With a robust lineup of plans and policy features, Mutual of Omaha provides reliable coverage to applicants across the country, even those with major health concerns or a history of tobacco use. Though the buying process can be a bit slow, especially when compared with online insurers, this may be a good choice for those whose age or personal factors preclude them from buying affordable coverage elsewhere.
- Pros & Cons
- Key Takeaways
- Company Overview
Get quotes and purchase coverage online, over the phone, or through an agent
Tobacco use won’t always impact whole life rates
Long list of riders and plan benefits
Many policy options available for seniors
Buying a policy online may reduce your coverage options
Dividends are not offered
The buying process can be slow
Online account management is limited
- Though Mutual of Omaha is in 17th place in terms of U.S. market share, the company is ranked third for customer satisfaction.
- Policies can be purchased online, over the phone, or through an agent directly. If you choose to buy online or over the phone, though, just know that your coverage options may be a bit more limited than if you buy through an agent.
- Mutual of Omaha offers 11 different life insurance plan options, whether you need term, whole, or universal life coverage. Coverage is available to applicants as old as 85, and some policies won’t even count tobacco use or major health concerns against you.
Holding less than 2% of the market share in the United States, Mutual of Omaha is definitely one of the smaller life insurance providers around. However, this company has built a positive reputation for offering a wide variety of plans, benefits, and optional riders to suit a range of coverage needs for applicants all the way up to age 85.
Mutual of Omaha was founded in 1909 in Nebraska, originally offering just accident and health insurance. The company has greatly expanded since then, and now offers products in all 50 states that include annuities, mortgages, disability insurance, long-term care coverage, and, of course, life insurance.
- Year Founded 1909
- Kinds of Plans Term life, whole life, universal life, AD&D-only
- Number of Plans 11
- Payment Plan Options Monthly, quarterly, or annual payments accepted
- Customer Service (800) 205-8193, via online contact form, or by contacting your local agent
- Official Website www.mutualofomaha.com
- Get quotes and purchase coverage online, over the phone, or through an agent: You have many options for buying life insurance coverage from Mutual of Omaha. These include applying online, over the phone, or going through a local agent.
- Tobacco use won’t always impact whole life rates: While smoking, vaping, chewing tobacco, etc. will still affect your term life insurance rates, Mutual of Omaha doesn’t always take tobacco use into consideration. In fact, they offer whole life coverage that won’t even factor these into your price or acceptance.
- Long list of riders and plan benefits: Depending on the coverage you select, there is a long list of benefits and riders that you can either choose from or are already included in your plan at no extra charge. These include basic riders like an accelerated death benefit and accidental death, as well as less-common features such as disability income, waiver of premium, return of premium, and even common carrier accident benefits.
- Many policy options available for seniors: You can purchase whole life coverage up to an issue age of 85 with Mutual of Omaha. Additionally, term life coverage can be renewed annually through age 94 (coverage ending at age 95), giving seniors the ability to buy and manage coverage even in their later years.
- Buying a policy online may reduce your coverage options: While some coverage types, like term life, are only available through an agent, others give you the option to buy online or over the phone. However, you may find that your options are a bit more limited when you don’t buy through an agent.
- Dividends are not offered: Mutual of Omaha does not offer dividends to policyholders at this time.
- The buying process can be slow: Though some term life insurers offer immediate coverage or an application process that takes only a day or two, this isn’t the case with Mutual of Omaha. According to their website, the average amount of time it takes to complete the process is actually around one month.
- Online account management is limited: If you want to add new beneficiaries, make changes to coverage, or otherwise change your policy, there’s not much you can do online. Most account changes will need to be made through your agent or by mailing/faxing physical forms.
Mutual of Omaha offers a variety of life insurance plans to choose from, depending on your coverage needs. However, not all policies will be available in all areas.
You may recognize Mutual of Omaha from their exciting Wild Kingdom program, an animal and nature show that ran from 1963 to 1989. Their wildlife program was revived in 2002 and ran on Animal Planet until 2011.
