Monumental Life Insurance Review

Customizable life insurance plans with lots of options

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Transamerica Life Insurance

Transamerica Life Insurance

Our Take

Monumental Life offers universal, universal index, whole, final expense, and term life insurance policies that are sold either through group plans to employers as part of supplemental insurance plans, or directly to consumers. It is a great option if your employer offers Monumental Life insurance as part of their group or if you’re looking to buy a policy from a company that offers a lot of customizable options. 

  • Pros & Cons
  • Key Takeaways
  • Specifications
Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Offers more types of life insurance than most life insurance companies

  • Offers final expense insurance that does not require a medical exam

  • Has a significant number of riders to help you customize your coverage

  • Term policies allow you to get terms of 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 years

  • Provides up to $10 million in coverage on some policies

Cons
  • To convert term policies, you have to submit a health questionnaire

  • Final expense insurance’s death benefit amounts change based on the age of issue, decreasing as you get older 

  • Higher than average number of customer complaints

  • Cannot get quotes on website for anything other than term policies

  • Does not offer a spouse rider, despite offering a child rider

Key Takeaways
  • Monumental Life provides a very wide range of terms, universal, universal index, final expense, and whole life insurance options sold directly to consumers or through your employer. The amount of options offered is rare for a company that provides supplementary insurance to employers. 
  • The company offers several riders to add to your coverage.
  • While Monumental Life offers annuities and retirement planning products, it does not offer auto or home insurance, so you cannot purchase all your insurance products from one company. 
Specifications
  • Year Founded 1858
  • Kinds of Plans Whole, term, universal, universal index, final expanse
  • Number of Plans 5 types and 8 total policies
  • Payment Options Mail, online, phone, automated payment, credit card, payroll
  • Official Website https://www.transamerica.com/individual/what-we-offer/products/insurance/#

Introduction

Monumental Life is a life insurance, annuities, group supplementary insurance, and retirement planning company that offers whole, universal, universal index, final expenses, and term life insurance policies directly to consumers or through your employer. It offers some simplified-issue plans and some fully underwritten plans with a wide variety of options

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

Company Overview

Monumental Life is headquartered in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. It is owned by Transamerica Company and started changing its name to Transamerica Premier Life Insurance Company in 2014. That process is still rolling out across their different products and lines of business but is now primarily known as Transamerica Premier Life Insurance Company. 

Transamerica is owned by one of the world’s leading financial organizations, Aegon, N.V., of which it became a subsidiary in 1999. The companies together serve over 13M customers and employ over 26,000 people around the world.  

Monumental Life’s policies are sold over the phone, through a financial professional or agent, or your employer and it is rated A by AM Best for financial strength. 

The company’s policies are offered in all states but some policy options and riders are different in New York.  

Available Plans 

As part of Transamerica, Monumental Life sells universal, universal index, final expenses, term and whole life insurance policies with several different options, term lengths, and policy types to choose from. 

Term Life Insurance

Monumental Life offers two term life insurance policies: the Trendsetter Super Series plan and the Trendsetter LB plan. Both offer terms ranging from 10 years to 30 years and have policy minimums of $25,000. While most of their policies require a medical exam, you might be able to get a policy without one if you’re under a certain age and fill out a medical questionnaire. 

The Trendsetter Super Series provides up to $10 million in coverage and might even offer more than that under special circumstances, although what qualifies as a special circumstance is unclear. The amount of coverage is guaranteed through the term you choose and at the end of the term, you may be able to convert your policy to a permanent life insurance policy without an additional health exam. 

The Trendsetter LB plan provides you with up to $2 million in protection but also offers a "living benefits" option where you can choose to buy a rider that gives you an accelerated death benefit in case you develop a critical, chronic, or terminal illness. This rider would allow you to access your death benefit while you’re alive to pay for medical expenses. 

Whole Life Insurance

Monumental Life offers whole life policies that provide you and your family with permanent protection throughout your entire life. So long as you pay your premiums, you build guaranteed cash value through these policies that you can access through a loan and your loved ones are guaranteed to receive a benefit upon your death. These policies have level premiums that are higher than a term life policy. Monumental Life sells two types of whole life insurance policies: individual whole life insurance and group whole life insurance. 

