For those who are busy with all the other demands of parenting life insurance is likely not at the forefront of their mind. However, there are plenty of reasons to consider purchasing a life insurance policy as a parent. Maybe there are debts that a parent might not want to leave with their children, or parents may want to give their children a safety net.
Regardless, choosing a reliable life insurance company for parents isn’t easy, which is why we’ve compiled a list of the best life insurance for parents according to our strict criteria.
Best life insurance for parents: shortlist
- Everyday Life - best life insurance for new parents
- Ladder - best term insurance for parents
- Northwestern Mutual - best whole life insurance for parents
- Nationwide - best life insurance for elderly parents
- State Farm - best in customer satisfaction ratings
Best life insurance for parents in 2023: overview
With so many types of life insurance policies and even more insurance companies, it can be difficult to know where to start. We want to assist in this process by providing several top companies that have passed our strict criteria. Below are our top companies that serve as great contenders for the best life insurance for parents out there.
Each has been evaluated based on customer satisfaction, price, flexibility, and options for young parents and life insurance for elderly parents.
1. Everyday Life - best life insurance for new parents
While Everyday life may be new to the insurance game (starting in 2018), their software helps users find affordable policies online in roughly 15 minutes. Being a parent means simplicity and ease of use are essential with insurance, which everyday life delivers by providing 24/7 access to insurance policies through a completely online process.
With an average cost of $15 per month, Everyday Life provides value at a reasonable price by using life insurance partners to offer policies that maintain an A rating by A.M. Financial Strength and A+ by the Better Business Bureau. This value at the average price makes getting life insurance for parents who are young and juggling new expenses very reasonable.
Policies offered: Accidental Death, Term Life, Whole Life, No Exam, and Guaranteed Acceptance Whole Life.
2. Ladder - best term insurance for parents
Life as a parent means that financial needs are constantly changing. Committing to even a 10-year life policy can feel as though the benefit of the policy can become irrelevant. Ladder allows insureds to “ladder up” their life insurance benefit whenever more coverage is needed, like a new child or house.
Likewise, Insureds are able to “ladder down” their benefit whenever they have more coverage than they need and would rather spend less on premiums, like when a child moves out of the house, or a mortgage is paid off. With this type of flexibility offered only at Ladder, this company seems like a no-brainer for term life insurance for parents.
Policies offered: Term life insurance with typically no medical exam for coverage under $3 million.
3. Northwestern Mutual - best whole life insurance for parents
Most people recognize Northwestern Mutual for their financial planning services. However, Northwestern Mutual is also one of the largest insurers when it comes to life policies as well. Because of its strong presence in the financial planning sectors, Northwestern Mutual offers many whole-life policies that fit well with parents who want coverage that works well with their financial goals.
With the total expected dividends of their cash value life insurance policies reaching $6.8 billion for 2023, Northwestern helps parents invest a portion of their premiums as another form of investment, achieving the highest financial stability rankings possible from all four major rating services.
Policies offered: Whole Life, Universal Life, Variable Universal, and Term Life.
4. Nationwide - best life insurance policy for elderly parents
Like the other life insurance companies listed here, Nationwide has several awards for customer service, financial stability, and overall trustworthiness as a competitor. However, Nationwide may be home to the best life insurance policy for elderly parents. Not only can applicants under 60 potentially receive up to $1 million in coverage without a medical exam, but most policies come with living benefit riders at no additional cost.
That means that should a parent become chronically, critically, or terminally ill, a portion of the benefit can be paid out to take care of the insured’s medical expenses. For elderly parents, this extra money can be crucial in a pinch.
Policies offered: Term Life, Universal Life, Whole Life, Variable Life, and Long-term Care.
5. State Farm - best in customer satisfaction ratings
State Farm is perhaps the chief of all household names regarding life insurance, and for good reason. Having been around for over 100 years, State Farm remains a customer favorite, as reflected in their reception of awards for being number one in Customer Satisfaction among Life Insurance Providers 3 Years in a Row. State Farm agents are bound agents, meaning they can only sell State Farm’s life insurance policies.