By purchasing a basic term life policy from Mutual of Omaha, you are opting to protect yourself with 10, 15, 20, or 30 years of level coverage. While this insurance policy will eventually expire, you’ll enjoy level premiums for the duration of the term you choose.
Term policies through Mutual of Omaha are available to applicants ages 18 through 80, for $100,000 or more in coverage. After your term expires, you can renew on an annual basis all the way through age 95. Or, term plans can also be converted into permanent coverage in many cases, if you decide that you need life insurance protection for longer.
Living Promise Graded Benefit Plan
Mutual of Omaha offers three whole life insurance options, depending on what you need and how you prefer to buy. Two of these are considered Living Promise policies, the first of which is the Graded Benefit Plan.
This plan is offered to applicants between the ages of 45 and 80, and is available to those who prefer to purchase with the help of an agent. Benefits can range from $2,000 to $20,000 (if you’re in Washington, these limits are $5,000 to $40,000) and are never reduced due to your age or health conditions. Health and tobacco use aren’t factored into your premiums, either.
As a graded plan, your beneficiaries may only receive a portion of your policy’s death benefit if you pass away within the first two years. If you die of natural causes during this time frame, your beneficiaries will receive the premiums you paid to-date plus 10%. If you die from an accident in those first two years, though, or from any cause after the two-year period is up, they’ll receive the full benefit.
Living Promise Level Benefit Plan
The second Living Promise whole life coverage option is a Level Benefit plan, available to applicants between the ages of 45 and 85 (five additional years, compared to the Graded Benefit Plan).
It provides a bit more in lifelong, permanent insurance coverage (up to $40,000) through a simplified underwriting process. It is the second whole life coverage option you’ll have if you’d prefer to apply for your policy with the help of an agent.
How you buy life insurance through Mutual of Omaha matters—you’ll find that maximum coverage limits on term and whole life policies are lower when buying online or over the phone, versus buying through an agent.
Guaranteed Plus Whole Life
Guaranteed Plus applications are available online or over the phone.
This whole life policy offers between $2,000 and $25,000 in guaranteed coverage ($5,000 to $25,000 in Washington) with no medical exam or health questions required. Neither tobacco use nor health history is factored into your pricing, either.
Policies are issued to applicants ages 45 to 85 (in New York, 50 to 75), with benefits that will never be reduced due to age or health status. According to Mutual of Omaha, 85% of claims made on Guaranteed Plus policies are paid out within 24 hours.
Life Protection Advantage℠
If you’re looking for permanent coverage that also builds investable cash value, the Life Protection Advantage℠ policy may be worth a look. This indexed universal life plan provides you with protection up to age 85 (and even beyond), as long as you continue paying your no-lapse premium, while also allowing your cash value to grow.
Another indexed universal life policy, the Income Advantage℠ plan from Mutual of Omaha provides you with permanent coverage and a failsafe way to grow your cash value. Though your money is never actually invested in the stock market with this plan, its growth is tied to market index performance.
In a good year, your cash value will benefit from interest growth; in a bad year, though, you’re safe with downside protection. This protection means that even if the market index performance is negative, your savings will never receive less than 0%. In other words, you will never lose money, only gain.
The third indexed universal life option through Mutual of Omaha is the AccumUL Answers plan. In addition to providing permanent life insurance coverage, this plan also guarantees at least 2% annual growth on your cash value with a declared interest rate.
With evidence of good health, each of these three universal life plans can allow you to increase your death benefit over time, as needed.
With no medical exams or health/occupation limitations, an accidental death policy provides protection should you die in an accident. This policy, which is offered to applicants between the ages of 18 and 80, can be standalone or as a supplement to existing coverage. It provides a benefit up to $1 million and is guaranteed renewable through age 80.
