Guardian Life Insurance Reviews – Can you do better?

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This article will contain everything that you need to know from a Guardian life insurance review.  We will cover all the need-to-know details about the Guardian Life Insurance Company.  We will discuss the Guardian Life insurance rating, their history, and how competitive Guardian’s rates are.

There are hundreds of life insurance companies operating in the United States, and we review them all. That being said, is Guardian Life Insurance Company the right company to protect your family?

Is Guardian among the best life insurance companies in the industry? That depends on what you are looking for. If you are considering purchasing life insurance with Guardian Life Insurance Company, do not move forward without reading this review.

Shall we begin?

Guardian Life Insurance History

Guardian was founded over 150-years ago in 1860.  A group of 21 prominent businessmen gathers to create the Germania Life Insurance Company of America, which eventually became the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America as we know it today.

Guardian’s founders raised $200,000 in equity capital, which was double the required amount at the time.  Even from the beginning, Guardian was committed to making good on its long-term promises to its policyholders.

Guardian continued to expand their product and services over the years, expanding into the employee benefits market in 1957 and expanding their presence in the individual disability income insurance market with the merger of Berkshire Life Insurance Company in 2001. Today, Guardian is one of the largest mutual insurance companies in the United States

Guardian Life Insurance Ratings

In the life insurance industry, brand recognition is critical.  People need to feel confident that their life insurance company will pay when the time comes. Guardian has been in business since the 1860s and has an iron-clad financial strength.  Guardian has been awarded some of the highest marks from rating agencies like A.M. Best, S&P, Moody’s and Fitch.

A.M. Best S&P Moody's Fitch BBB
A++ (Superior)
AA+ (Very Strong)
Aa2 (Excellent)
AA+ (Very Strong)
A+

A.M. Best: A++ (Superior)
S&P: AA+(Very Strong)
Moody’s:  “Aa2” (Excellent)

Fitch: AA+ (Very Strong)

These rating agencies provide their opinions on an insurer’s ability to meet its obligations to its policyholders.  All of Guardian’s financial strength ratings are considered investment grade, which is an important consideration when choosing a life insurance company. Guardian has $71.5 billion under management with a whopping $637 billion of life insurance in force.

Guardian is also an A+ accredited business with the Better Business Bureau and has been accredited since 1957, which is the BBB’s highest rating.  While no company can get it right 100% of the time, Guardian has demonstrated that negative customer experiences are the exception rather than the rule.

How Does Guardian Works With its Customers?

Guardian has evolved since its founding into more than just life insurance.  Often Guardian’s life insurance products are usually sold by financial professionals or independent life insurance brokers. Financial professionals typically can sell securities, like mutual funds and variable annuities, in addition to traditional life insurance.

This approach to doing business may suit people looking for a more comprehensive service that includes investments and financial planning.  However, it does have some drawbacks.  A financial professional who is more of a generalist may not have the broader industry expertise that a broker who solely focuses on life insurance may have.

If you are strictly looking for life insurance, we would suggest working with an independent broker who specializes in life and health products.  Independent brokers don’t work for any insurance company.  They work with insurance companies to find you the best deal period!  Additionally, since their focus is strictly life insurance, independent brokers can compare the marketplace to ensure you are matched with the best company.

Guardian Life Insurance Options

Guardian Life Insurance Company offers many other products and financial services to its policyholders such as:

  • Life Insurance
  • Investments
  • Employee Benefits
  • Disability Insurance
  • Dental Insurance
  • Annuities

For the purposes of this Guardian Life Insurance Review, we will focus strictly on Guardian’s life insurance products.  Guardian is probably best known for its dividend-paying whole life insurance policy. Guardian declared  $913 million in dividends payable to policyholders.

Guardian offers some unique underwriting. For starters, Guardian now considers offering life insurance for people with HIV under select circumstances. Quite frankly, this was unheard of even a few years ago.

While Guardian has great underwriting for qualified applicants, they do not specialize in no-exam life insurance underwriting.  If you want to purchase life insurance without the hassle of a medical exam, you may be better served looking at our Phoenix life insurance review for a no-exam company that specialize in those solutions

Guardian Term Life Insurance Coverage

Term life insurance is temporary.  Term life insurance was created as a way to affordably secure high death benefit amounts for temporary needs, such as income replacement and mortgage protection.

Term life is the most straightforward type of life insurance you can buy.  There is usually no cash surrender value.  Simply put, you pay the premium, and if you pass away while the contract is active, the life insurance company pays the death benefit.

Guardian offers their Term Series as a solution for temporary life insurance needs.  Guardian’s term can be purchased in 10-year, 15-year, 20-year or 30-year guaranteed level-premium periods.  After the stated term, your premiums will increase year-to-year as illustrated in the contract.

