New York Life Insurance Company

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New York Life is one of the best life insurance companies around, with affordable term and permanent coverage, the highest level of financial security, and strong customer satisfaction ratings.

A.M. Best

A++

BBB

A+

J.D. Power

770

The Good

  • Affordability
  • Financial security
  • High satisfaction ratings
  • Minimal complaints
  • Versatile policy lineup
  • Potential to earn dividends
  • Full financial planning
  • AARP partnership

The Bad

  • Requires captive agent
  • No online quotes

Product Availability

Policy Types
  • Term
  • Universal
  • Variable Universal
  • Whole
Riders
  • Accidental death 
  • Children’s insurance
  • Chronic care
  • Deduction waiver
  • Guaranteed minimum accumulation benefit
  • Living benefits
  • Policy purchase option
  • Return of premiums
  • Spouse’s paid up
  • Term conversion
  • Waiver of premium
  • Yearly convertible term

Review Breakdown

Overall

4.83

Price/Value

3.5

Financial Strength

4.9

User Experience

4.2

Product Availability

3.1

Brand/Size

4.6

Price/Value

When you pick a life insurance company, one of the biggest driving factors will be the cost of coverage.

If you’ve narrowed down your search to a few providers that are financially stable and offer the policy you need, the rates you’re quoted could be the ultimate decision maker. 

We examined the cost of coverage for a thirty-five year old in relatively good health, comparing New York Life’s rates to hundreds of other providers.

The company came out strong, with lower than average premiums for the applicant above. Though older applicants and those in poorer health might pay a little more for coverage, the average applicant will find competitively priced policies from New York Life.

The 2019 J.D. Power survey awarded New York Life a 4 out of 5 for price, indicating their rates are ”Better than most,” based on client ratings.

Financial Strength

It’s vital to buy life insurance from a company that is financially capable of paying out claims. 

New York Life is as safe and secure as a provider can be, with the highest ratings possible from all four credit rating agencies: 

A.M. BestA++
FitchAAA
Moody’sAaa
Standard & Poor’sAA+

New York Life is one of a select group of life insurance companies to receive ratings this high across the board.

These financial ratings are based on strength, solvency, and a forward outlook to the near and distant future.

Established in 1845, New York Life is also one of the longest standing companies in the insurance industry.

As primarily a mutual company, New York Life is solely owned by its policyholders, not shareholders or Wall Street. It is one of the few companies to remain structured like this today.

The company pays dividends to its policyholders into the cash value of the whole life insurance policies it offers.

New York Life boasts over $572 billion in assets under management. 

It has also reached a major financial milestone, with $1 trillion of individual life insurance in force.

Based on their past and present performance and financial outlook, New York Life is a rock-solid institution you can count on for your life insurance needs.

User Experience

There’s more to a top-tier life insurance company than having a range of affordable policies.

The best companies also focus on giving you an excellent experience across all of its communication channels. 

New York Life is one of the highest ranked life insurance companies in terms of user experience, based on its:

  • Digital tools
  • Agent interaction
  • Ease of applying
  • Account management

Ratings

  • J.D. Power: 4 / 5
  • BBB: A+

J.D. Power ranks New York Life as “Better than most” at user experience, factoring in some of the criteria above based on actual customer responses.

The company also gets the Better Business Bureau’s seal of approval with their highest rating.

Website

New York Life’s website is easy to navigate and provides users with educational content on life insurance.

It also presents information on New York Life’s policies and riders, along with a calculator to help you map out your coverage needs.

While you can’t get a quote or apply for coverage online, you are matched with a local agent who can help you start the process.

New York Life’s website allows you to:

  • File claims
  • Make payments
  • Search for a lost policy or unclaimed benefits
  • Update beneficiary information

You can also reach New York Life’s representatives with general service questions via their hotline from 9am to 7pm EST, Monday through Friday.

Application

When you’re ready to get started on an application, the New York Life website will prompt you to present your name, age, location, and basic contact info.

From there, a local agent will contact you about your life insurance needs and help you work through the application process.

After communicating with an agent, you will be asked to complete a TeleApp call, a brief phone interview that assesses your health and lifestyle. Your answers to these questions will be used by the underwriters to determine your rates.

You may then need to undergo a medical exam based on your responses, age, and the amount of coverage you’re applying for.

However, the AARP Life Insurance Program from New York Life offers a line of small guaranteed policies that don’t rely on medical exams.

J.D. Power ranks New York Life’s application process as “Better than most” based on the ease of completing the application, the speed of the underwriting process, and the documentation required to submit an application.

Product Availability

You’ll have a full suite of life insurance products available when you work with a New York Life agent.

Term

Term life insurance allows you to protect your loved ones for a set amount of time, granting a  death benefit in exchange for low monthly premiums.

New York Life offers two policy structures:

  • Yearly Convertible: Perfect for individuals looking to convert to permanent protection later, this policy can be renewed each year, with initially lower premiums that increase annually.
  • Level Premium Convertible: With this option, you can lock in level premiums for a term of 10 or 20 years, after which point, premiums begin to increase.

Their term policies come with standard riders like living benefits and the disability waiver of premium, as well as a Policy Purchase option that guarantees insurability later in life.

They also offer a unique rider, Spouse’s Paid Up, which allows your spouse to use your policy’s death benefit towards insurance without a required medical exam after you pass away.

Universal

Universal life insurance gives you permanent protection with flexible premiums and coverage amounts, plus a cash value component.

