Prudential Life is one of the largest life providers out there, so it makes sense that many families turn to them when it comes time to purchase coverage.
However, potential customers should consider Prudential Life’s customer satisfaction ratings and product offerings before committing to them as a provider.
In this review, we will discuss Prudential Life’s history, ratings, product offerings, and more to help you become more familiar with the life insurance powerhouse.
In this review:
- About Prudential Life
- Company Ratings
- Life Insurance Products Offered
- Life Insurance Riders Offered
- Eligibility and Application Process
- Pros and Cons
About Prudential Life
Founded in 1875, Prudential Life is one of the oldest and largest life insurance companies in the United States.
They offer a wide range of insurance products and financial services to their customers.
Besides life insurance, customers can turn to Prudential for health insurance, retirement accounts, annuities, investments, and workplace benefits.
With more than $4 trillion of life insurance in force globally, Prudential Life currently operates in more than 40 countries providing service to both businesses and individuals.
They are an American Global 500 and Fortune 500 company and are currently based out of Newark, New Jersey.
Prudential Life Ratings
One of the best ways to learn more about a life insurance company’s reliability is to turn to third-party ratings.
Agencies like the Better Business Bureau and A.M. Best provide ratings to companies based on their customer satisfaction, financial strength, creditworthiness, and more.
Beginning with A.M. Best, they gave Prudential Life their highest possible rating of an A+.
This indicates that the agency believes Prudential Life to be extraordinarily capable of paying out claims to policyholders.
Standard & Poor’s
Standard & Poor’s, another financial rating agency, awarded Prudential Life an AA- rating.
This is also a high rating on their scale and conveys their confidence in Prudential Life’s financial strength.
Esteemed rating agency Moody’s also recognized Prudential Life’s financial stability with a rating of A3.
Overall, the major rating agencies are in agreement about Prudential Life and their fiscal strength.
Unfortunately, Prudential Life has not demonstrated the same strength when it comes to their customer relations.
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) lists Prudential Life’s complaint ratio at 2.66, which is far worse than the average life insurance company.
This means that Prudential Life has had more complaints submitted to state insurance offices than other companies.
Prudential Life was also ranked 11th out of 24 life insurance companies by J.D. Power.
This ranking was based on customer feedback regarding application and orientation, interaction, communications, price, product offerings, and statements.
Overall, Prudential Life has remarkable financial stability rankings, but their customer experience is nothing to write home about.
Prudential Life Insurance Products Offered
Prudential Life offers customers a wide variety of term and universal life insurance products to choose from.
Their offerings range in term limits, coverage amounts, investment and cash value opportunities, and more.
These are the types of life insurance products that are available to you through Prudential Life.
Prudential Life sells three different term life insurance products with varying features, prices, and term lengths.
Customers even have the option to apply for and purchase term life policies through Prudential Life’s website.
Prudential Term Essential Policy
The most basic and affordable term life product through Prudential Life is called the Term Essential policy.
This product features face values ranging from $100,000 to $10 million and term lengths of 10, 15, 20, and 30 years.
Premiums are guaranteed to stay level over the course of the policy, and policyholders have the ability to convert to a permanent policy at any point during their term.
Prudential Term Elite
Prudential Life also offers a product known as Term Elite.
This product has the same term length and face value ranges as the Term Essential product.
The major difference is that if you convert the policy to a permanent policy within the first five years of the term, you will receive a one-year premium credit.
The final term product that Prudential Life has is called PruTerm One.
This policy offers coverage that is renewed on an annual basis.
This product is marketed as a solution for people or small businesses who want coverage while they payoff short-term loans.
For customers seeking a permanent life insurance policy, Prudential Life also offers universal life insurance.
Universal life insurance offers whole life insurance with an investment element.
PruLife Essential UL
Currently, Prudential Life only has one basic universal life policy known as PruLife Essential UL.
This plan offers similar coverage limits to the term life products but instead covers you for your entire life.
Your beneficiary will receive a death benefit upon your passing.
Additionally, this policy allows access to a cash value component that you can access when you want it.
Indexed Universal Life
Prudential Life also has indexed universal life policies available to customers who would like their cash value to have more growth potential.
