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The Pan American Life Insurance Group (PALIG) is a long-standing insurance company with a big footprint. It has an excellent financial strength rating and fewer complaints than expected for a company of its size. The company also offers whole life policies that pay dividends. But you won’t find much information on the company’s website and you'll have to contact an agent to get a quote and apply.
- Pros & Cons
- Company Overview
Excellent financial stability
Fewer complaints than expected
Some policies eligible for dividends
Very little information on the website
No online quotes or applications
The Pan American Life Insurance Group (PALIG) was founded in 1911 in New Orleans, Louisiana, where its U.S. headquarters remain. The company provided insurance for more than 5.8 million people and had over 2,100 employees by 2020. Coverage is available in 49 states, as well as in the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
- Excellent financial stability: The insurer earned an A (Excellent) financial strength rating from AM Best.
- Fewer complaints than expected: The insurer had fewer complaints than expected for a company of its size over a period of three years.
- Some policies eligible for dividends: Pan American offers participating whole life insurance policies, which are eligible for dividends.
- Very little information on the website: The company’s website has limited information, making it hard to learn about its life insurance offerings.
- No online quotes or applications: Unlike many other insurers that offer online quotes and applications for term coverage, you can’t get a quote or apply without contacting an agent.
Pan American has received fewer customer complaints than expected for a company of its size, according to annual complaint index data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).
It means that it received a number of complaints expected for a company of its size if a company has a complaint index of 1.00. The company received more complaints than expected if the index is above 1.00. It had fewer complaints than expected if its index is below 1.00. Pan American had consistently low complaint indexes in 2019, 2020, and 2022, coming in at 0.14, 0.00, and 0.30 for those three years respectively.
Pan American also fares well when it comes to financial strength, according to AM Best, a long-standing credit rating agency that specializes in the insurance industry. AM Best assesses over 16,000 insurance companies and grades them based on their ability to pay debts, claims, and other financial obligations.
So how well does Pan American rank? The insurer earned an A (Excellent) for financial strength in October 2022. This is AM Best’s third-highest rating. This means that the company is considered very stable so policyholders won't have to worry about its ability to pay claims.
Pan American offers term, whole life, and universal life insurance policies. Here’s a closer look at how these policies work.
Pan American’s whole and term life insurance policies are provided by Mutual Trust Life Insurance Company, a Pan American Life Insurance Group Stock Company.
Term Life Insurance
Term life insurance offers coverage for a fixed period, such as 10, 15, 20, or 30 years. You can select the term that’s best for your situation. Your beneficiary will receive a death benefit if you pass away during the covered period. But you’ll lose coverage when the plan expires if you outlive the term and your beneficiary won’t receive any payout.
You can convert PALIG policies to permanent coverage before the term ends or renew term coverage once the term expires.
Whole Life Insurance
Whole life insurance is a permanent type of insurance that’s designed to provide coverage for life, as long as you pay your premiums. Plans typically have fixed premiums, fixed death benefits, and a cash value component. PALIG offers participating whole life insurance policies that may be eligible to earn dividends.
Universal Life Insurance
Universal life (UL) insurance is another type of permanent life insurance with a cash value component. But you’re able to adjust your premium and death benefit amount instead of paying a fixed premium and having a fixed death benefit. This type of policy is more flexible than whole life, but you may find that you have to increase your premium payments later on if you don’t pay sufficient premiums in the early years.
Insurance riders are provisions that can be added to your life insurance policy to expand your coverage. The more options you have, the more ways you can customize your policy to your needs. Here’s a sampling of the riders that are available through Pan American.
Guaranteed Insurability Rider
A guaranteed insurability rider gives you the option to buy additional permanent life insurance at designated times without having to show evidence of insurability. Mutual Trust offers this option to policyholders every three years, starting at the age of 22 until the age of 40. You can also qualify to purchase additional coverage when certain life events occur, such as a marriage or the birth of a child.
A child rider lets you add life insurance coverage for your children until they reach a certain age. You receive a death benefit if they pass away while they have coverage. Mutual Trust lets you cover children under the age of 20.
Waiver of Premium
A waiver of premium rider exempts you from paying your life insurance premiums if you become totally disabled. Your premiums will be waived but your coverage will continue when you provide proof of your disability and after a specified elimination period.
Accidental Death Benefit
An accidental death benefit rider provides your beneficiary with an additional benefit if you die as the result of an accident, such as a car wreck. Mutual Trust offers a rider that pays an accidental death benefit if you die within one year of an accident and before the age of 70.
ADB: Terminal Illness Rider
Accelerated death benefit (ADB) riders enable you to receive some or all of your life insurance policy’s death benefit if you’ve been diagnosed with a terminal illness. Mutual Trust lets you accelerate up to 50% of your policy up to $250,000 if you’re diagnosed with a terminal illness and have a life expectancy of 12 months or less.
ADB: Chronic Illness Rider
The chronic illness rider lets you accelerate your death benefit if you’re diagnosed with a permanent chronic illness. Mutual Trust allows you to accelerate up to 24% of your policy up to $240,000.
Paid-up Additions (PUA) Rider
Paid-up addition (PUA) riders let you add to your whole life policy’s fixed death benefit and cash value. Mutual Trust offers PUA options to continuously add to your death benefit over time, or you can do so in one lump sum.
What can you expect when you need assistance? Pan American provides dedicated customer support channels for the different regions it serves and the different products it offers. U.S. policyholders can get help by calling 1-877-939-4550 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT.
You can also send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can self-serve by logging into the member portal, My Palig, if you want to learn more about your specific policy.
Pan American is a financially stable company that can be trusted to pay out death benefit claims. And some policies can actually earn you dividends, cutting down on the cost of carrying this insurance.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What kind of insurance does Pan American Life offer?
Pan American offers universal, whole life, and term life insurance policies. It also provides numerous optional riders, including accidental death benefits and a child rider. Some of Pan American's whole life policies provide dividends.
Is Pan American Life a reputable company?
Pan American has a solid financial strength rating from AM Best. It's received fewer complaints than other insurers of its size. It's provided more than 5.8 million policies since its inception.
What is Pan American Life's average claim response time?
This insurance company doesn't publish or promise a specific time frame for claim response. It reportedly converted to digital management of claims in 2002, which should have sped things up, at least in theory. The average wait time for most life insurance companies is 10 to 15 business days, but policies that are less than two years old can take longer.
What is Pan American Life's customer service availability?
Pan American dedicates customer support channels for each of the regions it serves, as well as for its various policies and products. Support is available by phone Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT., and by email at email@example.com. The company also provides an online member portal that can direct you to information about your own policy.
What is Pan American Life's claims process?
Pan American doesn't advertise an overall, specific claims process, but it does indicate that you can call 1-877-569-3075 for step-by-step guidance in submitting your specific claim. You can also access PALIG's Resource Center online. You can access the policy in question here and receive further guidance as to what you should do next.
We designed a comprehensive ranking methodology based on consumer priorities and life insurance company fundamentals to rank more than 90 insurers across five general categories: financial stability, customer satisfaction, product and feature variety, the overall buying experience, and cost.
We collected over 5,000 data points and scored each company based on 55 metrics. We grouped metrics by category to see how insurers performed in each. We then weighted category scores to determine how companies performed overall.
You can read our full Life Insurance Methodology to learn more.
AM Best. "Pan-American Life Insurance Company."
NAIC. "Mutual Trust Life Ins Co a Pan Amer National Complaint Index Report."
American Income Life Insurance Company. "File an Insurance Claim."
Pan American Life Insurance Group. "Resource Center."