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Traditionally, shopping for a term life insurance policy can involve several time-consuming steps. The process often involves comparing rates, choosing a company, completing a lengthy application process, scheduling a medical exam, and then waiting for underwriting to determine if you qualify for coverage.
What if there was a provider that could make the application process much simpler and less time-consuming? What if you could skip the medical exam altogether, complete the application, and receive a decision for life insurance coverage in just 9 minutes?
If that sounds too good to be true, then you’re going to want to make sure you check out Bestow term life insurance as they are quickly becoming a popular choice for term life insurance coverage for those very reasons.
Bestow is an insurance broker that developed the first entirely digital platform for applying for life insurance online without taking a medical exam or even a phone call. Their online application process takes roughly 9 minutes to complete, and you will receive an instant decision as to if you qualify for coverage shortly after completing an application.
At the moment, Bestow currently offers only term life insurance coverage. Their term insurance plans range in contract lengths of 10-years up to 30-years with coverage amounts as high as $1.5 million with no possibility of a medical exam being required.
While Bestow may sound like they can offer the best term life insurance plan, everyone has different needs, so it’s still a good idea to review not only their coverage but all your options before choosing a plan.
Before applying for any insurance policy, you should compare rates, policy riders, coverage amounts, and eligibility requirements. Our job is to help you do just that. In the following review, we will be exploring all the Bestow term life insurance features to help you make the right decision.
Bestow Life Insurance Company
Who exactly is Bestow?
Bestow started as a software company in Dallas, Texas. The company officially launched in 2017, building the first entirely digital platform for selling term life insurance.
The platform was designed to eliminate phone screenings, doctor visits, and blood tests to provide an effortless way to get life insurance coverage online.
While the company is relatively young, it’s backed by a major life insurer. Bestow partners with North American Life to offer its affordable term life insurance coverage. The policies are sold through the Bestow online application platform and issued by North American Life.
Since the launch of Bestow, the company has raised over $150 million in funding in just five years, including $70 million during the Series C funding round in December 2020. Not only have they partnered with a major life insurer, but they are also funded by some big named investors such as Breyer Capital, Valar Ventures, New Enterprise Associates, Core Innovation Ventures, Morpheus Ventures, and Sammons Financial.
In recent news, Bestow has acquired Centurion Life Insurance for $2.3 million, which indicates the company’s success in an incredibly short period of time.
North American Life Insurance Company
Why is it important to know about North American Life Insurance Company in a Bestow term life insurance review?
Well, Bestow is the one that supplies the technology, while North American Life is the company responsible for issuing the Bestow term life products.
North American Life Insurance Company has over 135 years of experience in the insurance industry. The company was founded in 1886 and is now a subsidiary of Sammons Financial Group (SFG), the financial services arm of Sammons Enterprises, Inc.
If you’re wondering if Sammons is a large company, rest assured they are. Sammons is currently ranked 22nd in AM Best’s top 200 U.S. life and insurers in 2020.
Headquartered in Dallas, Sammons generates over $5 billion in annual revenue and has over $70 billion in assets. It’s one of the largest privately held companies in the United States. The company offers a wide range of annuities, life insurance, and health insurance products.
We can honestly say that Bestow made a great choice in partnering with North American Life.
North American Life Insurance Company Ratings and Reviews
When looking for a term life insurance product or any other life insurance product, part of the consideration process should involve comparing the company’s professional ratings.
There are a handful of widely recognized independent rating agencies that rate companies based on their financial performance. These scores help determine a company’s likelihood to remain financially stable and its ability to pay claims out to its policyholders.
Since the term life insurance plans are issued through North American Life, Bestow would not have their own professional ratings. This is because professional ratings are only handed out to companies that issue actual insurance policies.
For that reason, we need to look at the financial ratings for North American Life as they will be the ones providing the actual life insurance coverage. Luckily, North American Life has high financial ratings:
- AM Best: A+ (Superior)
- S&P Global Ratings: A+ (Strong)
- Fitch Ratings: A+ (Stable)
As Sammons Financial Group owns North American Life, most of the ratings are based on the parent company’s financial standings. However, North American remains one of the largest insurers in the nation.
North American Life has close to 400,000 life insurance policies and over 220,000 annuity policies in force. The company has also paid over $593 million in death claims in 2019 alone.
