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Forester’s Life Insurance Review 2020

Foresters is a fraternal benefit society. Customers must be members of The Independent Order of Foresters, but you can apply as part of the purchase of a life insurance policy. Becoming a member gives you benefits, such as access to academic scholarships, discounted legal services, and financial counseling. 

Foresters in based in Toronto, Canada and they serve customers in Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom. They have been in business since 1874 when they recognized that average, working families needed access to life insurance. Today, they have more than three million customers and assets of over $22 billion dollars. They were recently purchased by Nassau Financial group. 

Pros and Cons of Foresters Life Insurance

– Nice selection of products
– Charity donation upon owners’ death
– Focused on life insurance
– Member benefits 
– Higher prices than some
– No online quotes
– Policies are sold through agents
(this could be a pro, depending on how you feel about agents)

>>MORE: The Best Life Insurance Companies

Products Offered by Foresters Life Insurance

Foresters Financial offers four main kinds of life insurance:

  • Term Life
  • Whole Life
  • Universal Life
  • Variable Life

Term: Term insurance at Foresters is offered in terms of 10, 15, 20, 25 and 30 years. It’s renewable, and you can convert any term policy to permanent life insurance without having to undergo any additional underwriting (i.e. a medical exam). 

A nice and unique feature of Foresters term life insurance is that, in the event of a claim, Foresters will donate an additional 1% (up to $100,000) to the charity of the owner’s choice. 

Whole life: Three types of whole life insurance are offered:

  • PlanRight Whole Life
  • Advantage Plus II Participating Whole Life
  • Interest Sensitive whole life 

PlanRight Whole life is a basic policy meant to cover final expenses.

Advantage Plus II has the potential to earn dividends, which can be used to purchase additional insurance, pay premiums, increase cash value or be paid in cash. Learn more about dividend paying life insurance

Premiums can be paid for either 20 years or up until age 100. As with all whole life insurance, you earn cash value which you can then borrow against. Learn more how about cash value in whole life insurance policy

Interest Sensitive whole life lets you grow cash at current interest rates, but there’s also a guaranteed interest rate. It functions like a floor does in variable life policies; in other words, you can’t earn less than a certain amount. 

>>MORE: A Guide to the Best Whole Life Insurance Companies

Universal Life: Universal life offers life insurance plus cash value that grows at a minimum interest rate of 2% a year and has the flexibility usually associated with UL policies. You can use the cash value to pay the premiums or pay more or less in premiums as your needs arise. 

Variable Life: Variable life policy provides life insurance with the cash value tied to investments. 

MORE: The Pros and Cons of Variable Universal Life Insurance

All of these policies come with Foresters 1% donation to the owner’s charity of choice (up to $100,000) upon their death. 

Foresters automatically includes the following riders:

  • Common carrier accidental death coverage: if you die due to an accident while you’re a passenger on public transportation. Learn more about accidental death life insurance
  • Accelerated death benefit
  • Family health benefit
  • Charity benefit

Optional riders include:

  • Guaranteed purchase/insurability rider. Learn more about guaranteed insurability in life insurance
  • Waiver of premium
  • Waiver of monthly deductions
  • Children’s term rider. Learn more about life insurance for children
  • Spouse’s term
  • Accidental death
  • Disability income

Financial Strength Rating of Foresters Life Insurance

Financial strength is important because you want to know your insurance company has the ability to pay claims. A.M. Best gives Foresters Financial a score of A and predicts a stable outlook. 

Customer Satisfaction Rating of Foresters Life Insurance

Foresters does not appear in J.D. Power’s 2019 life insurance study, so we will have to consider other sources. They don’t have any reviews on TrustPilot, either. 

Foresters is not accredited by the BBB, but they get an A+. There are nine complaints listed on the website, although some details are unavailable and one of them is not for Foresters. What does it mean if a company is not accredited? It could mean that a company chooses not to pay the fees (there is a fee to be accredited by the BBB) or it could mean the company does not endorse the standards set forth by the BBB. 

Consumer Complaints Rating of Foresters Life Insurance

The NAIC rates every insurance company and assigns them an index. The median average index is 1.0. Foresters received an index of .28 meaning they received fewer complaints than you would expect for a company of their size.

There are other complaints on various websites on the internet. Reading through them, some people did not seem to understand what they were purchasing. Some do mention high-pressure sales tactics. It’s important for consumers to read policies carefully before turning over any financial information. It’s also important to have a goal and a budget in mind before meeting with any insurance agent, so you don’t get talked into something you don’t want or need. 

Digital Experience Rating of Foresters Life Insurance

Foresters is not the most connected company when it comes to digital availability. There is no online quoting, and no rates are listed online. If you want to purchase insurance, you will have to contact a financial advisor/insurance agent. This usually means prices are a little higher, to accommodate the agents’ commissions. 

To file a claim, you’ll have to download a form and mail it in. You’ll need a copy of the death certificate to mail in along with your claim.

There is no mobile app, but you can find them on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Last Thoughts

Foresters Life insurance is part of The Independent Order of Foresters, a fraternal organization. There are some nice benefits associated with membership, which is available when you purchase life insurance. Customers looking for rock bottom prices or for a comprehensive digital experience should probably look elsewhere, or at least shop around. If you’re looking for a small life insurance company with a history of charitable giving, and you will take advantage of the added perks, Foresters could be perfect for you.

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