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MassMutual life insurance review 2023

Updated Jan 11, 2023
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BANKRATE AWARDS 2023 WINNER

Best whole life insurance company

See why it won
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Bottom Line

Policyholders looking for whole life insurance with plenty of rider options from a company with high customer satisfaction and the financial strength to back it up might find MassMutual to be a good choice for life insurance.

Pros
  • High third-party customer satisfaction scores

  • Extensive rider options

  • A++ (Superior) financial strength rating from AM Best

Cons
  • No guaranteed life insurance offered

  • Online quotes not available

  • Customer service not open on weekends

Info
What’s new with MassMutual?

Due to a recent acquisition, the Great American Life Insurance Company is now MassMutual Ascend. Here, customers may be able to bolster their retirement savings by purchasing a variety of annuities.

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Bankrate Award winner for best whole life insurance company

Each year, Bankrate’s insurance editorial team evaluates the largest carriers by market share to bring our readers the best of the best in the insurance world. After reviewing coverage options, digital presence, financial strength, customer satisfaction and more, we are excited to announce that MassMutual secured the 2023 Bankrate Award for best whole life insurance for the second year in a row.

Why MassMutual won

Whole life insurance is designed to stay in place until you pass away, so the ability to personalize a policy and a company’s financial strength — which shows the insurer’s historical ability to pay claims — are essential. MassMutual has 13 rider options for its whole life insurance product (the longest list of all the carriers we analyzed) and has a financial strength rating of A++ (Superior) from AM Best. The company also boasts above-average customer satisfaction, according to J.D. Power, and fewer-than-average customer complaints lodged with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). These factors helped push MassMutual to the top of our list of best whole life insurance companies.

MassMutual life insurance

Based on Bankrate’s extensive review, Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company — better known as MassMutual — is the best life insurance company for those seeking whole life insurance, namely due to its high customer satisfaction, rider options, financial strength and coverage capacity. Additionally, the company offers a top-rated mobile app for those who prefer to take a hands-on approach to their life insurance.

Founded in 1851, MassMutual is the fourth-largest life insurance provider by market share, according to the Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I), and it has financial professionals located across the country and Puerto Rico, with the exception of Alaska. As a mutual company owned by the policyholders, you may potentially earn profit dividends on eligible policies.

While MassMutual won the 2023 Bankrate Award for best whole life insurance company, other policy types are available, including term, universal and variable policies.

  • Term: Term policies remain active for a preset number of years — typically, between 10 and 30. MassMutual does not list out the term lengths it has available, but it does state that terms are often 10, 20 or 30 years.

    After the policy term, your policy will expire, and your loved ones will no longer receive death benefits if you pass away (unless you convert it to permanent life insurance before the end of the term). Term life insurance typically works well for those who only want coverage for a specific time in their life. For instance, when their children are young or while they’re paying down their mortgage.
  • Permanent: Permanent life insurance refers to a few different types of policies, including whole life, universal life and variable life. Generally speaking, permanent life insurance is more expensive than term, but it comes with a few perks that term policies lack. For instance, permanent life insurance comes with a cash value account that has the potential to grow over time.

    Unlike term policies, permanent life insurance covers you for your entire life rather than a predetermined amount of time. As such, permanent life insurance may be best for people who want coverage with no concerns of policy expiration (as long as premiums are paid).
    • Whole: Whole life cash value has the potential to increase in value at a guaranteed rate, and with MassMutual, you may earn dividends. Although dividends aren’t guaranteed, MassMutual boasts that they’ve issued a dividend payout to its whole life policyholders every year since 1869. Additionally, whole life premiums stay the same for the duration the policy and the death benefit is fixed.
    • Universal: Universal life also can grow in cash value (based on the current interest rate), but unlike MassMutual whole life, there is no potential to earn dividends. Universal life also has flexible premiums and you may increase or decrease your death benefit after policy inception.
    • Variable universal: Variable universal life insurance has flexible premiums, and like a regular universal life policy, you can increase or decrease your death benefits after you purchase the policy. The cash value portion of variable universal life policies are invested stocks, so cash value can increase (or decrease) depending on the market.

MassMutual life insurance endorsements

While adding an endorsement, or rider, to your MassMutual life insurance policy may increase the cost of your life insurance policy, riders can help you tailor your coverage to meet your specific needs. MassMutual offers the longest list of endorsements for its whole life insurance policies out of all the companies we analyzed. Some of these endorsements include:

  • Waiver of premium rider: This endorsement can allow you to pause your premium payments without canceling your policy if you become disabled.
  • Guaranteed insurability rider: You may want to add this rider to your whole life policy if you want to increase your death benefit coverage (or purchase a new whole life policy) without a health exam. This rider could be a good choice for those purchasing a life insurance policy for children or for young adults, since health circumstances are likely to change as one ages.
  • Additional life insurance rider: The additional life insurance rider allows policyholders to apply extra payments to their policy to increase their death benefits and accelerate cash growth.
  • Accelerated death benefit rider: If you are diagnosed with a terminal illness, this rider may help you access a portion of your death benefit to use as you wish before you pass.

MassMutual life tools and benefits

MassMutual offers a range of financial products alongside financial planning services. Among the many investment and retirement products the company offers, you will find annuities, individual retirement accounts, mutual funds and 529 plans.

