Allianz Life Insurance Review

International insurer offering fixed index universal life

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Allianz Insurance

Allianz Insurance

overall rating
4.5

Our Take

Allianz offers fixed index universal life insurance policies, which is a type of permanent life insurance that has a permanent death benefit. It’s a great option if you want flexibility over how much you pay in premiums, wish to use your life insurance as a way to grow your investments tax-deferred, and also would like the ability to access your cash value via a loan.  

  • Pros and Cons
  • Key Takeaways
  • Specifications
Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Policy loans can help you supplement your retirement or college funding strategy

  • Adapts to your needs throughout life

  • International company

  • Also sells annuities

Cons
  • Only sells one kind of policy

  • Must purchase directly from a financial professional

  • Might be more coverage than you need

  • Charges high fees on your premiums

Key Takeaways
  • Allianz sells only one type of policy—a fixed universal index life insurance policy. 
  • The company includes an accelerated death benefit as part of your policy which allows you to access your death benefit if you develop a terminal illness. 
  • Allianz offers you the option of indexing your cash value to a variety of indexes allowing you to diversify your investments and reduce the impact of volatility on your cash value growth. 
Specifications
  • Year Founded 1890
  • Kinds of Plans Fixed universal index
  • Number of Plans 1
  • Payment Options Online, automated payment, credit card
  • Official Website https://www.allianzlife.com/what-we-offer/life-insurance/fixed-index-universal-life/life-pro-plus-advantage

Introduction

Allianz is an international company known for its insurance and annuities. It offers only one life insurance policy, a fixed index universal life insurance that has a lot of options for how you can use and grow the cash value of your policy. 

We reviewed Allianz’s policy offerings, riders, pricing, customer service, industry ratings, and more to help you decide if its policies are right for you.  

Company Overview

Allianz was founded in Munich, Germany, and is currently based in Berlin, Germany. Its U.S. headquarters are in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and the company claims to have over 100 million customers in over 70 countries who take advantage of its many products and services in the areas of insurance and asset management. It currently employs over 150,000 people worldwide and is rated A+ by AM Best for financial strength. 

The company doesn’t sell directly to consumers but instead works with financial professionals to help customers plan for their retirement and other goals through insurance. 

Allianz is licensed for business in all U.S. states.

Available Plans 

Allianz offers one policy: the Allianz Life Pro+ Fixed Index Universal Life Insurance Policy.  This policy has a minimum death benefit of $100,000 and a maximum death benefit of $65 million. It can be issued to people aged 0 to 80. 

With this policy, you can choose from several death benefit options. You can have a death benefit of a specific amount, a death benefit that will be equal to a specific amount but increases over time, or a death benefit that is equal to a specified amount and the premiums you have paid into the policy. 

The base cost of the policy varies depending on which death benefit and coverage amount you choose, and you can pay your premiums annually, semiannually, quarterly, monthly, or via a premium deposit lump sum. However, you can contribute above the base cost of the policy in order to build cash value. The policy also has a survivor benefit where the total death benefit of the policy increases by 10% if you take the death benefit over 10 years rather than in a lump sum, as is conventionally done. Note that the increase in value is considered taxable income. 

Allianz gives you multiple ways to access your cash value without having to pay surrender charges. You can take an indexed loan that uses the indexed interest of your policy to offset the loan costs or a fixed interest loan where interest is charged upfront at a specific percentage and then every year after at another percentage and you pay it out of your policy proceeds or directly. 

The policy allows you to index the cash value portion of your insurance to one or more indexes to diversify your risk and decrease volatility over time. The policy guarantees that your cash value never decreases due to negative performance. You can choose from the following indexes: S&P 500, Bloomberg US Dynamic Balance Index II, a blended index that comprises four indexes, or a balanced index that comprises two indexes. 

Interest earned is credited annually to your policy. 

Note

The Allianz Life Pro+ Fixed Index Universal Life Insurance Policy requires a medical exam. 

Available Riders

Allianz offers several life insurance riders, which are add-on forms of coverage that you can purchase to add to your plan. 

  • Child term rider: This adds term coverage of between $5,000 and $10,000 to your policy for children between 15 days old and 21 years old. You can convert this rider to permanent plans at any time. 
  • Enhanced liquidity rider: This rider waives part of the surrender charges for the policy if you decide to access your cash value or cancel your policy. 
  • Loan protection rider: This rider protects against a lapse in your policy due to a policy loan. It can be used between the ages of 75 and 120 after the policy is in force for a minimum of 15 years. 
  • Premium deposit fund rider: This rider deposits a lump sum of money that allows you to pay multiple years of premiums at a discounted rate. 
  • Supplemental term rider: This allows you to get extra term insurance that is up to 10 times the base death benefit of your policy until age 75. 
  • Waiver of new charges benefit: This rider waives surrender charges, expense charges, and enhanced liquidity rider charges if the amounts of these fees increase after year 11. 
  • Waiver of Specified Premium Rider: This rider means that your premium will be waived if you become totally disabled. 
  • Other insured term rider: You can get term coverage for up to four people, whether family members or business partners. Coverage can be in effect up to age 100.
  • Chronic illness accelerated death benefit rider: If you become chronically ill or cognitively impaired, you can access the death benefit while you are still alive. 
  • Terminal illness accelerated death benefit: With this rider, you can access the death benefit of the policy (up to $1 million) if you become terminally ill with 12 months to live. 

