Gerber Life Insurance is a subsidiary of Southern & Western Financial Group that offers both adult and child life insurance, as well as family life insurance. Gerber provides term, whole, and guaranteed life as well as accident protection. Customers can also purchase coverage for a child or grandchild—starting at 14 days old—to insure against accidents and help build savings to cover the child’s education expenses later in life.
Based on our review of more than two dozen life insurance companies, Gerber Life Insurance was not one of the best companies we found. To see other options that may be better, visit our list of the best life insurance companies.
- Pros and Cons
- Key Takeaways
Insures adults, kids, or the whole family
Cost-effective insurance for young kids
Build cash value for your kids over time
Get help with college planning
Guaranteed lifetime coverage for kids starting at an early age
Underage children have no income that needs to be insured
Choosing a policy for a child is difficult to understand their future financial needs
Coverage for children is limited to $50,000
- Gerber Life has children’s life coverage that you can’t find anywhere else
- Gerber Life’s Grow-Up® Plan gives children automatic coverage when they turn 18
- Gerber offers very transparent pricing for coverage at any age
- Gerber Life is owned by Western & Southern, but has no affiliation with the makers of Gerber baby food
- Parents can buy life insurance for their children starting at just 14 days old
- Year Founded 1967
- Average Cost Per Month $30 to $36 per month for $150,000 in term coverage (35 year old non-smoker) or $160 per month for the same amount of whole life.
- Kinds of Plans Term, whole, guaranteed life, accident protection, child protection.
- Number of Plans Six
- Payment Plan Options Monthly, quarterly, annually, or semi-annually; adjust payment preferences online through Gerber Life’s online service center.
- Official Website https://www.gerberlife.com/
Gerber Life Insurance is an insurance company that provides coverage for adults, seniors, and, most notably, children. The company, not owned by the Gerber baby food company, is a great option for those who want accident protection and like that it also helps save for college and other expenses for their children and grandchildren.
Gerber Life is not affiliated with Nestle, the maker of Gerber baby food.
Company Overview: Coverage for the Whole Family
Gerber Life Insurance was started in Fremont, Michigan in 1967. The company is owned by Western & Southern Financial Group, who licenses the Gerber trademark from Gerber Products, which is owned by Nestle. So, while Gerber Life isn’t technically the same company that makes the baby food, it is owned by a large financial firm with more than $50 billion of life insurance policies in force.
Children’s Insurance Benefits
When someone first hears about insurance for children, many people think it isn't necessary. What people forget is that there are many benefits of life insurance aside from death benefits. Life insurance for kids can help parents or guardians save for college expenses and children’s future housing, in addition to setting them up for permanent coverage of their own when they turn 18.
Available Plans: Children’s Coverage You Can’t Find Anywhere Else
Gerber Life Insurance offers several types of traditional life insurance for adults, including term and whole life. The company also offers coverage for seniors, accident protection, and guaranteed life. Gerber is also unique in that they offer insurance policies for children as young as 14 days old that can be used to save for things like college expenses and can be converted easily once the child reaches adulthood.
Gerber doesn’t offer as many types of life insurance as most life insurance companies. For example, the company doesn’t offer either universal or indexed universal policies, so policyholders can’t invest their cash accounts in the stock market for faster growth.
Term Life Insurance
Gerber customers can buy term insurance to get a set amount of coverage for a set period of 10, 20, or 30 years. Term life is Gerber’s least expensive type of insurance, with premiums varying by age and location. A 35-year old man in Michigan, for example, can purchase $150,000 of coverage for 20 years for $36 per month if he's a non-smoker. The cost more than doubles for a smoker. While Gerber offers life insurance policies specifically for children, eligibility for its traditional term coverage starts at age 18. A medical exam is required only for applicants older than 50 and those applying for $100,000 or more in coverage.
Whole Life Insurance
Whole life is a type of permanent insurance that offers coverage if something happens to an insured, but it also diverts a portion of policyholders’ regular premium payments into a cash account. The Gerber whole life insurance plan a policy coverage ranges from $50,000 to $300,000 for ages 18 to 70; however, those with certain medical histories may not be eligible for the maximum coverage amount. This cash account accrues interest so it can grow over time. Policies remain in force as long as policyholders pay their premiums, which are guaranteed not to increase over time.
Guaranteed Life Insurance
Gerber’s guaranteed life insurance is a type of whole life coverage, sometimes called final expense coverage, designed for people between the ages of 50 and 80. Applicants are guaranteed approval and can purchase coverage ranging from $5,000 to $25,000 and their policy builds cash value over time. However, the plan is primarily designed to help cover final expenses like medical bills, burial costs, or outstanding loans.