Guardian’s term policies are convertible to one of their permanent policies available during the time of conversion.  This is a valuable feature that offers excellent flexibility in the future.  This guarantees that you will have a coverage option available if your health excludes you from life insurance coverage otherwise.

Key benefits of term life insurance

  • Affordable temporary death benefits
  • Term conversion option

Guardian Whole Life Insurance

Guardian whole life insurance is the oldest form of permanent life insurance. Whole life insurance is designed for permanent life insurance needs like final expenses and burial costs or estate planning. Whole life insurance provides lifelong death benefit protection with the most guarantees of any life insurance policy.

Whole life has guaranteed cash accumulation, guaranteed level premiums, and guaranteed death benefits.  The policy may also receive non-guaranteed dividend payments that can be reinvested within the policy to purchase additional death benefit or reduce premiums. While dividends are not guaranteed, Guardian historically has paid a dividend to its participating policyholders since 1968.

The cash value grows tax-deferred within the whole life policy.  If you want to access money built up within the policy, you can take out a tax-advantaged loan.  This can be a valuable feature in a pinch for emergencies or other needs.

Key benefits of whole life insurance

  • Flexible premium payments
  • Lifelong death benefits
  • Guaranteed cash value accumulation
  • Non-guaranteed dividend payments
  • Money is accessible through tax-advantaged withdrawals and loans

Guardian Universal Life

Guardian offers a flexible alternative to whole life called universal life that provides lifetime protection and cash value accumulation potential.  With a universal life insurance policy, you can customize the timing and amount of your premium payments, unlike whole life insurance that has set mandatory premiums.

These types of policies have decreased in popularity in recent years due to a low-interest-rate environment.  Universal life insurance usually has a fixed minimum interest rate, but the credited rate, which is not guaranteed, can fluctuate higher.

These types of policies should be monitored on a regular basis to ensure that they are being funded adequately.  If the indexed investment strategy doesn’t perform as expected, the policy could potentially lapse.

Key benefits of universal life insurance

  • Flexible premium payments
  • Lifelong death benefits
  • Potential cash value accumulation
  • Money is accessible through tax-advantaged withdrawals and loans

Variable Universal Life

Variable universal life insurance provides death benefit protection with the potential to build cash value within the policy.  Like most universal life insurance policies, variable universal life insurance allows flexible premium payments.  The main feature of variable universal life insurance is that a portion of your premiums is invested in mutual-fund-like subaccounts.

These sub-accounts generally offer a range of investment options with different levels of risk.  Usually, you have a choice of equity, fixed income, and sometimes alternative investment strategies.

Since variable universal life insurance is a security, they are issued with a prospectus and contain varying levels of investment risk to your cash value.  Unlike indexed universal life insurance, your principal can be lost due to poor investment performance.

Variable life insurance can be complicated and should be thoroughly reviewed before purchasing.  Some policies are designed primarily for the death benefit, and other policies can be designed to maximize cash value growth.  Before you move forward with a variable life insurance purchase, consult with a trustworthy and knowledgeable agent to be sure that the policy you are considering is suitable for your situation.

Key benefits of universal life insurance

  • Flexible premium payments
  • Lifelong death benefits
  • Potential cash value accumulation
  • Money is accessible through tax-advantaged withdrawals and loans
  • Cash value is invested directly in the equity and bond markets

Sample Guardian Life Insurance Quote

Guardian does not publicly display their rates on their website.  As a result, you would need to reach out to a Guardian agent in order to get a quote specific to you and your unique situation.

Life insurance is something you need to qualify for based on your health, lifestyle, and age.  By consulting with an agent, it ensures you receive an accurate quote as opposed to an unrealistic price that you may not even qualify for.

The Final Word

Thank you for reading our Guardian life insurance review. We hoped our Guardian life insurance review helped you decide what the best life insurance company is to protect your loved ones with.

Guardian offers some unique life insurance options through their financial advisors.  If you are looking for general financial services that include insurance, investments and financial advice, then Guardian may be a good fit for you. You can learn more about Guardian’s product and services at the Guardian’s phone number 1-888-482-7342 or the Guardian website.

However, if you are looking for specialized life insurance knowledge then working with an independent life insurance broker may be a better option.  Independent life insurance agents can broker multiple companies to find you the best deal on your coverage.

Each life insurance company has different opinions on rates and underwriting. A knowledgeable independent life insurance agent will know what companies will offer you the best value to protect your family.

If you are looking for life insurance, don’t hesitate.   Request a free no-obligation quote, or call on of our veteran life insurance agents for a consultation today.

Joseph Cirillo of Good Life Protection

Joe is a lifelong learner with a passion for sharing what he has learned with others. Joe has publicly spoken on life insurance in the past to both colleagues at industry conferences and to consumers in educational settings and as a contributor to industry blogs.  Additionally, Joe is studying for certifications such as the CFP, CLU, and RICP to further his professional knowledge.