Final Expense Insurance

12 best final expense and burial insurance companies

A burial insurance plan is a small no-exam life insurance policy. It provides a quick cash payout to your beneficiary(s), so they have the necessary monies to pay for your funeral costs.

Considering the following:

  • What is the fine print?
  • Who are the best companies?
  • How much will it cost?
  • Can you get coverage without a 2-year waiting period?

In this article, we will give you detailed answers to those questions and much more.

Topics covered in this article

 

What is burial insurance, final expense insurance & funeral insurance?

Burial insurance, also known as “final expense insurance” or “funeral insurance,” is generally a small whole life insurance policy with affordable premiums designed to pay all final expenses. No exams are required, serious health issues will not prevent acceptance, and coverage typically ranges from $2,000-$40,000 with most companies.

A whole life final expense policy has very minimal fine print. Here are the most important details:

  • Rates are locked in for life and cannot increase.
  • Coverage is guaranteed never to decrease.
  • Guaranteed never to expire or cancel.
  • Builds cash value.

Once you pass away, the insurance company will merely pay out the death benefit in the form of a tax-free check payable directly to the beneficiary(s). If you prefer, you can name a funeral home as the beneficiary rather than a person.

There are no restrictions on how you spend the money. Whether funeral-related expenses or other costs such as debts or medical bills, you can spend the money on anything. Any leftover money will remain with your beneficiary(s), not the funeral home.

 

How much does final expense insurance cost?

Most companies charge roughly $30-$100 per month for a $10,000 final expense policy.

The exact cost of final expense insurance will vary from person to person because your age, gender, health determine prices and how much coverage you purchase.

Below is a table showing some price estimates.

AgeFemale
$10,000
No Waiting Period
Female
$10,000
Guaranteed Acceptance
Male
$10,000
No Waiting Period
Male
$10,000
Guaranteed Acceptance
45$22$28$27$33
50$24$30$30$36
55$27$38$35$45
60$32$42$43$55
65$41$51$54$66
70$51$69$70$89
75$71$98$99$121
80$98$140$139$166
85$135$170$192$230
89$275N/A$358N/A

 

Who are the best burial and final expense life insurance companies?

  1. Mutual of Omaha
  2. Aetna
  3. Royal Neighbors of America
  4. Foresters Financial
  5. Transamerica
  6. Prosperity Life
  7. AIG
  8. Americo
  9. Liberty Bankers Life
  10. Gerber Life
  11. American Amicable
  12. Baltimore Life

 

Below you will see a detailed breakdown of all the best final expense insurance companies. From prices to product brochures, we leave little to the imagination. The companies are listed in no particular order.

 


 

1) Mutual of OmahaMutual of Omaha company logo

With an impressive A+ rating with A.M. Best, Mutual of Omaha is a very financially secure life insurance company.

They call their funeral expense policy “Living Promise.” All around, it’s the best plan on the market.

Their premiums are consistently among the lowest. In addition, they accept many common health issues, and most applicants can qualify for their immediate benefit plan. They also have the best life insurance for children.

To get even more details, check out the full Mutual of Omaha review.

Mutual of Omaha premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$20,000
Male
$20,000
45$22.61$27.11$42.01$51.01
50$24.31$30.68$45.41$58.15
55$27.71$35.95$52.21$68.69
60$32.87$43.76$62.53$84.32
65$41.01$56.48$78.82$109.75
70$53.24$74.61$103.28$146.01
75$72.41$99.97$141.62$196.74
80$98.43$139.73$193.66$276.26
85$135.90$192.74$268.60$382.27

The policy does not end once you turn 85.

It lasts forever once issued. 85 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

 

2) Aetna Aetna company logo

Aetna is on this list for multiple reasons. First, they’ve been in business since 1853 and currently have an A rating with A.M. Best.

If you can believe it, they offer new coverage to seniors as old as 89. It’s incredibly uncommon for a life insurance company to issue a new life insurance policy to applicants over 85.

All around, their senior burial insurance has competitive rates and will approve applicants for a no waiting period policy despite high-risk health conditions.

To get even more details, check out the full Aetna review.