Parents, grandparents, and legal guardians may apply when children are 14 days to 14 years old and lock in an affordable premium that will never increase.
Gerber Life College Plan
The College Plan is "flexible use" coverage that can be used to pay for college or anything else, with guaranteed growth and the benefit of adult life insurance. Coverage is available from $10,000 to $150,000. Once the policy reaches maturity, there is no limit as to what the cash value can be used for. And, unlike a 529 plan, your Gerber Life College Plan's value won't fluctuate with changes in the economy. Applicants are guaranteed approval if they’re 19 to 69 years old—with no physical exam required—and rates will never increase.
Accident Protection Insurance
Accident protection insurance is coverage that protects against accidental death or disability. Coverage is available from $20,000 to $100,000 and can help cover out-of-pocket medical costs or lost wages. Applicants are guaranteed approval if they’re 19 to 69 years old—with no physical exam required—and rates will never increase.
Gerber Life is one of few life insurance companies that offer coverage for children. These policies provide protection against accidents but also build cash value that can be used to pay for college or other expenses.
- Gerber Life Grow-Up® Plan: The Grow-Up Plan is whole life coverage for children as young as 14 days old that provides protection, builds cash value, and can guarantee coverage for your child for their entire lifetime. Coverage automatically doubles at age 18 at no extra cost.
- Gerber Life Young Adult Plan: Gerber’s Young Adult Plan is a whole life insurance policy for teens ages 15 through 17 that offers lifelong protection for the child as long as premiums are paid. Rates are guaranteed to stay the same and coverage automatically doubles when the child turns 18 for no extra fee.
Customer Service: Available But Not Great Ratings
Gerber Life customers who need assistance can contact the company by phone, email, or fax (for those who still have machines). The company can be reached by phone at 1-800-704-2180 between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or on Saturday between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET. The company’s fax number is 231-928-3078, and customers can contact Gerber via email through the company’s website.
Customers who need to file a claim can’t do so online but can contact the company via phone or email to start the process.
Customer Satisfaction: Could Be Better
Gerber is not rated by J.D. Power, nor is its parent company, Western & Southern. However, Gerber receives strong ratings online for customer service. Reviewers on Gerber's website rate its various plans as follows:
|Plan||Star rating||Recommendation rate|
|Gerber Life Grow-Up||4.4/5.0||89%|
|Gerber Life Young Adult||No reviews||N/A|
|Gerber Life College Plan||4.3/5.0||91%|
Financial Strength: Not Backed by Nestle
Gerber has received an A (Excellent) rating from AM Best, indicating that the company is relatively stable financially. It’s worth noting that Gerber is owned by Western & Southern, which further adds to its financial strength. However, the company is not associated with the Gerber food maker Nestle, so customers can’t depend on the financial strength of the giant Swiss food company. Still, the company has never defaulted on a payment.
Cancellation Policy: Cancel Whenever You Want
Customers who purchase life insurance policies through Gerber have 30 days in which to cancel their policy at no cost (a so-called “free look period”). After that, customers can still cancel their policies whenever they want but may encounter surrender charges. Customers who cancel can get immediate access to the cash value of their policy, less surrender charges or any funds they’ve borrowed against their policy previously.
Coverage doubles at age 18 automatically with no increase in cost.
Gerber makes it extremely easy for people to get quotes through their website. The company isn’t as cost-effective as some other providers, nor do they offer as many different types of policies as some other insurers. However, Gerber does offer some types of insurance—such as children’s insurance—that a lot of companies don’t provide.
Non-smoking adults looking to purchase $150,000 of term life coverage for a 20-year term can expect to pay the following monthly premiums:
*Represents monthly cost for $200,000 of coverage
And here are estimated monthly premiums for $25,000 of coverage through the Gerber Grow Up Plan for children five years or younger:
|Under 1 Year||$15.70||$15.70|
Competition: Gerber vs. American Family
American Family Insurance (AmFam) is another life insurance company that offers, among other products, children’s life insurance. Also like Gerber, AmFam gets an A (Excellent) rating from AM Best for financial strength. AmFam makes the benefits of its children’s insurance less clear, and coverage doesn’t automatically double when the child turns 18 as it does with Gerber. If you’re looking for children’s insurance, be sure to check out Gerber first.
Gerber is a Great Way to Save for College
Gerber Life Insurance is one of few national life insurers that offer policies for young children. The company also offers policies for adults and seniors, but there are few types of policies available and rates aren’t very competitive. If you’re looking for children’s life insurance to help save for college expenses or guarantee your child lifetime coverage, Gerber is a great option. If you’re looking for more conventional adult life insurance, be sure to consider other providers.
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. For each company, we compared the life insurance products offered, as well as available features, and reported customer experiences using our life insurance review methodology.