North American Life maintains high ratings from customers. The company is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and is quick to address customer complaints. North American Life currently has an A+ rating from BBB based on its customer satisfaction.
Bestow Term Life Insurance
Bestow term life insurance is part of a recent trend to provide consumers with more online solutions to applying for life insurance coverage quickly and without the need for a traditional medical exam.
The company developed an entirely digital platform that eliminates many of the hassles associated with buying insurance products. You can get a quote, apply for coverage and receive approval in minutes. Some of the highlights of Bestow term life include:
- Policies are backed by North American Life, an A+ rated insurer
- Issue ages 18 to 60
- Up to $1.5 million in coverage is available
- 10-year to 30-year contract lengths
- The paperless application takes as little as nine minutes to complete
- Available in 49 states
- Pay with a credit card
- No medical exam is ever required
Want to know more? Here’s a comprehensive look at what you get with Bestow term life insurance.
Bestow Term Life Insurance Overview
|Policy Features||Bestow Term Life|
|Contract Options:||10-Year: 18-60
30-Year: 18-39 Males / 18-40 Females
|Coverage Amounts:||Minimum Amount: $50,000
Maximum Amount: $1.5 Million
|Policy Riders:||None available|
|Renewability:||Not renewable once contract is over|
|Conversion Option:||Not convertible|
|Medical Exam Requirements:||Medical exams are not required|
|State Availability:||Available in all states except NY|
|Bestow Term Life Issue Ages|
Bestow term life insurance plans are available to individuals who are between the age of 18-60. Depending on your age when applying for coverage, you may be limited to specific contract lengths.
|Bestow Term Life Contract Lengths|
|10, 15, 20, 25 and 30-Years|
Bestow offers five different term insurance plans of 10, 15, 20, 25, or 30-year duration. All contract lengths provide a premium payment that remains the same price throughout the entire length of the contract once approved for coverage.
Contract lengths are limited to the following ages:
- 10-Year: 18-60
- 15-Year: 18-55
- 20-Year: 18-50
- 25-Year: 18-45 (18-37 Male Tobacco / 18-38 Female Tobacco)
- 30-Year: 18-39 Male / 18-40 Female (18-30 Male Tobacco / 18-31 Female Tobacco)
Applicants between the age of 56 and 60 need to qualify for a rate classification of preferred or better to be eligible for a 10-year contract.
|Bestow Term Life Coverage Amounts|
|Minimum Amount: $50,000
Maximum Amount: $1,500,000
Bestow term insurance plans offer coverage amounts starting as low as $50,000 up to $1,500,000.
For any coverage greater than $1,000,000, applicants must be between the age of 21-45, qualify for a rate classification of preferred or better, and be employed full-time.
Applicants between ages 18-20 will be limited to a maximum coverage amount of $500,000.
|Bestow Term Life Policy Riders|
|No available policy riders|
Bestow term insurance plans do not come with or offer any optional policy riders. The life insurance coverage is pure death benefit protection only.
|Bestow Term Life Renewability|
|Coverage is not renewable|
When a term insurance contract ends, you generally have the option to continue paying on the expired contract but at a much higher rate. This is often referred to as an annual renewability period and will last up to a specific age.
With Bestow term insurance plans, there is no renewability period. Once the term contract has ended, the life insurance coverage is done. If you still require life insurance coverage after the contract expires, you will need to re-apply for an entirely new policy.
|Bestow Term Life Conversion|
|Coverage is not convertible|
A conversion option is a policy feature found commonly on term insurance plans. The feature allows you to take an existing term contract and switch it to permanent coverage without providing any evidence of insurability.
Bestow term insurance plans do not offer a conversion option.
Medical Exam Requirements
|Bestow Term Life Medical Exam Requirements|
|Medical exams are not required|
Bestow term insurance plans do not require a medical exam at all. Instead, approval is based on medical questions, height and weight, along with information received from third-party underwriting sources.
Application Process for Bestow Term Life Insurance
The application process is completed online and includes just four easy steps:
- Provide basic identifying information:
- Discuss your personal history and medical history
- List the beneficiaries for your policy
- Choose your policy and payment details
After filling out the online forms, Bestow uses its algorithmic underwriting process to review your application. The company uses data from third-party sources, including the Medical Information Bureau (MIB) and LexisNexis, to help with the underwriting process. Bestow also looks at your driving history, criminal history and runs a soft credit check.
