AIG Life Insurance Review

Great term, universal life, and living benefits for all ages

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AIG

AIG

overall rating
4.7

You should be aware that not all life insurance companies are currently accepting insurance applications due to COVID-19 pandemic. We'll update our reviews as we find more information about what companies are currently accepting new applications.

Our Take

AIG is one of the largest life insurance companies and offers a wide variety of policy options. It maintains an A+ AM Best Rating and can underwrite some of the largest policies sought out by consumers. AIG has a policy to match every need and budget.

  • Pros and Cons
  • Key Takeaways
  • Specifications
Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Range of products available to suit a budget or build wealth

  • No medical exam policies are available

  • Living benefit Quality of Life (QoL) plans

  • No waiting period policies available

  • Many universal life policy options

  • Return of premium, money-back options available

  • Policies with guaranteed cash values you can access

  • Term life available up to 35 years

Cons
  • No online quotes (require email and phone number for call back)

  • Conversion time limits may be confusing

  • Limited whole life insurance options

  • Policy options may be confusing

  • Customer service ratings are not consistent

  • Higher than average complaint ratio with the NAIC

  • Relies on discussion with the agent

Key Takeaways
  • AIG got dismal ratings for customer service in J.D. Power’s 2019 Life Insurance Study. 
  • AIG has excellent ratings for financial stability including an A+ rating from AM Best. 
  • AIG’s variable universal life policies offer more than 40 different investment options. 
  • AIG offers up to $10 million of permanent life coverage. 
  • AIG is the fifth-largest life insurance company in the U.S.
Specifications
  • Year Founded 1926
  • Kinds of Plans Term life, guaranteed issue whole life, universal life, variable universal life, final expense
  • Number of Plans 11
  • Official Website https://www.aig.com/individual/insurance

AIG Life Insurance Company offers term life, permanent life, and universal life plans with a variety of options and riders. We researched AIG Life Insurance’s financial stability ranking, policy plan options, riders, website tools, and customer service reviews to help you compare the life insurance policy options of AIG Life Insurance with the competition. See our full findings below.

Company Overview

AIG Life Insurance issues policies through American General Life Insurance Company (AGL) or The United States Life Insurance Company in the City of New York (US Life). AIG is a global insurance company, originally founded in 1919 by an American in China, with the first American offices opening in New York in 1926. AIG is the fifth-largest Life Insurance provider in the US, with headquarters in Houston, Texas. AIG sells their life insurance through agents and AIG Direct. 

Available Plans with AIG

AIG Life offers 11 available plans with several riders, including living benefits features. They only offer one Whole Life Policy on their website, which is the Guaranteed Issue policy. The rest of their product offering is strong for term life options, as well as survivor and universal life plans.

Term Life Insurance

AIG Life offers both renewable term and convertible term life insurance plans with 18 different term periods and 4 different riders available. The maximum coverage period for term life with AIG is 35 years, which is longer than most of the other companies we reviewed, some of which had maximum term life policy periods of 20 or 30 years. Here is an overview of the Term Life Plans offered by AIG.

Our expert says

For term or universal life insurance, AIG is a strong company to consider due to its multiple policy choices, long term lengths, and comprehensive list of riders including living benefits options.

Select-a-Term Level Premium Convertible

Select-a-Term Level Term plans provide the option to convert your term life policy to a Universal Life plan for specified time periods based on term length. For example, for a 10-year term, you may have an option to convert up until the 8th year, so you don't want to leave conversion to the last minute or end of term otherwise you may not have the option. If you convert your plan during the eligibility period, you will not have to prove insurability again, which means you won’t have to take a new medical exam. Premiums are guaranteed level for the initial level term only and policies expire at a maximum age of 95. 

For term or universal life insurance, AIG is a strong company to consider due to its multiple policy choices, long term lengths, and comprehensive list of riders including living benefits options.

QoL Flex Term

AIG’s QoL Flex Term policy is a level term life insurance policy with living benefits. Living benefits allow some flexibility because rather than only paying out the death benefit in the event of death, a living benefit option allows you to access some of the value of your policy if you are diagnosed with a chronic illness, critical illness or terminal illness before the end of the term. 

The minimum face value is $100,000 with the capacity to go over $1,000,000. 

Permanent Life Insurance

Whole Life insurance is a type of permanent life insurance policy that offers you a set death benefit and many have cash values that you can borrow against if you need to later on in life. AIG offers two types of permanent life insurance: whole life insurance and universal life.