Available Riders and Benefits
Mutual of Omaha provides a healthy list of benefits and riders that are either included in your life insurance plan automatically (depending on the policy) or can be added for an additional cost. Not all benefits are available in all states or for all insurance plans, so be sure to ask your agent which ones can be added to your plan.
Accelerated Death Benefit Rider
If you’re diagnosed with a terminal illness or condition and have 24 months or less to live, this rider gives you access to up to 92% of your policy’s death benefit as a lump sum. Your policy will then terminate after the accelerated death benefit is paid out.
Chronic Illness Rider
If you’re unable to complete two or more of the six Activities of Daily Living (ADL) for at least 90 consecutive days, this rider will give you access to up to 80% of your policy’s benefit.
Terminal Illness Rider
If you are diagnosed with a terminal illness and have 12 months or less to live, this rider allows you to pull from your death benefit (up to 80%).
Critical Illness Rider
You’ll receive an accelerated death benefit if, within the last 12 months, you have been certified by a physician as having:
- Kidney failure
- Major organ failure
- Life-threatening cancer
- Heart attack
Residential Damage Rider
The premiums for your base policy and riders will be waived for six months if your primary residence sustains $25,000 or more in damages.
Waiver of Premium for Unemployment Rider
The premiums for your base policy and riders will be waived for a six-month period in the event of qualifying for unemployment.
Common Carrier Death Benefit Provision
Receive an additional death benefit equal to 100% of your policy’s value or $250,000 (whichever is less) if you die in an accident as a fare-paying passenger on a common carrier, such as an airline or bus.
Disability Income Rider
If you’re diagnosed with a qualifying disability, this rider will pay out a percentage of your policy’s value at regular intervals (usually monthly) as income protection.
Disability Waiver of Premium Rider
After being diagnosed with a qualifying disability, the disability waiver of premium rider will waive your monthly premium payments while still keeping your coverage in good standing.
Accidental Death Benefit
In addition to your plan's existing death benefit, the accidental death rider will pay out an additional coverage amount if you are killed in a qualifying accident.
Dependent Children’s Coverage
You can choose to protect your dependent children with their own term coverage through a rider on your existing coverage.
According to Mutual of Omaha, more than 85% of whole life insurance claims are paid out within 24 hours or less.
Whether you are looking to buy a new life insurance policy or want to make changes to your current coverage, Mutual of Omaha gives you the option to contact them either by phone or email. Their agents are available Monday through Thursday from 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. CST and Friday 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. CST at 800-205-8193.
Additionally, you can reach out to your local Mutual of Omaha agent (if you have one) or request to be connected to an agent near you for more personalized assistance.
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners, or NAIC, is tasked with tracking the number of closed consumer complaints lodged against insurers in a given year. Accounting for the industry average and each company’s own market share, the NAIC then calculates what’s called a complaint index.
The average (baseline) index is always 1.00; if a company’s complaint index is less than one, it means they received fewer complaints than expected based on their size. A complaint index greater than one indicates more complaints than expected.
In 2019, Mutual of Omaha had a complaint index of 0.59 for the company overall, which means the insurer received fewer complaints than expected from consumers relative to its share in the market.
In terms of financial strength, Mutual of Omaha has earned an A+ rating from both AM Best and S&P Global. While this isn’t the highest possible rating, it does indicate confidence in the company’s ability to fulfill its coverage obligations and pay benefits.
Based on the results of the J.D. Power 2019 U.S. Life Insurance Study, Mutual of Omaha scores very well in terms of customer satisfaction and overall excellence. In fact, the insurer was ranked third (just behind Northwestern Mutual and State Farm), receiving four out of five stars and 795 points out of a possible 1,000.
This rating takes into account factors such as price, availability, plan options, customer satisfaction reports, and company communication.
Technically, you can cancel a life insurance policy at any time and for any reason. The catch is that, depending on the terms of that policy, you may incur penalties for doing so.
If you have a term policy through Mutual of Omaha, you can call customer service at any time and request to cancel your coverage. If you simply stop making premium payments, your coverage will automatically be canceled, as well.