The underwriting process takes an average of 30 seconds to complete, allowing you to receive a decision instantly. Then, if you are approved, you can verify the details of the policy, make payment and have insurance coverage, all within a matter of minutes.
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Bestow Term Life Insurance Frequently Asked Questions: Overview
Bestow term life does not come with many features, but you may still have a few questions about how it works and whether it is worth the cost.
The following FAQ should address any remaining questions about the term life insurance coverage offered by Bestow. If you think of a question that we overlooked, let us know by submitting your question in the form located at the end of the FAQ section.
Who is a good fit for Bestow term life insurance?
Bestow term life is designed for those who wish to avoid medical exams. The company encourages individuals between the ages of 18 and 60 with no felony records and good overall health to apply.
If you want a term life product with a straightforward application process, you may be a good fit for Bestow. Applying takes minutes, and you never need to complete a medical exam.
What determines eligibility?
Eligibility is determined based on your responses to the questions on the application and the data obtained from third-party sources. The Bestow application platform has been designed to work as an algorithm to make fast underwriting decisions.
While you complete the application and answer the health questions, the platform is hard at work reading the responses and pulling data from third-party underwriting sources. The information received from the third-party sources is matched to the application questions to underwrite coverage accurately.
For example, Bestow can immediately pull your driving record from the department of motor vehicles (DMV) or the secretary of state (SOS) to review your driving record. However, multiple traffic violations or DWIs and DUIs in the past five years may keep you from getting approved.
Bestow will also assess other risk factors as well. For example, your age, height, weight, lifestyle, and medical history are used to determine the risk of approving your application and determining your premiums.
Bestow will work with LexisNexis and other data vendors to instantly run data reports on prescribed medications, criminal history, bankruptcies to assess potential risk factors.
Who is not eligible for a Bestow term insurance policy?
Residents of the state of New York are not eligible for Bestow term life insurance. However, this product is available in the remaining 49 states. In addition, anyone outside of the issue ages of 18 to 60 years old is ineligible for insurance from Bestow. You will also need to be a US citizen or current green card holder with a minimum of 2-years of US residence to be eligible.
The underwriting process allows Bestow to look for medical conditions that you may have received treatment for. Certain medical conditions may potentially disqualify you from coverage, depending on the details of the condition, while others will result in an automatic denial for coverage with Bestow.
For example, if you suffer from depression or anxiety combined with other health issues, your risk factor increases, increasing the chances of Bestow denying your application. However, Bestow may still approve applicants with a mild diagnosis of depression or anxiety as long as there are no other risk factors.
Bestow also has an extensive list of conditions that automatically disqualify you from receiving coverage.
Some of the conditions include:
- Heart disease
- Cancer (except basal and squamous cell skin cancer)
- Kidney disease
- Diabetes (Type 1)
- Organ transplant
- A history of alcohol or drug abuse
Bestow may also deny your application if you are currently in a hospital, long-term care facility, or hospice facility. The company also denies applications for individuals that are confined to wheelchairs or have experienced unexplained weight loss.
If you have a pre-existing health condition and are unsure if you will qualify for coverage, it’s always best to reach out to us or Bestow Life to see if you will be eligible before completing an application.
Will a medical exam ever be required?
A medical exam is never required for Bestow term life insurance. Instead, bestow relies on big data and technology to review your application and medical history instead of using exams and additional paperwork.
Bestow uses health data from the Medical Information Bureau (MIB) and LexisNexis to assess your risk and eligibility. The MIB collects data related to medical information from any past insurance application, while LexisNexis contains data from driving reports, prescribed medications, financial information, etc. These details eliminate the need for an exam.
Who underwrites the application?
The application is underwritten by Bestow and issued by North American Life. Bestow uses in-house underwriting using an advanced algorithmic process.
The underwriting process is used to assess the risk of the company paying a claim. Each insurance company uses a different formula to assess your risk and decide how much you should pay for coverage.
What kind of health questions are asked on the application?
