Standard Life Insurance Review

Term, whole, and final expense coverage with rider options

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Standard Life Insurance

overall rating
3.9

Our Take

Standard Life offers term, whole, and final expense life insurance coverage sold primarily through the company’s agents. The company also offers supplementary coverage and all of its products come with local support. However, if you’re looking for online quotes or term policies longer than 10 years, you will need to look elsewhere.

  • Pros and Cons
  • Key Takeaways
  • Specifications
Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Policies aimed at the insurance needs of seniors

  • Offers supplemental coverage like accident and home health care policies

  • Riders for accelerated living benefits available

  • Final expense coverage up to $50,000

  • Whole life policy builds cash value

Cons
  • Doesn’t offer online quotes

  • Does not offer universal coverage

  • Only offers a 10-year term policy

  • Few policy details online

  • Whole life only issued up to age 85

Key Takeaways
  • Plans all offer level premiums and guaranteed death benefits. 
  • Standard Life sells add-on supplemental coverage like short-term medical coverage or coverage that protects you if you have a heart attack or stroke or if you get cancer. 
  • Standard Life does not offer property or casualty insurance like home and auto coverage so you will need to get that coverage from another insurer 
Specifications
  • Year Founded 1946
  • Kinds of Plans Term, whole, final expense
  • Number of Plans 3
  • Payment Options Online, automated payment, credit card
  • Official Website https://www.standardlifeco.com/Products/Life-Insurance

Introduction

Standard Life offers a portfolio of specialty insurance, life insurance, and accident insurance products aimed primarily at seniors and sold mainly through independent brokers and independent insurance “marketing organizations.” It offers a limited array of insurance options that you can combine with their highly specialized supplemental coverage. 

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

Company Overview

Standard Life is headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, and is owned by ManhattanLife, an insurance company that focuses on individual life insurance, annuities, Medicare supplemental insurance, and voluntary dental and eye coverage. Standard Life had $37 million in assets and $12.5 million in annual revenue when it was acquired by ManhattanLife in 2020, which had over $2.5 billion in assets at the time of acquisition. 

Standard Life is licensed for business in 29 states

Standard Life’s agents are freelance and typically work on commission. Be careful as they may try to get you to purchase more insurance than you need.

Available Plans 

Standard Life offers three types of life insurance plans, although few details are available online. You’ll need to contact an agent for more information on any of its policies. 

Term Life Insurance

Standard Life offers only one kind of term coverage called LifeGuard 10. It is a 10-year term life insurance policy that is renewable. It offers guaranteed level premiums and can be converted to a whole life insurance policy at any time. You can add additional benefits to this policy through an accelerated living benefits rider or an accidental death and dismemberment rider. 

Standard Life doesn’t list minimums or maximums for this policy online.  

Whole Life Insurance

Standard Life offers a whole life insurance policy that provides permanent life insurance coverage and also includes a guaranteed level premium. Like many whole life policies, you’re able to build cash value through your policy that you can borrow against if and when you need it. 

Standard Life’s whole life policies can be issued up to age 85. 

Final Expense Life Insurance

Final expense coverage is a type of permanent life insurance policy with a relatively low minimum that allows you to get coverage to offset the cost of your funeral or other final expenses including medical bills or any other debts.

Standard Life’s final expense policy, the Senior Security plan, allows you to get up to $50,000 in coverage. Your premiums will never go up and your death benefit will never decrease with this policy. 

Standard Life does not list its underwriting process online, so it is unclear if you will need a medical exam for any of these policies.

Available Riders

Standard Life lists a few riders on its website. These include: 

  • Accelerated living benefits: This rider allows you to use a portion of your death benefit towards chronic health expenses if you experience a heart attack, cancer, stroke, or need bypass surgery. 
  • Accidental death and dismemberment: With this rider, your death benefit is increased in the event of your accidental death. 
  • Common carrier accident rider: This rider provides your beneficiaries with an additional payout if you die while on a common carrier. A common carrier is typically a commercial entity that transports people or goods such as a taxi, plane, or ferry. 

Standard Life doesn’t list any other riders online but might offer more riders as add ons to its policies. To learn more about the riders offered and how much they cost, you’ll need to contact the company. 

Customer Service: Good Phone, Fax, Online, and Email Options

Standard Life has two customer service numbers. For its policy services, you can call 1-800-327-0695 and for claims, you can call 1-800-227-0251. The company does not list the days or hours its call center is open. 

