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Best Life Insurance for Veterans

As a veteran, finding out which life insurance policy is right for you can be difficult, as the options are nearly infinite. Here, we have selected the top five companies for veterans to purchase life insurance policies. These companies provide guidelines to help veterans feel secure in knowing that their loved ones will be taken care of after they pass away. Many of these companies offer policies that allow policyholders to grow wealth while they're still living, giving an added incentive to enroll in a life insurance policy.

Best life insurance for veterans: shortlist

  1. USAA — best options for veterans overall
  2. Northwestern Mutual — best for financial growth
  3. Pacific Life — best for customer service
  4. Ethos — best for easy enrollment
  5. AIG — best for quality of life insurance

Best life insurance for veterans in 2024

These companies stand among the best life insurance options for veterans. All have solid financial strength and rank highly among competitors. We've delved into each company's offerings, pros and cons, and overall consumer feedback. With the information presented here, you can find the policy that best fits your life insurance needs as a U.S. military veteran.

1. USAA — best options for veterans overall

Provider overview
On insure.com Website

USAA is an insurance company founded on the idea of providing policies for current and former members of the armed services. However, their policies are purchasable for those without military experience or connections. It has the highest possible score for financial strength, earning an A++ rating by AM Best.

Most policies require medical exams, which are brief — in most cases, this part of the application process doesn't take any longer than 30 minutes to complete. USAA's policy offerings have term and whole-life options, with coverage as high as $10 million. Those who purchase a policy from USAA while on active duty do not have to worry about joining a new policy after leaving the military, as coverage is guaranteed to continue after military service ends.

Policies offered: term, whole, universal, guaranteed whole

2. Northwestern Mutual — best for veterans who prioritize financial growth

Provider overview
On insure.com Website

Northwestern Mutual is another financially strong life insurance company. Like USAA, it has the highest AM best rating possible, an A++. This top direct life insurer has been in operation for over 160 years. It offers term, whole, universal, and variable universal life insurance policies.

Its term-life policies are highly affordable, with coverage attainable for less than $1 per day. Term policies can be 10 or 20 years or may last until you reach age 80. However, they don't have the investment component that makes Northwestern Mutual a destination for veterans seeking life insurance that also features financial growth. That's a feature of Northwestern Mutual's whole-life policies, which have universal and variable options. With Northwestern Mutual, policyholders can choose how their funds are invested. Over time, funds may grow to be substantial enough to cover expenses like college tuition, medical costs, or even premiums.

Policies offered: term, whole, universal, variable universal

3. Pacific Life — best for customer service

Provider overview
On insure.com Website

Pacific Life shares similarities with Northwestern Mutual, particularly its longevity (over 150 years in business) and its policies that emphasize financial growth and provide a death benefit for loved ones. It offers term, universal, guaranteed universal, indexed universal, and variable universal life insurance policies that vary depending on the state you're residing in. This is the first listed company that features indexed universal life insurance. This policy allows cash value to be invested in a stock market index instead of individual stocks.

This company is also distinguished by its near-universal customer satisfaction, with a JD Power score of 799 out of 1,000. Pacific Life is an excellent choice for a veteran who values helpful customer service and life insurance policies that support long-term financial goals.

Policies offered: term, universal, guaranteed universal, indexed universal, variable universal

4. Ethos — best for easy enrollment

Provider overview
On insure.com Website

Veterans who want a practical life insurance enrollment process may wish to consider purchasing a policy from Ethos. The application is entirely online and can be completed within 10 minutes. Ethos is also a company for those who wish to make provisions beyond what their beneficiaries will receive. Upon policy enrollment — whether that be term life, whole life, or final expense policy — Ethos grants free access to estate planning tools.

Ethos offers term policies that can last up to 30 years and cover over $1 million. While this option would cost more than shorter terms with fewer death benefits, Ethos will refund your initial premium payment if you cancel within 30 days of joining. On the other hand, its whole-life policies provide up to $30,000 in coverage (and up to $25,000 for guaranteed whole life).

Policies offered: term, whole, final expense

5. AIG — best for quality of life insurance

Provider overview
On insure.com Website

AIG offers term, whole, and universal life, guaranteed acceptance, and quality life insurance. It has a high financial strength rating of A by AM Best. Policyholders can obtain policies up to $10 million. For term life coverage, the costs can be as low as $13 per month for a $250,000 policy.

Veterans may opt for AIG because of its term policy (quality of life insurance), which features living benefits. If you develop a chronic, critical, or terminal illness, you may access a portion of your death benefit from using while you're still alive if you have a quality-of-life insurance policy. This also comes with options for riders, such as accidental death and waiver of premium.

