5Star Life Insurance Review

Group term life policies for employees and federal government contractors

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5Star Life Insurance

5Star Life Insurance

Our Take 

5Star Life Insurance offers group life insurance plans through employers as well as federal government contractors. It also offers supplemental insurance options such as critical illness, accident, and hospital indemnity insurance. While prices aren’t available online, premiums are paid directly through employee paychecks, which may allow for some tax savings. If you are looking for term life coverage through a workplace plan, 5Star Life Insurance may be a good option.

  • Pros and Cons
  • Key Takeaways
  • Specifications
Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Supplemental insurance available

  • Some costs may be covered by employer completely

  • Coverage for active military members with no geographic restrictions

Cons
  • Limited to term and whole life policies only

  • Coverage terms and amounts may vary by employer

  • Only up to $150,000 in coverage available

Key Takeaways
  • 5Star Life Insurance offers group life and supplemental insurance coverage through employers.
  • 5Star Life Insurance is the principal underwriter for the Armed Forces Benefit Association (AFBA).
  • 5Star has a term insurance offering specific to federal government contractor employees.
  • 5Star Life Insurance has an A- (Excellent) rating from AM Best, making them a strong financial company.
Specifications
  • Year Founded 1996
  • Kinds of Plans Term, Supplemental
  • Number of Plans 2
  • Payment Options Payroll deduction, Monthly
  • Official Website www.5starlifeinsurance.com

Introduction

5Star Life Insurance is an employee benefits insurance company that focuses on providing life and supplemental insurance with special offerings for federal government contractor employees. We researched 5Star Life Insurance’s financial stability, policy plan options, riders, website tools, and customer service reviews to help you compare the life insurance policy options of 5Star Life Insurance with the competition. 

Company Overview

5Star Life Insurance was founded in 1996 to underwrite insurance policies for the Armed Forces Benefit Association (AFBA), which serves military members as well as federal government employees and contractors and also first responders such as law enforcement, firefighters, and emergency medical personnel. 5Star Life Insurance also offers its own insurance products as voluntary employee benefits.

5Star Life Insurance offers term life insurance to employees as an elective benefit, with premiums paid directly through employer payroll as a paycheck deduction. Policies are available in 45 states in the U.S., excluding DE, ND, SD, NY, and CA.

5Star Life Insurance offers a continuation of coverage option. This allows employees to keep their coverage as they change jobs.

Available Plans

5Star Life Insurance offers three types of term life insurance, group and individual term policies through employers, and group policies for federal government contractors. These policies can be customized to employees with varying coverage amounts and optional riders determined by the employer. Individual policies are owned by the insured and can be applied for directly through 5Star Life Insurance.

Group Term Life Insurance

5Star Life Insurance’s group term life insurance is coverage that allows continuous coverage up to age 121 with up to $150,000 in coverage and several riders available, as well. To qualify for a term policy, employees may need to answer health-related questions or be subject to a medical exam.

Spouse and child term policies are also available, with up to $150,000 in coverage available for spouses and $10,000 available for children.

Exact coverage term lengths, total coverage amounts, and premiums are selected by employers.

Individual Term Life Insurance

5Star Life Insurance also offers individual term life insurance coverage in which the policyholder owns the policy, not the employer. As with the group term policies, exact coverage term lengths, total, and premiums vary, though up to $150,000 of coverage is available. Instead of level-term policies, continuous term coverage is available until age 100 with prices based on age and health status.

To qualify for a term policy, employees may need to answer health-related questions or be subject to a medical exam. Spouse and child term policies are available, as well, with up to $150,000 in coverage available for spouses and $20,000 available for children.

Federal Contractor Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance coverage for federal government contractors is offered through the Armed Forces benefits Association (AFBA), which is the parent company of 5Star Life Insurance. These policies are guaranteed-issue, meaning no medical exam is required. It is also available to domestic or deployed individuals with no geographic limitations.

Basic coverage can be included as an employer benefit with no cost to the employee. Additional coverage can be elected as a voluntary benefit for a monthly premium amount. Coverage term length, benefits, and costs will vary by employer.

Available Riders

5Star Life Insurance offers several riders to its life insurance policies. Riders are additional coverage or benefits that are added to a life insurance policy to enhance coverage. Riders may be included at no additional cost or may charge via a flat fee or additional monthly premium amount. 

Accelerated Death Benefit Rider With Nursing Home Benefit

While coverage amounts, payouts, and rider availability may vary by state, this rider pays up to 30% of the policy face value upon a qualifying terminal illness diagnosis with a life expectancy of 12 months or less (24 months or less in KS, MA, and TX). The total payout is not to exceed $50,000 and will reduce the face value of the policy.

Disability Waiver of Premium Rider

If you become permanently disabled (unable to work), you may be eligible to have your premiums waived after a six-month waiting period.

Quality of Life Rider

This rider accelerates a monthly amount of up to 4% of the term life insurance face value, up to 75% of the total policy benefit, paid out on a tax-preferred basis.

Automatic Increase Rider

Available on individual term life policies, the insured can increase the policy benefit amount for up to five consecutive years on the policy anniversary date. No further qualifications are needed, the increase is a guaranteed benefit. 

The additional cost is $1 per week for this rider.

Children’s and Grandchildren’s Benefit Rider

Available on group term life policies, this rider offers level-term life insurance for your children or grandchildren. This policy is only available if the parent or grandparent is between 18 and 70 years old and the child is between 19 days and 19 years old (26 years old if a full-time student). 

Coverage benefits range from $5,000 to $10,000, and policies can be converted to a permanent life policy when the child turns 19.

