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Canada Life Insurance: Everything You Need to Know

Canada Life Insurance: Everything You Need to Know
Canada Life Insurance: Everything You Need to Know

Canada Life Insurance is one of the largest and oldest insurance providers in Canada. But is it the right choice for your coverage needs? This extensive guide examines Canada Life’s history, products, pricing, pros and cons, and more to help you make an informed decision.

What is Canada Life Insurance?

Founded in 1847, Canada Life Assurance Company is Canada’s first domestic life insurer. It provides a wide range of insurance products and financial services to over 13 million Canadians. Canada Life has over $219 billion in assets under management, making it one of the country’s most financially secure insurance providers.

The company offers comprehensive insurance options beyond just life insurance coverage, including critical illness, health, disability, travel and more. Canada Life is owned by Great-West Lifeco and is considered one of Canada’s most prominent and trusted insurance companies.

What Life Insurance Products Does Canada Life Offer?
What Life Insurance Products Does Canada Life Offer?

How Does Canada Life Life Insurance Work?

Canada Life Insurance provides both term life insurance and permanent life insurance options:

Term Life Insurance

  • Coverage for set periods such as 10, 20 or 30 years
  • Options like Canada Life My Term allow flexible 5-50 year terms
  • Lower premiums just cover death benefit protection
  • Can renew without medical underwriting
  • Convertible to permanent insurance up to age 70

Permanent Life Insurance

  • Lifelong coverage as long as premiums paid
  • Two main types: whole life and universal life
  • Accumulates cash value that grows tax-deferred

Term life provides temporary coverage at a low cost. Permanent life has lifelong protection with investment savings. Canada Life offers both choices with conversion options.

What Life Insurance Products Does Canada Life Offer?

Term Life

  • Canada Life My Term – Customizable terms from 5-50 years
  • Term-to-Age 65 – Coverage until age 65, convertible to permanent

Whole Life

  • Estate Achiever – Focuses on long-term value growth
  • Wealth Achiever – Prioritizes early cash value with dividends

Universal Life

  • Annually Increasing Premium – Lifelong coverage, annual COI increases
  • Level Premium – Steady premiums until age 100
  • Limited Pay – Pay for 10-20 years then guaranteed cash value

Critical Illness

  • Lump sum payment if diagnosed with a covered illness
  • Among the highest maximums at $2.5 million total coverage

Canada Life Insurance provides versatile options to suit different Canadians’ needs. Their participating whole life policies offer unique lifelong coverage with dividends based on company earnings.

What Optional Riders Do They Offer?

Canada Life allows customizing coverage through optional riders like:

  • Accidental Death Benefit
  • Disability Waiver of Premium
  • Guaranteed Insurability
  • Business Growth Protection
  • Life Insurance for children

Riders provide supplementary benefits to tailor protection for your profession, lifestyle and family.

How Much Does Canada Life Insurance Cost?

How Much Does Canada Life Insurance Cost?
How Much Does Canada Life Insurance Cost?

As with any insurer, Canada Life Insurace’s rates depend on personal factors like age, gender, lifestyle and health. However, some key considerations for pricing:

  • Higher Premiums – Canada Life’s premiums tend to be higher than competitors for similar coverage.
  • Minimums Apply – Policies require at least $100,000 coverage or $500/year premium.
  • No Online Quotes – Must talk to an advisor; no direct online pricing.

Here are sample monthly premiums for a healthy 35-year-old non-smoker:

CoverageMaleFemale
$500,000, 20-year term$36.45$29.25

While competitive, Canada Life is not the most budget-friendly, so compare quotes.

How Do I Apply for Canada Life Insurance?

Canada Life sells its insurance exclusively through licensed advisors. There is no option to get a direct quote or apply online.

Getting a Quote

To receive pricing information for Canada Life insurance, you will need to speak with one of their advisors. You can search for an advisor on their website by entering your location.

Alternatively, you can call Canada Life’s contact center at 1-844-222-2264 and they can match you with an advisor who will provide quotes.

The advisor will ask about your age, health, lifestyle and desired coverage amount. They will then use this information to provide quotes for applicable Canada Life insurance products.

Submitting an Application

Once you decide on the policy and coverage amount you want, the advisor will assist you with completing the application documents.

The application involves forms to provide personal details, lifestyle information, family medical history, and a paramedical exam that checks vitals like blood pressure and cholesterol.

Your advisor will submit the application and supporting documents to Canada Life on your behalf. There is no way to directly apply online without going through an advisor.

Ongoing Customer Service

After your policy is issued, your Canada Life advisor will act as your main point of contact for any questions, servicing requests or claims.

You cannot manage your policy directly through an online account. All inquiries and changes must go through your advisor.

