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Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company

Living Benefits: The Smartphones of Life Insurance

Founded in 1925, Nationwide offers affordable term policies with an accelerated death benefit rider. The long-term care rider is available on the universal and variable life insurance policies. Nationwide offers a variety of options of living benefits and has one of the most affordable policies on the market.


  • Online quotes and applications are available for term policies.
  • It offers the most affordable term policy options in the industry.


  • It does not offer online quotes for permanent life insurance policies.
  • It does not offer long-term care riders on term policies.

Additional Policy Features

Nationwide offers a universal or variable term policy with the long-term care rider which provides a monthly benefit in case of long-term care. You can also get an accelerated death benefit on the term, whole, universal, and variable life insurance policies. This provides you with the lump sum from the death benefit in case of a terminal illness.

Massmutual Life Insurance Company

Founded in 1851, MassMutual offers policies nationwide. It offers whole life insurance and long-term care insurance packages that provide flexibility regarding how you use the benefits. You can use these benefits to receive payouts to cover long-term care, cancel the policy and receive the surrender value while you are living, and receive a tax-free death benefit for dependents.


  • Flexible living benefits are provided for long-term care riders on whole life policies.
  • The policies are eligible for dividend payments.
  • The company offers online account management and has a mobile app.


  • It does not offer online quotes for whole life policies.
  • There are limited details about the terms online.

Additional Policy Features

If you want funds in case of a terminal illness without much flexibility, you can add an accelerated death benefit rider to a regular whole life insurance policy. This will provide you with an advance if you are diagnosed with a terminal illness and are expected to die within 12 months. You will get a policy that accumulates cash value and will be eligible for dividends. Even though MassMutual writes policies nationwide, the policy offerings might differ from state to state.

How Much Do Living Benefits Cost

The question of cost regarding living benefits depends on many factors. First and foremost, what kind of policy do you have? Second, what benefits do you need? Someone who adds one rider and someone who adds three riders can expect a significantly different cost. Similarly, whole life insurance and term life insurance are completely different, and the cost of living benefits reflects those differences.

In general, whole life insurance costs more than term . However, the higher monthly premiums for whole life insurance doesnt mean youll have to pay extra to take advantage of its living benefits..

In fact, most of the built-in living benefits of whole life insurance dont come at an extra charge, whereas living benefits that are in the form of riders do increase the amount you pay in monthly premiums.

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What Are The Living Benefits Of Permanent Life Insurance

A permanent life policy will typically offer most of the optional riders noted above, but it also has an important feature that term life does not provide: cash value. So while permanent insurance is typically more expensive than term, most of the cost difference is because premium dollars can contribute to a policys cash account, where it grows tax-deferred, helping your family build wealth.

Cash value usually takes a few years to grow into a usable sum, but once that happens, it can become a financial asset with many advantages. Generally speaking, there are four ways to access life insurance cash value:

  • Surrender: Cashing out your policy is usually not advisable, but it is possible. While you can cancel your policy and take the cash surrender value payment, you’ll no longer have life insurance protection, and you may face significant surrender fees and/or taxes but there are other ways to access those funds.
  • Withdrawal: In many situations, you can withdraw cash from your permanent life policy. That money is often non-taxable as long as it’s not more than the amount you’ve paid into the policy. However, the policy’s death benefit will likely be reduced, and that reduction may be more significant than the amount withdrawn, depending on the terms of your policy.
  • Living Benefits For Life Insurance

    Life Insurance with Living Benefits: Definition, Pros, and Cons

    You may know life insurance offers a death benefit, but did you realize many policies also offer living benefits? Depending on your policy, you may be able to add a living benefits rider to your life insurance.

    A living benefits provides an early payout of policy death benefits, if the insured is injured or has an illness. The amount that can be accessed depends on the type of contract. This payment, which is made to the policy owner rather than to the beneficiary, reduces any cash value that has built up on the policy and reduces the death benefit.

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    Permanent Life Living Benefits

    With permanent policies, you have two options to tap into your living benefits your death benefit and cash value. Your permanent policy doesnt expire like a term policy does, meaning you have access to living benefits as long as your policy is active.

    Living Benefit Options for Term Policies

    Cash value withdrawal
    With this living benefit, you can access part of your cash value of your policy. Your withdrawal rules vary by insurer and are regulated by federal tax rules, according to U.S. News.
    Policy loan
    You can take out a loan against your permanent policy. Know that you typically dont have to undergo a credit check with a policy loan.
    Policy surrender
    If you decide to cancel your permanent policy, a policy surrender gives you access to your cash value as a one-time lump sum.
    Long-term care benefits
    This living benefit will cover long-term care costs that arent covered by your health insurance or Medicare. Your death benefit will be reduced, depending on how much you borrow. According to the Genworth Cost of Care Survey, long-term care services, like a home health aide, will likely cost around $5,676 a month in 2023.

