North American Life Insurance Review

High-coverage life insurance policies

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North American Life Insurance

North American Life Insurance

overall rating
4.0

Our Take

North American Company for Life and Health Insurance, a subsidiary of Sammons Financial Group, offers term, universal, and indexed universal life insurance policies with high coverage limits, as well as annuity products. With an A+ (Excellent) rating from AM Best and over $500 million in annual death benefit payouts, North American is a financially sound life insurance company, and clients can be confident in its policies.

  • Pros & Cons 
  • Key Takeaways
  • Specifications
Pros & Cons 
Pros
  • Term life insurance quotes available online

  • High coverage amounts for some policies (up to $5 million)

  • Available life insurance calculator to help find the right coverage amount

Cons
  • No whole life policy available

  • Not available in New York

  • Captive agents earn a commission from selling you insurance and annuity products

Key Takeaways
  • North American is a century-old life insurance provider with excellent financial strength.
  • There are several optional riders to customize the life insurance policies.
  • North American has fewer complaints than other life insurance companies its size (according to NAIC).
  • Sammons Enterprises, the parent company for North American, is one of the largest privately-held insurance companies in the U.S.
Specifications
  • Year Founded 1886
  • Kinds of Plans Term, universal, indexed universal
  • Number of Plans 8
  • Payment Options Monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, annual
  • Official Website https://www.northamericancompany.com/

Introduction

North American Company for Life and Health Insurance (North American) offers term, universal, and indexed universal life insurance at reasonable rates. We researched North American’s financial stability, policy plan options, riders, website tools, and customer service reviews to help you compare the life insurance policy options of North American with the competition. 

Company Overview

North American Company for Life and Health Insurance, a subsidiary of Sammons Financial Group, was founded in 1886 as North American Accident Insurance. It expanded its offerings over time, even providing the first disability insurance policy for women in 1918. North American has since shifted its focus to only offer life insurance and annuities.

North American offers term and universal life insurance policies for all ages, including several policy riders for customizing each plan. Term policy quotes are available online, but you must speak to an agent to apply for any life insurance plan.

North American is licensed in 49 states (not available in New York), but actual availability varies by product and state.

Expert Tip

North American also several annuity products including fixed-index, multi-year guarantee, and immediate annuities. 

Available Plans 

North American offers nine types of life insurance plans including term, universal, and indexed universal plans. There are two types of term insurance and seven types of universal life insurance. The website also has an interactive life insurance calculator to help users figure out exactly how much coverage is needed, although it does not help determine the type of insurance that would be best for you.

Term Life Insurance

North American offers two term life insurance plans, one that is only term coverage and the other that offers additional benefits and riders to be added.

North American Classic Term: This policy offers term coverage and level premiums for 10- and 15-year term lengths. Coverage starts at $500,000 and goes up to $5M.  

ADDvantage Term: This policy offers term coverage and level premiums from 10- to 30-year term lengths. Coverage starts at $250,000 and goes up to $5M. This policy is also convertible to a permanent life policy without additional underwriting. Clients can also choose to add optional riders to this policy.

Universal Life Insurance

North American offers universal life insurance, a type of permanent life insurance that not only covers you for your lifetime but allows you the flexibility of adjusting your premiums and death benefit mid-policy. Universal life also has a savings component to allow your policy to build cash value over time that can be borrowed against or withdrawn early (with optional riders). 

North American offers three types of universal life insurance:

  • Custom Guarantee: Custom Guarantee plans are simple, low-cost options that offer guaranteed death benefit coverage. It also stops premium payments at age 100 for additional savings.
  • Custom Growth CV: This universal life policy accumulates cash value that grows with interest, as well as offers an interest-rate bonus after year 10 of the policy.
  • Custom TermGUL: This plan is a low-cost permanent life insurance option with a lower minimum coverage amount (only $25,000). It also offers a guaranteed interest rate on the accumulated cash value of the policy.

Indexed Universal Life Insurance

North American offers four indexed universal life insurance policies with flexible premiums and cash value growth based on changes in the value of a stock market index. There are also several available riders on each policy for maximum customization.

  • Builder IUL: The Builder IUL is designed for growth of cash value, earning interest based on the movement of a stock market index. Cash value interest is guaranteed to never go below zero percent.
  • Guarantee Builder IUL: This option is similar to the Build IUL but with a guaranteed death benefit up to age 120 (with available rider)
  • Rapid Builder IUL: This policy offers cash value growth based on the movement of a stock market index as well as the ability to access the cash value early via a zero-cost loan after year six of the policy.  
  • Survivorship GIUL: Designed to leave a financial legacy to your beneficiaries, this is similar to the guaranteed IUL policy but covers two people with the death benefit paying out after the second of the insured has passed away.

Available Riders

A rider is an optional coverage policy addition that allows custom coverage or enhancements to insurance policies. North American offers access to several riders for their life insurance policies. Rider fees are typically added to the policy premium, or as a flat fee when exercised. Fees vary by policy, product, and options selected.

