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Ethos Life Insurance Review

Fast, straightforward term life coverage most people can apply for entirely online.

Pro Bullet Term life insurance
Licensed Life Insurance Agent/Staff Writer
Published on January 24, 2020

Ethos is a start-up life insurance company backed by several industry giants, including Assurity and Banner (Legal and General) along with RGAX, Munich Re, and Aon. Ethos has a fully online application that doesn’t require a medical exam for most people looking for term life insurance, though you may have to answer some medical questions. It’s a fast, convenient way to get coverage, but if you’re looking for lots of options, Ethos probably isn’t for you.

Who might choose Ethos for life insurance?
  • Applicants avoiding a medical exam: Ethos offers accelerated underwriting for its policies.
  • People looking for level term life: Ethos doesn’t sell whole, universal, or variable life.
  • Young people looking for $500K or less: These shoppers will find Ethos’ rates the most competitive.
  • Busy families: These people could find a quick way to get a policy in place with Ethos.

Ethos life insurance policies

Death benefit payout Age rangeExam required?
Term life insurance




Table created for illustration purposes only. Information available at Data effective 1/10/2020.

Like most insurers offering a fully online application process, Ethos sells only term life insurance. This type of coverage is the cheapest and simplest form of life insurance, and for many people, it’s all they need.

Ethos term life insurance

Ethos provides term life insurance for 10-, 15-, 20-, and 30-year terms. Policies are available for individuals aged 20 through 65, with coverage levels ranging from $100,000 to $1.5 million. If you're looking to load up on riders or other options, you won't find them at Ethos. This company offers term life only, and its policies are about as straightforward as they come.

You can expect plenty of choices when it comes to choosing your death benefit, however, with the ability to customize your coverage amount in $25,000 increments. Although many companies offer this variety of coverage amounts, few allow you to choose them right there on the company website. You’d need to customize your policy through an agent. But with Ethos, these policy choices are available online.

Ethos life insurance rates

It's not uncommon for an insurer with a fully online application process to charge higher prices than more traditional competitors. In this regard, Ethos is no different. But for young people looking for low amounts of coverage, the difference is just a few dollars per month.

For older adults, however, the difference jumps steeply, sometimes more than doubling typical rates for coverage amounts of $500,000 or more for people 50 and older.

If you're between 50 and 59 and want lots of coverage, you'll probably find lower rates with a traditional application process. If you’re comfortable with a low coverage amount and want to skip the medical exam, however, consider a company that sells final expense life insurance.

Ethos sample rates

20-year term life policy for a healthy 25-year-old
Death benefit payout

Male monthly premium





Female monthly premium





Sample rates based on and are for illustration purposes only. Actual rates may vary. Data effective 1/10/2020.

20-year term life policy for a healthy 50-year-old
Death benefit payout

Male monthly premium





Female monthly premium





Sample rates based on and are for illustration purposes only. Actual rates may vary. Data effective 1/10/2020.

Things to consider about Ethos Life Insurance

Ethos is helping to bring the life insurance industry into the 21st century, and we think it's about time. The company manages to provide a balance of technology that lets you build your own coverage online, but you’ll also need to speak with a human to finalize your coverage.

Convenience with a personal touch

You can apply for Ethos life insurance coverage online in three easy steps:

  1. Get a quote that outlines your policy options. Choose the coverage amount and term length you want.
  2. Once you choose your coverage, take a few minutes to complete the online application, which asks questions about your age and income.
  3. Finally, Ethos' underwriters review the application and put together the coverage plan that's best for you. At this point, a licensed agent reaches out to review and customize the plan, and they can write your coverage as soon as you agree.

It's important to note that, based on health information provided in the application, Ethos may require a medical exam for some customers. But that doesn't automatically mean you will pay higher premiums.

Life insurance for the modern shopper

Ethos is part of a growing industry called insuretech. As its name implies, Ethos combines insurance with technology to make buying coverage convenient and fast. But Ethos isn't the only company in the game.

HavenLife and Bestow also offer a technology-driven application process for life insurance. And Breeze has a similar process for disability income insurance.

These companies make it easy for busy people who just want to check things off a to-do list quickly to find coverage. But they may not offer all the riders, options, or education you might encounter with more traditional companies.

Ethos financial ratings

If you've never heard of Ethos, don't worry. It was founded in 2016,1 so in life insurance terms, it's still a baby. Fortunately, several older, more established companies back Ethos. These include Legal & General America (Banner Life) and Assurity Life Insurance Company.

As a start-up firm, Ethos hasn’t been around long enough to garner ratings from top financial rating companies. But we can look at the ratings of Ethos’ backers, particularly Banner, which has been rated by three out of four of our go-to agencies.

Is Ethos life insurance financially stable?

AM Best (FSR)S&PFitchMoody's
What it means
SuperiorVery strongHigh qualityN/A

Table created using information available at,,, and Data effective 1/13/2020.

AM Best gives Banner Life its highest mark of A+. Meanwhile, Standard & Poor’s and Fitch each place Banner Life at the lower end of their second highest class. Moody’s does not have a current rating for Banner Life.

Of the four top rating agencies, only AM Best rates Assurity, placing the insurer in its second-highest class with an A-.

Combined, these ratings suggest Banner Life and Assurity will be able to handle their financial obligations for years to come. And as a result, Ethos is likely to have the same ability.

Ethos claims and customer service

Because Ethos doesn't underwrite its life insurance policies itself, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) doesn't track complaints filed against the insurer. Banner Life and Assurity both have relatively clean claims histories, but that may not reflect what Ethos customers can expect.

What we can say is that Trustpilot shows a customer service rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars from nearly 350 reviews. So not too shabby.

Bottom line: Ethos is a time-saving way to purchase term life insurance

Ethos is inarguably convenient, but you may not find the best rates or all the options you’re looking for.

For many people, Ethos offers a simple solution to the complicated question of “how can I get life insurance quickly and easily?” Backed by much bigger names in insurance underwriting, Ethos provides quality term life insurance without a medical exam in most cases.

Unfortunately, some people, especially older adults and those looking for high coverage amounts, may find Ethos too pricey. And you won’t be able to choose from a menu of riders or other options like you might with other insurers. But if you’re young and just need a simple term life policy fast, Ethos could be the right choice.

Not sure Ethos is for you? Read up here: 


1. Ethos, “Why Ethos

Written by
Kathryn Casna
Kathryn Casna is a licensed insurance agent and life insurance specialist who has appeared on The Simple Dollar and Best Company. On a weekly basis, she dives into complex life insurance topics to wring out genuinely useful information. When she’s not wrangling big ideas into easy-to-understand articles, Kathryn nerds out on budget-tracking spreadsheets and tries to coax her leash-trained cat to take outdoor adventures.