Aetna premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$15,000
Male
$15,000
45$25.55$29.92$36.57$43.14
50$27.30$34.39$39.20$49.83
55$34.39$44.10$49.83$64.40
60$40.51$51.10$59.02$74.90
65$47.60$58.19$69.65$85.53
70$58.19$73.15$85.53$107.97
75$75.86$101.41$112.04$150.37
80$101.41$140.26$150.37$208.64
85$136.67$195.82$203.26$291.99
86$171.32$236.25$255.24$352.62
87$205.97$276.67$307.21$413.26
88$240.62$317.10$359.19$473.90
89$275.27$357.52$411.16$534.54

The policy does not end once you turn 89.

It lasts forever once issued. 89 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

 

3) Royal Neighbors of AmericaRoyal Neighbors of America company logo

Royal Neighbors isn’t a household name, but let that alarm you. They have been in business since 1895 and maintain an A rating with A.M. Best.

By far, Royal Neighbors of America will accept more health issues compared to any other funeral life insurance company. In addition, their premiums are competitive compared to other carriers.

Finally, they include (at no additional charge) many valuable member benefits to all their policyholders.

To get even more details, check out the full Royal Neighbors of America review.

Royal Neighbors premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$20,000
Male
$20,000
50$33.71$39.61$64.81$76.61
55$37.51$46.31$72.41$90.01
60$38.21$50.11$73.81$97.61
65$44.61$58.81$86.61$115.01
70$55.61$74.81$108.61$147.01
75$79.81$110.41$157.01$218.21
80$110.41$153.81$218.21$305.01
85$148.81$212.71$295.01$422.81

The policy does not end once you turn 75.

It lasts forever once issued. 80 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

 

4) Foresters FinancialForesters Financial company logo

Foresters Financial has been in business since 1874 and currently has an A rating with A.M. Best. As a company, Foresters Financial is heavily involved in charity throughout the USA. For example, they partner with Ronald McDonald House and the Red Cross as part of their philanthropic agenda.

Their plans have competitive premiums, quick approval times, and accept many health conditions present among seniors. Foresters Financial grants every policyholder, at no extra cost, access to generous member benefits.

To get even more details, check out the full Foresters Financial review.

Foresters Financial premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$20,000
Male
$20,000
50$26.05$32.00$48.95$60.85
55$31.16$36.86$59.17$70.58
60$35.41$45.19$67.67$87.22
65$42.80$55.75$82.44$108.34
70$53.42$72.91$103.69$142.66
75$75.08$102.69$147.00$202.23
80$111.08$146.74$219.01$290.33
85$165.92$200.75N/AN/A

The policy does not end once you turn 85.

It lasts forever once issued. 85 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

 

5) TransamericaTransamerica company logo

  • Company founding date: 1904
  • A.M. Best rating: A (excellent)
  • Product name: Immediate Solution preferred
  • Policy type: whole life insurance
  • 2-year waiting period: no (subject to underwriting approval)
  • Premiums stay the same forever: yes
  • Policy duration: forever (never expires)
  • Builds cash value: yes
  • Brochure | sample policy | sample application
  • State where available for sale: all 50 states
  • Coverage amount range: $1,000-$50,000 (varies by age)
  • New applicant age range: 45-85 (policy lasts forever once issued)
  • Optional riders: accidental death (doubles the payout for accidental death)
  • How to apply: Agencies licensed to sell Transamerica products (you cannot buy directly from them).
  • Phone number to apply: 1-800-644-2926
  • Application approval time: 2-5 business days
  • A medical exam required: no
  • Guaranteed acceptance: no (there are health questions)
  • Common health issues they accept: COPD or emphysema | diabetic neuropathy | blood thinners | bipolar disorder | schizophrenia | depression | Parkinson’s disease | kidney disease | disability

Transamerica’s Immediate Solution funeral life insurance product is a marriage of competitive premiums and lax underwriting. As a company, Transamerica has strong financials.

They have been in business since 1904 and currently have an A rating with A.M. Best.

Transamerica has a unique plan that comes with no waiting period for high-risk chronic conditions such as COPD.

To get even more details, check out the full Transamerica review.

