UPDATED: Mar 18, 2020
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Americo has more than 100 years of experience in the life insurance industry and serves most of the country. Their products include life insurance, retirement savings plans, and Medicare Supplement coverage.
Americo was founded in 1946 as The College Life Insurance Company of America. The company has grown through mergers and acquisitions with other companies, some of which are much older and trace back to the early 1900s. These include The Ohio State Life Insurance Company (1906) and Great Southern Life Insurance Company (1909).
Americo is the underwriter and issuer of all of the life insurance policies for its family of companies, which then handle the management of in-force policies. They are licensed to operate in all states with the exception of New York, including the District of Columbia. The company’s headquarters is located in Kansas City, MO.
Group companies are responsible for several firsts in the insurance industry, including being the first to offer children’s policies and the first to provide living benefits.
Among the life insurance plans, they offer is final expense coverage, which like all of their policies is sold through local independent agents. The company’s website appears to be mainly aimed at agents, with little detail regarding the policies readily available and more information on agent incentive programs. The setup of the website indicates that they do not see a lot of sales through potential customer web searches.
Our full review of Americo and all of its products can be found here.
Americo Final Expense
The final expense plans offered by Americo are known as the Eagle Premier Series, and there are two options to choose from. Both are standard whole life insurance policies providing permanent coverage.
The main difference between the two is how death benefits are paid out. Eagle Premier offers the full death benefit from day one, while Eagle Guaranteed has a graded death benefit, with three years required before full benefits will be paid. The full benefit is payable for accidental death on both policies.
Both plans offer death benefit amounts ranging from $2,000 up to $30,000 and have no requirement for a medical exam in order to be issued. The rates do not change over time regardless of age or health condition. Americo also offers a Quit Smoking Benefit on these plans, through which smokers can qualify for non-smoker rates by quitting.
The site does not state what the issue age range is for this product. As mentioned previously, the information on the site is mainly aimed at agents and not at potential customers.
In keeping with the agent-based approach, this company does not offer online quoting. Rate quotes can be obtained directly from an agent. The site does offer a quick contact form through which potential customers can request more information.
Interestingly – and unusually – there is no agent search found on the website. Only the request info form is available, which means the company will likely forward your contact information to a local agent of their choosing. This takes away the customer’s option to select their own agent.
The website provides downloadable claim forms which can be sent in either by email or by regular mail. There is also a fax number available.
A customer service phone number and email address are also listed on the claim page, both of which can be used for inquiries regarding claims. The phone number is for the administrative office but the site does say what the hours of operation are for this line. It is likely that claims questions can only be addressed during business hours, which is common for life insurance companies.
The contact page lists phone numbers for all of the underlying companies in the group. It appears, however, that claims are handled centrally via Americo’s main office.
Ratings and Consumer Reviews
Americo has a B+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), which is down since the last time we looked at the file. The lowered grade is the result of two complaints against the company that were not resolved. The company has a total of 33 complaints on file in the past three years.
The reviews on the BBB page cite failure to play claims; one of these is written by an agent that sold Americo policies and states they repeatedly failed to pay client claims.
We were unable to find customer reviews anywhere else, and overall the number of complaints is low. That said, the failure to resolve two complaints has dropped this company’s rating and affects our impression of their reputation.
The Bottom Line
Americo is not the type of company that someone seeking to buy final expense insurance independently through online searches is likely to consider; they are very focused on agent sales instead. It would be beneficial to see them bring their rating back up. We would recommend purchasing insurance from this company only after consultation with a trusted agent of your choosing.