Additional Insurance Products Offered by 5Star Life Insurance

Outside of life insurance, 5Star Life Insurance also offers other supplemental insurance products to employees:

Basic Life and AD&D

These policies offer basic coverage for life insurance and accidental death & dismemberment, with costs covered by employers. Coverage amounts and terms will vary per employer and policies are guaranteed-issue, meaning no medical exam is needed to enroll.

Critical Illness

This coverage pays out a lump sum amount if the insured is diagnosed with a critical illness (check with your employer benefits department for a list of covered illnesses). This helps clients focus on recovery and offsets the cost of missed work and other income. Up to three times the face value is available if diagnosed with qualifying critical illnesses. 

Spouse and child coverage is available as well.

Accident Insurance

Provides a cash benefit for medical and non-medical costs as a result of an accident. Policies are available for medical costs only or for income replacement, as well. Coverage amounts and terms will vary by employer. 

Healthcare Indemnity Insurance

This policy offers extra coverage to help pay for hospital procedures and stays that are not fully covered by traditional medical insurance. Payment is made directly to the employee or care provider.

Customer Service: Basic Phone and Email Support

5Star Life Insurance offers support over the phone or via email. As an employee benefit, many customer service questions will be directed to your workplace benefits department. 

5Star Life Insurance customer service is available by phone by calling 1-866-863-9753, though hours are not listed online. Emails for policies can be sent to PolicyHolderService@5Starlifeinsurance.com. Customers can also submit a question through the online contact form.

Customer Satisfaction: Better Than Average

5Star Life Insurance receives fewer complaints than average life insurance companies, according to the NAIC Complaint Index. While an average complaint score is 1.0 (the lower, the better, based on market share), 5Star Life Insurance received a 0.69 score. It has improved over its 2018 score of 1.74 and is still close to its low score of 0.34 in 2019. 

Neither 5Star Life Insurance nor its parent company AFBA was included in the J.D. Power 2020 U.S. Life Insurance Study.

Financial Strength: A- (Excellent)

5Star Life Insurance has an A- (Excellent) rating from AM Best. This rating is based on 5Star Life Insurance’s very strong balance sheet, marginal operating performance, limited business profile, and appropriate enterprise risk management. This reflects a strong financial position and gives customers the assurance that their life insurance claims will be paid as they arise.

Cancellation Policy: Depends on Employer Policy

Most U.S. states require a minimum “free look” period for insurance policies, and 5Star Life Insurance is held to this same standard. This is usually a 10- to 30-day period (which varies by state) that allows clients to sign up for a policy and cancel to receive a full refund. 

Since 5Star Life Insurance offers group life insurance policies directly through employers, the actual cancellation policy may depend on your state and employer.

After the free look period, term life insurance policies can typically be canceled, but will not offer a refund of premiums. Check with your employee benefits department for exact details on 5Star Life Insurance cancellation policies.

Price of 5Star Life Insurance: Varies by Employer 

5Star Life Insurance quotes are not available online, and premiums may be partially covered by your employer for basic life policies. Prices vary by policy, coverage, and term lengths selected as well as employer-negotiated pricing.

How 5Star Life Insurance Compares to Other Life Insurance

5Star Life Insurance offers flexible group term life insurance policies with many available riders. All of its policies are available as paycheck deductions, and premiums are paid with pre-tax dollars. Policies can also continue coverage after separation from employment.

Its term life policies offer low coverage amounts but may be a good option as supplemental coverage, although prices and coverage vary by employer. Here’s how 5Star Life Insurance compares to another workplace insurance company.

5Star Life Insurance vs. MetLife Life Insurance

5Star Life Insurance and MetLife are both top group life insurance providers for workplaces around the U.S. They both offer term life policies as well as other employee perks and programs. While 5Star Life Insurance underwrites policies for the AFBA, which supports over 650,000 individuals in the U.S., MetLife is by far the larger company, with over 90 million customers in over 60 countries around the globe. 

Here’s how 5Star Life Insurance and MetLife compare:

  • MetLife offers universal life policies, while 5Star Life Insurance does not.
  • 5Star Life Insurance offers several types of supplemental insurance, including critical illness and healthcare indemnity insurance.
  • MetLife offers additional perks as part of its plans, including funeral planning and grief counseling.
  • 5Star Life Insurance offers a policy increase rider, which allows the insured to add coverage over time with no additional qualifications needed.

While 5Star Life Insurance offers flexible term policies with a few available riders, MetLife offers a wider range of policy options including cash-value life policies for tax-deferred growth potential.

Read our full MetLife Life Insurance review.

  5Star Life Insurance MetLife Life Insurance 
Market Share  Sixth-largest in the U.S. by in-force premiums Largest in the U.S. by in-force premiums
Number of Plans
Online Quotes Available?  No  No 
Service Method  Email, phone  Email, phone, social media 
AM Best Rating  A- (Excellent)  A+ (Superior) 
Complaints Index  0.69 (good)  1.00 (average) 
Final Verdict

5Star Life Insurance offers decent term policies and supplemental insurance options through employers as well as underwriting policies for the AFBA. While pricing may be partially covered by employers, premiums paid by employees are also tax-deductible, coming directly out of your paycheck.

5Star Life Insurance’s policies only offer up to $150,000 in term life coverage, which may not be enough for many individuals.  If you are looking for a simple way to get life insurance coverage from your employer, 5Star Life Insurance is a good option. If you want more coverage options and flexibility, you may want to find another life insurance policy outside of your workplace from another top-rated life insurance company.

Methodology

All of our reviews of life insurance companies are based on extensive research and analysis of each company’s offerings, customer service, financial stability, cost, and more. For each company, we compared the life insurance products offered, as well as available features, and reported customer experiences. Visit our life insurance review methodology for the full breakdown of what we evaluated for over two dozen companies.