The individual whole life insurance through Monumental Life allows you to get a policy with a death benefit between $25,000 and $2 million. The group whole life insurance allows you to pay for a voluntary life insurance policy through your employer. The coverage amount will depend on the options offered by your employer and will allow you to access guaranteed whole life insurance coverage. 

Universal Life Insurance and Index Universal Life (IUL) Insurance

Monumental Life offers universal life and universal index insurance policies that provide the policy owners more flexibility to modify the amount and frequency of their premium payments and the amount of the death benefit. You can also use the cash value of your plan to pay for your premiums. With a universal life insurance policy, you can access a death benefit as well as build cash value in your universal life insurance plan that grows tax-deferred until you withdraw it or die. 

Monumental Life offers three universal life insurance policies: an index universal life insurance policy, a Transamerica Financial Foundation IUL, and a group universal life insurance policy. 

The index universal life policy allows you to index the basic interest amount your insurance’s cash value earns to two popular investment indexes. 

The Financial Foundation IUL has a guaranteed minimum interest rate floor that provides you with interest guarantees (the floor varies depending on issue date) and allows you to access Monumental Life’s "concierge planning" rider, which provides you with help on funeral planning. 

The universal group life insurance policy is provided as an option by your employer if they have an agreement to provide voluntary life insurance with Monumental Life. 

Final Expense Life Insurance 

Monumental Life offers a final expense life insurance policy which is a guaranteed issue insurance policy that you can get without having to undergo a medical exam. It also offers same-day approval for this policy, which is a whole life policy that builds cash value over time. 

There are three policy premium options: an Immediate Solution (available to those between 0 and 85 years old), a 10-Pay Solution (available to those between 0 and 85 years old), and an Easy Solution (available between ages 18 and 80 in every state except New York, where it’s available between ages 50 and 75). The Immediate Solution is a permanent life insurance policy that you have to pay premiums for until age 121; the 10-Pay Solution is a permanent life insurance policy that you pay over 10 years; and the Easy Solution is a graded death benefit that increases after an initial graded period and offers permanent coverage. 

The maximum benefit you can get for the Immediate Solution and 10-Pay Solution depends on your age when the policy is issued.

Age Maximum Coverage Amount
0-55 $50,000
56-65 $40,000
66-75 $30,000
76-85 $25,000

The maximum benefit you can get for an Easy Solution plan is $25,000. 

Note

Most of Monumental Life’s plans require a medical exam unless you are under a certain age, which is not specified online, and answering a medical questionnaire. To find out more details about when you need a medical exam, please contact Monumental Life.

Available Riders

As part of Transamerica, Monumental Life offers several life insurance riders you can purchase as add-on coverage for your plan including: 

  • Child life insurance rider: This rider allows you to purchase a policy for your child to add to your policy. 
  • Accelerated death rider: This rider allows you to get part of your death benefit in advance if you have a chronic, critical, or terminal illness. 
  • Accidental death benefit rider: This rider will increase your payout if you experience an accidental death that fits the policy criteria’s definition of accident. 
  • Waiver of premium rider: This rider ensures that if you become disabled your policy premiums will be paid. 
  • Concierge planning rider: This rider allows you to access funeral planning services in concert with Everest Funeral Concierge. 

These riders aren’t offered on all Monumental Life insurance policies, and they are not guaranteed-issue and might require a medical exam to add them to your policy. For an estimate of the cost of each rider, you will need to talk to a licensed Monumental Life agent.

Customer Service: Good Phone and Online Options

Monumental Life has a customer service hotline for claims and customer service. Claims are made through agents or on the phone. You can call Monumental Life Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. ET at 1-800-797-2643. 

You can also call 1-855-288-4181 to get a quote Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. ET. 

You can also request a call through the website and can connect with customer service via your online account. 

Customer Satisfaction: Fewer Complaints Than Average 

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) gives out ratings to insurance companies to help customers determine a company’s customer satisfaction. An NAIC complaint index score of 1 would mean that the company received an average number of complaints. An NAIC complaint score below 1 would mean that it received a lower than average number of complaints and an NAIC complaint score of more than 1 would mean it received more complaints than average.  

