GPM Life Insurance Review

Several plan options with convenient coverage for federal employees

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GPM Life

GPM Life

Our Take

With nationwide coverage, Government Personnel Mutual (GPM) Life Insurance offers flexible life insurance coverage for federal employees.

  • Pros and Cons
  • Key Takeaways
  • Company Overview
Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Exclusive coverage

  • More than a dozen riders

  • Final expense with no medical exams

Cons
  • Limited customer support

  • Very poor customer service rating

  • No online quotes

Key Takeaways
  • Government Personnel Mutual (GPM) Life Insurance was founded in 1934, offering 85+ years of experience. 
  • GPM services federal employees, basing coverage on salary. 
  • There are eight life insurance plans, including whole life, term, universal, and final expense life insurance, and 13 riders for your coverage.
  • You cannot apply or get an online quote, but a licensed agent can help provide further details on pricing and availability.
Company Overview

GPM Life stands for Government Personnel Mutual Life Insurance. It was founded in 1934, at a time when America was ravaged by war, but it stood out as the first U.S. company to offer life insurance policies without a War Exclusion Clause. Today, GPM Life services the individuals and families who currently serve or are retired federal employees and military. 

Geographical Restrictions

GPM Life is licensed in 48 states and Washington, D.C. It is not available in New York or New Jersey.

  • Year Founded 1934
  • Kinds of Plans Whole life, term, universal, final expense
  • Number of Plans 8
  • Payment Plan Options Monthly; otherwise unspecified
  • Customer Service 1-800-929-4765
  • Official Website www.gpmlife.com

GPM Life is not one of our top-rated life insurance companies. You can review our list of the best life insurance companies for what we think are better options.

Pros Explained

  • Exclusive coverage: GPM Life offers exclusive coverage for federal employees, basing coverage on your salary and even taking Federal Employees' Group Life Insurance (FEGLI) premiums from your monthly payment.
  • More than a dozen riders: GPM Life has 13 different riders available to better help you customize your coverage.
  • Final expense with no medical exams: There are no medical exams required when you purchase a final expense life insurance policy from GPM Life.

Cons Explained

  • Limited customer support: GPM Life only offers phone and email support through an online form. There are none of the online chat options seen with other providers, and the contact page does not provide specific information about claims or other issues.
  • Very poor customer service rating: With a National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) rating of 2.21 in 2021, GPM receives double the number of complaints that the average company receives.
  • No online quotes: GPM provides limited details online, and there is no option for online quotes or applications; instead, you must reach out to an agent directly.

Available Plans

GPM offers term, whole life, and universal life insurance products with optional final expense coverage through federal group insurance policies. 

Term Life

With GPM term life insurance, you receive guaranteed fixed premiums for a specific term. There are terms available for 10, 15, and 20 years, with availability based on your age at the time of issue. Eligible policyholders are between the ages of 18 and 75 with coverage starting at $100,000.

Terms and Issue Ages for GPM Life Term Insurance
Term Period Level Term Period Standard Express Tobacco Class 
10 years 18 to 80 18 to 75
15 years  18 to 70  N/A 
20 years  18 to 65  18 to 60
30 years  18 to 45  N/A 

With GPM term life insurance, you also receive accelerated benefits for chronic, critical, and terminal illnesses. At the end of the term, you have the option to convert your policy without proof of insurability.

Whole Life

Whole life insurance includes guaranteed level premiums with death benefits and cash value as you age. With GPM whole life, you also have the option to earn dividends.

There are three plans for GPM whole life insurance.

Lifetime Pay

This policy features fixed level premiums throughout the entire contract. It is eligible to receive annual dividends and includes an Accelerated Living Benefit Rider where available by state.

20 Pay Life

GPM’s 20 Pay policy lasts for 20 years with higher premiums because of the shorter term. However, it is eligible to receive annual dividends and includes the Accelerated Living Benefit Rider where available by state.