Unlike the standard universal life policies, indexed universal life policies base the cash value performance on a stock index, like the S&P 500.
This can allow your cash value to grow at a faster rate, but it can also be vulnerable if the index is not performing well.
PrueLife Founders Plus UL
The first of the two indexed universal life products is called PruLife Founders Plus UL.
This product allows you to choose between two options for building cash value: through a fixed interest rate or through the performance of the S&P 500.
If you choose to tie the cash value performance to the index, you will not be entitled to dividend payments.
PruLife Index Advantage UL
The second indexed universal life policy offered by Prudential Life is called PruLife Index Advantage UL.
This policy boosts the greatest potential to grow cash value through four separate options.
The first is the fixed interest rate, and the other three are tied to the performance of the S&P 500.
Just like the Founders Plus product, the indexed growth options do not pay dividends.
Survivorship Universal Life
Survivorship universal life insurance is a plan that covers two people.
This is typically a married couple and pays a death benefit to a beneficiary when the second insured passes away.
This policy is useful for couples that want to use their life insurance policy to help with estate costs or taxes.
Prudential Life offers two survivorship universal-like products.
PruLife SUL Protector
The first of which is called PruLife SUL Protector.
This plan is the standard survivorship universal life policy that will pay a death benefit as long as there are no lapses in premium payments.
PruLife Survivorship Index UL
The second survivorship universal life policy option is called PruLife Survivorship Index UL.
This plan is designed to grow and protect your children and grandchildren.
It has the potential to accumulate a cash value with a moderate guaranteed minimum interest rate.
Variable Universal Life
Lastly, Prudential Life offers customers several variable universal life products for policyholders that would like to be more active in their investments through the policy.
Much like the other universal life policies, variable universal life combines permanent life insurance protection with accumulating cash value.
The major difference is that variable universal life policies allow you to customize the investments that will grow your cash value.
You can either make these investment decisions independently or work with a Prudential financial advisor.
The baseline variable universal life product, VUL Protector, provides moderate returns and moderate levels of risk.
This is a great option for people that are primarily focused on providing their family with coverage.
PruLife Customer Premier II
Prudential Life’s PruLife Customer Premier II policy may appeal to younger insureds seeking a higher potential for growth.
This policy has higher levels of risk, which can mean higher rates of return.
There are two no-lapse guarantee periods built into the policy, which will ensure protection in the early years of the policy.
PruLife SVUL Protector
Finally, the PruLife SVUL Protector policy allows you to leave a portion of your death benefit to a charitable foundation.
This policy also allows for more control over the underlying investment options.
This policy also includes a no-lapse guarantee.
Prudential Life Insurance Riders Offered
Similar to other life insurance companies, Prudential Life offers extra features that allow you to customize your coverage, known as riders.
You can purchase various life insurance riders based on which coverages you would like to add.
- Accidental Death Rider: This will provide an additional death benefit to your family in the event you die as a result of an accident. This rider is not available in the state of Massachusetts.
- BenefitAccess Rider: This is similar to an Accelerated Death Benefit rider. This allows you to access your death benefit early if you are diagnosed with a chronic or terminal illness. This rider requires additional underwriting.
- Children Level Term Rider: You can also purchase a Children Level Term rider, which adds an additional term policy for your children. The children’s term policies have the potential to be converted to a permanent policy when the children get older.
- Enhanced Cash Value Rider: If you are purchasing a policy for a business, you may want to add the Enhanced Cash Value rider. This feature will give you the highest surrender value if you give up the policy early on.
- Enhanced Disability Benefit Rider: This rider will keep your life insurance policy in force in the even that you become unable to work. However, it is only available on permanent life policies.
- Estate Protection Rider: For survivorship policyholders, the Estate Protection rider increases the death benefit in the event that both insureds die within the first four years of the policy.
- Guaranteed Policy Split Rider: Survivorship policyholders can also split the policy into two separate policies through the Guaranteed Policy Split rider. This is helpful in the event of estate law changes or a divorce.
