Fidelity Life Insurance Review: Fast And Easy Life Insurance
As the COVID-19 pandemic swept the globe in 2020, more and more people have realized the value of life insurance. According to a report by CNBC, in the first half of the year, applications for life insurance rose 1.5 percent from the previous year. But with the coronavirus still looming overhead, there is a growing need for insurance providers that can issue policies as quickly as possible.
Enter Fidelity Life, a long-established life insurance company that is known for its RAPIDecision policies, which provide policyholders with coverage within days of their application – a stark contrast to the three to eight week average underwriting time. But, is this insurance company the answer for those who need insurance ASAP?
In this review, we take a closer look at Fidelity Life and their RAPIDecision life policies to determine whether they’re worth investing in.
What To Look For In An Insurance Provider
Before we get into our review of Fidelity Life, let's talk about the five factors you must always consider when shopping for insurance:
Policy And Coverage
The three most common types of life insurance are:
Term life insurance: This type of policy only provides short-term coverage, lasting anywhere between five and 40 years. Because it's short-term, term life is also the most affordable type of insurance.
Whole life insurance: In contrast to term life insurance, whole life provides lifelong coverage plus a cash value component that can earn interest over time. As such, this policy is rather expensive, often costing five to nine times more than term life.
Universal life insurance: Like whole insurance, this policy comes with a death benefit, lifelong protection, and a cash value. However, this policy also comes with flexible premiums and death benefits. There are several different kinds of universal insurance policies, including indexed and variable insurance.
Note that different companies also offer a variety of coverage limits, term durations, and issue ages for each of their policies.
How easy is it to apply to an insurance provider? And how long does it take for applications to process? When reviewing an insurance provider, ask yourself the following questions:
Can I request and compare quotes online?
Can I start my application online?
How easy is it to get in touch with an insurance agent?
Are medical exams and health questions required for all life policies?
How long does the underwriting process take? (The average is three to eight weeks)
How much does it cost to waive the medical?
Price is a tricky subject when it comes to insurance. Technically, there is no ideal price range, as the price of one's premiums will always be influenced by personal factors such as one's age, health, gender, and lifestyle. Essentially, the older and unhealthier you are, the more expensive your premiums will be.
To assess a company's service, we look at a few facets:
Helplines and their accessibility to customers
Consumer feedback online
Customer satisfaction ratings
Better Business Bureau ratings
NAIC Complaint Index score
In a nutshell, we want to make sure that a company can respond to claims and queries, show up for customers when they're in trouble, and maintain a good relationship through the lifetime of their policies.
Financial Strength Ratings
Financial strength is a measure of a company's ability to honor claims, meet their financial obligations, and maintain good credit ratings. For this, we refer to third-party agencies like A.M., Moody's, and Standard & Poor's.
Fidelity Life Insurance Review
The Fidelity Life Association, not to be confused with Fidelity Investments or Fidelity Brokerage, is a life insurance provider that has been around for over 120 years. The company was founded in 1896 as Mystic Workers of the World, and was known as one of the first companies to sell life insurance coverage to both men and women. By 1930, the company was renamed to Fidelity Life Association.
The company has gone on to experience success in the insurance industry, having more than $31 billion in life insurance in force by 2018. By 2020, Fidelity Life Association was recognized by Newsweek magazine for the third year in a row as America’s Best Customer Service Company.
Policy And Coverage
Fidelity Life offers seven different types of life insurance. Here's a breakdown of each policy:
Term Life Insurance
There are three kinds of term life insurance policies at Fidelity Life. These include:
This is a straightforward term life policy that provides between $50,000 to $1 million worth of coverage for a choice of 10-, 15-, 20-, or 20-year terms.
This policy is available to applicants aged 18 to 65 years old. As with most policies at Fidelity Life, premiums remain level for the duration of the term. Medical exams are required for this policy.
If you want to skip the medical altogether, you can opt for the RAPIDecision Express life insurance policy. This provides guaranteed acceptance sans medical exams, health questions, and long waiting periods.
According to the Fidelity Life insurance website, this policy is ideal for those between the ages of 10 and 65. Policyholders can choose from 10 to 30-year durations and death benefits between $25,000 and $100,000.
RAPIDecision Senior Life
Seniors get their own special policies at Fidelity Life as well. The RAPIDecision Senior policy is a term life plan that is issued to those between the ages of 50 and 70. Coverage is limited – you can only get between $10,000 to $150,000. However, you do have a choice of either a 10-year term, a 20-year term, or a 30-year term.
The policy expires when the policyholder turns 80.
Permanent Life Insurance
If you're looking for more permanent coverage, Fidelity Life offers three whole life insurance products:
RAPIDecision Final Expense
Final expenses are costs incurred in the last year of a person's life, from hospitalization to hospice care to funeral services. Fidelity Life offers final expense coverage from $5,000 to $35,000 – just enough to help your loved ones cope with the aforementioned costs.
Again, this policy comes with level premiums. And like most final expense policies, Fidelity Life's version requires no medical exam. That's guaranteed acceptance regardless of one's age or condition.
