NEA Life Insurance Review

Discounted group term life policies for NEA members

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NEA Life Insurance

NEA Life Insurance

Our Take 

NEA Life Insurance offers group term insurance and accidental death & dismemberment (AD&D) insurance to members of the National Education Association (NEA). While its term life policies may help younger members save money, NEA Life Insurance does not offer whole or universal life insurance, and its policies may be more expensive than other top life insurance companies. Compare prices first before signing up for an NEA policy.

  • Pros & Cons
  • Key Takeaways
  • Specifications
Pros & Cons
Pros
  • No-exam group term life coverage available (up to $400,000 in coverage)

  • Very low rates for young, healthy individuals

  • Online tool to determine how much coverage is needed

Cons
  • Premiums increase in 5-year age bands on some policies

  • Maximum of 20-year term lengths available

  • $1 million coverage cap on life insurance and AD&D policies

Key Takeaways
  • NEA Life Insurance is underwritten and serviced by Prudential Life Insurance.
  • NEA Life Insurance offers life insurance coverage for member dependents and spouses as well.
  • The National Education Association (NEA) is a union membership offered only to educators (teachers and other education staff), and life insurance policies are only available to NEA members.
  • The NEA also offers several other discounted insurance options and benefits to members.
Specifications
  • Year Founded 1967
  • Kinds of Plans Term, AD&D
  • Number of Plans 7
  • Payment Options Monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, annual
  • Official Website https://www.neamb.com/products/life-insurance

Introduction

NEA Life Insurance offers discounted life insurance options through its partner, Prudential Life Insurance. We researched NEA’s financial stability, policy plan options, riders, website tools, and customer service reviews to help you compare the life insurance policy options of NEA Life Insurance with the competition. 

Company Overview

NEA Life Insurance is offered by the NEA Member Benefits group, founded in 1967. NEA Life Insurance offers group term life insurance and AD&D policies to NEA members, their spouses, and their dependents, up to $1 million in coverage. There is also complimentary coverage available to NEA members, up to $15,000 of term life coverage during the first year of membership.

Sample policy rates are available online and most policies can be applied for online.

NEA Life Insurance is licensed in all 50 states, but actual availability varies by product and state. Policies are underwritten and serviced by Prudential Life Insurance, the fourth-largest life insurance organization in the U.S. (by market cap).

NEA also offers members access to discounted home and auto, health, and pet insurance, as well as a variety of retail discounts.

Available Plans 

NEA Life Insurance offers seven types of life insurance plans, including four types of term life insurance and three AD&D insurance plans. Plans are non-transferable, meaning that individuals who cancel their NEA membership will lose coverage.

Group Term Life Insurance Plan

The standard group term life insurance plan offers up to $500,000 in coverage with coverage up to age 70. At age 70, the benefit is reduced to 50% of the initial coverage amount. At age 75, the benefit is lowered to only 10% of the initial coverage amount.

Premiums are charged based on five-year age bands, which means premiums will increase as you enter a new age band. Up to $400,000 in coverage is available to healthy individuals with no medical exam required.

Level Premium Group Term Life Insurance Plan

This term life offering is a level-premium policy with benefits ranging from $50,000 to $1,000,000 in coverage, available up to age 70. Policy term lengths offered are 10-, 15-, and 20-year for applicants under age 60. Applicants aged 60 to 65 can apply for 10- or 15-year policies, and those ages 66 to 70 can apply for 10-year term policies.

Complimentary Life and AD&D Insurance

Once you become an NEA member, you get $1,000 in complimentary term life coverage as well as up to $50,000 in AD&D coverage. There is also a provision that pays out up to $150,000 if you are a victim of an unlawful homicide while at work.

There is also additional no-cost coverage available for the first 12 months of membership, including $15,000 in term life coverage. After 12 months, you can continue coverage at the normal member rate for term life insurance.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance Plan

NEA Life Insurance offers guaranteed-issue life insurance with coverage up to $20,000 for applicants aged 44 and older. This is ideal for smokers or those in poor health that may not otherwise qualify for life insurance coverage. Premiums increase in five-year age bands, up to age 70, where premiums level off.

The guaranteed-issue policy has VERY limited coverage for the first three years. Applicants only receive $500 in coverage for the first year of the policy, 25% of the benefit during the second year, and 50% of the benefit during the third year.

Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance Plans

The NEA AD&D plans offer coverage up to $120,000 for death or dismemberment due to an accident, or up to $1,000,000 for any covered accident on a plane, train or ship, or other public conveyance. There is additional coverage available for spouses and dependent children as well.

Coverage is guaranteed, no medical exams are required. There are also additional benefits available through the “Plus “ and “Advantage” plans:

  • AD&D Insurance Plus: Adds coverage for accidents due to a faulty seatbelt or airbag or injury during a felony assault. There is also a reimbursement available to cover dependent tuition, daycare costs, and educational costs for a spouse.
  • AD&D Advantage Insurance: Along with the benefits of the “Plus” plan, this offers to cover up to 12 months of mortgage payments, reimbursement for rehabilitation expenses, and counseling reimbursements. 

Available Riders

NEA Life Insurance offers several riders for its group term life insurance policies. These optional policy enhancements are only available on the standard term life policy, and not on the level-premium, or guaranteed-issue policies. 

Rider fees are typically billed as a small percentage of the policy premium or as a flat annual fee.

