UPDATED: Nov 30, 2018
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About Equitable Life
Equitable Life has its roots in a group of benevolent societies created by a Utah doctor to help families of miners deal with funeral expenses. In 1935 Dr. Roderick Earl “Doc” Ross officially founded the Equitable Mutual Aid Protective Society, which came to be classified as an insurance company under a law enacted that same year.
The creation of Medicare in the 1960s moved the company into the senior-focused insurance market. They added Medicare Supplement insurance to their product lineup, and the following decade began offering long-term care coverage as well. In the 1980s another senior insurance program was added, a home care recovery plan.
In 2009 Equitable Life & Casualty entered the third-party administration market, and this makes up a good portion of their business today.
Equitable offers their health and life products in 45 states as well as the District of Columbia. Products are sold through independent agents, and the company maintains its headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Equitable Medicare Supplement Plans
Equitable calls their Medicare Supplement Plans EquiChoice, but they follow the standardized letter-coded plans that are in use in most states.
Of the eleven possible standardized plans, Equitable offers four. This is not a lot of options, but includes both Plan A and Plan F. Plan A is the base plan that all insurance companies have to offer if they are offering Medicare Supplement at all. It covers all Medicare Part A & B coinsurance amounts and the first three pints of blood each year.
Most companies also choose to offer Plan F, which has the most coverage of any available option, essentially paying all out-of-pocket expenses not covered under Original Medicare. This makes it the most expensive plan in most cases. There is a high deductible version of Plan F that offers a lower monthly premium, but Equitable does not offer this option.
The also offer Plan N and Plan G. Plan N has copays for some services, which results in a lower premium. This sometimes makes Plan N more affordable than Plan A.
Online quoting is not offered and there is not a rate chart available for Equitable’s Medicare Supplement plans. The “Get a Quote” button on the site leads to a contact form that will likely result in solicitation from an agent.
While this is not surprising for this type of company, it may drive away some potential customers that want to obtain rates without dealing with solicitation attempts.
Claims information that pertains directly to Medicare Supplement insurance is not available on the website. Since most companies handle Medicare claims directly with providers, we do not usually see much in the way of claim information for this type of policy.
There is a general claims inquiry page that provides customer services phone numbers and a contact form to request assistance. There is also a claims forms page, but none of the forms we saw were for Medicare Supplement.
Ratings and Consumer Reviews
Equitable has been Better Business Bureau (BBB) accredited sin 1964, and they have an A+ rating. There are only four complaints on file in the past three years, which is low for any company, even a smaller one.
We did not find other reviews or complaints from consumers on any of the usual websites. In general, a lack of reviews denotes a good reputation, since people are generally more motivated to write reviews when they are dissatisfied, particularly in the insurance industry.
The Bottom Line
Equitable has been around for a long time, and there are no red flags in terms of their reputation. They do not offer a big selection of Medicare supplement plans, however, and we are unable compare them in terms of rates. While there is nothing negative here, there is not a lot that makes Equitable stand out, either.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.