This life insurance policy also comes with an optional accelerated death benefit rider, which allows policyholders to access a portion of their death benefit in the event that they are diagnosed with a terminal illness. This rider can be added to the policy at no additional charge.
RAPIDecision Guaranteed Issue
Admittedly, we don't see much of a difference in Fidelity's RAPIDecision Final Expense and Guaranteed Issue whole life policies. The latter policy provides fewer benefits in general, with only up to $25,000 in coverage and a reduced death benefit in the first three years.
This policy is also limited to those aged 50 to 85 years old. Like its "older sister", the Guaranteed Issue policy does not require policyholders to submit a medical exam.
RAPIDecision Senior Whole Life
The third whole life policy offered by Fidelity Life is again aimed at seniors, with issue ages between 50 and 85 years old. This plan comes with life coverage of up to $150,000 and a cash value component that can earn interest over time.
And while this policy does not require a medical exam, it does need a short health questionnaire. This means that, if you've got a chronic condition or less-than-satisfactory blood work, you might be better off applying for the Guaranteed policy instead. The trade-off, of course, is that you must settle for a lower death benefit.
Accidental Death Benefit Insurance
Aside from term and whole life insurance, Fidelity Life also offers Accidental Death benefit life coverage. This policy ensures that, in case a policyholder dies as a result of a covered accident, their beneficiaries will receive a death benefit. Policyholders can choose from 50,000 to $300,000 worth of coverage.
Accidental Death Benefit insurance is also a guaranteed policy, meaning that applicants are not required to take a medical exam to qualify. This policy is available to those between the ages of 20 and 59.
Based on our experience, it's fairly easy to request quotes online. The first step involves submitting the following information:
Then you’ll be asked to submit more personal information such as your full name, email address, and phone number. Afterward, an agent will get in touch with you to discuss your options.
As mentioned above, you can apply for most Fidelity Life insurance products without the need to submit a medical exam. Some policies require a simple health questionnaire.
The life insurance company is able to do this because, according to their website, they use "technology to determine whether you'll need to take a medical exam". As such, they can also cut the underwriting time to a matter of days. This is why most policies are called "RAPIDecision" policies. The company can offer coverage and finalize your plan in just a few days.
At most, you can expect to wait between one week to a month if you have a complicated medical history. This is in contrast to the average underwriting time of three to eight weeks.
When we requested quotes for RAPIDecision Life term life insurance for a 30-year-old non-smoker male, we got a monthly rate of $27.84 for $250,000 worth of coverage for 30 years. Compared to the average rate for this profile – $23.42 – Fidelity Life proved to be slightly more expensive than the average insurance company.
As mentioned above, in 2020, Fidelity Life was recognized by Newsweek magazine as America’s Best Customer Service Company for the third year in a row. Fidelity's Better Business Bureau rating also shows a favorable rating of A+.
However, the company does have its downsides in the realm of service. For one, Fidelity Life customer service is only available through a phone hotline on Mondays through Fridays, from 8 am to 5 pm. There is no online chat option.
Secondly, Fidelity clocks in a less-than-desirable NAIC complaint index score of 1.42. For reference, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners keeps a record of consumer complaints in what's called the Complaint Index. The national average is 1.00, and if you fall below that, it means you've received fewer complaints than the average insurance company. Unfortunately, a 1.42 score means that Fidelity has received 1.42 times more complaints than the average.
Financial Strength Ratings
A.M. Best rating: A-
Better Business Bureau rating: A+
Standard & Poor's rating: N/A
Moody’s rating: N/A
Options for guaranteed issue insurance: Whether you've got a medical condition or are simply looking for quick and easy approval, Fidelity Life's myriad of guaranteed policies makes it easy to qualify for life insurance.
Options for seniors: It isn't always easy for seniors to find life insurance companies that cater to their needs. Fidelity is one of the few life insurance companies that provides a variety of policy options to older folk.
30-day trial period: One of the best things about Fidelity Life is the 30-day trial period, which gives policyholders a month-long grace period to decide whether they're happy with the policy they have chosen. If you're not satisfied, you can cancel your policy and expect a return of premiums.
No universal life insurance policies: If you're more inclined towards flexible premiums and death benefits, you'll have to look elsewhere for universal life insurance.
Expensive rates: Unfortunately, Fidelity is not the most budget-friendly of insurance companies. If you're looking for a more practical choice, Fidelity is not the one for you.
Low coverage limits: Fidelity is not the place for sky-high coverage amounts. If you need millions of dollars worth of coverage, you will be left unsatisfied by the amount of coverage offered by Fidelity's policies.
The Bottom Line
If you're looking for an insurance company that can issue you a policy in a flash, Fidelity Life might be the perfect option for you. But with low maximum coverage limits and not-so-competitive rates, you may find that, ultimately, it isn't the most practical of options.
Interested in more reviews like this? At Wesley Financial Group, we take an incisive look into some of the biggest names in life insurance today. Comb through our extensive library of reviews and articles to learn more about the do's and don'ts of personal finance.