Columbus Life Insurance Review 2022
The benefits explained
- Wide choice of riders: Columbus Life offers a wide selection of riders for additional coverage, including two accelerated benefits riders that can be added at no upfront cost.
- Affordable term life insurance premiums: Based on our review of 32 term life insurance companies, Columbus term life insurance premiums are better than average.
- Mandate conversion until the end of the mandate period: Some companies only allow you to convert your temporary policy into a permanent policy within a certain window, for example 10 years after the issue of the policy. But with term policies from Columbus Life, you can convert until age 70 or at the end of the term.
- Very few customer complaints: Columbus Life has received very few complaints over the past three years for all of its products and for its life insurance policies in particular.
- Convertible term life insurance policies: Columbus Life’s term life insurance policies are convertible before the end of the term, allowing you to get permanent coverage without a medical exam.
- Most policies require a medical examination: Most Columbus Life life insurance policies are medically underwritten, which means you must undergo a medical exam to be approved.
- No quote available on the site: If you would like a quote for a life insurance policy, you will need to contact a financial representative in your area. Columbus Life does not provide online quotes.
- No online application: Columbus Life only sells life insurance policies through its network of independent agents, so you won’t be able to apply for or purchase coverage online.
Index of complaints
Columbus Life has few customer complaints according to data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). The NAIC calculates a Complaints Index each year that measures the number of complaints received by an insurer relative to its size. Some examples of complaints include unsatisfactory claim payments, denied claims and lack of insurance.
Insurers with an expected number of claims for their size have a claims index of 1.00. Companies with more complaints than expected have an index above 1.00, and companies with fewer complaints than expected have an index below 1.00. The fewer complaints an insurer receives, the lower its index.
To better understand Columbus Life Insurance’s complaints, we looked at its life insurance complaints and calculated its three-year average index, which is 0.127. The Columbus Index is well below the industry average of 1.00, meaning it has far fewer complaints than expected for a company of its size.
Most of the top life insurance companies we’ve reviewed also have a complaints index below 1.00. Having fewer complaints than expected indicates that the insurer has good customer service and claims handling, and that policyholders are generally satisfied with the provider.
Columbus Life Insurance has excellent financial strength, with an A+ (Superior) rating from AM Best, a credit rating agency that rates companies based on their financial strength. Columbus Life Insurance’s score indicates that it has a superior ability to meet contractual obligations and pay life insurance claims.
AM Best rates companies on an A++ to D scale, based on factors such as balance sheet strength, operating performance and total debt. Of the 91 life insurance companies in our database, most have a minimum AM Best rating of A (Excellent), and nearly all of our “best” life insurance picks have A+ (Superior) or A++ (Superior).
Columbus offers a good selection of life insurance policies. Its Indexed Explorer Plus policy, which is a universal life insurance policy, is the only one that qualifies for accelerated underwriting (request without medical exam).
Term life insurance
A term life insurance policy is not permanent coverage, but protects you for a set period of time, usually up to 30 years. It has fixed premiums that remain level throughout the term, as well as a guaranteed death benefit. If you die during the term, your beneficiary receives the death benefit, which is paid as a tax-free lump sum. The Columbus term life insurance policy can be converted to a permanent policy until age 70 or at the end of the term.
The maximum face value of the Columbus term life insurance policy depends on the length of term you select. You can get up to $100,000 for a term of 15, 20 or 30 years, or up to $150,000 for a term of 10 years.
Universal life insurance
Universal life (UL) insurance is a type of permanent life insurance that provides lifetime protection and creates cash value. Your cash value increases with current interest rates and you have the option of adjusting your premiums, withdrawing cash from the cash value or taking out a loan against it. Columbus offers two UL policies, both of which have a maximum face value of $100,000.
Indexed universal life insurance
Index-linked universal life (IUL) insurance is similar to UL insurance, but the difference is that cash value increases based on the performance of a stock market index, such as the S&P 500. Cash value does not is not invested directly in the stock market, and if the index loses value, your cash value will not. The company also offers a survivor IUL policy that covers two people and pays a death benefit when the second insured person dies.
Columbus Life Insurance offers a wide variety of endorsements that you can add to a policy for additional protection. Life insurance riders change the terms of your life insurance policy and can fill gaps in your coverage. Some riders can be added at no upfront cost, while others will increase your premium.
Guaranteed insurability rider
A Guaranteed Insurability Rider allows you to purchase additional life insurance coverage at certain times (called option dates), without a medical exam. Option dates often correlate with major life events, such as marriage or the birth of a child, or can be scheduled to occur every few years.
The children’s rider allows you to purchase a small amount of life insurance for your eligible children. The rider expires when the child becomes an adult. Upon expiration, the child usually has the option to convert the rider into a permanent life insurance policy that provides coverage for the rest of their life.
Premium Rider Waiver
A waiver of premium rider temporarily waives your life insurance premiums if you become totally disabled (as defined by the insurer) and unable to work. As long as the waiver of premium rider is in effect, your life insurance policy remains in force. If you die during this time, your beneficiary can still receive the death benefit
Accidental Death Benefit Rider
If you die and your death is caused by a qualifying accident, an accidental death benefit rider will provide a second death benefit to your beneficiary, in addition to the death benefit from your base policy.
ABR: endorsement in the event of terminal illness
A Terminal Illness Rider is a type of Accelerated Benefit Rider (ABR). If you are diagnosed with a terminal illness that is expected to significantly shorten your life expectancy, this rider allows you to withdraw death benefit money from your life insurance policy while you are still alive. This endorsement is available on all Columbus life insurance policies at no upfront cost.
ABR: chronic illness rider
A chronic condition rider is another ABR, which allows you to access your death benefit money if you are diagnosed with a chronic condition. To use this endorsement, a physician must certify that you cannot perform two of the six Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). This endorsement is available on all Columbus life insurance policies at no upfront cost.
Using an ABR will reduce your death benefit by an amount of money comparable to the amount you withdraw. As a result, your beneficiary will receive a lower payout upon your death.
To contact Columbus Life Insurance, you can call (800) 677-9595 or submit the online contact form to send an email. If you want to get a quote or buy a life insurance policy, you can use the online search tool to find a financial representative in your area. All Columbus life insurance policies are sold by independent agents.
Columbus policyholders can access basic policy management functionality by logging into the online customer portal. If you need help accessing your account, you can contact a representative during business hours.
Our Methodology: How We Review Life Insurance Companies
We have designed a comprehensive ranking methodology based on consumer priorities and life insurance company fundamentals to rank over 90 insurers in five general categories: financial stability, customer satisfaction, variety of products and features, experience of overall purchase and cost.
To do this, we collected over 5,000 data points and scored each company based on 55 metrics. We’ve grouped the metrics by category to see insurers’ performance in each; we then weighted the category scores to determine overall business performance.