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American Income Life Review

review of American Income Life

American Income LifeChartered in Indiana in 1951 and now headquartered in Waco, Texas, American Income Life (“AIL”) is a financially strong life insurer that focuses on serving “working families.”

AIL’s bread and butter is marketing life insurance to members of associations—especially labor unions and credit unions—though group membership is not generally a prerequisite for coverage.

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AIL’s founder was a strong advocate for labor unions, and the company’s affiliation with unions is a significant aspect of its marketing. However, this relationship is not just a promotional gimmick, as AIL consistently supports labor-related causes and charities, with company representatives even known to assist striking union members directly.

Operating in 49 states and Washington, D.C., AIL offers life insurance through its subsidiary, National Income Life Insurance Company, in New York. The company’s website states that local agents are available for house calls to help insured individuals and prospective clients with their coverage needs.

AIL’s agents work as independent contractors and are not unionized, receiving their income solely through commission-based sales. While this structure can provide the potential for high-performing agents to earn substantial income, it can also lead to high-pressure sales tactics.

Although AIL’s marketing primarily targets association members, consumers can also obtain contact information for local agents from the company’s website.

Since 2019, AIL has been a wholly-owned subsidiary of Globe Life, which specializes in low-cost, low-coverage life insurance policies.

Note that this is a review of American Income Life, not the company itself. For inquiries, please use the contact  Customer Care: 800-433-3405

American Income Life Financials

  • A.M. Best: A+
  • S&P: A.A.-
  • Moody’s: NR
  • Fitch: A+
  • Comdex Ranking: 91

American Income Life has received highly respectable scores from major rating groups, with a 91 from Comdex and an A+ from A.M. Best, placing it just outside the top-rated life insurance companies.

In practical terms, this means policyholders who purchase coverage from AIL face very little risk of non-payment of policy benefits. While unexpected events can occur, AIL is generally a safe choice for financial stability.

With over $4 billion in corporate assets and over $60 billion in life insurance policies covering more than two million individuals, AIL is a sizable company, but not as large as some of the biggest names in the industry.

American Income Life Consumer Ratings

AIL has been accredited by the BBB since 1952 and currently has an A+ rating, which indicates that it is responsive to consumer complaints received through the BBB.

However, AIL’s ratings from customers directly are relatively low, with just over two stars out of five on BBB’s site. Many AIL policyholders have cited difficulty in reaching company representatives in a timely manner as a common issue in online reviews of the company. If fast customer service is a priority, AIL may not be the best choice.

American Income Life Insurance Rates

Regarding overall life insurance cost, AIL seems to offer higher-than-average premiums in total.

Premium competitiveness can vary considerably from one policy to another. Variations in underwriting standards between companies can make one company a bargain for one person but overpriced for another.

Generally, though, AIL seems to come in on the high side.

Selection is pretty limited with AIL. Term and whole life are both available, but the company doesn’t sell universal life or offer a no-exam life insurance policy (or, if they do, they do an excellent job of keeping it a secret).

What Products Does American Income Life Offer?

First and foremost, AIL is a life insurance provider—issuing term life and whole life policies.

Additionally, the company offers accident and supplemental health coverage, including accident-only, hospital-indemnity, cancer protection, and critical illness policies.

AIL’s Special Risk Division also provides accident coverage for minor-oriented organizations, such as summer camps and 4H groups.

AIL offers its insureds a program for obtaining discounted services from partnered healthcare providers at no additional cost. AIL’s “Safe Child Kit” for parents of minor children does not require a policy purchase and is one of AIL’s more effective marketing tools.

Life Insurance from American Income Life

AIL Term Life Insurance: 

AIL offers the kind of straightforward term life policies that have come to take up the lion’s share of the consumer life insurance market.

The policies work by extending coverage for a pre-defined period of years (often 10, 15, 20, 25, or 30 years). During that term, the policyholder makes regular premium payments.

AIL’s policies are “level term life insurance,” which means premium amounts stay consistent throughout the term. If the insured dies during the term, AIL pays out the policy’s death benefit to the named beneficiary. If the term ends, the coverage lapses, and the policy no longer protects the insured.

AIL offers a variety of term lengths, with premiums depending on the insured’s age, health, and chosen term length, among other factors.

If coverage is triggered, the beneficiary can accept payment via a single lump sum or spread out the funds over a period of years. Subject to certain restrictions, term policies can be converted to whole-life coverage.

AIL Whole Life Insurance

AIL whole life insurance policies come with the standard features commonly associated with whole life insurance. Coverage is guaranteed to stay in place as long as premiums are paid.

Premium payment amounts are fixed for life and guaranteed not to increase. Policies accumulate a cash value that earns guaranteed interest, and that cash value can be withdrawn, borrowed against, or annuitized to help fund retirement.

A downside of AIL’s whole life coverage is that it is non-dividend-paying. Many mutual insurance companies pay regular dividends to policyholders—a small slice of the company’s annual profits split among policyholders.

AIL doesn’t offer that, so while the interest rate paid on cash value looks pretty respectable, it must be weighed against the absence of dividends from many other companies.

AIL Freedom of Choice (Final Expense): 

AIL offers a whole-life policy marketed explicitly as final expense insurance coverage. The policy is designed to pay for funeral and burial expenses and similar estate-related costs.

Final expense plans are generally marketed to older insureds who might have trouble finding coverage otherwise.

Final expense policies usually provide less coverage than what is typically required for income replacement but are much easier to qualify for.

AIL Head Start (whole life for children): 

AIL’s Head Start program enables parents and grandparents of minor children to purchase whole-life coverage of up to $25,000 for children.

Policy premiums are fixed for life and are based on the child’s age when coverage is issued.

A featured Guaranteed Insurability option ensures continuing coverage eligibility. If elected, the option allows for increases in a policy’s coverage amount at six different points in the child’s life—up to a $25,000 increase each time.

Terminal Illness Rider: 

AIL offers a Terminal Illness rider that can be added to life insurance policies without any additional premium.

When the rider is in place, up to half the policy’s coverage amount can be accelerated (i.e., paid out early) if the insured is diagnosed with a “terminal illness,” which usually means less than 12 months to live.

The policy remains effective, and upon the insured’s death, the remaining coverage amounts are paid to the named beneficiary.

Final thoughts…

American Income Life’s high ratings indicate that it is a reliable company that can fulfill its obligations to policyholders.

However, with numerous options available in the life insurance marketplace, you can probably find a better deal by shopping around.

If you want to compare AIL to other top companies in the market, please get in touch with us today and experience the IBUSA difference.

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