Transamerica premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$20,000
Male
$20,000
50$25.30$30.70$47.10$57.90
55$29.10$35.90$54.70$68.30
60$33.60$43.70$63.70$83.90
65$41.60$56.50$79.70$109.50
70$53.90$74.60$104.30$145.70
75$72.80$100.00$142.10$196.50
80$104.00$140.20$204.50$276.90
85$148.60$200.40$293.70$397.30

The policy does not end once you turn 85.

It lasts forever once issued. 85 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

 

6) Prosperity Life Group Prosperity Life Group company logo

Prosperity Life Group has an A- rating with A.M. Best so you can trust they are financially secure.

They have an excellent burial insurance plan that is a superior choice for many folks. For example, non-cigarette smoking tobacco or nicotine users can all get a non-tobacco rating. Prosperity will only apply a tobacco price to those who smoke cigarettes.

They accept many high-risk health issues, are available in nearly all states, and have a simple, instant decision application process (takes 15 minutes).

To get even more details, check out the full Prosperity review.

Prosperity premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$20,000
Male
$20,000
50$29.15$34.52$54.70$65.43
55$29.93$37.62$56.27$71.64
60$35.88$49.99$68.17$87.95
65$44.42$58.10$85.25$112.59
70$59.13$79.58$114.66$155.56
75$80.19$113.68$156.78$223.76
80$98.30$147.96$193.00$292.32

The policy does not end once you turn 80.

It lasts forever once issued. 80 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

 

7) AIGAIG company logo

  • Company founding date: 1919
  • A.M. Best rating: A (excellent)
  • Product name: Guaranteed Issue Whole Life
  • Policy type: whole life insurance
  • 2-year waiting period: yes
  • Premiums stay the same forever: yes
  • Policy duration: forever (never expires)
  • Builds cash value: yes
  • Brochure | sample policy | sample application
  • State where available for sale: all states except ME & NY
  • Coverage amount range: $5,000-$25,000
  • New applicant age range: 50-80 (policy lasts forever once issued)
  • Optional riders: none
  • How to apply: Agencies licensed to sell AIG products or via AIG Direct.
  • Phone number to apply: 1-800-644-2926
  • Application approval time: 3-5 minutes
  • A medical exam required: no
  • Guaranteed acceptance: yes
  • Common health issues they accept: HIV or AIDS | dialysis | angina | oxygen use | current internal cancer | CHF | dementia or Alzheimer’s | wheelchair-bound

AIG is a renowned long-standing life insurance carrier. They have an A rating with A.M. Best and have been in business since 1919.

AIG only offers guaranteed issue life insurance. This kind of policy has no health questionnaire or medical assessments. Your acceptance is guaranteed. As is the case with all guaranteed issue policies, there is a 24-month waiting period before the policy will pay out a death benefit. Should death occur during this time, AIG will merely refund 110% of the premiums paid.

Guaranteed issue burial policies are generally the last resort. However, they have their place if you have ultra-high risk conditions and cannot qualify for a plan with underwriting.

To get even more details, check out the full AIG review.

AIG premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$20,000
Male
$20,000
50$35.83$51.92$73.93$101.85
55$43.23$56.90$95.34$125.17
60$50.02$63.17$110.15$138.18
65$61.57$84.15$135.37$184.61
70$74.52$98.18$163.60$215.24
75$107.17$138.55$234.85$303.31
80$175.42$246.44$383.77$538.70
85$199.06$315.82$437.18$692.70

The policy does not end once you turn 80.

It lasts forever once issued. 80 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

 

8) AmericoAmerico company logo

Americo has a unique burial life expense plan with no waiting period. Seniors with high-risk conditions such as Lupus, Multiple Sclerosis, diabetes, and many other conditions can all qualify for immediate coverage.

Americo has been around since 1909 and has an A- rating with A.M. Best. You can trust Americo is a financially secure insurance company capable of paying its claims.

To get even more details, check out the full Americo review.

Americo premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$20,000
Male
$20,000
50$27.67
$36.30
$51.55
$68.80
55$31.32
$40.49
$58.84
$77.18
60$38.46
$49.67
$73.11
$95.53
65$48.65
$62.92
$93.50
$122.04
70$60.88
$83.31
$117.95
$162.81
75$83.31
$113.87
$162.81
$223.93
80$129.12
$166.93
$254.45
$330.07
85$190.69
$229.59
$377.59
$455.37

The policy does not end once you turn 85.