Estate Builder

The Estate Builder covers children between the ages of 14 days and 14 years. Coverage is available between $5,000 and $35,000 with simplified underwriting. Upon the child’s 18th birthday, the initial face amount doubles without increasing your premium. It includes an automatic dividend option, and a Guaranteed Insurability Option (GIO) is included without proof of insurability at ages 25, 28, 31, 34, 37, and 40.

Universal Life

Universal life insurance policies feature flexible premiums with guaranteed minimums and maximums. 

UniMark UL

GPM’s UniMark universal life is a form of permanent insurance that accumulates cash value with level premiums. You also have the opportunity to adjust your death benefits over the life of your policy. 

There is a base policy of $100,000 with an Additional Term Rider that lasts through the age of 70, amounting to $400,000.

Federal Employees' Group Life Insurance (FEGLI)

As the world’s biggest group life insurance program, Federal Employees' Group Life Insurance (FEGLI) is a type of federal insurance policy created in 1954. It provides group life insurance policies for active and retired government employees and their families. However, because it is a group policy, policies do not accumulate cash value. Employees receive basic coverage with the option to purchase additional optional coverage as needed, and applicable payments are then deducted from your paycheck. 

Employees have the option of three plans:

  • Option A-Standard: $10,000 of coverage
  • Option B-Additional: Available in 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 multiples of the employee’s annual basic pay
  • Option C-Family: $5,000 insurance coverage for employee’s spouse and $2,500 per eligible dependent child

FEGLI coverage begins at time of hire and continues until waived. The amount of coverage matches your annual pay, rounded to the nearest $1,000 with a $2,000 bonus. Policyholders are responsible for paying two-thirds of the total premium, with the federal government paying the rest. 

What You Need to Know

GPM Life takes your FEGLI premiums directly from your salary each month, saving you an extra step and an extra bill to pay.

Final Expense Life Insurance

Final expense life insurance allows you to plan ahead, so your family is spared from the added burden of burial expenses at a time when they are already grieving.  

GPM Life sells final expense coverage as traditional whole life insurance policies available to policyholders between the ages of 50 and 85. Policies are sold under the SECURE-Mark products series with three plans that provide level premiums and cash or loan value.

SECURE-Mark Level: Simplified Issue Whole Life

GPM Life offers Simplified Issue Whole Life Insurance (SIWL) under its SECURE-Mark Level series. It features a full death benefit of the face amount when the policyholder’s death meets the specific terms of the policy.

With the simplified issue whole life policy, eligible policyholders receive their entire death benefit beginning in the first contract year. There is also an optional Accidental Death Benefit that is available until the age of 70 and is available for issue for ages 50 to 60. 

Policyholders have the option of lifetime, 10-year, and 20-year payment options, although the 20 Pay option is only available for policyholders between 50 and 70 years of age.

Policy coverage depends on your age at the time of issue.

SECURE-Mark Level SIWL Policy Options
Age SIWL Policy Options 
50 to 70 Whole Life
10 Pay Life
20 Pay Life
71 to 85  Whole Life
10 Pay Life 

Your age also determines the amount of coverage that you can buy.

SECURE-Mark Level SIWL Policy Coverage
Age Minimum  Maximum 
50 to 80 $3,000 $35,000
81 to 85  $3,000  $10,000 

SECURE-Mark Graded: Graded Death Benefit Whole Life

With the SECURE-Mark Graded Death Benefit Whole Life (GDB), there is a graded death benefit that increases with each year. It is available for applicants between the ages of 50 and 85.

SECURE-Mark GDB Policy Death Benefit
Policy Year Death Benefit 
Year 1 30%
Year 2  70% 
Years 3+  100% 

There are available policy options based on your age at time of issue.

SECURE-Mark GDB Policy Options
Age GDB Policy Options 
50 to 70 Whole Life
10 Pay Life
20 Pay Life
71 to 85  Whole Life
10 Pay Life 

The amount of coverage of your policy depends on your age at issue with minimum and maximum amounts for coverage. 

SECURE-Mark GDB Policy Coverage
Age Minimum  Maximum 
50 to 80 $3,000 $25,000
81 to 85  $3,000  $10,000 

An accidental death benefit is included during the graded period, but no riders are available for this plan. 