Bestow asks seven main health questions to determine your eligibility. The topics of the questions include:
- Weight loss
- Tobacco use
- Medical history
The answers that you provide to the initial questions help determine your eligibility before moving forward with the application. The application includes a limited selection of questions, as Bestow receives the information it needs during the underwriting process.
A portion of the application non-related to health questions will consist of lifestyle and participation in dangerous hobbies.
Is a paper application available?
Paper applications are not available for Bestow term life insurance. You need to apply online. Bestow was built as a digital-only platform and handles everything paperless, which is how Bestow can provide an instant decision for coverage. If you get a policy from Bestow, all paperwork and forms will be sent via email.
How quick is approval for coverage?
Some applicants receive approval instantly. The company claims that underwriting decisions are completed within an average of just five minutes.
The typical underwriting process with traditional life insurance companies takes an average of 45 days. Bestow term life allows you to receive an instant thanks to its algorithmic underwriting process.
What happens after you are approved for coverage?
If you are approved for coverage, Bestow displays the final premium for your policy based on one of six rate classifications. Ideally, your initial quote should be the same as your final premium. However, depending on the underwriting outcome, it could be different.
Once approved, you will have the opportunity to adjust your coverage before finalizing your term insurance plan. Changing the coverage amount or term length will also change the final rate to reflect the new changes.
After viewing the premium, and if you accept the terms of your coverage, you simply need to finalize the process by electronically signing your policy documents and make your first payment to receive coverage. Bestow accepts payments via debit cards and credit cards.
Is Bestow term life insurance affordable?
Bestow term life insurance is affordable for those in good overall health. However, if you are a tobacco user or suffer from a minor health issue, such as high blood pressure, you are likely to pay higher premiums.
Unlike many insurers, Bestow does not use agents. As a result, agents do not collect a commission when you buy a policy, which helps keep the prices down. However, you are also paying for the convenience of the digital-only platform. You may find cheaper options from an insurance company that uses a more traditional application process.
Bestow Term Insurance Rates
|Male||Bestow 10-Year||Bestow 20-Year||Bestow 30-Year|
|Female||Bestow 10-Year||Bestow 20-Year||Bestow 30-Year|
*Preferred Plus Non-Nicotine underwriting classification. Monthly Male/Female premium rates current as of 10/12/2021 representing the cost of a $500,000 Bestow 10, 20, and 30-year term life insurance policy.
What happens after the level premium ends?
The level premium ends at the end of your chosen contract length. Unfortunately, Bestow does not offer any options for renewing or converting your policy.
Many insurance companies allow you to convert your term life policy to a permanent policy or renew it with higher premiums. With a Bestow term life policy, you must reapply at the end of the term if you want to continue receiving coverage.
What other types of insurance does Bestow offer?
Bestow currently only offers term life insurance. However, the company plans on offering additional insurance products in the future.
Bestow completed its acquisition of Centurion Life to expand its range of products. The policies will continue to be issued by the North American Life Insurance Company.
How Is Bestow different from its competitors?
Bestow is different from the competition due to the company’s reliance and big data and technology. The algorithmic underwriting process is likely to become more common among insurers, as it streamlines the entire process.
With traditional underwriting, the insurer spends several weeks assessing your risk level. Underwriters use various resources to contact third-party vendors and verify your information, including your medical history. You may also need to schedule an exam, which adds to the duration of the underwriting process.
Even with the accelerated underwriting options available from the competition, you may need to wait several days for approval. Instead of weeks, Bestow can approve an application in minutes.
Does Bestow handle the death claims?
Death claims are handled by the company that issues the policy with support from Bestow. After the death of a policyholder, the beneficiary files a claim with Bestow. The company then performs a policy search and notifies North American Life Insurance Company.
North American Life then handles the rest of the claim process. The beneficiary receives a claim packet with a list of information needed to settle the claim. The claim packet is completed and submitted to North American Life.
What Is the cancelation policy with Bestow?
Bestow has a 30-day cancelation policy, which is longer compared to the industry standard. Many companies have a 7-day free look period. You can cancel your Bestow term life policy within the first 30 days to receive a full refund of your first premium payment.
You can cancel the policy after the 30-day free look period but do not get your money back. The policy does not build cash value. If you stop making payments or cancel the policy, you do not receive a refund.
