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How To Evaluate Life Insurance Companies Ratings

Life Insurance Company Ratings

When it comes to buying life insurance, most people consider only the cost and the type of the policy. These factors are important, but not the only ones.  For example, you don’t want to purchase a policy from a company that has low ratings, even if the cost is competitive. Overall, you must include factors such as the strength of an insurance company into your decision. 

There are five main rating organizations that issue financial strength ratings to all the licensed insurance firms. These are some of the most respected rating organizations in the world and include Standard & Poor’s, Moody’s Investors Service, Fitch Ratings, TheStreet.com Ratings and A.M. Best. Every rating organization has a different grading system, which means there can be some variation in the grading levels among them.

The rating of an insurance company is based in part on its ability to clear off claims. When you chose a higher rating company, it is an indication that it has sufficient amount of reserves and assets for paying claims.

Because life insurance claims are usually made several years after buying the policy, it is essential to keep checking the financial strength of your insurer from time to time. The ratings can be affected by many factors. For example, if the management of the company takes certain bad financial decisions and starts losing money, their ratings could start dropping. Ratings can also be affected by company changes, such as mergers.

Many online sites and tools help insurance customers learn about the ratings of life insurance companies. When buying a policy, make sure that the insurer is a member of the Insurance Marketplace Standards Association or IMSA. The IMSA was launched by the industry organizations after the industry suffered many setbacks so as to maintain a uniform and high standard.

If an insurance company must become a member of the IMSA, they have to undergo careful scrutiny by qualified and independent evaluators. When you come across a member-IMSA insurance company, it is a sign that they maintain the highest standards, especially in customer service, sales and marketing.

An insurer must also offer good customer service.  Because the industry is regulated at state level, all the complaints are compiled by states on an annual basis. These reports provide you with information like the number of complaints for each company against their market share. Get these reports from your state to keep a check on your insurer. 

Life insurance policies described, quoted, shown and illustrated throughout this website are not available in all states and may include those issued by: Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America, Minneapolis, MN and Allianz Life Insurance Company of NY, New York, NY are both members of Allianz Insurance Group, Minneapolis, MN; American General Life Insurance Company, Houston, TX; The United States Life Insurance Company in the City of New York, New York, NY, member companies of American General Life Companies; Assurity Life Insurance Company, Lincoln, NE; Aviva Life and Annuity Company, West Des Moines, IA; Aviva Life and Annuity Company of New York, Melville, NY; Banner Life Insurance Company is a subsidiary of Legal & General Group, Plc, London, UK; Legal & General America, Frederick, MD; Banner Life Insurance Company, Urbana, MD; William Penn Life Insurance Company of New York, Garden City, NY; Equitable Life and Casualty Insurance Company, Salt Lake City, UT; Fidelity Life Association, A Legal Reserve Life Insurance Company, Oak Brook, IL; First Central National Life Insurance Company, New York, NY and Household Life Insurance Company, Detroit, MI, member companies of HSBC Insurance; Genworth Life and Annuity Insurance Company, Richmond, VA and Genworth Life Insurance Company of New York, New York, NY, only Genworth Life Insurance Company of New York is admitted in and conducts business in New York, member companies of Genworth Financial, Inc.; Great West Life and Annuity Insurance Company, White Plains, NY; Integrity Life Insurance Company, Cincinnati, OH and National Integrity Life Insurance Company, Goshen, NY are both members of Western & Southern Financial Group, Cincinnati, OH; John Hancock, Boston, MA; Lincoln Life & Annuity Insurance Company of New York, Syracuse, NY and The Lincoln National Life Insurance Company, Fort Wayne, IN, both insurance company affiliates of Lincoln National Corporation, whose marketing name is Lincoln Financial Group; First MetLife Investors Insurance Company, New York, NY, MetLife Investors USA Insurance Company, Irvine, CA and Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, New York, NY, all three members of the MetLife family; Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company, Omaha, NE; North American Company Life & Health, Chicago, IL and North American Company Life & Health of NY, Garden City, NY are both members of Sammons Financial Group, Chicago, IL; Principal Life Insurance Company, Des Moines, IA; Protective Life refers to Protective Life Insurance Company and its affiliates, including Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company. Both companies located in Birmingham, AL; Minnesota Life, St. Paul, MN; Pruco Life Insurance Company, Newark, NJ and Pruco Life Insurance Company of New Jersey, Newark, NJ, member companies of Prudential Financial, Inc., Newark, NJ; ReliaStar Life Insurance Company, Minneapolis, MN, ReliaStar Life Insurance Company of New York, Woodbury, NY and Security Life of Denver Insurance Company, Denver, CO, member of the ING family of companies; Securian Life Insurance Company, St. Paul MN; Symetra Life Insurance Company, Bellevue, WA; Transamerica Life Insurance Company, Cedar Rapids, IA; First Symetra National Life Insurance Company of New York, New York, NY; Vantis Life Insurance Company, Windsor, CT.

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