New York Life has three types of universal coverage:

  • Universal Life (basic): The standard option is best for those looking to secure affordable long term coverage with flexibility and the potential for growth.
  • Custom Guarantee: If you aren’t concerned with cash value growth, this option can provide you with fixed premiums for coverage for as long as you need it.
  • Protection Up to Age 90: Made for individuals who need 7 figures of coverage, this universal policy is an affordable alternative to whole life insurance, cutting off coverage at age 90.

You can add a Chronic Care Rider or a Money Back Option Rider to the Custom Guarantee Policy.

Variable 

Variable universal life insurance operates similarly to universal coverage, but with a difference in how your cash value is invested.

You can take on more risk and decide how the cash value is invested to potentially benefit from market gains.

Variable universal policies require working with a financial services professional, which you’ll have access to as a New York Life policyholder.

These policies can be customized with the following riders:

  • Monthly Deduction Waiver: Waives some account and investing fees to help your cash value grow more.
  • Waiver of Specified Premium: Waives premiums if you are unable to meet them for qualifying reasons.
  • Guaranteed Minimum Accumulation Benefit: Guarantees a minimum rate of return to protect you from market fluctuations.

Whole

Whole life insurance provides you with lifelong coverage, with the added benefit of an accessible cash value account.

Since New York Life is a mutual company, it could also pay out dividends.

Here are the three whole life policy options you’ll get with New York Life:

  • Value Whole Life Insurance: For those focused on securing a guaranteed death benefit, this policy comes with level premiums.
  • Whole Life Insurance: This policy option considers both the cash value growth and the death benefit in its distribution.
  • Custom Whole Life Insurance: With option number three, you can set the amount of time you wish to pay premiums for, working around your budget and financial goals.

With whole life insurance from New York Life, you can add on:

  • Accidental Death Benefit
  • Chronic Care
  • Disability Waiver of Premium
  • Living Benefits
  • Option to Purchase Paid-up Additions

Brand/Size

In operation for nearly 175 years, New York Life is the largest mutual life insurance company in the United States.

New York Life’s first insurance policy was issued to Lewis Benton,the company’s elected secretary, with a benefit of $5,000.

Today, it is a top insurer for families, small businesses, and large companies alike and has been the issuing company for well-known figures such as Susan B. Anthony, several U.S. Presidents, and even Walt Disney.

The company has protected 7 million policyowners and paid out $11.1 billion in benefits.

New York Life Insurance Company is well-known for being the standard underwriter for the nationally recognized AARP, a seniors benefit organization aimed at aiding those over 60 years of age in many different aspects, namely financially.

AARP is one of the most trusted, go-to organizations for seniors and the elderly across the nation.

In addition to its whole life and universal insurance policies, New York Life offers a variety of financial and life insurance products, such as:

  • mutual funds
  • 529 plans
  • income annuities
  • variable annuities
  • estate planning solutions
  • long-term care coverage

Philanthropy

Dedicated to the good of our communities, workforce, and policy owners, corporate social responsibility is of top priority for New York Life.

In 2018 alone, The New York Life Foundation contributed over $25 million to deserving national and local nonprofit organizations, while employees donated over 136,000 hours of volunteer work.

The company’s philanthropic efforts focus primarily on community and family bereavement support, middle school enrichment programs, and workforce engagement grants, among other important causes.

Disaster relief grants and family scholarships are also an important extension of The New York Life Foundation’s mission, providing peace of mind to thousands of families each year.

Accolades

Currently a Fortune 500 company, the company has been named as one of the World’s Most Admired Companies in the life and health insurance sector.

New York Life also prides itself on its commitment to diversity and inclusion. Of 8,500+ employees nationwide, many are women and minorities.

In 2019, New York Life Insurance Company was designated Forbes 2019 America’s Best Employers for Diversity.

The company was also named one of the 2018 Top 70 Companies for Executive Women by The National Association for Female Executives (NAFE).

New York Life conducts business in all 50 states, as well as across the globe.

Brand

New York Life is one of the most well-known and highly regarded brands in the insurance industry.

From its commercials to social media platforms, the nation’s largest mutual company actively markets itself and engages with the public on a major scale. 

The company has over 670k Facebook followers, with countless more accounts for agents at the local level.

New York Life is also present and active on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube, with large followings.

Consensus

Based on ratings from dozens of reputable online sources and countless user reviews, New York Life gets nearly our highest consensus rating possible.

Time and time again, New York Life ranks among the most outstanding life insurance companies, hailed by the industry and policyholders.

In uncertain times, nothing is more reassuring than the strong foundation built by a pioneering insurance provider such as New York Life Insurance Company.

Though you may find more affordable term life insurance elsewhere, if you value strength, stability, and security in an insurance provider, look no further than New York Life Insurance Company.

From a variety of quality financial products, to an impressive track record, New York Life understands the ins and outs of the insurance industry so you don’t have to.

New York Life Insurance Company

Phone
(212) 576-7000
Address
51 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10100

Company Name (and subsidiaries)

  • New York Life Insurance and Annuity Corporation (NYLIAC)
  • NYLIFE Insurance Company of Arizona (NYLAZ)
  • New York Life Investment Management (NYLIM)
  • New York Life Seguros Monterrey (International)

Author:

Avatar

Jason Fisher

Jason Fisher is the founder and CEO of BestLifeRates.org, LLC. and a multi-state licensed life insurance agent who has helped over a million Americans seek out affordable coverage, compare quotes, or get their family and businesses covered.