It lasts forever once issued. 85 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

 

9) Liberty Bankers LifeLiberty Bankers Life company logo

  • Company founding date: 1958
  • A.M. Best rating: A- (excellent)
  • Product name: SIMPL preferred
  • Policy type: whole life insurance
  • 2-year waiting period: no (subject to underwriting approval)
  • Premiums stay the same forever: yes
  • Policy duration: forever (never expires)
  • Builds cash value: yes
  • Brochure | sample application
  • State where available for sale: all states except CT, MA, MN, NH, NY, RI
  • Coverage amount range: $3,000-$40,000
  • New applicant age range: 18-80 (policy lasts forever once issued)
  • Optional riders: accidental death & dismemberment | children’s term | grandchildren term
  • Sample policy: n/a
  • How to apply: Agencies licensed to sell Liberty Bankers Life products (you cannot buy directly from them).
  • Phone number to apply: 1-800-644-2926
  • Application approval time: 10-15 minutes
  • A medical exam required: no
  • Guaranteed acceptance: no (there are health questions)
  • Common health issues they accept: COPD or emphysema | chronic bronchitis | diabetes | bipolar | schizophrenia | depression | afib | epilepsy | fibromyalgia | seizures

Liberty Bankers Life is one of the few companies that will offer an immediate coverage plan to someone with COPD.

Liberty Bankers is also one of the few companies that will sell their coverage to people as young as 18. Most burial life insurance carriers start their products at age 50.

They have great rates and a fast application that takes less than 10 minutes. Their A- rating with A.M Best is evidence of their financial security.

To get even more details, check out the full Liberty Bankers review.

Liberty Bankers Life premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$20,000
Male
$20,000
50$25.57$30.51$46.51$56.39
55$30.40$36.79$56.17$68.95
60$34.67$45.80$64.71$86.97
65$42.81 $55.94$80.99$107.26
70$54.79 $73.31$104.95$141.99
75$76.20$100.15$147.78$195.67
80$109.16$146.80$213.69$288.97

The policy does not end once you turn 80.

It lasts forever once issued. 80 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

 

10) Gerber LifeGerber Life company logo

  • Company founding date: 1967
  • A.M. Best rating: A (excellent)
  • Product name: Guaranteed Life Insurance
  • Policy type: whole life insurance
  • 2-year waiting period: yes
  • Premiums stay the same forever: yes
  • Policy duration: forever (never expires)
  • Builds cash value: yes
  • Brochure | sample policy | sample application
  • State where available for sale: all states except MT
  • Coverage amount range: $5,000-$25,000
  • New applicant age range: 50-80 (policy lasts forever once issued)
  • Optional riders: none
  • How to apply: Agencies licensed to sell Gerber Life products or directly from Gerber.
  • Phone number to apply: 1-800-644-2926
  • Application approval time: 5-10 minutes
  • A medical exam required: no
  • Guaranteed acceptance: yes
  • Common health issues they accept: oxygen use | AIDS/HIV | current cancer | congestive heart failure | dementia | angina | wheelchair usage |

Gerber Life only offers a guaranteed issue whole life policy. Your acceptance is guaranteed regardless of your health or lifestyle.

Because there are no health questions, there is a two-year waiting period.

This type of plan is only ideal for people with very high-risk conditions such as HIV, dialysis, or cancer.

Gerber Life presently has an A rating with A.M. Best. They are a financially sound life insurance company that can and does pay its claims.

Gerber is also infamous for their Gerber grow plan children’s insurance policy. It’s a good child policy, but not the best one available.

To get even more details, check out the full Gerber review.

Gerber Life premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$20,000
Male
$20,000
50$34.47$44.09$68.02$87.27
55$44.28$57.93$87.63$114.95
60$51.06$63.89$101.20$126.87
65$62.61$85.16$124.30$169.40
70$75.53$99.18$150.15$197.45
75$108.17$139.52$215.42$278.12
80$176.37$247.32$351.82$493.72

The policy does not end once you turn 80.

