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Protective Life Insurance Company Review For 2020

Low premiums for most people and a record of reliability make Protective worth considering.
Pro Bullet Term
Pro Bullet Universal
Pro Bullet Variable
Pro Bullet Whole
Licensed Life Insurance Agent/Staff Writer
Published on December 06, 2019

Protective was founded in 1907. Although it now offers retirement investment and annuity products, it began as (and still primarily is) a life insurance company. Protective is a financially stable company with excellent customer service and claims history, which makes it one of the top life insurance companies worth considering.

Protective: Who is it best for?

  • Shoppers on a budget: Protective’s term and Custom Choice Universal Life products offer some of the lowest rates on the market.
  • Nonsmokers: Current and former tobacco users will find Protective’s rates less competitive than other insurers.
  • People who want conversion options: You can convert a term policy into permanent life insurance without having to take a medical exam.

Protective life insurance policies

Policy type

Options

Term life

Terms from 10–30 years
$100K–$50M
Level premiums
Convert to permanent coverage later

Universal life

Custom Choice UL
Variable universal
Indexed universal

Whole life

Adult
Child (ages 0–17)

Table created using information available at Protective.com. Data as of 12/6/2019.

Protective offers whole life insurance, children’s life insurance, and joint life insurance, but its stand-out products are term and universal life policies.

Learn more about the types of life insurance.

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Protective term life insurance

Protective offers a single term life insurance product available in terms of 10, 15, 20, 25, or 30 years. You may be able to convert your Protective term life policy into permanent life insurance later if your needs change. You can choose a death benefit between $100 thousand and $50 million, and you can apply for a policy if you’re 75 or younger.1

Protective universal life

This insurer’s permanent life insurance options include four kinds of universal life (UL):

  • Traditional UL
  • Variable UL
  • Indexed UL
  • Custom Choice UL—the company’s stand-out product.

Custom Choice UL costs about the same as a term life policy but offers more lifetime coverage options. With this policy, you can pay higher premiums to, for instance, extend the length of coverage. Or, if your goal is to keep your premiums low, it can be structured to reduce your death benefit over time.

How much does life insurance with Protective cost?

To understand Protective’s pricing, we sampled rates from this insurer, including those in the tables below.

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

Monthly male premium

Monthly female premium

$100K

$9

$8

$250K

$13

$11

$500K

$19

$16

$1M

$32

$24

Sample quotes based on Protective.com and are for illustration purposes only. Actual quotes may vary. Data effective 12/2/2019.

20-year term life policy for a healthy 50-year-old 
Death benefit payout
Monthly male premiumMonthly female premium
$100K
$22$18
$250K
$40$31
$500K
$72$55
$1M
$138$100

Sample quotes based on Protective.com and are for illustration purposes only. Actual quotes may vary. Data effective 12/2/2019.

Overall, Protective has some of the lowest rates on the market, especially if you’re healthy. As with other insurers, prices go up if you have diabetes, a heart condition, a family history of health issues, and other health considerations. Protective’s least favorable rates seem to be for current and former tobacco users.

Things to consider about Protective

Protective is known for its competitive pricing (as long as you’re not a smoker), but you may find its policies under a different name.

Protective is sold under multiple brands

If you’re a Costco customer, you may know that Protective provides the national warehouse chain’s life insurance products. Protective also owns the Chase Insurance Group, so if you have life insurance through Chase Bank, that’s Protective too. Finally, policyholders with West Coast, MONY, and Lyndon Life Insurance Companies are customers of Protective subsidiaries.

If you like Protective’s policies and want to shop around for better rates or slight variations on their products, check out Costco life insurance or another Protective brand.

Low price—unless you've used tobacco

Companies price coverage according to their proprietary formula, Protective's strength seems to be healthy people looking for term or universal life. Its weakness appears to be high prices for former and current tobacco users.

These companies typically offer more competitive rates for tobacco users:

How Protective stacks up

As of December 2018, Protective Life Insurance Company had $901 billion of coverage in force and, making it one of the largest life insurance companies globally.2 Today, Protective is known for reliability and financial stability.

Is Protective financially stable?

Protective Financial ratings
AM Best (FSR)

A+

S&P

AA-

Moodys

A1

Fitch

A-

Table created using information available at AMBest.com, StandardAndPoors.com, Moodys.com, and FitchRatings.com. Data effective 12/6/2019.

AM Best, which rates only insurance companies, gives Protective its highest score of A+. AA- is S&P's second-highest rating, while Fitch and Moody’s give Protective their third-highest scores. All these ratings give a stable outlook and indicate a financially sound insurance company.

Claims and customer service

Protective is a reliable company with few complaints on its record. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) reports this insurer received 19 official complaints nationwide in 2018. For a company that brought in nearly $1.7 billion in premiums last year, 19 complaints is low—much lower than other similarly sized companies.3

This insurer's customer service level seems to have decreased recently. In 2018, J.D Power scored Protective 791 points for overall customer service ("better than most").5

In 2019, however, that score dropped to 754 ("about average"). That said, most large insurers dropped at least a few points on J.D. Powers scorecard between 2018 and 2019.4

Bottom line: Protective is worthy of consideration

Financial strength, reliable claims and service, and competitive pricing make Protective a contender for most people’s needs.

For many people, Protective checks all the right boxes: strong financial ratings, reliable claims and service, and affordable premiums. But if you use or have used tobacco, you could find Protective’s rates out of reach.

Whether Protective seems right for you or not, you can compare life insurance quotes from this company and others quickly and easily. Make your search for the perfect life insurance provider a snap by requesting a quote today.

Need help understanding how life insurance works? Read up here: 

Protective FAQ
Does Protective offer life insurance for seniors?

With Protective, you can apply for a policy if you’re 75 years old or younger. The company doesn't have policies explicitly geared toward older adults, however. If that’s what you’re looking for, check out a few companies that specialize in senior life insurance.

Alternatively, many older adults buy life insurance coverage mainly for final expenses. If that’s you, check out burial insurance companies.

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.