    So What Are Living Benefits In Life Insurance

    Simply put, the living benefits of life insurance is the option for the insured to use his or her life insurance policy while still alive. The insured does not have to die to use the policy. This could happen in 2 scenarios:

    * Purchase a policy that builds up cash value. * Purchase life insurance with living benefits. Weve answered 21 FAQs about living benefits.

    In the first instance,

    The life insurance industry is slowly evolving trying to adjust to match the needs of todays consumers. With that being said, more companies are offering life insurance policies without a medical exam, fast self-complete applications, and policies with living benefits.

    When purchasing a policy building cash value, the insured/owner of the policy could use the funds to help supplement his or her retirement income or to help with other financial goals. Typically, permanent policies such as whole life insurance and universal life policies build cash value. Below are the pros and cons of the option:


    • Money is growing tax-deferred over time
    • Available to borrow against, if needed
    • Can be used to pay for the policy


    • Only available in permanent policies that are more expensive when compared to term insurance
    • It does not grow significantly in the first years of the policy
    • It needs to be repaid, or it reduces the value of the insurance

    In the second instance,



    In this guide, we would turn our attention only to life insurance with living benefits as accelerated riders .

    Also Check: Return Of Premium Life Insurance

    What Are The Living Benefits Of Life Insurance

    The primary purpose of any life insurance policy is to provide financial protection for your loved ones after you pass away. However, life insurance can also provide living benefits features and protections that can help you while youre still alive. Certain kinds of policies can also help you build wealth, with cash value that can be accessed while youre still alive. This article will help you better understand the two main types of life insurance term and permanent and tell you about:

    How Do I Know If I Can Submit A Claim For My Living Benefits

    Living Benefits Life Insurance

    It depends if you are trying to trigger your cash proceeds for critical, chronic or terminal illness.

    For example, if you are attempting to collect cash due to a terminal illness, you would need a certified document from your physician stating your life expectancy is projected to be 12 months or less.Sometimes 24 months or less like we mentioned previously.

    The same would apply for Critical and Chronic illness claims. When you attempt to collect the cash proceeds while living, you will need a certified physician to sign off on the situation proving that you meet the criteria that your specific policy entails.

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    Living Benefits And Taxes

    Life insurance death benefit payouts are always tax-free. Your beneficiaries will never pay taxes on the death benefit payout. The IRS enforces this rule.

    In most cases, any living benefits received from the death benefit of a life insurance policy are generally not subject to Federal income tax. On the other hand, some state laws may have rules on life insurance and living benefit payments.

    Most insurance companies will word your policy and structure your living benefits in a way that reflects this, stating that if you are to accelerate any living benefits, be sure to check with a tax professional regarding the tax treatment of accelerated death benefit.

    That said, this is another time when its a good idea to check your policys language closely. You dont want to wind up paying unexpected fees or taxes, especially in the kinds of stressful situations that often trigger living benefits.

    Before accelerating any living benefit payment, make sure you know exactly what the tax rules are.

    How Much Does Life Insurance With Living Benefits Cost

    Probably the best news in this article is that living benefits that are a result of the Accelerated Death Benefit are typically provided at no cost to the policyholder whether they are provided as an automatic benefit of the policy or added as a rider.

    Its important, however, to know how the accelerated death benefit can deviate from company to company and are strictly regulated in the state of New York and California.

    New York

    First of all, the critical illness benefit is not available in New York. Additionally, the chronic illness benefit requires the insured to complete a supplemental application, and certification of the diagnosis must be provided by the healthcare provider.

    When a long-term claim is filed for a chronic illness diagnosis, the healthcare provider must also certify to the insurance company that continuous care is needed for the remainder of the claimants life.

    Also, the total benefit paid for chronic illness long-term care cannot exceed the annualized per day amount that is in effect for the claimants long-term care services.


    In California, anyone over the age of 65 cannot have a chronic or critical illness benefit on their life insurance policy. The chronic illness benefit is not allowed on a term policy, whether automatic or added using a rider.

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    Life Insurance With Living Benefits Faq:

    Living benefits are additional features for your life insurance policy that allow you to use some of your death benefit to pay for end-of-life care before you die.

    Both term and permanent life insurance comes with the option to add living benefits riders to your policy.

    It depends on your circumstances. Most life insurance policies come with at least one living benefits rider , but if your family has enough savings, you may not need to use any living benefits.

    Editor & Licensed Life Insurance Expert

    Amanda Shih is a licensed life, disability, and health insurance expert and a former editor at Policygenius, where she covered life insurance and disability insurance. Her expertise has appeared in Slate, Lifehacker, Little Spoon, and J.D. Power.