It lasts forever once issued. 80 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 


 

 

11) American AmicableAmerican Amicable company logo

  • Company founding date: 1910
  • A.M. Best rating: A (excellent)
  • Product name: Senior Choice immediate benefit
  • Policy type: whole life insurance
  • 2-year waiting period: no (subject to underwriting approval)
  • Premiums stay the same forever: yes
  • Policy duration: forever (never expires)
  • Builds cash value: yes
  • Brochure | sample policy | sample application
  • State where available for sale: all states except CT, ME, MT, NH, NY, VT
  • Coverage amount range: $2,500-$35,000 (varies by age)
  • New applicant age range: 50-85 (policy lasts forever once issued)
  • Optional riders: grandchildren’s term | children’s term | nursing home waiver | accidental death
  • How to apply: Agencies licensed to sell American Amicable products (you cannot buy directly from them).
  • Phone number to apply: 1-800-644-2926
  • Application approval time: 8-10 minutes
  • A medical exam required: no
  • Guaranteed acceptance: no (there are health questions)
  • Common health issues they accept: cigarette smokers | pipe smokers | cigar smokers | afib | schizophrenia | bipolar disorder | depression | blood thinners | wheelchair usage

American Amicable is an A-rated company with A.M. Best. Their burial expense insurance is a quick issue policy accepting of common health issues present among seniors.

If you smoke cigarettes, American Amicable will likely offer you a lower price than any other company.

Unlike other carriers, American Amicable offers non-tobacco rates to applicants who smoke an occasional cigar or pipe.

Another exciting aspect of their program is their rider selection. You can opt to add some exciting perks to your policy for a few dollars extra per month.

To get even more details, check out the full American Amicable review.

American Amicable premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$20,000
Male
$20,000
50$26.67$31.65$50.69$60.65
55$33.69$40.04$64.74$77.43
60$38.27$47.06$73.89$91.47
65$47.06$59.75$91.47$116.85
70$60.38$78.79$118.12$154.94
75$81.73$108.02$160.82$213.39
80$113.68$155.83$224.72$309.01
85$166.03$221.32$329.41$439.99

The policy does not end once you turn 85.

It lasts forever once issued. 85 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

 

12) Baltimore LifeBaltimore Life company logo

  • Company founding date: 1882
  • A.M. Best rating: B++ (good)
  • Product name: Silver Guard I
  • Policy type: whole life insurance
  • 2-year waiting period: no (subject to underwriting approval)
  • Premiums stay the same forever: yes
  • Policy duration: forever (never expires)
  • Builds cash value: yes
  • Brochure | sample application
  • State where available for sale: all states except MA, MN, MO, NY, NC, SC, WA, WV
  • Coverage amount range: $2,500-$25,000
  • New applicant age range: 50-80 (policy lasts forever once issued)
  • Optional riders: accidental death (doubles the payout for accidental death)
  • Sample policy: n/a
  • How to apply: Agencies licensed to sell Baltimore Life products (you cannot buy directly from them).
  • Phone number to apply: 1-800-644-2926
  • Application approval time: 15-20 minutes
  • A medical exam required: no
  • Guaranteed acceptance: no (there are health questions)
  • Common health issues they accept: cancer | heart attack | circulatory surgery | heart Surgery | congestive heart failure | diabetic coma | amputation due to diabetes | angina | stroke | home health care | insulin shock | diabetic nephropathy

Baltimore Life isn’t a commonly known name, but that isn’t a cause for concern. They have been operating since 1882. Also, they have a B++ rating with A.M. Best which is considered good.

Their application process is swift. Generally, approvals take less than 15 minutes.

To get even more details, check out the full Baltimore Life review.

Baltimore Life premiums

The prices stay the same & the policy never expires.

AgeFemale
$10,000
Male
$10,000
Female
$15,000
Male
$15,000
50$27.90$33.30$39.15$47.25
55$32.40$39.60$45.90$56.70
60$38.70$48.60$55.35$70.20
65$47.70$60.30$68.85$87.75
70$61.20$78.30$89.10$114.75
75$81.00$104.40$118.80$153.90
80$117.90$147.60$174.15$218.70

The policy does not end once you turn 80.

It lasts forever once issued. 80 is just the maximum age for new applicants.