MassMutual’s website also hosts tools to find a financial professional, and calculators for figuring out college savings, budgeting, disability income, retirement income and more.

MassMutual customer satisfaction

Insuring yourself with the best life insurance company is more than just finding the cheapest premiums. In fact, for some people, customer service may be just as important as affordability. It’s for this reason that Bankrate’s insurance editorial team reviewed a variety of third-party scores to evaluate MassMutual’s customer satisfaction.

In the J.D. Power 2022 U.S. Individual Life Insurance Study, MassMutual scored above the industry average with a customer satisfaction score of 780 out of 1,000. Since the industry average score was 774, this could mean that MassMutual’s policyholders are generally happy with the service the company provides.

We also analyzed where MassMutual landed on the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Complaint Index Report. Here, the company has an overall NAIC complaint index score of 0.03, far below the baseline (or average) of 1.0. This data shows that MassMutual receives fewer complaints than average compared to other companies of similar size. Even more impressive, the NAIC reports that MassMutual has received zero complaints regarding its individual life insurance product.

Lastly, although financial strength may not be directly tied to customer satisfaction, adequate financial strength does mean that, historically, a company has had the means to pay out claims when required. If a company is not able to pay out claims in a fast and fair manner, its customers will likely be unhappy. When it comes to financial strength, MassMutual shines with an AM Best financial strength rating of A++ (Superior), the highest score available.

How to file a claim with MassMutual

Filing a life insurance claim could be an emotional time for your beneficiary. To ease some of their burdens, you may want to give them heads-up on what to expect during the claims process.

There are three steps to filing a life insurance claim with MassMutual. First, your beneficiary must contact the company to start the claim. Then, MassMutual will send your beneficiary a claims packet to complete and return. Once MassMutual receives, reviews and approves the claims packet, the benefit payment will be processed within 10 days.

When your beneficiary is ready, they can file a life insurance claim with MassMutual by:

  • Visiting the company’s online claims portal and following the instructions
  • Calling the company at 1-800-272-2216

Additionally, your beneficiary will need to provide some of your basic information, such as your name, policy number, your date of birth and date of death.

MassMutual availability

MassMutual has finance professionals available in all 50 states, except for Alaska. It also has offices in Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico. However, not all of MassMutual’s life insurance products may be available in every state. If you’d like to know if MassMutual offers life insurance in your state, it may be a good idea to contact the company directly.

Other MassMutual perks worth considering

In addition to high third-party ratings and various types of life insurance, MassMutual offers the following perks:

  • Mobile app: MassMutual’s mobile app is rated highly at the App Store and Google Play. It allows policyholders to manage their policies, handle payments and more.
  • Financial advisors: MassMutual operates through financial professionals who help advise policyholders and potential clients.
  • Various calculators: MassMutual’s website features a life insurance calculator, which may be helpful for those who are wondering: “How much life insurance do I need?” Additionally, there are other specialized calculators for figuring out college savings, budgeting, disability income, retirement income and more.
  • Online tools: Policyholders can use MassMutual’s website to manage their policy online and read MassMutual’s blog, which publishes useful materials such as guides to life insurance, financial literacy articles and how-to pieces.

MassMutual corporate sustainability

MassMutual boasts a solid commitment to corporate sustainability. The company’s charitable organization, MassMutual Foundation, has invested more than $20 million in local communities to advance economic development. Additionally, MassMutual’s Catalyst Fund is a $50 million fund that supports entrepreneurs in building business throughout the state of Massachusetts. In terms of environmental consideration, MassMutual’s headquarters utilizes 1,750 solar panels, hosts an onsite herb garden, uses local produce and has its HQ cafeteria participate in a recycling program.

Although this MassMutual Life Insurance review is extensive, you may still wonder if this company can offer coverage to help you meet your financial goals. While you’re shopping, you may want to compare life insurance quotes from the companies below:

MassMutual vs. State Farm

Another Bankrate Award winner, State Farm offers the best term life insurance according to the 2023 Bankrate Awards, based on its exceptional customer satisfaction score, excellent AM Best financial strength rating and near-nationwide availability.

Learn more: State Farm Insurance review

MassMutual vs. Nationwide

If you’re looking into universal life insurance, Nationwide could be a solid choice. Like MassMutual, Nationwide boasts an above-industry-average J.D. Power score and has a plethora of digital tools for those who prefer hands-on policy management.

Learn more: Nationwide Insurance review

MassMutual vs. Mutual of Omaha

If you’re looking for life insurance for people over 50, Mutual of Omaha may be a good fit. The company has high third-party ratings and offers a blog geared toward seniors called Mutual Cares.

Learn more: Mutual of Omaha Insurance review

Is MassMutual a good insurance company?

Bankrate knows the value of doing research before choosing a life insurance company. That’s why we’ve spent countless hours using our real experiences as insurance agents to conduct honest and comprehensive carrier reviews.

MassMutual could be a good company, but it depends on your needs. If you’re looking for guaranteed life insurance, you will have to shop with another company because this type of policy is unavailable with MassMutual. However, if you value high customer satisfaction, financial strength, a top-rated mobile app and need whole life insurance with lots of rider options, then MassMutual could be the company for you.

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