Standard Life also gives you options to contact them via fax, email (support@slacins.com), or your online account.

Customer Satisfaction: More Complaints Than Average 

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) provides ratings to consumers to help them understand how often consumers complain about insurance companies. NAIC gives out a rating of 1 if a company has an average number of complaints, a number above 1 if it has more than average, and a number below 1 if it has less than average.  

Standard Life received an NAIC complaint index of 1.87 which is a sign that it gets more complaints than other insurance companies. However, it captured only 0.01% of the national complaint market share. Many of the complaints were for issues such as frustration with customer service and policy issues. 

Financial Strength: B (Fair)

AM Best rates companies to help the general public better understand a company’s relative financial strength. This is important when buying a life insurance policy because you want to know how likely a company is to meet its financial obligations in the future. It looks at things like a company’s performance, balance sheet, debt, and assets.

Standard Life has a B (Fair) rating from AM Best and its parent company, ManhattanLife, has a B+ (Good) AM Best rating.

Cancellation Policy: Must Contact the Company to Cancel

Standard Life does not list its cancellation policies online but it likely has what’s known as a free-look period. This is a period of time, typically between 10 and 30 days, where you can cancel your policy and get a refund of your premiums without any cancelation fees or penalties.

It is unclear what Standard Life’s cancellation policy is after the free look period, so contact them to ask whether it has fees and penalties involved in cancellation.

If you’re purchasing a permanent life insurance policy from Standard Life, read the fine print around your policy’s surrender value and how it’s calculated. With a permanent policy, you grow cash value and often this gets paid out when you cancel your policy. Understanding how a company calculates that amount is important. 

Price Of Standard Life Life Insurance: Varies by Policy Type

Standard Life does not include quotes or any information about their prices on their website. However, the company focuses on providing cost-effective supplementary or life insurance to seniors so is likely to have affordable or competitive rates. 

How much you will pay for your coverage will depend on things like the type of coverage you choose, the amount of insurance you want, your gender, your age, your health history, and where you live. 

Standard Life might offer deals for purchasing more than one type of supplemental coverage. Before purchasing a policy, ask whether you can get a discount if you bundle your policy purchases.

How Standard Life Compares to Other Life Insurance

Standard Life offers three types of popular life insurance policies, but they are all relatively simple policies with few options to customize. Competitors like Monumental Life might offer better final expense options. 

Standard Life vs. Monumental Life Review

Standard Life and Monumental Life both offer term, whole, and final expense coverage options but Monumental Life also offers both universal and universal index life policies. Standard Life has a relatively high number of NAIC complaints, especially compared to Monumental Life, which receives a fewer than average number of complaints. Both companies offer a limited number of riders. 

These are some other key differences between Standard Life and Monumental Life:  

  • Monumental Life offers a concierge planning rider that provides you with funeral planning assistance. 
  • Monumental Life and Standard Life both offer up to $50,000 in final expense coverage, but how much coverage you can get decreases to just $25,000 if you’re between 76 and 85 with Monumental Life. 
  • Monumental Life sells policies that allow you to take out up to $2 million in coverage, whereas Standard Life doesn’t list its policy maximums on its website. 
  • Standard Life has a very low AM Best rating, although the rating might improve due to its acquisition by ManhattanLife.  

Read our full Monumental Life Insurance review.

  Standard Life Monumental Life
Types of Plans Term, whole, final expense Whole, term, universal, universal index, final expenses
Customer Service  Phone, email, fax, online  Phone, email, online
NAIC Complaint Index  1.87  0.91
Optional Riders Available  Yes  Yes 
AM Best Rating  B A

If a company has a low AM Best rating, be sure to find out why. If a company is owned by another company, check the parent company’s AM Best rating, too.

Final Verdict

Although Standard Life offers term, whole, and final expense coverage, its options for each type of policy aren’t very robust. For example, the company only offers a 10-year term policy when most companies offer a selection of terms. However, its final expense insurance coverage offers a larger amount of coverage than most, and it has rare riders like the common carrier accident insurance rider that might make sense for you to purchase, depending on your lifestyle, and how much you travel. 

Standard Life is a good choice for people who are looking for a simple policy or who want to get a final expense policy with a larger death benefit.

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.

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. Think Adviser. "ManhattanLife to Acquire Standard Life and Casualty." Accessed June 14, 2021. 

  2. Business Wire. "ManhattanLife Agrees to Acquire Standard Life and Casualty Insurance Company." Accessed June 14, 2021.