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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. Plus, the company offers whole life policies that pay dividends. However, you won’t find much information on the company’s website and will need 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 provides insurance in 22 countries and has over 2,100 employees. 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: Over three years, the insurer had fewer complaints than expected for a company of its size.
- 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). If a company has a complaint index of 1.00, it means it received a number of complaints expected for a company of its size. If the index is above 1.00, the company received more complaints than expected. If its index is below 1.00, it had fewer complaints than expected. Pan American had consistently low complaint indexes over the past three years of 2021, 2020, and 2019, coming in at 0.14, 0.00, and 0.30 for those three years respectively. This means the company received far fewer complaints than expected for a company of its size.
Pan American also fares well when it comes to financial strength, according to AM Best. AM Best is a long-standing credit rating agency that specializes in the insurance industry. It 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? Most recently, the insurer earned an A (Excellent) for financial strength—AM Best’s third-highest rating. As a policyholder, that means the company is considered very stable so you 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. During the covered period, your beneficiary will receive a death benefit if you pass away. However, if you outlive the term, you’ll lose coverage when the plan expires and won’t receive any payout. However, 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 life insurance that’s designed to provide coverage for life, as long as you’re paying your premiums. Plans typically have fixed premiums, fixed death benefits, and a cash value component. PALIG offers participating whole life insurance policies which 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. However, instead of paying a fixed premium and having a fixed death benefit, you’re able to adjust your premium and death benefit amount. While this type of policy is more flexible than whole life, if you don’t pay sufficient premiums in the early years, you may need to increase premium payments later on.
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 available riders through Pan American.
Guaranteed Insurability Rider
A guaranteed insurability rider gives you the option to buy additional permanent life insurance at designated times without needing 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 enables you to add life insurance coverage for your children until they reach a certain age. If they pass away while they have coverage, you receive a death benefit. 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. Upon providing proof of your disability and after a specified elimination period, your premiums will be waived, but your coverage will continue.
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 to 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. If you want to learn more about your specific policy, you can self-serve by logging into the member portal, My Palig.
Our Methodology: How We Review Life Insurance Carriers
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.
In order to do this, 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.
To learn more, read our full Life Insurance Methodology.