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Brighthouse Financial life insurance review 2024

Updated May 24, 2024
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At a glance

Bankrate's take

If you are looking for life insurance and long-term care, Brighthouse Financial’s SmartCare policy might be worth considering for your situation. The company offers limited policy options, though and was the lowest-rated option in J.D. Power's 2023 customer satisfaction ratings.

  • Ranked poorly in the 2023 J.D. Power Individual Life Insurance Study
  • Offers term life insurance coverage up to $3 million
  • Whole life insurance is only accessible through Brighthouse Financial if you convert a term life policy
  • Offers a hybrid policy that merges life insurance with long-term care insurance


What's new with Brighthouse Financial?

Brighthouse Financial announced that its Board of Directors appointed Michael J. Inserra and Lizabeth H. Zlatkus as independent board members. Both Inserra and Zlatkus have been designated as "audit committee financial experts" under U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission rules and will serve on the Audit Committee. Inserra will also join the Investment Committee, while Zlatkus will serve on the Finance and Risk Committee. Additionally, in partnership with BlackRock, the company announced that the LifePath Paycheck solution is now available in defined contribution plans, providing American workers with easier access to lifetime income during retirement.

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Brighthouse Financial life insurance

Brighthouse Financial offers term life insurance and permanent life insurance. One of its unique policy offerings, called Brighthouse SmartCare, combines universal indexed life insurance with long-term care insurance. Some customers may have the option to get a policy with simplified underwriting, which, depending on their age, does not require a medical exam.

In addition to the carrier's hybrid SmartCare policy, here are the types of life insurance coverage you can purchase through Brighthouse Financial:

  • Term life insurance: There are two options available for term life insurance — Brighthouse SimplySelect and Brighthouse One Year Term. The SimplySelect term policy provides affordable coverage for 10, 20 or 30 years, with coverage ranging from $100,000 to $3 million. For this policy, a medical exam is not a requirement, plus you may have the option to add an acceleration of death benefit rider for added financial protection. The Brighthouse One Year Term policy provides the flexibility of short-term coverage for one year only, but you may use a convertible and renewable rider to extend your coverage to five years. One-year term policy availability and conditions vary by state.
  • Whole life insurance: If you have a term life insurance policy from Brighthouse Financial, you could opt to convert it to a whole life policy before the term ends if you have selected that option when initially purchasing your policy. Brighthouse Financial’s whole life policies have level premiums for your lifetime, guaranteed coverage as long as the premium is paid and guaranteed cash value growth. However, keep in mind that Brighthouse Financial only offers whole policies to those who already have term life insurance with it and want to convert, so you will first need to have a term policy in place that is nearing its end.
  • Indexed universal life insurance: Brighthouse Financial offers indexed universal life insurance with its SmartGuard Plus plan. If you’re willing to pay a little extra upfront, you can add a guaranteed distribution rider to ensure that future distribution payments stay above a certain threshold.

Pros and cons of Brighthouse Financial life insurance

Not sure if Brighthouse Financial has what you’re looking for? Our quick list of pros and cons can give you a quick snapshot of the company:

Green circle with a checkmark inside


  • Offers a unique hybrid policy with life insurance and long-term care insurance
  • Excellent financial strength ratings
  • With the SimplySelect plan, approved applicants may receive coverage within 24 hours
Red circle with an X inside


  • Must purchase a policy through a Brighthouse financial professional; online quoting is not available
  • Limited selection of life insurance products offered
  • Below-average customer satisfaction score in J.D. Power's 2023 individual life insurance study.

Brighthouse Financial life insurance riders

Brighthouse Financial does not list all the life insurance endorsements available for different policy types on its websites. However, it does advertise the following:

  • Guaranteed distribution rider: This rider is available for universal life policies and guarantees that distribution payments remain above a certain minimum threshold.
  • Convertible and renewable rider: Available for term policies, this rider gives policyholders the option to convert their coverage to a permanent policy or renew their term policy once it expires.
  • Acceleration of death benefit rider: This term policy rider allows you to access your policy's death benefit early if you are diagnosed with a qualifying illness.

If you're interested in how you can personalize your policy, as well as how much life insurance might cost with Brighthouse Financial, contacting an agent or company representative may be helpful.

Brighthouse Financial customer satisfaction

To give you a more comprehensive Brighthouse life insurance review, Bankrate rounded up key third-party ratings. AM Best is a credit agency that specializes in the insurance industry. AM Best gives companies a letter grade that represents financial strength. A high AM Best rating signals that a company has historically made good on its financial claim obligations. This may be particularly important to life insurance shoppers, as life insurance claims can sometimes be in the millions. Brighthouse Financial currently holds an A (Excellent) rating from AM Best.

We also looked at J.D. Power’s latest life insurance studies to see how Brighthouse Financial stacks up against the competition — and the results were underwhelming. Brighthouse Financial scored well below the industry average of 790 with a score of 739, coming in last place for overall customer satisfaction in the 2023 Individual Life Insurance Study. This indicates that policyholders who value service may want to do some more research before purchasing a policy with Brighthouse.

Brighthouse Financial insurance customer complaints

Another important metric Bankrate uses to review life insurance companies is the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) complaint index. The NAIC tracks the number of complaints policyholders file against insurance companies and awards each company multiple complaint index scores: an overall score and a score for each product line it offers.

The NAIC sets the average complaint index score at 1.0. If a company receives a score of 1.0, this means that it receives an average amount of complaints for a company its size. With NAIC Complaint Indexes, the lower the score, the better — it means that fewer customers are filing complaints about the company, and customers may be more satisfied.