While this limits options, the result is a team of agents who are very familiar with their life insurance policies and strive to have a personal conversation to determine the best fit. State Farm is an easy choice for parents looking for a personal touch to their life insurance company.
Policies offered: Term Life, Whole Life, Universal Life, Guaranteed Acceptance Whole Life, No Exam.
Best life insurance policies for parents: a comparison
The following table helps organize some of the data from our list of best life insurance for parents.
|Company||Best for||AM Best Rating||Policy types||No Exam Policies|
|Everyday Life||New parents||A- to A+||Accidental Death, Term Life, Whole Life, No Exam, and Guaranteed Acceptance Whole Life||Yes|
|Ladder||Term Life||A||Term life insurance with typically no medical exam for coverage under $3 million||Yes|
|Northwestern Mutual||Whole Life||A++||Whole Life, Universal Life, Variable Universal, and Term Life||Yes|
|Nationwide||Elderly parents||A+||Term Life, Universal Life, Whole Life, Variable Life, and Long-term Care||Yes|
|State Farm||Customer satisfaction||A++||Term Life, Whole Life, Universal Life, Guaranteed Acceptance Whole Life, No Exam||Yes|
How we ranked the best life insurance companies for parents
When comparing life insurance companies for parents, we took the following criteria into consideration:
- Overall value. Parenting can bring a wide range of needs per person and therefore requires a wide range of policies. We looked for a wide range of flexible options with policy changes, riders and other add-ons.
- Policies offered. We looked not just for flexibility with the add-ons of the policy, but the different types of policies themselves. We gave special attention to companies with multiple policy options and/or a no-exam policy option.
- Financial strength. Part of our criteria demanded a company that would last as long as parents would need them for. Therefore, we did not consider any company below an A for their AM best rating.
- Online reputation. Parents don’t have time to deal with hiccups when it comes to life insurance. This is why we looked for companies that kept online records of their customer feedback and had been nationally recognized for their customer service.
- Price. An important final criteria marker is affordability. With parents accepting plenty of new expenses, we looked for policies that held low and affordable premiums. Many listed companies offer money-back guarantees within a certain time period.
What is life insurance for parents?
Life insurance for parents, in short, is a life insurance policy that covers the added risks that come with having children. These risks look different for each parent but may include covering debts so that children will not have to pay them if the parents pass, covering lost income in case one or both parents die, leaving an inheritance for the children that could pay for their education or other reasons.
Parents should get life insurance coverage whenever there is a financial gap that the remaining family would have to cover should a parent die. Thus, a life insurance policy may be needed even for those who ask, “Do I need life insurance for my mom, who stays home with my little brother?” If there is a gap in finances or services, life insurance should be considered.
How to get life insurance as a parent
The process for obtaining life insurance as a parent differs for each company. First, review details of different policies and companies on the life insurance company’s website.
Next is an online assessment or speaking to an insurance agent to discuss coverage, including going over net worth, debts, assets, and plans for children.
Once a benefit amount is determined, paperwork is signed and submitted to the company for approval. A medical exam may be required. Often times, these can either be taken at home or at a clinic or similar medical facility free of charge to the insured.
Once the company receives all relevant data, a decision on coverage will be issued, which may include approval, denial, or approval of a lower amount of coverage. Once approved, the insured will often receive their life insurance policy paperwork in the mail for review.
How much does life insurance for parents cost?
There is a wide range of premium costs, often between a few dollars a month to several hundred. For example, according to Nationwide’s online life insurance premium calculator, a 25-year-old male buying 250,000 in 10-year term life coverage could pay $18 per month, while a 55-year-old male who is overweight and smokes may pay $200 per month for the same policy.