- Living Needs Rider: The Living Needs rider allows you to access your death benefit early if you need to use the funds to pay for terminal illness treatment, an organ transplant, nursing home costs, or other living need expenses. This rider can be added at no additional costs and will only cost more if you use the benefit. It is not available to policyholders in the state of Washington.
- Overloan Protection Rider: The Overloan Protection rider protects your policy from lapsing in the case of an outstanding policy loan. This is a one-time charge for universal life insurance plans.
- Survivorship BenefitAccess Rider: Similar to the standard BenefitAccess rider, the Survivorship BenefitAccess allows you to access the death benefit early if one or both of the insureds becomes chronically or critically ill. There is also additional underwriting for this rider.
- Waiver of Monthly Deductions Rider: The Waiver of Monthly Deductions Rider lets you waive your monthly premiums if you become disabled for at least six consecutive months.
- Waiver of Premium Rider: Similarly, the Waiver of Premium riders protects your policy in the event that you are unable to work to make payments on the premiums.
Eligibility and Application Process
The process of applying for a life insurance policy through Prudential Life will differ depending on the type of coverage.
For customers seeking term life options, there may be opportunities to submit an application through the website.
Otherwise, you will have to go through a Prudential Life agent.
First, you will need to go on Prudential Life’s website and find an agent in your area.
They will discuss your policy options with you and walk you through an application.
Depending on what type of policy you’re applying for, you may need to undergo a full medical exam.
After your application and medical information have been submitted, your policy will go to underwriters for quoting and an approval decision.
Prudential Life is known for having a slightly slower turnaround time, so you can expect to hear back in four to six weeks.
Once a decision has been made, Prudential will either return with a quote or a denial for coverage.
You can choose to accept the policy or move on. If you choose to bind, Prudential Life will deliver the policy to you electronically.
Pros and Cons of Prudential Life
These are some pros and cons to consider before purchasing a life insurance policy through Prudential Life.
- Variety of coverage types: Prudential Life offers customers several different policy options for both term and permanent life policies. Within those categories, there are several options to choose from with various investment opportunities.
- Options for customers with complicated medical histories: Customers with medical conditions like fibromyalgia, and osteoporosis will still qualify for excellent coverage through Prudential Life. Marijuana and CBD users may also be accepted, depending on how frequently they use those products.
- Online resources and tools: For customers interested in learning more about life insurance coverage, Prudential Life has a series of online tools and resources to help you become educated about life insurance. They have a life insurance calculator to help you determine coverage amounts, articles that explain the nuances of life insurance, and more.
- Medical history required: Prudential Life requires applicants to provide their medical history before being approved for a policy. Depending on the policy, you may even be required to undergo a medical exam. This can mean trouble for people with underlying health conditions.
- Online quotes unavailable for certain products: Prudential Life is pretty old school when it comes to applying for and quoting policies. In most cases, they require you to speak to an agent to apply and obtain a quote.
- No final expense insurance: Many life insurance providers offer coverage known as final expense insurance. These permanent life policies have low coverage limits and are intended to cover the costs associated with a funeral and burial. Prudential does not offer a final expense plan whatsoever.
Is Prudential Life a good company?
Prudential Life has been consistently rated as a financially sound and credible institution. However, their customer service reputation is merely average compared to their high financial marks. Overall, Prudential Life is highly regarded in the life insurance industry and among leading financial institutions.
Who owns Prudential Life?
Prudential Life is an independently owned and operated organization. They currently have operations in over 40 countries and are headquartered in Newark, New Jersey.
How long does Prudential Life take to pay out?
The time it takes for a life insurance claim to pay out will vary from case to case. Typically, the company will need to investigate and verify the details of the claim. Some life insurance claims will require more investigating than others.
Is Prudential Life the Best Choice for You?
Prudential Life is an esteemed life insurance company and has provided protection to millions of families.
However, everyone’s needs are different, so it’s critical to determine what kind of protection you need before deciding on a specific policy or provider.
I have worked in life insurance for nearly fifteen years, and it’s my goal to make sure that everyone has protection when it comes to their family and wellbeing.
Check out more of my articles to learn more about the top life insurance providers and how to find the best coverage for you.