 

 


 

Here’s the story with waiting periods

First of all, final expense insurance with no waiting period does exist. Many companies offer it.

For example, of the 12 companies you see on this page, 10 of them offer immediate coverage with no waiting period.

The most important thing you must understand is that you must qualify for a policy with no waiting period in every circumstance.

To get immediate coverage, you have to apply with a company where you do answer health questions. You don’t have to take an exam, but you will have to answer health questions.

Thankfully, many companies have diverse and lenient underwriting, so getting no waiting period coverage is usually possible.

The only way for you to know if immediate coverage is possible is for you to speak with one of our agents. They’ll ask you some questions on your health so they can quickly determine if no waiting period coverage is possible.

Just know there are some situations where you 100% cannot get immediate coverage.

Suppose any of the conditions below apply to the person you’re trying to insure. In that case, it will be a modified whole life policy with a two-year waiting period.

  • Dialysis
  • HIV or AIDS
  • Cancer or treatment for cancer within the last 12 months
  • Hospice
  • Currently in a hospital or nursing facility
  • Heart attack within the previous 12 months
  • Full-blown stroke within the previous 12 months (mini-strokes don’t count)
  • Diabetic coma or insulin shock within the last 24 months
  • Diabetic amputation within the previous 24 months
  • Alzheimer’s or dementia
  • Terminal illness
  • Circulatory surgery within the previous 12 months
  • Heart surgery within the last 12 months
  • Congestive heart failure

That is not an all-inclusive list, but these are the most common ones.

If you don’t have any of those conditions, we can probably get you immediate coverage.

Every day we secure coverage for folks with no waiting period. Most of them thought it wasn’t possible.

 

Questions to ask before buying

Before you sign on the dotted line with anyone, there are specific questions you must ask to protect yourself.

Knowing the answers to these questions will help ensure you get the right policy and don’t get any unwelcome surprises later in life.

 

Will the premiums ever increase?

The should be a no answer. Some companies market plans where the monthly premiums increase over time. If you’re on a fixed income, it’s essential to buy a policy that has fixed monthly rates. If not, the premiums will likely increase beyond your budget one day, and then you’d lose your coverage since you cannot afford it.

 

Will the policy terminate at any age?

The should be a no answer. If the policy can expire, you take the risk of your coverage terminating before you die. If you outlive your policy, then you won’t have it to pay for your funeral expenses.

 

Will the coverage ever decrease in value?

The should be a no answer. If the coverage value can decrease over time, you can surely bet that it will deplete entirely one day.

 

Is there a waiting period for non-accidental death?

Some plans have a 2-3 year waiting period, and some don’t. The truth is there are some health issues where you cannot avoid a waiting period. However, that is typically only the case for ultra-high risk conditions such as cancer, dementia, or end-stage renal failure, to name a few. Most people can get a policy with immediate coverage where you’re fully insured from day one for natural or accidental death.

The most important thing is to know the truth. If there is a waiting period, you should know about it. If that detail is being hidden from you, run because you’re dealing with a crook.

 

How to protect yourself after buying

No matter how much research and due diligence you do before buying, the most critical step to protect yourself is what you do after the sale takes place.

You must read the policy. We cannot stress this enough.

The goal in reading the policy is to verify that you got what was promised.

The policy contains the truth.

Here’s what you need to verify:

  • Price
  • Coverage
  • Length of time the policy lasts
  • If there is a waiting period for non-accidental death

If the information in the policy does not match what you were told in the sales process, then you are dealing with a liar.

It’s important to remember that everything you see or hear before the issuance of the policy is just a proposal. None of that is legal and binding.

The only legally binding part of insurance is the policy. The policy is the legal contract between you and the insurance company.

Rest assured, though, there is hope if someone has tried to take advantage of you. The department of insurance in each state mandates that each insurance policy comes with a free look provision.

This provision grants you the right to review your contract once you receive it. It typically lasts 10-30 days, depending on your state. During this time, you can refuse the policy for any reason and get a full refund of any premiums that you’ve paid (if any).

So if you, unfortunately, buy from a sleazy agent who tried to swindle you, have no fear because you’ll get your money back.

 

Sample applications & policies

Want to see the application? What health questions do they ask (if any)?