Where can I read reviews from people who have purchased Bestow term life insurance?
The best place to find reviews of Bestow term life is on the Trustpilot website. Trustpilot is a trusted source for honest reviews from customers, as the company does not allow businesses to alter or edit reviews in any way.
Bestow currently has an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 from 753 customer reviews. Over 90% of customers gave the company a five-star rating.
How do I reach Bestow customer service?
You can reach Bestow customer service via phone, email, or live online chat. The customer service phone number is 1-833-300-0603 and the email address is email@example.com.
The live chat feature is available on almost every page of Bestow’s website. Simply click on the icon at the bottom of the page to launch a live chat.
How do you get a Bestow term life insurance quote?
We can get you a quote quickly. No Medical Exam Quotes has partnered with Bestow to provide access to their rates and application process. View your rate today!
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Advantages of Bestow Term Life Insurance
Bestow term life insurance is not for everyone, but it offers a long list of advantages that help it stand out compared to the competition:
- Backed by a strong life insurance company
- A straightforward application process
- Up to $1.5 million in coverage
- Accepts collateral assignments
- No medical exams ever
- 9 minutes process from start to finish
Bestow term life is backed by a stable company with a long track record in the insurance industry. North American Life was founded in 1886 and is now owned by Sammons Enterprises, with over $70 billion in assets. So whether you choose a 10-year or 30-year contract, you can relax knowing that the company can fulfill a claim.
The application process is also incredibly easy. Several other companies offer online applications but often require a follow-up phone interview or answers to a long list of questions. The entirely digital platform created by Bestow allows you to apply in minutes and receive notice of approval a few minutes later.
Bestow term life provides coverage up to $1.5 million, which is more than enough for the average individual. You may also use your policy as a collateral assignment for a secured loan. This is incredibly good for business owners who need fast life insurance as part of an SBA loan approval requirements.
Collateral assignments allow you to obtain a secured loan with lower interest rates. If you pass away before repaying the loan, the lender can collect the debt from the death benefit.
Yet, the primary benefit of Bestow term life is never needing to complete a medical exam. While many insurers offer no-medical exam policies, they often come with stipulations that limit eligibility. Bestow allows almost anyone to obtain coverage quickly, including smokers and those with minor health issues.
Finally, Bestow and its platform meet what today’s consumers are looking for when buying life insurance. That is fast and easy without a medical exam. Bestow scores an A+ in that department.
Disadvantages of Bestow Term Life Insurance
Bestow term life was created to provide a simpler way to buy insurance, which also means providing a no-frills product. Some of the potential drawbacks of Bestow term life insurance include:
- Limited issue ages
- No conversion options
- No policy riders
- Not the cheapest option
- $1.5 million may not be enough for everyone
Bestow term life is only available for individuals between the ages of 18 and 60. If you turn 61 this year, you need to find another option.
The available contract lengths also depend on your age. The maximum contract length for a 60-year-old is 10 years. The maximum issue age decreases by five years for each contract length. For example, a 15-year term is only available up to the age of 55 and the 30-year term is only available up to the age of 40.
We can tell you now, there are plenty of traditional life insurance providers that offer term insurance plans to individuals over the age of 60. In fact, most term insurance providers will offer term insurance contracts up to individuals who have reached the age of 80.
The term life insurance from Bestow also lacks conversion options and policy riders. The policies are not automatically renewable either. When the level premium ends, your policy ends.
Bestow is not the cheapest option, especially for those in good health. If you have no medical concerns, you are likely to find a more affordable option elsewhere. The coverage amount may also fail to meet your needs. Bestow allows up to $1.5 million in coverage.
Conclusion: Is Bestow Term Life Insurance Worth It?
Bestow term life comes with many advantages and a few disadvantages. It’s a basic term life product with one of the easiest application processes. Unfortunately, it’s also missing many features offered by other insurers.
Bestow term life insurance does not include policy riders, conversion options, or automatic renewal. It’s also only available for those up to the age of 60. Yet, you never need to complete a medical exam.
However, if you’re looking for strictly death benefit protection, then do not pass on Bestow term life insurance. We highly recommend them.
You can answer a few questions and get a quote in minutes, making Bestow term life insurance worth it for those that want a simple solution.
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