Brighthouse Financial’s NAIC complaint index, coupled with its sub-par J.D. Power score, implies that the company has a ways to go in terms of customer service. Although its scores remained below 1.0 in 2021 and 2023, it tipped into above-average in 2022.

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Compare Brighthouse Financial with other insurers

Depending on your priorities, Brighthouse may or may not be able to meet your life insurance needs. You may want to explore some of the carriers below during your research process:

Brighthouse Financial vs. Pacific Life

Pacific Life offers a wide variety of insurance policies, including two types of universal life insurance. The company is rated above average for overall customer satisfaction by J.D. Power in the 2023 Life Insurance Study.

Learn more: Pacific Life Insurance Review

Brighthouse Financial vs. Mutual of Omaha

Along with life insurance, Mutual of Omaha offers robust long-term care insurance policies. Brighthouse offers a hybrid life and long-term care product but not a traditional long-term care insurance policy. Mutual of Omaha’s wide range of available riders also made it a standout on our list of best term life insurance companies.

Learn more: Mutual of Omaha

Brighthouse Financial vs. Globe Life

Globe Life Insurance offers many types of life insurance, including term, whole and final expense coverage. Additionally, there are policies for accidental death insurance, mortgage protection insurance and children’s life insurance. While Brighthouse Financial focuses on comprehensive and customizable coverage, Global Life is typically straightforward and simple.

Learn more: Globe Life Insurance review

Brighthouse Financial vs. State Farm

If you prefer to bundle your insurance policies, you may want to consider an insurer with multiple lines of coverage like State Farm. In addition to many life insurance options, State Farm also offers home insurance and auto coverage and boasts a few 2024 Bankrate Awards in the life insurance category. By contrast, Brighthouse Financial has fewer bundling choices.

Learn more: State Farm

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Our insurance editorial team includes licensed agents with decades of combined experience, and we used our intimate knowledge of the industry to conduct this in-depth Brighthouse Financial insurance review.


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Is Brighthouse Financial a good insurance company?

Brighthouse Financial is a solid life insurance provider overall, based on available metrics reviewed by our Bankrate insurance editorial team. With more than fifty carriers reviewed, our team can help you find the best life insurance company for your needs and give you an overview of how life insurance works.

Based on Bankrate’s Brighthouse Financial life insurance review and its offerings, it may be considered a decent life insurance option for many customers. The company offers a couple of standard policies to cover basic life insurance needs, including its signature SmartCare coverage, but it falls short in terms of accessibility and customer satisfaction ratings. It also does not offer an online life insurance quote option. However, if you are looking for long-term care and life insurance rolled into one, Brighthouse Financial’s SmartCare policy might be worth considering.

What are real-life customers saying about Brighthouse Financial?

We read discussions and reviews on Trustpilot and Reddit to gather firsthand accounts of customer experiences with Brighthouse Financial. In the realm of life insurance, it's noteworthy that customer feedback often centers around the policy acquisition phase, ongoing support and overall service quality rather than direct experiences with claims and payouts. This tendency stems from the fact that life insurance claims are handled by beneficiaries, who may not be the same person or entity as the policyholder. Therefore, the insights gleaned from these platforms primarily reflect Brighthouse Financial's customer service and policy management practices, offering prospective customers a snapshot of what they might encounter when interacting with the company.

Reddit and Trustpilot reviews

In the realm of life insurance, the quality of customer service can significantly impact the policyholder's experience. A Reddit discussion from January 2024 highlighted concerns about Brighthouse Financial's customer support, with one user advising, "I would recommend switching if you are worried about customer service. Both will have no problem paying out the death benefit, but customer service is more than that. If you need to change your billing address, your banking information, your beneficiary information, etc. during the life of the policy you will need to reach out to the company's customer support team. Brighthouse is downright awful."

This sentiment was echoed in another Reddit conversation in April of 2023 where, after initially praising the company for its low rates, concerns about the level of customer support became prevalent. Trustpilot reviews also reflected dissatisfaction, with a user in September of 2023, offering a succinct critique labeling the life insurance quote process with Brighthouse as "horrible."

These firsthand accounts suggest that while Brighthouse life insurance may offer attractive rates, potential customers should weigh the importance of responsive and effective customer service when considering their life insurance options.

Brighthouse Financial company details

For those considering Brighthouse Financial for their insurance needs, here are some key contact details and resources to help you get started or manage your existing policies:

  • Customer service and claims: These lines are open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Eastern time
    • Life insurance policies ending with BI, BLT, BLW, USU, USV, UT: 1-800-882-1292
    • Life insurance products ending with US and FM: 1-833-208-3017
    • Former New England Financial policies: 1-800-388-4000
  • Company website:

State availability

Brighthouse Financial services customers in all 50 states, but not every policy type is available in every state.

Brighthouse Financial tools and benefits

Brighthouse Financial exclusively offers life insurance products and annuities.

However, the company has a large library of online resources for learning about purchasing the right amount of life insurance coverage, planning for retirement and estate planning, as well as life insurance coverage calculators. If you are new to life insurance or not yet sure how much coverage you will need, how long you want an active policy or if you have other financial planning goals, Brighthouse’s resources may be a good starting place for your research.

Frequently asked questions about Brighthouse Financial

Written by
Ashlyn Brooks
Ashlyn Brooks is a finance writer with more than half a decade of experience, known for her knowledge in areas such as taxes, insurance, investing, retirement, finance news, and banking products.
Edited by Editor II, Insurance