Below are some sample policies and applications from the top 12 final expense companies.

Please note, you cannot complete these applications and send them in all on your own. All but two of the companies below require that you deal with an agency (such as Choice Mutual) to apply.

Only Gerber and AIG will allow you to apply directly with them without talking to an agent.

 

Types of funeral insurance plans

There are typically five different burial insurance plans you could qualify for (Level/Preferred, Standard, Graded, Modified & Guaranteed Issue). Which rate plan a company offers you and the monthly price is directly related to your health.

 

Level/Preferred

A level or preferred rating (these two words mean the same thing) is when the company approves you for the lowest price they offer. In addition, the coverage has no waiting period. Generally, you can only qualify for this rating if you can honestly respond with “no” to all the health questions (not including the tobacco question).

 

Standard

A standard plan has no waiting period, but the price is somewhat higher than a level/preferred plan due to a health issue(s). For example, multiple funeral insurance companies will offer a standard rating to folks who have COPD.

 

Partial

Often referred to as “graded coverage” by most insurance companies, a partial coverage plan would pay out a portion of the death benefit if you died during the first two years. They usually payout 30%-40% during the first year and 50%-70% during the second year. After two years, the entire death benefit is active. Also, keep in mind that a partial coverage plan will also cost more than a preferred/level plan.

 

Modified

A modified rating is the most expensive plan possible. Generally, only those with severe recent health issues will qualify for this rating. These plans will always have a 2-3 year waiting period (varies by the insurance company). Second, these plans typically cost at least 80% more than a level/preferred plan.

 

Guaranteed issue

Also commonly called “guaranteed acceptance,” these plans have no health or lifestyle questions. Simply put, you are guaranteed to be approved. The insurance company knows nothing about your health. A policy like this (such as Alex Trebek’s life insurance) with no health questions will always (no exceptions) have a 2-3 year waiting period before you’re covered.

In addition, they typically cost much more per month because the insurance company takes on a serious risk since they know nothing about your health. Generally speaking, guaranteed issue is the last resort if you have an uninsurable condition such as HIV, dialysis, transplants, or are wheelchair-bound.

 

Finding the best burial policy

Ultimately, the way you get the best end-of-life insurance is by comparing offers from multiple insurance companies to see which one is best.

It would help if you accepted that this is not something you can do entirely on your own as a consumer.

Yes, you can do online research and get quotes just like you’re doing now on this website.

However, there is no way for you to determine if any particular company will accept you or the exact cost.

Only a licensed agent can A) determine what you’re eligible for with each final expense company and B) what your exact price per month will be.

Know this:

You must work with a qualified independent final expense life insurance agency that can compare offers from 10-20 different insurance companies at all costs. Their entire objective is to determine which one is best for you.

And you may not believe this, but it’s true.

Over half of final expense life companies do not sell their products directly. They rely on agencies to market their products for them.

Plus, there are dozens of funeral insurance companies that you’ve never heard of, and you need them.

In 2018, the USA had 773 life insurance companies. It’s important to remember that only a tiny fraction of them advertise on TV, in magazines, online, or in newspapers.

That means the vast majority of the life insurance companies aren’t household names. The non-name brand companies are not bad or untrustworthy. They are equally as reputable and financially stable as the carriers that do advertise on TV.

We’re saying this because it might very well be that your best plan is with a carrier that isn’t a household name.

Please be open to this concept. Trust that just because it’s not a household name like Mutual of Omaha or State Farm, you can still feel supremely confident they will pay your claim.

So to gain access to the best companies, you must with an independent agency (which doesn’t cost you anything, by the way).

The best funeral policy has the three following elements.

  1. Financial track record: An insurance policy is only as good as the issuing insurance company’s ability to pay its claims. It would be best to look for a company with a solid and reliable financial track record. A.M. Best is the most prestigious rating agency for insurance companies. Only consider companies that have a B rating or higher.
  2. When you are covered: At all costs, try to get a plan with no waiting period. Nobody knows what tomorrow holds, which is why you must get an immediate benefit plan if possible. Your health may be such that you will have a partial or total waiting period. It would be best to get your policy now to start chipping away at that waiting period.
  3. Cost of the insurance: All things considered, look for a price on the lower end of the spectrum. Some companies have high prices for no apparent reason. Compare rates from multiple providers and ensure you’re paying a fair price and not getting gouged.