Although Monumental Life is no longer in the NAIC database, its parent company Transamerica has an NAIC complaint index of 0.91, which means that it receives fewer complaints than its competitors. In total, it has 0.03% of the national complaint market share. Many of the complaints received were for billings and bad customer service. 

Financial Strength: A (Excellent)

AM Best is an agency that rates companies’ financial strength by analyzing company-specific data including the company’s forward-looking statements, business profile, and balance sheet to determine how financially healthy it is to meet its financial obligations. 

Although Monumental Life is not rated by AM Best, Transamerica has an A (Excellent) rating. 

Cancellation Policy: 10-Day Free Look Policy

Monumental Life offers a 10-day free look period, which means that you have 10 days after getting a policy to cancel it for a complete refund and without any cancellation fees. If you don’t cancel your policy during the free-look period, it is unclear if there are any cancellation fees for canceling your policy. Be sure to ask about the cancellation policy before getting one. 

If you purchase a whole or universal policy then you will likely have to fill out surrender forms when you cancel. Monumental Life will have to calculate the surrender value of your policy so that it can pay you the cash value of your policy upon cancelation. 

Price Of Monumental Life Life Insurance: Varies by Policy Type

What you will pay for a life insurance policy through Monumental Life could vary significantly depending on if you are adding to an employer-sponsored plan, taking advantage of a group voluntary plan, or purchasing an individual policy. Many employers partly subsidize or pay for all of the costs of a group life insurance policy. 

Your costs will also vary depending on what type of coverage you’re purchasing. Term life insurance tends to have lower premiums than whole life insurance. Also, universal life coverage gives you premium flexibility and allows you to use the cash value you build in your policy to pay your premiums. 

Monumental Life does not provide quotes online but the website says that policy costs vary depending on things like your age, health history, and marital status. To learn more about how much your premiums would cost, contact your HR representative about group plans or reach out to a Monumental Life agent for a quote. 

How Monumental Life Compares to Other Life Insurance

Monumental Life offers two types of life insurance: employer-sponsored supplementary plans and direct-to-consumer life insurance. Unlike many other similar companies which don’t offer a lot of options for customizing your individual coverage, it has a significant selection of types of life insurance coverage, coverage amounts, and riders. The company also offers annuities, retirement planning, other forms of insurance like Medicare supplemental insurance and employee supplementary benefits. 

To see how it measures up to the competition, we compared Monumental Life to Equitable, which offers several similar policy options. 

Monumental Life vs. Equitable 

Monumental Life and Equitable both specialize in offering group employee plans as well as individual life insurance policy options. Both companies have strong financial strength ratings, although Monumental Life has fewer complaints. Equitable, however, has a higher AM Best rating. 

Consider these other key differences between Equitable and Monumental Life:  

  • Equitable offers survivorship life insurance that you can get to cover both yourself and your spouse and that only pays out if you both pass away. 
  • Equitable offers a variable universal index life insurance option under their universal index options.
  • Monumental Life offers final expense insurance.
  • Monumental Life offers more term options allowing you to get coverage up to 30 years, whereas Equitable only allows you to buy up to 20 years of coverage.
  Monumental Life Equitable
Types of Plans Whole, term, universal, universal index, final expenses Whole, term, universal, universal index
Customer Service  Phone, email, online Phone, email, online
NAIC Complaint Index 0.91 3.78
Optional Riders Available Yes Yes
AM Best Rating A A+
Expert Tip

Final expense insurance is a type of whole life policy that allows you to get smaller minimum amounts of coverage to pay for medical bills and funeral expenses after you pass away.

Final Verdict

When looking for life insurance, Monumental Life is a great place to start because of its broad selection of policies. The ability to work with an agent means you can determine your life insurance needs to customize your policy around those needs and your budget. From final expense insurance to universal index coverage, Monumental Life has options that work for almost anyone and it also offers relatively good supplemental coverage options for employees.  

However, while Monumental Life has a lower complaints index score than other companies, it has a slightly lower AM Best score than some of its competitors too, meaning that despite the stellar policy selection options it offers, it might not be the best choice for everyone. 

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.