SECURE-Mark Modified: Modified Benefit Whole Life

SECURE-Mark Modified Benefit Whole Life (MBWL) is an option for policyholders between the ages of 50 and 85. 

With the SECURE-Mark Modified policy, your death benefit depends on how many years you have had the policy. It features a graded death benefit that is based upon the year in which the policyholder dies.

SECURE-Mark MBWL Policy Death Benefit
Policy Year Death Benefit 
Years 1 and 2 Return of Premium + 10% Interest
After Year 2  100% 

Your age will determine the amount of coverage available for your policy.

SECURE-Mark MBWL Policy Coverage
Age Minimum  Maximum 
50 to 85 $3,000  $10,000 

The Accidental Death Benefit is also available for years one and two.

Available Riders

A life insurance rider is a great way to customize your policy to better meet your needs with additional coverage.

GPM Life offers 13 different life insurance riders that you can use to better customize your policy.

Accelerated Living Benefit Rider

If a specific event occurs in your life, such as a terminal or chronic illness, the Accelerated Living Benefit Rider will pay a portion of your death benefit while you are still alive. Most new life insurance policies include this rider when there is a death benefit of $35,000 or more, but availability depends on your state.

Accidental Death Benefit

If you die from an accident, your beneficiary could receive an extra benefit in addition to the policy’s standard death benefit.

Additional Paid-Up Insurance Rider

The Additional Paid-Up Insurance Rider allows you to purchase additional insurance by continuing premiums after your policy’s coverage is fully paid. These additional premiums are then made available via the policy’s death benefit and cash value. 

Additional Term Rider

With the Additional Term Rider, the primary policyholder can purchase additional term coverage that is both renewable and convertible at the end of the term.

Children's Insurance Rider

Policyholders have the option to insure children between the ages of 15 days and 17 years. Term life insurance is provided until the child reaches the age of 25. At that time, the rider is eligible to be converted into permanent coverage for up to five times the original amount of coverage. 

Chronic Illness Accelerated Living Benefit

The Chronic Illness Accelerated Living Benefit rider allows you to access up to 24% of your death benefit each year, up to the lesser of the full death benefit amount or $1 million when you are certified to be chronically ill. To qualify, you must be unable to perform at least two of the Six Activities of Daily Living for at least 12 months, including:

  1. Bathing
  2. Continence
  3. Dressing
  4. Eating
  5. Toileting
  6. Transferring

Critical Illness Accelerated Living Benefit

With the Critical Illness Accelerated Living Benefit, you have the option to accelerate up to the full death benefit amount or $1 million, whichever is less, when you have a critical illness.

Eligible critical illnesses include:

  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease)
  • Cancer
  • Renal (kidney) failure
  • Blindness from diabetes
  • Paralysis in two or more limbs
  • Major organ transplant

Guaranteed Purchase Option

The Guaranteed Purchase Option (GPO) allows policyholders the ability to purchase additional insurance in the future without having to show proof of insurability.

Income Protection Rider

The Income Protection Rider (DAIR) allows for an extra income stream for you and your family when your children are still living in the household. You have the option to choose structured payments over a specific term, so you are guaranteed income when you need it most.

Mortgage Protection Rider

Available with universal life policies, the Mortgage Protection Rider (DMR) is a decreasing benefit that allows coverage based on the monthly payment required to satisfy your mortgage requirements.

Spouse Insurance Rider

With the Spouse Insurance Rider, you can purchase additional term coverage for your spouse that is both renewable and convertible.

Terminal Illness Accelerated Living Benefit 

The Terminal Illness Accelerated Living Benefit (TIALB) allows you to access 100% of your death benefit, up to $1 million, when you receive a life expectancy of 24 months or less or from a certified physician. Your premium will also be adjusted based on the amount you take from your benefit.  

Waiver of Premium

If you become totally disabled, the Waiver of Premium will pay your monthly premiums for you. However, this is only available for issue ages 18 to 59 and expires at the age of 65.

Customer Service

To help you determine what kind of coverage you need, GPM provides a helpful online calculator.