Working with Advisors

The advantage of working with an advisor is personalized service and having guidance from an expert. However, take into account that advisors earn commissions for selling Canada Life Insurance products.

They may encourage you to purchase more coverage than you need or push certain policies that pay them higher commissions. Compare quotes from other insurers online before committing to avoid any sales pressure.

How Long Does Canada Life Insurance Underwriting Take?

The underwriting process is the review and assessment Canada Life conducts to decide whether to approve your application and issue a policy.

For Canada Life Insurance, underwriting typically takes between 6-10 weeks. This is substantially longer than many other insurance providers in Canada.

The lengthier underwriting process is something to factor into your plans if you need coverage to be in place quickly. Be prepared for Canada Life to take 1-2 months for underwriting.

The slower decisioning comes as a trade-off for Canada Life’s focus on traditional underwriting with paramedical exams versus accelerated underwriting used by some competitors.

If you need insurance in place urgently, ask your advisor about expedited underwriting or consider providers with faster underwriting. Otherwise, be patient during Canada Life’s application process.

What are the Pros and Cons of Canada Life Insurance?

The Pros and Cons of Canada Life Insurance
The Pros and Cons of Canada Life Insurance

Pros

  • Longstanding reputation and financial strength as a top Canadian insurer
  • A broad range of insurance offerings beyond just life coverage
  • Ability to customize policies through optional riders
  • Participating whole life policies offer dividends
  • High maximum coverage amounts available

Cons

  • Premiums tend to be higher than those of some competitors.
  • No online quotes or applications are available; you must use an advisor.
  • Slower underwriting process typically takes 6-10 weeks.
  • Minimum policy requirements may rule out small coverage amounts.
  • Working with advisors introduces potential sales pressure or bias.

Is Canada Life Insurance the Right Choice for You?

Canada Life is a great option for:

  • Those wanting permanent life insurance or critical illness coverage.
  • People who value reputation and financial strength.
  • Individuals seeking an advisor relationship for advice and service.
  • Applicants who require high insurance amounts are given Canada Life’s high maximums.

Canada Life may not be the best fit for:

  • Buyers focused on finding the lowest cost term life insurance.
  • People who want a fast and simple online application process.
  • Those shopping strictly on price, given Canada Life’s higher premiums.

Ultimately, the best life insurance provider for you depends on your budget, preferences and specific coverage needs.

Tips for Buying Canada Life Insurance

  • Compare quotes from other top insurers online first before committing to Canada Life. This ensures you get unbiased, competitive pricing.
  • Ask advisors to explain how they are compensated so you understand if they have incentives to sell you certain products or coverage amounts.
  • Be prepared for a lengthy application process and plan accordingly if you need coverage quickly.
  • Inquire about bundling different policies like life insurance, critical illness and disability for potential discounts.
  • If considering participating whole life policies, ask your advisor to illustrate projected future dividends and cash value growth specific to your situation.
  • Discuss term conversion options upfront if you may want to switch your term policy to permanent coverage later on.
  • Take advantage of Canada Life’s high maximums if you require an exceptionally large amount of insurance.
  • Get quotes for shorter terms if you only need coverage for a specific period.

Comparing options and asking the right questions allows you to get optimal coverage suited to your needs and budget.

How Does Canada Life Insurance Compare to Other Insurers?

While a respected leader, Canada Life is not necessarily the top choice across every category. Here is how they compare to competitors:

  • Premium Price – Tend to be higher than many competitors for similar coverage.
  • Underwriting Time – Their 6-10 week underwriting is slower than accelerated underwriters.
  • Online Experience – No online quotes or application option, unlike some insurers.
  • Policy Options – Wide range of products, terms and riders to customize coverage.
  • Financial Strength – Among the highest ratings as an established company.
  • Customer Experience – The focus is on advisor relationships for service and support.

Make sure to compare Canada Life against other top insurers in Canada using online quotes to find your best option.

How Can I Learn More and Get a Canada Life Insurance Quote?

The best way to learn if Canada Life is right for your specific needs is to get a customized quote. You can easily compare Canada Life to other insurers using these steps:

  1. Get instant quote comparisons from top insurers using online tools.
  2. Speak with an advisor for personalized quotes if interested in Canada Life.
  3. Apply online for your selected insurer, or work with an advisor if choosing Canada Life.

Comparing quotes allows you to find the optimal mix of pricing, features and services to protect your family.

The Bottom Line

Canada Life is undoubtedly one of Canada’s most established life insurance companies and a viable option thanks to its financial strength and coverage offerings. But make sure to weigh it against competitors using quotes tailored to your situation.

