Gerber Life Insurance Review
- "A" financial strength rating
- Variety of coverage options for children and adults
- Limited policy sizes
How We Reviewed Gerber Life Insurance
4 companies compared
6 independent ratings agencies consulted
5 policy types evaluated
Gerber Life Insurance Review
Believe it or not, Gerber Life is the same company as the one with the adorable Gerber baby, and its insurance branch doesn’t stray far from the target audience. Gerber life insurance is geared toward families, with policy options for children starting at just 14 days old as well as policies for teens, adults, and seniors.
Gerber has an “excellent” financial strength rating from independent rating agency A.M. Best, meaning it has the capital to back all of its policies. It also has fewer than the median number of customer complaints filed with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. That means customers are generally satisfied with the company’s service and settlements.
Gerber is a good option for parents looking to buy child life insurance and for adults and seniors with minimal coverage needs — anyone who needs more than $300,000 in life insurance coverage (Gerber’s maximum limit) should choose another company. See our review of the best life insurance companies to explore other recommendations.
Gerber claims to provide “quality life insurance, especially for young families on a limited budget.”
Is it true?
Generally, yes — although there’s no guarantee that Gerber will be your cheapest bet for life insurance. Prices can vary a lot across companies, so you’ll have to request quotes from multiple insurers to find out whether Gerber is truly the most affordable insurer for the coverage you need.
“You want good value so competitive pricing is important. Different companies have different prices, so shopping around and comparing quotes is a must.”
Customers who choose Gerber have a variety of policy options. Gerber offers whole life insurance for children, adults, and seniors and adult-centric term life insurance that can last 10, 20, or 30 years. Coverage ranges from $5,000 to $300,000, depending on the policy type.
Gerber’s child life insurance has some unique perks. For example, coverage automatically doubles at age 18 and can last the child’s whole life. Children’s whole life coverage also accrues cash value that the insured can borrow from later in life if needed. These kinds of policies might be a good option for parents looking to set up a long-term financial plan for their children.
“Whole life policies build value over time with guaranteed rates, similar to a high-interest savings account,” says Mitch Mclean, Director of Brokerage at PolicyAdvisor.com. “You can surrender your whole life policy for its cash value at some point or take out a loan against it … However, doing so will incur taxes or interest charges, or both.”
Other benefits of buying life insurance through Gerber include ease and affordability. Most policies don’t require a medical exam, so customers can apply and receive coverage relatively quickly. And since Gerber only sells small- to mid-sized policies, its life insurance is going to be more affordable by default. (Remember that life insurance premiums depend on policy size, among other things.)
However, Gerber’s low death benefit limits will also take it out of the running for some life insurance customers. Coverage caps out at $300,000, so anyone looking for a large-sized policy (maybe because they have multiple beneficiaries, extensive financial planning needs, or other major life insurance considerations) might be better off with another insurer.
- In business since: 1967
- A.M. Best financial strength rating: A
- Policy types: Whole life for children, adults, and seniors, term life for adults
- Guaranteed level premiums
- No medical exam for most customers
- Online resource center and life insurance FAQ
- Online quotes for term and whole life insurance
Variety of child life insurance options
Not many companies specialize in child life insurance. Some offer one policy type, others offer it as an add-on to adult life insurance, and many don’t offer it at all. Gerber is unique in offering a few different child life insurance plans: one that can be purchased when the child is 14 days to 14 years old and one that starts between the ages of 15 and 17. These plans can help ensure that the child has life insurance at an affordable cost once they reach adulthood. They can also provide financial support for funeral expenses if the worst should ever happen.
Child life insurance becomes adult life insurance
With both of Gerber’s child life insurance plans (the “Grow-Up” plan and the Young Adult plan), coverage automatically doubles at age 18 at no extra cost. That means a $20,000 death benefit becomes a $40,000, for example. In addition, children can decide to keep the coverage active throughout adulthood “at standard adult rates,” regardless of changes in their health or occupation. This means parents can help set up a long-term financial plan for their child early on at an affordable rate.
Guaranteed level premiums for term and whole life
All of Gerber’s life insurance policies have “guaranteed level premiums,” meaning your monthly payment will never change; the amount you pay on the day your policy starts is the same amount you’ll pay in year 10, 30, or 50 (depending on how long coverage lasts). This guarantee offers Gerber customers a little extra peace of mind. Other companies might raise premiums over the course of the policy due to age or health, so customers could end up paying more for their coverage than they originally anticipated.
No medical exam for most customers
Gerber does not require most customers to take a physical exam to apply for life insurance. Instead, customers answer a few basic medical questions on their application that help the company determine their health level and set rates. This simplifies the application process, since customers don’t have to coordinate with a health professional or give blood and urine samples. Skipping the exam can also make it easier for people with health concerns to get coverage. Note: Adults age 51 and over or adults applying for more than $100,000 in coverage from Gerber will need to take a medical exam.
Smaller policy sizes limit coverage options
Gerber’s coverage levels are fairly limited. Adult life insurance maxes out at $300,000, final expense insurance at $25,000, and child life insurance at $50,000. Some customers will need more coverage than Gerber offers, whether because their financial plan includes a large family, college tuition, complex estate planning, or other big monetary obligation. These customers will be better off with a life insurance company that has higher policy limits.
*Customer complaints are registered by the NAIC and measured relative to the company's market share
Gerber Life Insurance vs. Globe Life Insurance
Gerber and Globe Life have pretty similar life insurance policy options, including term and whole life insurance for adults and whole life insurance for children. However, Gerber is a little more generous than Globe with coverage options. Its term and whole life insurance max out at $300,000 worth of coverage, while Globe only offers up to $100,000 in term life and $50,000 in whole life. Neither company is rated for customer satisfaction by J.D. Power, but Globe has a far higher complaint ratio with the NAIC than Gerber. That means more customers and beneficiaries have filed official complaints against Globe than Gerber.
Gerber Life Insurance vs. State Farm Life Insurance
If you need more life insurance coverage than Gerber offers, State Farm is a good place to start your search. State Farm has earned the highest satisfaction score in J.D. Power’s life insurance customer survey five years running thanks to its fair pricing, diverse policy options, and good customer service. State Farm does not offer child life insurance, and its final expense option is smaller than Gerber's ($10,000 compared to $25,000), so Gerber might be a better option for customers who need these types of coverage.
Gerber Life Insurance vs. Protective Life Insurance
If your first priority when buying life insurance is affordability, we’d suggest getting a quote from Protective Life to compare with your Gerber quote. Protective proved to be one of the best companies for cheap life insurance in our own quote comparison, giving consistently affordable rates. It also has a full array of policy options, including term, whole, universal, and child life insurance, and it earns top customer service scores in J.D. Power’s life insurance satisfaction survey.
Gerber Life Insurance vs Mutual of Omaha
Mutual of Omaha is a great option for senior life insurance. While Gerber’s senior life insurance is geared toward final expenses (capping out at $25,000 worth of coverage), Mutual of Omaha provides seniors with a more robust financial plan. Coverage starts at $50,000 and has no maximum limit, meaning seniors can choose a policy that will provide for more complex financial planning needs or estate management in their absence. That said, because of these higher limits, senior life insurance from Mutual of Omaha is generally more expensive than that from Gerber.