Phoenix Life Insurance, now Nassau Life Insurance Company, traces its roots back to 1851.
The company has always been an innovator. Over a century ago, it was the first insurer to see the benefits of advertising by direct mail.
Since then, the company has undergone a few changes, including a rebranding. At its heart, however, it’s still the reliable brand that Americans trust.
Is it the right insurer for you? In this Phoenix Life Insurance review, we’ll weigh up the facts to help you make an informed decision.
In this review
About Phoenix Life Insurance Company
- BBB: A+ (Not Accredited)
- A.M. Best Company: B+. The company’s rating improved from Fair to Good between 2019 and 2020.
- Fitch: As of December of 2020, Fitch affirmed the company’s BB rating. It then withdrew the rating because there was insufficient financial evidence to comment.
- Moody’s: N/A
- Standard & Poor’s: BB
The Phoenix life insurance ratings show the company as having a “Good” ability to meet its obligations.
At first glance, it may seem a tad off, but you shouldn’t be too worried.
A firm with an A+ rating is rated capable of meeting obligations even in an economic downturn. Phoenix Life is only slightly lower.
What is encouraging, however, is that the AM Best rating improved from a B to a B+, despite the COVID-19 epidemic.
In a time when all life insurers are feeling the pinch, Phoenix Life Insurance is showing signs of improvement.
Phoenix Life Insurance Products Offered
After rebranding, Nassau Life trimmed their insurance products. They now offer only:
- Nassau Safe Harbor Term and Term Express: A simple life insurance policy that pays out upon death or at the age of 70.
- Nassau Remembrance Life: A whole life insurance policy that provides coverage beyond the age of 120.
Both plans provide living benefits. They are, however, very different products, so let’s take a closer look.
Nassau Safe Harbor Term and Term Express
A term life insurance policy provides coverage for a set term. In this case, you select a period of 10 to 30 years.
Should something happen to you during that time, your insurance pays out.
At the end of the term, the insurance expires. Nassau Life will consider renewal on an annual basis up to the age of 100, but it is not obliged to do so.
A term life policy is typically more affordable because you bear some of the risk. The insurer is betting on you outliving your coverage.
The downside is that your policy may never pay out. If you’re still alive when it expires, obtaining additional coverage is more difficult and expensive.
Nassau Life Insurance offers two versions of the term life policy – Standard and Express.
Neither plan requires you to undergo a physical, but there’s a subtle difference:
NASSAU SAFE HARBOR TERM
You will have to supply your medical records, so it takes a little longer to approve.
Waiting may be advantageous for someone in good health, as it allows for the best health classification.
NASSAU SAFE HARBOR TERM EXPRESS
You do not have to supply your medical records, so approval is faster.
The downside is that you’ll, at best, qualify for standard rates. For those with some health issues, this may prove an advantage.
In either case, it’s essential, to be honest about pre-existing conditions.
If you don’t, the company will find out about them when you claim and submit medical records.
They’re then within their rights to decline the claim if you lied.
The company will assess each application individually and reserves the right to decline cover.
They will determine your premium based on your current circumstances, health, and life expectancy.
You may opt to use the living benefits or let them accrue towards the death benefit.
You must be aged 18 to 80 to apply. The maximum age varies according to the term of the plan:
- 10 Years: 80
- 15 Years: 70
- 20 Years: 65
- 30 Years: 50 – 55 (depending on whether or not you smoke tobacco)
The minimum payout amounts are:
- Standard: $25,000
- Express: $50,000
The maximum coverage depends on the age at application and ranges from $100,000 to $500,000.
You may convert the policy to a whole life product within the first few years, and you may not need to provide evidence of insurability.
Nassau includes an Unemployment Rider and Accelerated Benefit Rider free of charge.
You may also opt to have an Accidental Benefit Rider if you are younger than 65. When you turn 70, the Accidental Benefit Rider falls away.
This policy is whole life insurance that includes living benefits.
Anyone between ages 18 to 80 may apply, and there’s no need for a physical exam.
The policy doesn’t pay dividends but accrues a guaranteed cash value annually.
The death benefit applies from day one, so qualifying for this policy is a little more challenging.
Similar to Phoenix Life Insurance, Nassau doesn’t accept what it considers high-risk cases.
So, people with chronic conditions such as heart disease may not qualify.
The coverage includes the Accelerated Benefits Riders and Accidental Death Benefits as standard.
Anyone aged 30 to 80 may apply for coverage. The face value of the policy depends on your age upon application:
- 30-59 Years: $10,000 – $100,000
- 60-69 Years: $10,000 – $75,000
- 70-80 Years: $10,000 – $50,000
- 71-80 Years: $25,000 – $100,000
Life Insurance Riders Offered
Phoenix life insurance may offer the following riders to eligible applicants:
- Accelerated Benefit Riders: You’re allowed to access up to 95% of your policy’s death benefit if you’re diagnosed with a terminal or critical illness. Should you receive this payment, your death benefit reduces accordingly.
- Accidental Death Benefit Rider: If you die in an accident, your beneficiaries receive up to $250,000 extra.
- Unemployment Rider: If you’re unemployed for at least a month and receive unemployment, Nassau will waive your premiums for six months.
The life insurance riders available to you may differ according to the state.
The company may also choose to exclude specific options based on health or age.
Phoenix Life Insurance Pros and Cons
- Well-established company
- No medical exam
- Simple term or whole life options
- Outstanding customer service rating
- Simple application process
- B+ financial rating is not encouraging
- It might take up to 8 weeks to complete underwriting
Phoenix Life Insurance Eligibility and Application Process
Eligibility depends on your age, the term you select, and your overall health.
The maximum application age is 80, and the firm reserves the right to decline coverage or exclude pre-existing conditions.
You complete the application and health questionnaire online. It takes around 15 minutes for a person in good health.
The firm requires your personal details, as well as information about pre-existing conditions.
Should you require help, you may call Nassau for assistance. An agent will walk you through the process if you get stuck.
Once you’ve submitted the form, the process is entirely digital. The supporting documents that you submit depend on the policy you select.
Generally, you’ll have to provide:
- Proof of Identity
- Your Banking Details
- Proof of Address
- The Details of Your Beneficiary
Upon acceptance, the company allows you to digitally sign the documents, making it as simple as possible for you.
If you prefer a paper-based application, speak to a customer service agent or a broker, and they’ll assist.
Is Phoenix Life Insurance Right for You?
Now that you have the necessary information, you’re in a better position to answer that question.
Nassau seems to be moving in the right direction, and the rating upgrade is a positive.
The company is stable, well-established, and provides excellent customer service.