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Bottom line: Bestow is a straightforward option for fast life insurance, but its lineup is limited.
Policies offered: Term.
Financial strength: Exceptional.
Complaints: Fewer than expected.
Buy online? Yes.
How we review life insurance companies
Launched in 2017, Bestow is an insurtech company that sells term life insurance online. To apply, you’ll answer a series of questions about your health and lifestyle, with no need for a medical exam. Then, Bestow pulls data and uses algorithms to determine whether you qualify for coverage. If you do, your policy will be issued by the North American Company for Life and Health Insurance.
Bestow is based in Dallas and sells policies in all states except New York.
Bestow life insurance
Bestow earned 4 stars out of 5 for overall performance. NerdWallet’s ratings are determined by our editorial team. The scoring formula takes into account consumer experience, complaint data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and financial strength ratings.
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Bestow life insurance pros and cons
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Bestow life insurance policies
Bestow offers term life insurance to people 18 to 60 years old. You can choose a policy lasting 10, 15, 20, 25 or 30 years, with coverage up to $1.5 million (or $1 million if you’re 50 to 60 years old). The company specializes in instant life insurance, which means eligible applicants can get covered right away without having to take a medical exam. But you can’t customize your policy with life insurance riders.
Each term has the following age limitations on applicants:
10-year term: Ages 18-60.
15-year term: Ages 18-55.
20-year term: Ages 18-50.
25-year term: Ages 18-45 for nontobacco users. For tobacco users, women 18-39 and men 18-37 may apply.
30-year term: Ages 18-40 for female nontobacco users and 18-39 for male nontobacco users. For tobacco users, women 18-31 and men 18-30 may apply.
You might be denied coverage if you’ve been diagnosed with or treated for cancer (other than minor skin cancer) in the past 10 years.
Bestow made our list of the best instant life insurance companies in 2022.
Bestow customer complaints and satisfaction
Over three years, North American Company for Life and Health Insurance, which issues the policies sold by Bestow, drew fewer than the expected number of complaints to state regulators for a company of its size, according to a NerdWallet analysis of data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
More about Bestow
Bestow’s site is clean and easy to navigate. You can get an initial quote by entering your birth date, height, weight, gender and ZIP code, then apply for a policy after that.
If you have questions about your policy, you can contact the team via live chat, email or phone. If you’re a beneficiary, you can start the claims process on Bestow’s site. Then, you’ll receive a claims packet from the North American Company for Life and Health Insurance.
Bestow doesn’t have a mobile app.
For beneficiaries, Bestow offers access to Empathy’s services in 20 states at no cost. The platform guides you through end-of-life administrative tasks, such as filing a life insurance claim, planning a funeral and submitting an obituary.
Life insurance buying guide
Before you start comparing companies, choose the type of life insurance you want, such as term or whole life. Decide which life insurance riders, if any, you want the policy to include. Calculate how much life insurance you need and how long you want the coverage to last. Check that the insurers you’re considering offer the coverage you’re looking for.
When comparing rates, be sure the quotes are for the same amount of coverage over the same period of time. It’s also important to make sure the policy’s medical requirements match your needs. For example, if you want to skip the life insurance medical exam but don’t mind answering health questions, confirm that the application process for each policy you're comparing aligns with that.
Price may not be the biggest driver behind your decision to buy. Look at the number of consumer complaints each company receives, as high numbers can be a red flag about the quality of service.
For more guidance, see our life insurance buying guide.
Life insurance ratings methodology
NerdWallet’s life insurance ratings are based on consumer experience, complaint index scores from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners for individual life insurance, and weighted averages of financial strength ratings, which indicate a company’s ability to pay future claims. Within the consumer experience category, we consider ease of communication and website transparency, which looks at the depth of policy details available online. To calculate each insurer’s rating, we adjusted the scores to a curved 5-point scale.
These ratings are a guide, but we encourage you to shop around and compare several insurance quotes to find the best rate for you. NerdWallet does not receive compensation for any reviews. Read our editorial guidelines.
Insurer complaints methodology
NerdWallet examined complaints received by state insurance regulators and reported to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners in 2018-2020. To assess how insurers compare to one another, the NAIC calculates a complaint index each year for each subsidiary, measuring its share of total complaints relative to its size, or share of total premiums in the industry. To evaluate a company’s complaint history, NerdWallet calculated a similar index for each insurer, weighted by market shares of each subsidiary, over the three-year period. NerdWallet conducts its data analysis and reaches conclusions independently and without the endorsement of the NAIC. Ratios are determined separately for auto, home (including renters and condo) and life insurance.