Accelerated Death Benefit Rider

This rider pays 75% of the policy face value (or $1 million, whichever is less) upon a terminal illness diagnosis. This is only available on standard group term life plans.

Disability Waiver of Premium Rider

If you become permanently disabled (unable to work) before age 55, you may be eligible to have your premiums waived.

Children’s Benefit Rider

This rider offers term life insurance for your children for a small additional fee of $11 per year. 

Coverage of $100,000 is available per child.

Customer Service: Email, Phone, or Live Chat

NEA Life Insurance offers support over the phone, by email, or via its live chat online. Customers can speak with an NEA representative by calling 800-637-4636 or sending an email to ask-us@neamb.com

NEA Life Insurance’s customer service business hours are Monday-Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. ET, and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 1 p.m. ET.

Customer Satisfaction: Many Complaints

NEA Life Insurance is not a licensed insurer, but Prudential underwrites its policies and has a poor customer complaint score, according to the NAIC. While an average complaint score is 1.0 (the lower, the better), Prudential received a 4.09 score for its life insurance policies in 2020. This is much higher than the industry average, and it more than doubled its complaint index score in 2018 and 2019, which was 2.12 and 2.66, respectively.

J.D. Power also ranks companies based on customer satisfaction, and they ranked Prudential 11 out of 23 life insurance companies in the U.S. in their 2020 Life Insurance Study. This ranking is about average with the industry and is based on application and orientation (on-boarding process), communications, interaction, price, product offerings, and statements.

Financial Strength: A+ (Superior)

Prudential Life Insurance, the company that underwrites NEA policies, has a strong A+ (Superior) rating from AM Best. This rating is based on Prudential’s very strong balance sheet, as well as its strong operating performance, very favorable business profile, and very strong enterprise risk management. 

Financial strength and a high rating from AM Best give customers confidence that their policy benefits will be paid out when they make a claim. 

Cancellation Policy: Standard Free-Look Period

The minimum free-look period for insurance policies is usually 10-30 days, depending on the state. If a customer decides to cancel a policy within that period, they will receive a full refund of premiums paid. NEA Life Insurance policies follow the state-regulated free-look period for cancellations. Each state has its own policy, and you can review the details of each state’s free-look period before you purchase a life insurance policy.

After the free-look period, NEA Life Insurance term and AD&D policies can be canceled at any time but without a refund. Since the term and AD&D life policies do not build cash value, there is no refund. Cancellations must be made by sending in a formal letter to the NEA insurance group by mail, fax, or email.

Price of NEA Life Insurance: More Expensive the Older You Get  

NEA Life Insurance premiums vary by policy and may increase with age. The standard group term life premiums are increased every five years, while the level-premium term policies offer fixed premium rates for up to 20 years.

Below are sample quotes based on age for the NEA Life group term life policies. This is for $250,000 of term life coverage for a healthy individual. Premiums can be paid monthly or annually.

Keep in mind, this policy does not build cash value and the premiums only cover the death benefit.

Group Term Life Rates
Age Male  Female 
30 years old $9.55/month $9.55/month
40 years old  $16.15/month  $16.15/month 
50 years old  $37.47/month  $37.47/month 
60 years old  $92.11/month  $92.11/month 

How NEA Life Insurance Compares to Other Life Insurance

Although NEA Life Insurance offers simple term life and AD&D policies and the discounted premium rates can save members money, there are limitations on coverage, and some policies get more expensive as you age.

While NEA Life Insurance policies should be considered by members and their spouses, other life insurance companies may offer more options and possibly better rates for life insurance. 

NEA Life Insurance vs. Transamerica Life Insurance

Both NEA and Transamerica offer term life policies as well as no-exam life insurance options. While Transamerica is a large national insurer that offers low rates to young, healthy individuals, NEA is a membership that connects its members with discounted insurance underwritten by Prudential.

Here are a few differences between NEA and Transamerica:

  • Transamerica offers whole and universal life insurance with a cash value option.
  • NEA offers guaranteed-issue term life insurance policies.
  • Transamerica has local offices around the country, found using its Agent Locator tool.
  • NEA offers discounted AD&D policies to members, as well as their spouses and children.

While NEA offers discounted rates for its term life policies for members, prices increase over time and may get very expensive. Transamerica offers competitive term policies to all individuals and flexible whole and universal life policies for those looking to build cash value.

Read our full Transamerica Life Insurance review.

  NEA Life Insurance (underwritten by Prudential Life Insurance) Transamerica Life Insurance 
Market Share 4th largest in the U.S., 5.80% 8th largest in the U.S., 2.80%
Number of Plans  7 6
Online Quotes Available?  Yes  Yes (term life only) 
Service Method  Email, phone  Email, phone, in-person 
AM Best Rating  A+ (Superior)  A (Excellent) 
Complaints Index  4.09 (very poor)  1.31 (below average) 
Final Verdict

NEA offers a basic selection of life insurance policies for its members, but policies are not very flexible and rates increase over time on its main group term life offering. It does offer a variety of AD&D policy options for additional protection, which may be desirable.

If you are an NEA member looking for a term life policy, group life coverage may be an affordable option. But the older you get, rates may become expensive, and cost more than competitors. If you want more flexible policy options and coverage, or if you need the ability to accumulate cash value in your policy, you will need to look elsewhere.

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.