Policies offered: term, whole, universal, guaranteed acceptance, quality of life

Best whole life insurance policies: a comparison

The following table provides a general perspective of each company on this list and also demonstrates the high financial strength and positive customer reception that these companies have with the inclusion of AM Best ratings:

CompanyPlan types
AM Best rating
Ideal for
USAATerm, universal, whole life, and guaranteed whole life
A++
Veterans who want more options
Northwestern Mutual
Term, whole life, universal, variable universal
A++Financial growth
Pacific Life
Term, universal, indexed universal, variable universal, and guaranteed universal
A+
Those seeking excellent customer service
EthosTerm, guaranteed issue, and final expense
A+
Veterans who want to obtain life insurance quickly
AIGTerm, whole life, guaranteed whole life, and final expense
AVeterans who want a quality of life insurance policy

Ranking the top life insurance for veterans

When ranking, we took multiple factors into account, including:

  • Overall value. These companies are listed because of the benefits they provide to veterans and other individuals. They are proven to be reliable and provide high-quality policies.
  • Policies offered. Veterans who get services from these companies have options for both permanent and term life insurance.
  • Financial strength. The companies listed here have among the strongest financial ratings in the insurance industry. No company on this list has an AM Best rating below an A.
  • Online reputation. We researched how these companies fared in other reviews, and each company was positively received.
  • Number of complaints. All of these companies have had lower customer complaints than the industry average, which shows that individuals who seek policies from these companies are more likely to be satisfied with their coverage.

Why do veterans need life insurance?

For the most part, veterans need life insurance for the same reasons as non-military service members do — to provide for loved ones after they have passed away. However, veterans may need life insurance for reasons related to injuries incurred in combat. In the case of a veteran who has become disabled as a result of war, medical expenses could cause a strain on finances, which could, in turn, make it difficult to leave their loved ones with a sizable financial cushion.

Life insurance has other uses besides providing loved ones with a windfall. Policies such as indexed universal life insurance can help veterans build an investment portfolio so that their savings grow by the market. This can pose an advantage over traditional investing for the risk-averse because policyholders are protected from losses when the market is performing poorly.

What are the best life insurance types for veterans?

The best life insurance types for veterans will vary from individual to individual. These are four common types of life insurance that veterans and non-veterans purchase. The best policy will depend on factors such as desired coverage length, age, quality of health, and other personal circumstances.

Whole life

Whole life insurance lasts throughout the policyholder's life. Since it is in effect for life, there is no need to renew the policy as with term life coverage. These policies tend to have more expensive premiums than term life insurance due to featuring a cash value component, which grows over time and can be accessed while the policyholder is alive.

Term life

Term life insurance is less expensive than permanent life insurance options. Unlike permanent life policies, term life policies are only in effect for a finite period — typically not exceeding 30 years. While these policies expire after a certain period, policyholders can renew their term policies to keep coverage going. However, renewing a policy also means paying higher premiums.

Indexed universal life

Indexed universal life insurance involves investing the policy's cash value into a stock market index such as the S&P 500. This way, the cash value can increase as the market grows instead of remaining fixed. This policy is permanent life insurance, too. The coverage never expires as long as the policyholder is up-to-date on premium payments and keeps a certain amount of funds in the cash value account.

Guaranteed whole life

Older veterans with health issues may have difficulty being accepted for traditional whole-life policies, especially those that require medical exams as part of the enrollment process. Guaranteed whole-life policies accept applicants regardless of health issues. However, these policies tend to have higher rates and lower coverage amounts than whole-life policies, including medical exams.

What to consider before choosing life insurance for veterans?

When veterans are considering life insurance, they must take certain factors into account, including:

  • Age
  • Financial obligations
  • Medical history
  • Lifestyle

Age is one of the primary driving forces behind a policy's cost, alongside the person's quality of health and lifestyle habits. The younger and healthier you are, and the fewer lifestyle risks you take, the lower your premiums will be.

Applying for veteran's life insurance

Applying for life insurance can be completed in a few steps. The first is to contact the insurance company and inquire about a policy. The enrollment process will require you to provide information about yourself, including your personal and family medical history. You may also have to submit to a medical exam, which will help insurers determine how much of a risk it is to insure you and verify whether the information you presented in your application was accurate.

After you submit your application, the insurers will review it and decide whether to accept you. If you're accepted, there may be a waiting period during which a certain number of years must pass before the death benefit can be issued to your beneficiaries.

How to find out if you have life insurance as a veteran

Finding out if you have life insurance as a veteran can be done easily. Except for servicemembers' group life insurance (SGLI), military service will not automatically lead to you getting life insurance. However, if you have signed up for life insurance and are unsure whether you're enrolled, you can contact your state's Department of Insurance. They will have the documentation that shows you have a life insurance policy. Alternatively, you may use the NAIC life insurance policy locator tool online to find out whether you have a life insurance policy as a veteran.

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