Weight and age will have a significant impact on life insurance premiums. However, medical history, nicotine usage, and family medical history can also be factors. Insurance companies will often look to identify any potentially hazardous activities the insured participates in, such as skydiving. Career can also play a part in this, with those working in construction being at higher risk than an individual working in HR.
How to pick the right life insurance policy for parents?
Part of knowing how to get life insurance on a parent involves having a few key considerations:
- How easy is it to apply? If the application process for insurance is confusing or complicated, chances are making changes or even trying to receive the benefit is likely just as complex.
- Do they offer add-ons, riders, and various benefits? Circumstances change, and it is beneficial to have a policy that can adapt to meet different needs.
- What type of customer service experience is provided? It is easy at the moment to just pick a company and not think about personal preference, but what kind of customer service experience is preferred? Over the phone? In person? Make sure the company provides that form of customer service.
- What is the brand reputation? Does the brand have a reputation for being slow to pay out benefits? Is the brand well-known?
How much life insurance should a parent have?
When determining how much life insurance coverage a parent should have, there are a few questions to consider. How much money do the parents currently make? The insurance benefit should cover the missing income either until all dependents move out of the house or for enough time for the other parent to find an income stream to replace the lacking money.
What mortgages, student loans, car payments, and other debts remain outstanding? Can these be paid should a parent pass away or do some or all need to be included in the life benefit?
Financial goals for children should be considered. Is there a plan to leave the children an inheritance? What about paying for their college? These should also be considered when determining coverage.
These are the main categories when considering coverage, but an online insurance calculator or insurance agent can also help determine the coverage amount.
Can I get life insurance on my parents?
Getting life insurance for parents is possible. You might wonder if you can buy life insurance for your parents, or if they can only buy it themselves. The short answer is that you can take out life insurance on your parents.
There are two requirements, that you have an insurable interest and their permission.
When you speak with an agent to apply for insurance, insurable interest must be proved. This simply means that the company will need to verify you would suffer financially should something happen to your parents. This is often demonstrated through a phone or in-person interview where questions are asked, such as whether the parents provide financial support or have outstanding debts that need to be paid.
The parents in question would also need to provide permission, sign the paperwork, and participate in the medical questionnaire (if required).
Read more about other life insurance policies
Can you get life insurance for a parent?
Yes, one is able to purchase life insurance for their parents. However, one is only able to do so with permission from the parent and proof of insurable interest. Insurable interest must be proven upon purchase of the policy, usually through an interview and proof that the child would be financially impacted should something happen to the parent being insured. Then, the child can pay premiums and be the beneficiary of the policy.
What is the best life insurance for a parent?
There is no one single policy that fits every parent perfectly. However, there are a multitude of options available that can be tailored for an insured's needs. Generally speaking, Term Life policies sacrifice cash value for the sake of lower premiums, benefiting parents who are looking to save money. For parents who want more options and versatility with their life insurance plan, whole life policies can be an excellent option. If unsure, one can have a conversation with an insurance agent to evaluate their needs and make an informed decision.
Should you get life insurance after 60?
It’s never too late to get insurance. While older age can impact insurance premium costs, one should evaluate whether these premiums can offset the cost of unpaid debts or burial costs should one pass away. There are many companies that provide policies specifically tailored towards those around 60, with some policies providing guaranteed coverage approval. Using the death benefit to fund unforeseen medical expenses can also be a great help for those entering 60.
What are the most common types of life insurance for parents?
Term insurance and Whole Life are the most common types of life insurance for parents. With Term Life insurance providing a great deal of coverage for an affordable price, many parents find Term Life policies to fit their needs well. With new risks that need covered by insurance after having children and new expenses that naturally come with having children, many parents find Term Life policies to make the most sense for them.
- Nationwide. How much life insurance do I need?
- Ladder. How to decrease your term life insurance through laddering.
- State Farm. Family life insurance - secure your family's future.
- Everyday Life. How much life insurance do I need?