health can take advantage of the Principal Accelerated Underwriting process. You can have life insurance as fast as the next day—no medical exams, lab testing, or complex online applications required. 

To get started, you’ll need to call an agent and let them know you’re looking for the Principal Accelerated Underwriting application. Aside from the benefit of an accelerated underwriting process, there aren’t many life insurance products or add-ons offered within each life insurance category.

Find out more by reading our Principal Financial review

Best For: Fast approval

Not For: Customized policies

  • AM Best: A+
  • J.D. Power: 4/5
  • Standard & Poor’s: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • BBB Rating: A+

New York Life

Best for
Best for Seniors
New York Life
New York Life


New York Life is unlike many other life insurance companies in that it has partnered with AARP to offer members term and whole life insurance without needing a medical exam. Older adults and those who like to plan ahead will also appreciate New York Life’s rider selections like Chronic Care Rider. Younger adults might notice New York Life lacks a 30-year term life insurance option. 

To learn more about this provider, check out our review of New York Life.

Best For: Seniors

Not For: 30-year term life insurance

  • AM Best: A++
  • J.D. Power: 4/5
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA+
  • Moody’s: Aaa
  • BBB Rating: A+

Prudential


Best for Transparent Policies
Prudential
Prudential


Prudential makes it simple to find the life insurance policy you need based on your desired purpose. Its website also clearly defines the categories of life insurance and goes into detail about what each policy offers and how it can be tailored. However, Prudential is limited in that it does not offer whole life insurance. 

Get more details by reading our full Prudential review

Best For: Transparent policies 

Not For: Whole life insurance

  • AM Best: A+
  • J.D. Power: 3/5
  • Standard & Poor’s: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • BBB Rating: B-

Further Reading:

FAQs

What is life insurance?

Life insurance is a type of protection that ensures the financial stability of surviving loved ones. The policyholder pays premiums to the insurer so that when they pass away, the named beneficiaries receive a monetary death benefit. 

What is the average life insurance cost per month?

The average monthly cost of life insurance depends on variables such as your age, health, and death benefit amount. A healthy 35-year old seeking a 20-year policy with a $500,000 death benefit might pay around $36 per month, while a 65-year old might pay closer to $608 per month for the same policy. 

Which is the best life insurance provider?

Northwestern Mutual is the top life insurance provider based on our research for its outstanding customer service, policy offerings, and financial strength.

About the Authors

Lorraine Roberte

Lorraine Roberte Contributing Writer

Lorraine Roberte is a South Florida-based personal finance writer. Her work has been published on sites such as Thrive Global, Elephant Journal, Red Tricycle and Tweak Your Biz.