Any policy that satisfies all three of those requirements is a plan you want to secure as soon as possible.

Give us a call, and we’ll give you excellent service and help you find which plan is best for you. Check out what other real customers have to say after working with us.

Alternatives to burial life insurance

A final expense whole life insurance policy isn’t the only way to financially prepare for a funeral. For some folks, it’s easily their best option. However, some people don’t like the insurance option and would prefer to pursue other avenues.

Below are some alternatives to consider.

 

Pre-paid funeral

A prepaid funeral is a plan you set up directly with a local funeral home to design your preferred funeral. After you have made all your selections, they will tell you how much it costs.

You can elect to pay cash upfront or make monthly payments for 1, 3, 5, or 10 years. Your funeral is paid for after you’ve made all your payments. Keep in mind that if you make payments, you’ll pay in a total amount that exceeds the funeral cost. That is the price you pay for making payments instead of paying cash. If you’re making payments, expect to pay $125-$300 per month.

 

Other forms of life insurance

A whole life burial insurance policy isn’t the only type of life insurance used to pay for final expenses. Technically, you can cover end-of-life costs with the proceeds from any form of life insurance.

So if you have an existing life insurance policy, that could also be relied upon to pay for your burial expenses.

Keep in mind that many forms of life insurance expire after a certain number of years. It would be unwise to rely on a plan that ends at age 75 or 80. The chance that you’ll live longer than that is high, and then you would have nothing to pay for your funeral bills.

 

POD account

A payable-on-demand account (aka POD) is a particular type of bank account where the funds will be dispersed to beneficiaries upon the account holder’s passing.

Notify the beneficiaries if you set up and fund this account (make sure you deposit enough to cover all your final expenses). Otherwise, they won’t know it exists.

Ultimately, upon your passing, the funds in this account will be paid to your beneficiary(s), and they could use that money for your funeral.

 

Retirement portfolio

You could rely on money from your retirement account to pay for your funeral costs.

Using a retirement fund would be highly unadvisable because it takes so long for funds in a deceased person’s retirement account to be accessible.

The money in your retirement account would not be accessible until after they settle probate. Probate can take months to complete. Most families want a funeral carried out very soon after the death of a loved one.

Again, it would not be wise to go this route, but you could if you don’t like the other options.

 

Can you buy funeral insurance for someone else?

Yes, you can purchase coverage for another individual, provided they consent to the policy being issued. You cannot buy life insurance for an adult without their knowledge and consent. Getting quotes and asking questions on your own is fine, but you’ll need them to participate in the application process.

Insuring other people is not uncommon. In fact, one of the most frequent inquiries we get is from children seeking to insure their parents or someone trying to cover their sibling.

If you have their blessing, you can buy final expense insurance on any of the following:

The best thing to do is to start by having a conversation with an agent, so you can get quotes and become familiar with the application process.

Then talk with the person you want to insure and make sure they are on board with participating in the process. At that point, it’s just a matter of coordinating with your agent so the three of you can formally apply.

 

Frequently asked questions

Is burial insurance worth buying?

If you cannot afford to pay for your funeral, a final expense policy is likely worth buying. It can provide immediate peace of mind knowing your funeral bills won’t become a financial burden for your loved ones.

 

Is burial insurance the same as life insurance?

Yes, burial insurance is life insurance. It’s generally a small whole life policy meant to provide a quick cash payment to your family so they can pay for your funeral expenses.

 

Is burial insurance tax-deductible?

The payout to your beneficiaries from a burial life insurance policy is not subject to taxes.

 

Can I buy insurance to cover a cremation service?

Yes, you can buy insurance to cover cremation expenses. It’s generally a small whole life policy designed to cover the costs associated with a cremation funeral. These plans are easy to qualify for and cost very little since they only insure you for a small amount.

 

Does Social Security help pay for funeral expenses?

The short answer is yes, but it’s a tiny amount. Per the SSA.gov website, a one-time lump-sum death benefit of $255 can be paid to the surviving spouse if they qualify.