In most cases, cash value accrues tax-deferred. If you borrow against the cash value of the policy you will have to pay it back with interest (or it will impact the amount of money set aside for your death benefit). AIG Whole life policies are generally available to age 100, with a set premium. 

Coverage amounts for AIG Permanent Life plans are from $50,000 to $10,000,000, with the exception of the Guaranteed Issue Whole Life Plan. Here is an overview of the various whole life plans offered by AIG: 

AIG Guaranteed Issue Whole Life Insurance

The Guaranteed Issue Whole Life Insurance is a final expense insurance plan with no health questions or medical exams to qualify. The issue ages are between 50 to 85 with a minimum value of $5,000 and a maximum face value of $25,000. Details you need to know:

  • There is a reduced death benefit amount in the first two years for death if the cause of death is not accidental, but after that, you are eligible for the full insured face value. 
  • The payment for death due to suicide or other cause that is not accidental in the first two years is limited to 110% of the premiums paid up to the point of death. Most life insurance policies have a suicide provision or contestability clause that could deny payment in a suicide-related death in the first two years, so this settlement is better than most.

Universal Life Insurance

AIG Life offers a vast range of Universal Life Insurance Plans. The universal life policy offers the opportunity to choose a flexible death benefit, whereas the whole life policy does not. You can choose among seven different plan options, this allows you to manage the risk you are comfortable in taking with your investments and balance this with your death benefit option. Plans are available for issue ages 18 to 80 years old. Coverage amounts for AIG universal life plans are from $50,000 to $10,000,000.

AIG Life Insurance offers one guaranteed universal life policy and two index universal life products: 

Secure Lifetime GUL 3 

Secure Lifetime is a guaranteed universal life insurance policy with guaranteed death benefits plus cash value potential. This policy gives you the flexibility to adjust how you pay premiums and the death benefits.

Value+ Protector

The Value+ Protector is one of AIG’s index universal life insurance plans, it is similar to the guaranteed universal life but is structured instead to deliver maximum value through investment.

Max Accumulator+ Indexed Universal Life (IUL)

The Max Accumulator IUL is a flexible IUL product for long-term wealth accumulation and retirement goals. The performance of this product is tied to index market performance.

Quality Of Life (QoL) Plans

The QoL products provide built-in living benefits at no additional cost for situations such as:

  • Qualifying chronic illness
  • Qualifying critical or terminal illness

In addition to the basic plans above, AIG Life Insurance also offers the following products for quality of life coverages:

  • QoL Guarantee Plus GUL II: This policy provides a guaranteed death benefit and cash values. The QoL coverage included in this plan provides you with access to an accelerated death benefit option that you can use for the cost of care, to replace lost income, or help assure your quality of life if you get a terminal illness, chronic illness, or critical illness. The plan offers a guaranteed minimum accelerated benefit, up to a maximum available of $2,000,000. Another feature of this plan is that you may cancel the policy at the end of year 20, and get 50% of premiums paid, or at the end of year 25% to get back 100% of premiums paid and up to 40% of the death benefit face amount. 
  • QoL Max Accumulator+: This plan includes the Quality of Life options, plus various investment options for the cash value portion of your plan, as well as a death benefit. The plan also provides flexibility in premium payment options, you can select your death benefit amount, and you can choose how to earn the interest in your account. For example, you can put 25% in each of the index interest accounts, or divide it up however you feel comfortable. This plan puts you in control of your earning potential. You can also access the cash values through a tax-free loan, or withdraw cash value if you need it later on in life. Interest is guaranteed on this policy to never drop below 2%. The plan also offers a variety of riders to choose from some are included for free.
  • QoL Value+ Protector: This plan also offers Quality of Life options, plus guaranteed death benefit coverage up to age 100. This plan allows you to pick your premium amounts, the death benefit, premium frequencies and how you assign the mix of where you want to earn interest on your cash values, like the QoL Max Accumulator+. Policy loans and withdrawals on this plan may be taken by means of three options: Standard, Preferred or Participating. This access to cash is potentially income tax-free, offers fast access to cash and have no repayment plan required.

AG Secure Survivor GUL II 

AG Secure Survivor GUL II is a survivorship life policy that offers a guaranteed death benefit, and guaranteed cash value. Survivorship life insurance policies cover two people, and only pays the death benefit on the death of the second person. It is used as a strategy to pass on wealth to heirs.

