UPDATED: Mar 18, 2020
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About Pioneer American Life
Pioneer American Life was incorporated in 1946 in Waco, Texas, where it shares headquarters today with its parent company, ALICO. That company reaches back even further, to the founding of Amicable Life Insurance Company in 1909.
Because Pioneer American uses a shared website format that provides general information on ALICO and little specific information on any of the group companies, it’s difficult to gather details on this company’s history. The website is generally limited when it comes to any detailed information; the type of insurance products offered are described briefly, and it is unclear whether all of the products are underwritten by Pioneer American or by another group company.
Pioneer American sells its products through independent agents across the service area, which appears to be nationwide. The lack of detail on the website indicates a strong reliance on agent sales, an approach that tends to result in solicitation attempts.
Pioneer Life Products
A general overview of life insurance products is provided on the website.
Final Expenses Life is whole life insurance, offered with an issue age of 0 to 85 and requires no medical exam for issue. The site does not list the benefit amounts, but in general, this type of policy is a lower level of benefits in return for affordable premiums and minimal underwriting requirements. The plan includes accelerated benefits at no added premium, which is often an extra cost with this type of plan.
Simplified Life is a term life insurance policy that has no requirement for a medical exam. The term length options are not listed, but death benefits range from $25,000 up to $250,000. There is an optional Return of Premium plan, as well as the option to convert to whole life at the end of the term.
There is also an Association Term policy that is offered to members of certain groups:
- Government employees (all levels)
- First responders
- Employees of state funded educational institutions
- Railroad employees
- Hospital employees
- Spouses of anyone in the above groups
The plan is a ten-year term policy that is renewable, with an issue age of 18-65. Like the other simplified term, there is no medical exam required.
Two types of universal life insurance are listed. The non-medical is a simplified issue that requires no medical exam. Death benefits can be between $25,000 and $250,000, and the plan includes a 15-year no-lapse guarantee if premiums are paid.
The fully underwritten version of the plan, which does require a medical exam, has no top limit on death benefit amount. Both of these plans include a cash accumulation account.
The modified life plan is described only briefly as a whole or term plan that has a cash accumulation option. No further information on this type of policy is offered.
Rate quotes from Pioneer American are only available through an agent, with no option to obtain a quote online. That is quite typical for this type of insurance company, but as mentioned above it can lead to solicitation. Some insurance shoppers may find that frustrating and bothersome.
There is a contact form that can be filled out to have someone contact you in order to gather more information, and a toll-free number is also available.
While there is not a direct claims line, policyholder services has a toll-free number that is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. central time. There is also a contact email listed and a fax number as well.
Claims forms are easily located and available for download. They can be sent in either via email or fax, or to the mailing address listed on the site.
There is no further information listed on the website in regards to claims, although there is a policyholder login area where more detail might be offered. This approach to claims is, although common, somewhat frustrating for a life insurance company, since it is a beneficiary filing the claim in most cases and not the policyholder. Beneficiaries are not likely to have access to the login information.
Ratings and Consumer Reviews
Pioneer American has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), where they have been accredited since 2011. There are a total of six complaints on file, and only one review left on the page. The reviewer states that the policy was misrepresented at the time of purchase. Pioneer American appears to have responded.
There are six Google reviews of Pioneer American, with an overall 2.3-star rating. Only two of the reviews – one negative and one positive – have written comments, with the rest only star ratings. One positive review cites a claim paid within two days, and the negative review comment states that the company withdrew money from their account without permission. Aside from these, there are three one-star and one five-star rating with no comments.
Beyond this, we found very little customer opinion on this company. In general, fewer reviews is a positive thing for an insurance company.
The Bottom Line
Pioneer American has a good selection of simplified issue products, which will appeal to those looking to get coverage quickly with minimal effort. The lack of detail and rate information makes it difficult to say whether or not the company offers a good value for the insurance dollar. This is a company most likely to be presented as an option for life insurance when working with an independent agent, who will be able to provide more assistance with detailed policy information.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.