UPDATED: Nov 30, 2018
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Protective Life Summary
Protective Life Insurance Company was founded in 1907 by former Alabama Governor William Dorsey Jelks. In 1927 the company merged with Alabama National Insurance Company, keeping the Protective name, and began acquiring other companies over the years. Today, Protective is able to provide products in all 50 states.
Protective Life is now the primary subsidiary of Protective Life Corporation, with other subsidiaries including Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company, West Coast Life Insurance Company, MONY Insurance Company, and Lyndon Insurance Company. In 2015, Japanese corporation Dai-Ichi Life acquired Protective Life Corporation in a multi-billion dollar deal.
The company’s main office is located in Birmingham, Alabama, but there are offices in several other states as well. Unlike many similar companies, Protective sells its products directly and not through agents, with an online application process as well as application by phone.
Since life insurance is their focus, Protective has created a strong product lineup to choose from. Their range of life insurance and annuity products allow customers to select the right options for their needs, both in terms of budget and planning for the future.
Protective’s life insurance products are all considered to be Universal Life insurance policies; the company is unique in that it does not offer a traditional term life insurance option. Instead, they offer a policy that has aspects of both term and universal life.
Each of the policy options works a little differently in terms of premiums, benefits, and flexibility.
Custom Choice Universal
This policy is the closest thing Protective sells to a term life insurance product. It offers a level death benefit for a term ranging from 10-30 years, with several options for continuing the coverage beyond that term period. While most insurance companies do offer the option to convert a term policy at the end of the chosen term length, this policy builds it in, which prevents the customer from facing large premium increases at the time of the conversion.
This type of policy is not designed to be a cash accumulation policy, although there is some limited potential to do this.
This is Protective’s standard Universal life insurance policy, offering flexibility in premium payment options, a guaranteed death benefit, and lifetime coverage. The cash accumulation account has the potential for growth and loans are available as well as cash surrenders, although these can affect the death benefit.
Variable Universal Life
Combining an investment with a life insurance policy, variable life from Protective allows lifetime coverage with flexible premiums. The cash accumulation account can be invested in a variety of ways, making this type of policy a higher risk in terms of potential for growth, but also allowing a greater potential for growth.
Survivor Universal Life
This type of policy is designed to cover two people under one policy. The death benefit is paid out after the death of the second person. Similar to a standard life policy, this has flexible premiums and potential for cash accumulation.
Protective offers a range of annuity options, which are designed to provide retirement income. Protective offers both immediate and deferred income options as well as a range of terms for their annuities to meet each customer’s needs.
Protective offers a simple to use online quoting system to provide life insurance quotes. A quick quote for a 30-year-old male non-smoker living in California came back in the range of $36 per month for $1,000,000 with a 20-year term under the Protective Custom Universal Life policy.
For that amount of coverage with that term length, especially considering that Protective’s term is actually a Universal policy with easy conversion, that’s a very reasonable premium. Of course, these numbers are also based on limited information and may change with further underwriting, which is important to consider with any life insurance quote done online.
Protective offers a simple and clear explanation of how to handle a claim on their website. There is a toll-free number to call for either annuity or life insurance claims, and the required forms for the claim are available for quick download.
Protective’s straightforward claims process involves filing of the claim, gathering of the required information by a claims representative, and the release of funds when all of the documentation is complete. Protective promises to send out payment within one business day of claim approval.
The company offers a Benefit Account option for benefits larger than $10,000, which can be used as a checking account rather than a lump-sum payment. They also offer financial counseling to assist with handling the benefit, especially with large amounts.
Although Protective Life is not Better Business Bureau (BBB) accredited, it does have an A+ rating. The BBB records a total of 37 complaints against the company in the past three years, 12 of which were closed in the past 12 months. For a company of this size with nationwide service, these numbers are low.
There are a few negative reviews out there, but they are minimal overall. This is not unusual for a life insurance company since they do not pay out claims the same way a car or home insurance company would. Most people have little contact with their life insurance company once they have taken out the policy, which generally leads to fewer reviews and complaints.
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Protective Life Insurance Company should be high on the list for anyone shopping for basic life or annuity needs. The company’s many years of experience and focus on life and annuities only makes them a strong contender in the field. They may not be the right choice for those seeking term life only, or those who wish to have all of their policies in one place since they do not offer auto, home, or any other personal insurance products.
With a strong reputation and solid product offerings, Protective Life is well worth a quote comparison for most life insurance customers.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.