Variable Universal Life Insurance

The AG Platinum Choice VUL 2 is the only variable universal life policy currently for sale on the AIG site, it is not available in New York. As a variable universal life policy, it focuses on investment options to build cash values and has 46 variable investment options to choose from. This policy focuses on cash value guarantees regardless of market performance. This provides the potential to grow without traditional risks. 

Policy features include a guaranteed death benefit up to age 121, minimum cash value guarantees, guaranteed return of premium options (included at no cost), and a guaranteed chronic illness protection optional add-on. This policy also offers non-medical underwriting issuance for issue ages 18 to 50 at values under $500,000. For values over $500,000 or ages above 51, traditional underwriting (with a medical exam) is used.

Although AIG offers a lot of information online, figuring out what options are best for you may be confusing. Speaking to a financial professional or agent will help you get the most out of policy offerings.

List of AIG Life Insurance (American General) Policy Riders

AIG offers a robust selection of riders that you can add on your life insurance policy, riders may not be available for all policies. Here is a sample list of the riders available with AIG, options vary depending on policy type:

Accelerated Benefit Rider (ABRs)

Available with the Quality of Life (QoL) policies, including the Max Accumulator+ and Flex Term policy. This is the rider that covers the Quality of Life policy options described in the QoL section above. 

Income for Life Rider

For certain policies in force more than 10 years, you may convert the cash values into a guaranteed income stream, only available for some plans, such as the Max Acumulator+. 

Child Rider

Provides a death benefit in the event of the death of your child. Issue ages for the child are 15 days to 18 years old.   

Accidental Death Benefit Rider

This rider provides an additional death benefit if your death is the result of an accident subject to certain terms.  

Terminal Illness Rider

Provides an accelerated death benefit if diagnosed as having 24 months or fewer to live. 

Waiver of Monthly Deduction Rider

This rider allows you to waive the monthly deduction if you are totally disabled after a six-month waiting period.

Customer Service: Basic with a Concerning Level of Complaints

AIG offers its products through agents or financial planners with no direct online quoting. Although they do offer an option to get a quote, this leads you to a form on the AIG Direct site, which then triggers a call to you after you fill it in. You can request a term quote up to $2,000,000.

Although it may be inconvenient to not get the quote right away like some of the other life insurance providers that offer quotes online, with the variety of plans available, it may be best to speak to an agent to help you figure out the options. They offer a good amount of information online, including links to customer brochures that outline the products and an online calculator. Once insured with AIG, you have access to online policy management with some self serve options.

Customer Reviews and Complaints

AIG Life Insurance Company has some five-star reviews from their policyholders on their website. However, they also have a higher than average level of complaints on the National Association of Insurance Commissioner’s (NAIC) National Complaint Index. They had 232 complaints in 2019. Their complaint trend score is 1.42. This represents a complaint rating that is almost one and a half times more than the expected average for their size. The NAIC expected trend score would be 1, a score of 2 would indicate two times the expected average for a company of their size and market share.  

We also checked the complaint trends for 2018 and 2017, and it was consistent: 1.61 in 2018 and 2.23 in 2017, which was twice the expected number of complaints for a company of their size. In looking at the reasons for the complaints, most of them revolved around service delays and “delays/no response” which is concerning. 

AIG’s life insurance division, has a BBB rating of A, due to three unresolved complaints with the Better Business Bureau.

Our expert says

Although AIG offers a lot of information online, figuring out what options are best for you may be confusing. Speaking to a financial professional or agent will help you get the most out of policy offerings

Financial Strength

J.D. Power Rating: The Rest

AIG Life ranked 15 out of 23 for Customer Satisfaction Overall in the 2020 J.D. Power Life Insurance Study, which ranks life insurance companies for customer experience and satisfaction. J.D. Power rates life insurance companies in several customer service categories to come up with an overall customer satisfaction score. The categories are “Among the Best”, “Better than Most”, “About Average” and “The Rest.” 

 Here is the breakdown of AIG customer service ranking by category: 

Customer Service Category Rank
Overall Satisfaction The Rest
Product Offerings The Rest
Price The Rest
Statements About Average
Interaction The Rest
Communication The Rest
Application and Orientation The Rest

AM Best Rating: A+ (Superior)

AIG Life Insurance is financially stable and has an AM Best rating of A (Excelllent) under the AIG Life & Retirement Group, which includes, 

  • AGC Life Insurance Company
  • American General Life Insurance Company
  • United States Life Insurance Company in the City of New York
  • The Variable Annuity Life Insurance Company

An insurance company’s financial stability indicates the insurance company’s ability to meet its financial obligations and payout claims. 