Since Allianz does not list the price of the riders online, you will need to speak to a financial professional or Allianz agent for that information.

Customer Service: Average Phone, Mail, Fax, and Email Options

Allianz assists customers by phone at 1-800-950-5872 Monday to Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. CT. You can also contact the company via email, mail, and fax. It’s unclear how long it will take to receive a response.

Customer Satisfaction: Fewer Complaints Than Average 

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) provides ratings of insurance companies based on customer satisfaction and complaints. If a company received an average number of customer complaints, it would have a score of 1. If a company received fewer complaints than average it would have a score below 1 and if a company received more complaints than average, it would have a score above 1.

Allianz has an NAIC complaint index of 0.33 which means that it receives fewer complaints than its competitors. In total, it has a 0.21% of the national complaint market share. Many of the complaints received were for issues with customer service or billing issues.

Financial Strength: A+ (Superior)

AM Best is an industry rating agency that assesses and rates a company’s financial strength to help customers determine if it is strong financially and likely to meet its future financial obligations. To do this, AM Best examines factors including performance, forward-looking statements, activity, and balance sheets.

Allianz has an A+ (Superior) rating. 

Cancellation Policy: Must Contact the Company for Cancellation Details

Allianz offers a free look period but it doesn't state how long it is online. Typically, free look periods range in length from 10 days to 30 days and allow you to cancel your policy within that period of time for a full refund without any cancellation fees. Before purchasing a policy with Allianz, be sure to ask your financial advisor about the free look period policies and the cancellation policy generally. Some life insurance companies charge you if you cancel your policy after the free look period ends.

Since you would be purchasing a permanent life insurance policy from Allianz, you will also want to know more about the company’s surrender policies. After canceling your policy, Allianz would pay you the surrender value.

Price Of Allianz Life Insurance: No Fixed Premiums

Allianz doesn’t charge fixed premiums on its policies. The amount you will pay will, therefore,  depend on things like your age, gender, and risk class and will never be less than $25 per month or $300 per year. 

Your premiums generally go to the cash value of your life insurance but it charges a premium amount of 8% from years 1 to 9 and 4% from years 10 and over. If you pay more than your standard premium, you will be charged 14% in years 1 to 9 and 4% after that. Allianz also has a monthly insurance cost charge determined by your risk class and a monthly policy charge of $7.50 per policy. 

Note

Policies with no fixed premiums can give you more flexibility over when you add money to your life insurance coverage, allowing you to better time your contributions. 

How Allianz Compares to Other Life Insurance

Allianz is a good choice for a life insurance policy because it offers a highly optimized vehicle for investing for your future and accessing your cash value over the life of your insurance policy. It has industry-leading options with its indexed life insurance with more riders and more indexing options than most of its competitors. However, a company that sells a greater selection of policies like AXA Equitable might be a better option. 

Allianz vs. AXA Equitable

Allianz and AXA Equitable are both insurance companies that focus on insurance and annuities and are focused on helping clients buy insurance that is a part of their retirement plan. In fact, for that reason, both Allianz and AXA Equitable require that you work with a financial professional to purchase a plan so that they can advise you on the right strategy. 

 These are some other key differences between Allianz and AXA Equitable:  

  • AXA Equitable also offers whole, term, and universal life insurance policy options.
  • AXA Equitable offers other forms of insurance that Allianz does not like group insurance coverage to employers that includes coverage for supplementary health programs.
  • AXA Equitable offers automatic riders as part of some of their policies including a living benefits rider that pays out your death benefit early if you are chronically or terminally ill. 
  • Allianz has a significant number of riders, including ones designed as protections for your family and business partners, and riders to protect your policy’s costs against future increases. 
  • Allianz offers a considerable amount of flexibility on how much coverage you can get, offering up to $65 million in coverage. 
  • Allianz offers more options on how you index the cash value of your universal index life insurance than AXA Equitable does. 

Although the life insurance product offerings are similar, Allianz has a much lower number of customer complaints and more flexibility in coverage, making them a better choice. However, if you’re interested in additional types of insurance or automatic riders, you should consider AXA Equitable.

  Allianz AXA Equitable
Types of Plans Fixed universal index Whole, term, universal, universal index
Customer Service  Phone, email, mail, fax Phone, email, online
NAIC Complaint Index 0.33 3.78
Optional Riders Available Yes Yes
AM Best Rating A+ A+
Expert Tip

If you are looking for a universal index policy in which to build your cash value, it’s important to shop around and compare the loan policies and investment fees for other universal index policies.

Final Verdict

Allianz offers one insurance policy that offers up to $65 million in coverage, multiple choices for riders, indexing your cash value, and taking out loans against your policy. It is a policy specifically designed to help you with planning for your retirement and financial needs to allow for maximum growth and maximum flexibility in taking out policy loans. Ultimately, it’s a great policy for those looking for a life insurance policy focused on building their cash value through a tax-deferred means. 

However, if you just need life insurance coverage to cover your final expenses or support your family and want lower premiums or to pay low investment costs on your retirement investments, you might be better off getting another life insurance policy or saving for retirement through another investment vehicle.  

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.