Here are a few of their rider options for North American Life Insurance:

Accelerated Death Benefit Rider

With this rider, clients may be able to access a portion of their death benefit early with a terminal or chronic illness diagnosis. The death benefit will be reduced by the amount withdrawn.

Disability Waiver of Premium Rider

If you become permanently and totally disabled (unable to work), this term life insurance rider will waive all premiums.

Children’s Term Policy Rider

This rider offers level-term life insurance for your children starting at 15 days old, until 20 years old. Coverage is available starting at $5,000 and up to $25,000, and policies expire on the child's 23rd birthday.

Guaranteed Insurability 

This rider is available in permanent life policies, offering clients the ability to purchase additional insurance amounts with the need for another medical exam.

Customer Service: Email and Phone Only

North American offers support over the phone and via email. Users have the option of calling directly or filling out a contact form on the website to have an agent reach out directly. Agents can also be found using the agent locator tool, which is a simple contact form to have a local agent reach out to you.

Claim form PDF downloads are available online, and users can submit claims via email, fax, or standard mail.

North American customer service business hours are Monday-Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. CT, and Fridays 7:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. CT.

Note

North American Company for Life and Health Insurance does not offer live chat support online.

Customer Satisfaction: Not Many Complaints  

North American receives far fewer complaints than the industry average life insurance company (according to the NAIC complaint index). With an average complaint score of 1.0 (the lower, the better), North American received a 0.14 score. This is a slight improvement over the 2018 and 2019 scores of 0.19, which is still impressive.


J.D. Power ranks companies based on customer satisfaction, but North American was not included in their 2020 Life Insurance Study.

Financial Strength: A+ (Superior)

North American received an A+ (Superior) rating from AM Best based on a very strong balance sheet and operating performance. This high rating from AM Best gives customers confidence that North American can consistently pay out claims on the policies in force.

Cancellation Policy: Standard Free-Look Period

North American follows the minimum “free-look” period for insurance policies based on state regulations. This is a period of time that a new customer can sign up for a policy, and cancel for a full refund without penalty. This period is usually a minimum of 10 days but will vary by state.

After the free look period, cancellation terms will vary between policies. Typically, term life insurance can be canceled at any time, but after the free-look, will forfeit any refunds.

For universal life policy cancellations, you will need to reach out to a North American agent for specifics.

Note

There may be surrender charges and other fees to cancel a permanent life policy.

 

Price of North American Life Insurance: Low-Cost Option for Term Policies  

North American offers free quotes on term life policies. Rates vary by age, term length, benefit amount, and health status, but seem to be competitive for young, healthy adults. 

Premiums can be paid monthly, quarterly, semiannually, or annually. While quotes are available online, users must speak to an agent directly to sign up for a term life policy.

Term Life Rates

These sample quotes are based on a $250,000 term life policy for non-smokers.

Age Male Female
20 years old $13.64/month $12.10/month
30 years old $13.64/month $12.32/month
40 years old $19.58/month $16.50/month

How North American Life Insurance Compares to Other Life Insurance

North American offers quite a few universal life insurance options as well as competitive term rates for healthy individuals. With a strong financial footing and support from one of the largest privately held companies in Sammons Enterprises, North American customers can be confident in its policies.

While a solid option for some policies, North American only offers two types of insurance. Here’s how it compares with another quality life insurance company with more offerings.

North American Life Insurance vs. State Farm Life Insurance

Both North American and State Farm offer term and universal life insurance policies with a variety of optional riders available. Both companies have strong financial support and excellent customer service ratings, but State Farm offers more policy types while North American has more universal life insurance options.

Here are a few key differences between North American and State Farm:

  • State Farm offers term life insurance with a cash value option.
  • North American offers a guaranteed universal life policy.
  • State Farm offers multi-policy discounts for current customers.
  • North American is owned by a privately held company, not beholden to stockholder expectations for profit.

While North American offers great rates for its term policies for healthy individuals, State Farm clients can take advantage of multi-policy discounts to lower premiums, as well as add cash value to term policies. 

Read our full State Farm Life Insurance review.

  North American Life Insurance State Farm Life Insurance
Market Share Not Applicable Seventh-largest in the U.S., 2.87%
Number of Plans Eight Eight
Online Quotes Available? Yes (term life only) Yes (term life only)
Service Method Email, phone Email, phone, in-person, social media
AM Best Rating A+ (Superior) A++ (Superior)
Complaints Index 0.14 (excellent) 0.19 (excellent)

Final Verdict

North American Company for Life and Health Insurance is a financially strong company with decent rates on term policies for healthy individuals. With seven universal life policy options, as well as multiple riders available, clients can customize their life insurance to fit their lifestyle needs. North American also receives far fewer complaints than life insurance companies of the same size, pointing to quality customer service on its plans.

While North American can be a good option for term and universal life policies, those looking for whole life or final expense policies will need to look elsewhere.

Methodology 

All of our reviews of life insurance companies are the result of 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.

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. Forbes. "America's Largest Private Companies" Accessed May 4, 2021.