When you own a permanent life insurance policy, however, canceling is a bit more involved. You will likely be charged a penalty, called a surrender fee, for breaking your contract early and withdrawing funds ahead of schedule. This penalty would then reduce the cash surrender value of your policy.
It’s important to read the fine print of your policy and ask your Mutual of Omaha representative questions about your cancellation options before signing on the dotted line.
As with any life insurance policy, the price you’ll pay for coverage will vary based on your personal factors. Everything from your age to your location, medical history, and even gender will play into the cost. Plus, of course, price is determined by the type of policy and amount of coverage you choose.
Mutual of Omaha is no different. While they do have a reputation for providing some of the most affordable coverage around—especially when it comes to permanent policies—the cost will be unique to you and your situation.
Where the company does differ, however, is premiums for whole life policies. Most insurers will take into account your health and whether or not you smoke when calculating premiums, even if they don’t require an actual exam for whole life coverage. With Mutual of Omaha, though, your health and even your tobacco use are not considered factors in terms of pricing.
Mutual of Omaha does state that your gender will impact your premiums, though they don’t explicitly define how underwriting is handled for non-binary applicants. Some insurers will underwrite based on your birth gender while others take your chosen gender into account instead. Either way, just know that being non-binary will not prevent you from purchasing life insurance coverage nor will it affect the policy options offered to you.
Competition: Mutual of Omaha vs Nationwide
Anytime you’re shopping around for insurance coverage, it’s important to compare your options. That way, you can be sure that you’re getting the best possible policy at the best possible price.
To help, here’s a look at how Mutual of Omaha measures up against Nationwide, a comparably sized insurer with similar performance and ratings.
|Mutual of Omaha||Nationwide|
|Market Share||17th in the U.S., 1.4%||14th in the U.S., 1.91%|
|Number of Plans||11||11|
|Dividends for 2020||Not offered||Not announced|
|Wellness Program Discounts/ Quit Smoking Incentives||Not applicable||Not applicable|
|Service Method||Direct, through agents, or employer-based (group)||Employer-based (group) or individual|
|AM Best Rating||A+||A+|
|Price Rank||Average||Above Average|
|Complaints Trend||0.6530 Good||0.40 Excellent|
These two insurers are both similar in terms of market share, each accounting for less than 2% of life insurance policies written in the United States. They each offer 11 different life insurance plans and boast an A+ rating from AM Best.
There are a few differences, though. For starters, Mutual of Omaha ranked third in the J.D. Power 2019 U.S. Life Insurance Study compared to Nationwide’s number six placement. While both companies performed better than expected in terms of complaint index, Nationwide did edge out Mutual of Omaha slightly. Additionally, Nationwide provides dividends to many policyholders while Mutual of Omaha no longer offers them, giving Nationwide another advantage.
However, if you are older, have a serious health condition, or use tobacco, Mutual of Omaha may be your best choice for long-term coverage. That’s because many of their plans exclude these factors in pricing, and term life policies can be renewed until age 95.
Though Mutual of Omaha is one of the smaller life insurance companies on the market today, they offer a wide range of coverage options. Many of these policies come chock-full of included benefits, and others offer optional riders to help you personalize your coverage.
This insurer may not be the cheapest option for younger applicants in great health. However, applicants with health concerns or who use tobacco may find that Mutual of Omaha gives them access to more affordable life insurance without counting those factors against them. Additionally, coverage is offered to applicants all the way up to age 85, with term policies being renewable for applicants through age 94.
Our reviews of life insurance companies are based on a quantitative approach that analyzes each insurer on their stability and reliability, customer service, claims experience, diversity of product lines, and cost. We compare the terms of each type of policy offered—including available coverage amounts, optional riders, and premium payment options—with that of other major life insurance companies. Lastly, we look at how the company is rated by third-party organizations to determine its reliability and overall reputation.