UPDATED: Nov 30, 2018
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About Family Life Insurance Company
Founded in 1949, Family Life Insurance Company wrote only mortgage protection policies for the majority of their history. They later added other types of life insurance as well as Medicare supplement policies. You can see our review of the Medicare options here.
Family Life became part of the Manhattan Life Insurance group of companies in 2006.
Because they are now part of Manhattan Life, they no longer operate an independent website. This makes it difficult to clarify which of the products offered on the Manhattan Life site are actually underwritten by each of the companies in the group. The fine print states that the listed product may be written by one of several companies, including Family Life.
Family Life products are sold through independent agents across the United States. Their headquarters is in Austin, Texas.
Family Life Insurance Products
As we have already separately reviewed the Medicare Supplement plans, this review will focus on life insurance products. As previously stated, it’s difficult to determine which of the life products on the Manhattan Life website are specifically underwritten by Family Life. It appears that any group company, depending on location and other factors, may underwrite any one of the listed policies. As a result, we will look at all of the listed plans, even though Family Life may not underwrite them in all areas, or at all.
Term life insurance products are offered in both simplified issue and fully underwritten forms. Simplified issue products generally have a maximum face value of $250,000, while fully underwritten coverage is offered in higher amounts.
The Viva line of products is simplified issue, and include three choices: Professional, Living Benefit, and Family Plan. All of these plans have a 20-year level term for ages 18-55, and a 15-year level term for ages 56-60. The Family Plan can include a spouse and children’s rider, and all plans have a variety of rider options.
The Family Protection EZ is also a simplified issue plan, with a range of term length choices from 10 to 30 years.
The MCI Gold Plan is the mortgage protection product; like most such plans it is a term policy with a variety of riders and term lengths ranging from 10-30 years.
Finally, the Family Protection Select is the fully underwritten term life option. This plan allows a higher death benefit, has standard and preferred underwriting classes, and level term options from 10-30 years.
There are two whole life insurance options available.
The first option is Viva Lifetime, which is a simplified issue policy. It can be issued as a juvenile policy with a death benefit up to $50,000, or as an adult policy with a death benefit up to $100,000. This plan offers three payment options: LifeTime Pay, 20 Pay, and Paid-up at 65.
The fully underwritten whole life option is Family Protection Premier. This can also be issued as a juvenile plan with face values up to $150,000, or up to $3 million for an adult policy. Payment options on this plan are even more varied, including LifeTime Pay and Paid-up at 65 as well as several payment timelines ranging from 5 to 20.
As an agent-driven company, it is not surprising that Family Life or other Manhattan Life companies do not offer an online quoting option. Rates for simplified issue policies generally tend to be higher than those that are fully underwritten because they avoid any medical issues that might exist. Overall, we would not expect this company to be competitive with larger insurers in terms of rates, but that may not be accurate for all applicants.
Family Life does offer an online claim filing option, however, this can only be done by logging into the Client Services portion of the website. This may be frustrating for a beneficiary attempting to file a claim without the login information for the policyholder who has passed away.
Assistance with filing a claim can be obtained by contacting the agent or by calling the toll-free number provided on the contact page of the website. Overall, there is limited information offered on life insurance claims.
Ratings and Consumer Reviews
Family Life Insurance Company has three complaints on file with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) in the past three years and has an A+ rating.
Aside from the BBB, we were unable to locate additional ratings of the company. This is likely due to the fact that they operate under the Manhattan Life umbrella; frequently lesser-known companies like Family Life have few reviews and the better-known name, in this case, Manhattan, receives most of the complaints.
The Bottom Line
The amalgamation of Family Life Insurance Company with Manhattan Life makes it difficult to separate this company from its parent. Furthermore, there is so little information – including which of the listed policies Family Life actually underwrites – that forming a clear opinion of this company is difficult.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.