For further questions, you can send an email via the online contact form or contact GPM Life by mail or phone.

GPM Life Customer Support
Mailing Address 2211 N.E. Loop 410 
San Antonio, Texas 78217-4630
Phone  1-800-929-4765 
Medicare Supplement  1-866-242-7573 

Complaint Index

Ratings from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) are a great way to judge customer satisfaction. The NAIC collects customer complaint data for each insurance provider and then assigns a score using a baseline rating of 1.0 as the industry average.

GPM scores a staggering 2.21 in 2021, which is double the industry’s average score. It shows that the company has a long way to go in improving its customer satisfaction, especially since scores have been declining in recent years. In 2019, GPM received an NAIC rating of 1.15 and in 2018, it scored 0.71.

Third-Party Ratings

J.D. Power has long been respected as a rating provider for customer satisfaction. GPM is not rated in its 2020 U.S. Life Insurance Study nor is it rated in the 2021 U.S. Insurance Digital Experience Study.

AM Best is another leading industry rating provider, offering scores based on financial stability and strength. High AM Best ratings often mean efficient claims and payment processing. Here, GPM receives a high rating of A- (Excellent), showing that while its customer service could use some work, the company is financially strong. 

Cancellation Policy

While GPM does not specify its exact cancellation policy, there is a "free look" period that typically lasts between 10 to 30 days for most life insurance providers. During this time, you have a second chance to review your policy in detail to ensure that it is really the right pick for you. If you decide to cancel your policy during the free look period, you may have paid premiums returned. If you cancel your policy after the free look period, you may be subject to penalties and fees.

To cancel your policy, you can contact GPM customer support at 1-800-929-4765.

Price

GPM provides sample pricing for a $500,000 life insurance policy for a 25-year-old male in excellent health. Permanent insurance coverage can cost around $175 per month, but you could pay as little as $75 per month for a permanent life insurance policy with a term rider. 

Pricing for GPM life insurance is based on a number of different factors, including your age, medical history, and state of residence. Gender is another factor that can impact the cost of your life insurance, although most companies base the price on birth biology and not current gender identity. 

GPM offers bundle discounts for eligible policyholders, including savings when you purchase coverage for your spouse or business partners.

A licensed insurance agent can help with exact pricing for you.  

Competition

To understand how GPM Life matches up against the competition, we compare it to one of the best life insurance companies, New York Life. 

GPM is very small in market share when compared to New York Life, which stands as the third-largest insurance company in the U.S. today. While it has almost as many plans, GPM does far less business than New York Life and receives low ratings for financial strength. Worst of all, GPM’s customer complaint rating from NAIC is abysmal, leaving New York Life as the stronger company when comparing the two.

  GPM Life New York Life 
Market Share 0.007% Third-largest in U.S., 5.7%
Number of Plans  10 
Dividends for 2020  $809 million  $1.9 billion 
Wellness Program Discounts/Quit Smoking Incentives  Yes  Not applicable 
Service Method  Agents  Agents 
AM Best Rating  A- (Excellent)  A++ (Superior) 
Price Rank  Depends on salary  Better than most 
Complaints Trend  2.21 Very Poor  0.15 Excellent 
Final Verdict

You have to be a federal employee to benefit from GPM Life Insurance, but it’s a convenient solution with several options if you qualify.

GPM provides convenient, comprehensive life insurance for federal employees. However, while the company boasts strong financial reliability, customer satisfaction ratings leave much to be desired. 

Our Methodology: How We Review Life Insurance Carriers

To find the best life insurance carriers, we use our Life Insurance Review Methodology to critically and efficiently analyze each company in a systematic manner based on its strengths and weaknesses. We consider a number of factors, such as the types of coverage available, how many plans are offered, the selection of riders, and eligibility requirements. We also look to leading insurance ratings providers, like AM Best for financial strength and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). Based on these factors and more, we present comprehensive and current reviews of each life insurance provider so you can make the best decisions for you and your family’s financial future.

Article Sources

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  1. AM Best. "Company and Ratings Search." Accessed September 1, 2021.