UPDATED: Nov 30, 2018
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About Guarantee Trust Life
Guarantee Trust Life (GTL) operates as a mutual insurance company and was founded in 1936. Throughout its existence – and to this day – a member of the Holson family has been at the helm. The company’s headquarters is located in Glenview, IL, and they provide coverage in all states, although product availability varies.
GTL products are sold through independent agents across the U.S. They also write a lot of group benefits as employer-sponsored and voluntary benefits. The website is sparse in terms of details on both the company history and the specifics of the products they write.
We have reviewed GTL’s Medicare Supplement products separately here; this review will focus on the other products available from GTL.
Guarantee Trust Life Products
GTL’s product lineup is mainly focused on supplemental health, with a few group policies, some specialty options, and only two life insurance products. Some of the products are group products that require a membership in Select Benefit Service Association (SBSA), which has an added cost.
GTL lists two life insurance policies on its website, and neither is the type of standard policy we would expect to see.
MultiLife is a joint term policy that is issued to two people, generally a couple. It has a payout of up to $500,000 if both insured people die within a specific interval and a single benefit of $15,000 in the event that either of the policyholders passes away while the other is still living. Interval periods can be selected between 30 and 365 days. This plan is listed as requiring group membership but doesn’t state whether or not it is SBSA.
The other available option is juvenile life insurance policy called Great Start. This plan has up to $30,000 in modified premium whole life coverage. The plan has a set premium amount for any applicant under 25, and coverage increases are available at age 31, 34, and 37.
GTL has a variety of supplemental health plans to pay costs that are not covered by major medical insurance.
Advantage Plus Hospital Confinement Indemnity pays a daily flat rate for hospital stays of between $100 and $600. The plan offers several benefit periods – 3, 6, 10, or 21 days – and benefits reset after 60 days without a hospital stay.
Critical Cash is a critical illness policy that provides a monthly benefit in the event of a serious diagnosis. It can cover a variety of out of pocket expenses including assisted living and in-home nursing for a benefit period chosen at issue.
iGap is a policy designed to cover out of pocket expenses with lump-sum payments for accidents, critical illnesses, and other hospital stays. This plan requires membership in SBSA.
GTL also has a lump sum cancer, heart attack, and stroke policy that pays out a lump sum benefit to the insured when diagnosed with any of the three. The plan also has an experimental treatment benefit for cancer.
Short Term Care coverage is available with benefit periods up to 365 days. This plan pays out of pocket costs associated a short-term disability, illness, or injury that requires in-home or facility care.
GTL’s Accident insurance policy is another group-only policy that requires membership in SBSA. It covers a variety of costs associated with an accident, including air ambulance services and accidental death and dismemberment benefits.
Special Risk Policies
GTL writes a few special risk policies, mainly for schools. Plans include College and University Sports coverage, College and University Accident, K-12 Student Accident, and Child Care Facility coverage.
GTL does not offer online quoting, which is what we expect from a company that sells mainly supplemental health products. This type of company tends to rely on agent referrals and group plans for new business, therefore online quoting is not a major part of their business.
All of GTL’s claims forms are readily available on the website, in an easy to find location. They can be downloaded and submitted by mail to the appropriate claims department.
GTL also offers a toll-free customer service line for assistance with filing a claim. They do not appear to have a dedicated claims department, but that is not unusual for this type of insurance company.
Ratings and Consumer Reviews
GTL currently has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), with a total of 18 customer complaints on file in the past three years. Four of those complaints were closed in the past 12 months.
Consumer Affairs has nine reviews of GTL, all of which are negative. We found a further 30 reviews on Google. Among these are several very positive reviews, resulting in an overall 3.8-star rating for the company. GTL does appear to make a practice of responding to some, if not all, of the reviews on Google, which is an encouraging thing to see.
Most complaints were in regards to failure to pay claims; some cited poor customer service. The positive reviews seem to reflect an opposite experience.
The Bottom Line
Guarantee Trust Life is likely to appeal mainly to people who are already working with an agent or broker or are obtaining group coverage. Their life policies are very limited, and most insurance shoppers are not going to find what they are looking for here. They do have a good list of supplemental health products, but the requirement for a group membership on several of them is likely to make many people shy away.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.