AIG Life Insurance Cancellation Policy

If you decide you want to cancel your life insurance policy, the terms of cancellation will vary. If the policy you are looking to cancel has cash value or surrender values you should receive an illustration overview of how that value grows or changes over time and what happens if you cancel. Ask your agent for information to help you understand the full policy terms. 

Price of AIG Life Insurance Plans

The average expected costs for life insurance, according to LIMRA is $160 per year for $250,000 term life insurance for a healthy 30-year-old. 

There are no quotes available online.

Based on our research we found sample rates for life insurance on a 10-year term for $100,000 of coverage on their “Preferred Plus” rating for:

  • Under $20 a month: Age range from 30 to 55 
  • About $40-$60 a month: Age range from age 55 to 65
  • Between $60-$90: Age 70

Age varies based on health and sex. Information above was taken from the following illustrative chart of life insurance rates from ages 30 to 70 on a 10-year term:

AIG
AIG

How AIG Life Insurance Compares to Other Life Insurance

If you are looking for term or universal life insurance, then AIG is a strong company to consider due to its multiple policy choices. We found a few other companies with the same scope of options and riders. AIG offers a full spectrum of coverages, including living benefits.

The QoL series of policies make AIG a top pick for life insurance companies because they offer living benefit options with the opportunity to manage premium payments, cash values and death benefits on your own terms and at a varying level of risk. AIG’s variable universal life policy has several guarantees while providing a range of investment options. Variable universal life policies have traditionally been high risk, AIG’s offering of a minimum guaranteed cash value in the AG Platinum Choice VUL 2 plan is a definite asset.

The Guaranteed Issue Whole Life Policy with AIG is a true guaranteed issue policy option with no medical exam. In many cases, other insurers who offer final expense state there is no medical exam, but it does not guarantee acceptance. In those cases, with insurers such as “simplified issue” which still requires a medical questionnaire and may be refused, they are not truly “Guaranteed Issue”.   

AIG Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance vs. Transamerica Final Expense 

Both AIG and Transamerica offer no medical exam guaranteed issue policies. If you are looking for a no medical exam policy, here are some differences to consider:

  • AIG issue ages start at 50 years old, similar to the issue age range of Mutual of Omaha. 
  • Transamerica Life gears its guaranteed issue Final Expense policy to all ages, with issue ages from zero to 85 years, and also offers guaranteed issue term policies for younger applicants if they pass a medical questionnaire. 
  • AIG has a maximum benefit of $25,000 compared to the maximum limit of $50,000 for a Transamerica guaranteed issue plan.

Overall, when comparing these two companies, Transamerica has higher ratings for financial strength, can offer more coverage and has stronger customer satisfaction ratings making it our top pick when compared to AIG.

Final Verdict

Tons of Options

AIG Life Insurance provides a vast range of products to look at if you are shopping around for life insurance options. They offer limited information about their plans online but include links to full detail brochures that allow you to review the small print. Access to this can be very confusing so speaking to an agent or financial advisor is recommended.

Customer reviews are mixed. AIG’s universal life options and coverage up to 121 in some cases are a definite pro. AIG is a good company when you are looking for a policy that has lifetime coverage, flexibility in premium payment terms and guaranteed cash value growth. Before settling on purchasing from AIG Life make sure you fully understand the terms of what you are signing on for. 

Methodology

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

Article Sources

The Balance requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. You can learn more about the standards we follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in our editorial policy .
  1. Insurance Information Institute. "Facts + Statistics: Life insurance." Accessed Feb. 23, 2020.

  2. Insurance Information Institute. "What Are the Different Types of Permanent Life Insurance Policies?" Accessed Feb. 23, 2020

  3. American Council of Life Insurers. "Life Insurers Fact Book 2018." Page 66. Accessed March 12, 2020.

  4. National Association of Insurance Commissioners. "American Gen Life Insurance Co Results by Complaint Code." Accessed November 24, 2020.

  5. NAIC. "American Gen Life Ins Co Reasons Why Complaints Were Submitted." Accessed March 5, 2020.

  6. J.D. Powers. "J.D. Power 2020 Life Insurance Study." Accessed Nov. 24, 2020.

  7. AM Best. "AM Best Affirms Credit Ratings of American International Group, Inc. and Most Subsidiaries." Accessed Nov. 25, 2020.

  8. LIMRA. “Facts About Life 2019.” Accessed Feb. 20, 2020.

  9. AIGDirect. "Life Insurance Rates By Age." Accessed Feb. 27, 2020.