This ensures you select the best life insurance provider based on your budget, application preferences, and specific insurance needs – whether that’s Canada Life or an alternative. So get started with instant online quotes to kickstart your search!

Frequently Asked Questions about Canada Life Insurance

How long has Canada Life been in business?

Canada Life was founded in 1847, making it one of Canada's oldest insurance companies. It has over 175 years of experience serving Canadian policyholders.

What types of insurance does Canada Life offer?

In addition to life insurance, Canada Life offers critical illness, health, disability, travel insurance, segregated funds, annuities and more.

Where is Canada Life's head office located?

Canada Life's head office is located in Toronto, Ontario. It has major offices in markets across Canada.

Why choose Canada Life insurance?

Reasons to choose Canada Life include their strong financial rating, multi-product offerings, reputation, and ability to customize coverage.

When should I buy life insurance from Canada Life?

Consider Canada Life if you want permanent coverage or specialized products. Shop other insurers if you just need basic term insurance at the lowest cost.

Do I need to undergo a medical exam for Canada Life insurance?

Yes, Canada Life requires a paramedical exam as part of underwriting. This involves checking vitals and collecting fluids for lab tests.

Can I get an instant quote for Canada Life insurance online?

Unfortunately, Canada Life does not offer instant online quotes. You need to provide your details to an advisor over the phone or in-person.

Is the application process for Canada Life completely online?

No, Canada Life does not have any online application options. You have to submit forms through an advisor.

How long does underwriting take with Canada Life?

Canada Life's underwriting typically takes 6-10 weeks. Some insurers have faster underwriting, while others take 2-4 weeks.

How do I contact Canada Life to change my beneficiary?

To change beneficiaries or make any policy updates, you need to go through your Canada Life advisor as there is no direct customer access.

How do I lower my Canada Life insurance premium?

Options to reduce premiums include choosing a longer policy term, higher deductible, or lower coverage amount based on your needs.

How does Canada Life determine life insurance rates?

Canada Life rates are based on personal factors like your age, gender, health, family history, lifestyle, occupation and desired coverage amount.

How much does Canada Life car insurance cost?

Canada Life does not offer car insurance. For auto insurance, you'll need to check with providers like Lifebuzz

How can I save money on my Canada Life insurance premium?

Bundle multiple policies, choose longer terms, accept policy exclusions, or reduce unnecessary coverage to potentially save on Canada Life premiums.

How do I make a life insurance claim with Canada Life?

To make a life insurance claim, your beneficiaries should contact your Canada Life advisor who will assist with initiating the claims process.

How long does it take Canada Life to pay out a life insurance claim?

Canada Life aims to pay straightforward life insurance claims within 5-10 business days once the claim is approved and paperwork finalized.

How do I cancel my Canada Life insurance policy?

To cancel your Canada Life policy, contact your advisor. You may not receive any premium refunds if cancelling after the free look period.

How do I get the cash value from my Canada Life insurance?

For permanent policies with cash accumulation, you can withdraw available funds or take out a loan. Contact your advisor to initiate cash value access.

How do I find my Canada Life insurance policy number?

Your Canada Life advisor can provide your exact policy number. It is also printed on your annual policy statements and your payment invoices.

Article Sources:

To fully appreciate our rigorous adherence to veracity, transparency, and editorial independence, consider reviewing our Editorial Policy at Lifebuzz.ca. It is this dedication that positions us as the ultimate dependable life insurance news outlet in Canada.

  1. Canada Life Insurance Review – Updated 2024 – https://www.policyadvisor.com/
  2. Is Canada Life Insurance the best? 2024 Review – https://hellosafe.ca/
  3. Canada Life Insurance Review: Updated for 2024 – https://www.policyme.com/
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Written by Ben Nguyen

Ben Nguyen is an award-winning insurance expert and industry veteran with over 20 years of experience. He is the chairman and director of IDC Insurance Direct Canada Inc., one of Canada's leading online insurance brokerages.

Ben is renowned for his extensive knowledge of life, health, disability, and travel insurance products. He is the prolific author of over 1,000 educational articles published on LifeBuzz, BestInsuranceOnline, and InsuranceDirectCanada. His articles provide Canadians with advice on making smart insurance decisions.

With a Bachelor's degree in Actuarial Science and a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries (FCIA) designation, Ben is frequently interviewed by media as an insurance industry spokesperson.

He has received numerous honors including the Insurance Council of Canada’s Pivotal Leadership Award, the Canadian Insurance Hall of Fame induction, and the President’s Medal from the Canadian Institute of Actuaries.

Ben continues to shape the vision and strategy of IDC Insurance Direct as chairman. He is dedicated to advancing the insurance industry through his insightful leadership.

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