    Expert reviewer

    Financial Advisor

    Michael Reynolds, CSRIC®, AIF®, CFT-I, is a financial advisor, principal and founder of Elevation Financial, host of the weekly personal finance podcast Wealth Redefined®, and a member of the Financial Review Council at Policygenius.

    Questions about this page? Email us at .


    Living Benefits And Life Insurance

    Life Insurance With Living Benefits

    With living benefits, a new problem is solved for you and your family. You now can accelerate a percentage of your death benefit in the event of the costly and financially back-breaking events that can occur such as critical, chronic and terminal illness care.

    Not an option you want to pass up if given the choice. Trust us.

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    Best For Bundled Coverage: State Farm

    State Farm

    State Farm stands out because of its discounts for multiple types of insurance coverage. The company allows you to bundle life insurance with home or renters, health, auto, an umbrella liability policy, and many more options. State Farm is the best in our review for bundled coverage.

    • Online quotes for some life insurance policies

    • Meet agents in-person or by phone

    • Must speak to an agent for some policies

    • Some living benefits restrictions by state

    • Less competitive premiums

    State Farm ranked high because you can save money by bundling multiple types of insurance. Founded in 1922, the company offers auto, health, home or renters, life insurance, and many more options. The company has an A++ credit rating from AM Best and received just 18 complaints with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners in 2021, an incredibly low amount for a company of its size.

    State Farm offers a range of life insurance policies with living benefits, including term, permanent, and universal coverage. You may buy life insurance through an agent nationwide, either in-person or by phone, with restrictions on some policies, depending on where you live.

    State Farm offers a flexible care benefit rider, which offers accelerated death benefits or long-term care protection, as well as a waiver of premium for disability. You may contact State Farmâs customer service team by phone or through the companyâs mobile app.

    Read the full State Farm Life Insurance review.

    Do All Insurance Policies Offer The Same Living Benefit Riders

    No. Some riders, like accelerated death, are very common, but theyre still not found on all policies. If youre looking for a certain rider youll need to make it a priority while youre shopping for policies. An agent or broker can help you narrow down policies that have riders you want at rates that fit your budget.

    Also Check: What Disqualifies From Long-term Care Insurance

    What Is A Living Benefit Rider

    A living benefit rider is additional coverage on your basic life insurance policy that provides supplementary benefits and protection to you, sometimes at an extra cost. A rider comes in handy when you have specific needs that arent covered by a standard insurance policy. Basically, a rider is used to customize your policy to fit your needs.

    For example, if youre terminally ill, an accelerated death benefit rider may pay out a portion of your death benefit while youre still alive. You could use the payout for things like medical expenses, among other uses, and when you pass away, your beneficiaries will receive a reduced life insurance benefit since you used a portion of the policy already.

    The living benefits of life insurance can help provide additional layers of protection just one more way life insurance helps protect what matters most. Talk to your American Family Insurance agent to see if your American Family Life Insurance Company policy has living benefits. In the meantime, check out our life insurance coverages to see which option is best for you and your loved ones.

    Policy Forms: ICC17-225 WL, Policy Form L-225 WL, Policy Form L-225 WL, Policy FormICC17-225 WL, Policy Form L-226 WL, Policy Form L-226 WL, Policy Form ICC17-227 WL, Policy Form L-227 WL, Policy Form L-227 WL, ICC21 L141 MS 01 22, L141 ND 02 22, L141 SD 02 22

    Other Types Of Living Benefits

    A Larger Purpose – Eric’s Living Benefits Story

    There are additional types of living benefits that can be added to life insurance policies. Although this is by no means an exhaustive list, these additional riders are also frequently offered by life insurance companies.

    • Return of premium riders: With a term policy, if you do not pass away before your policy expires, you will not receive any kind of policy payout unless you have this rider. You will pay more for a term policy with this option, but if you do not pass away before the term expires, you get back the premiums that you paid into the policy.
    • Disability waiver of premiums rider: With this optional rider, if you are diagnosed with a long-term disability , you will not need to pay your premiums while the disability persists.
    • Long-term care benefits rider: Usually reserved for permanent policies, this living benefit rider allows you to use some of your death benefit to cover the cost of long-term care.

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    How We Chose The Best Life Insurance With Living Benefits

    To create our list of the best life insurance with living benefits, we started with 15 of the top life insurance providers. We looked for companies that offered living benefits automatically as well as by rider additions. From there, we gathered data through each company’s website, phone calls, and third-party agencies to assess financial strength and customer satisfaction.

    We looked at each company’s history, reputation, financial strength, and nationwide availability. Then we reviewed each provider’s life insurance policies, living benefits riders, and any standout features. Finally, we also compared the process for getting quotes, customer service, pricing, and restrictions.


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