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Bottom line: John Hancock's health-focused approach to life insurance makes it stand out from the competition.
One of the 10 largest life insurance companies in the U.S., John Hancock offers a mix of term and permanent life insurance. It’s unique for its wellness programs. Vitality rewards healthy behavior with Amazon.com discounts, free subscriptions and savings on fresh produce, while Aspire gives diabetics resources to lead healthier, more active lifestyles.
But it doesn’t support online quotes, so you’ll need to contact an advisor to start the application process.
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John Hancock life insurance
John Hancock 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.
» MORE: Best life insurance companies
John Hancock life insurance pros and cons
Healthy living discounts and rewards.
No online quotes.
Long list of riders available.
Doesn’t offer whole life insurance.
Generous policy limits.
John Hancock life insurance policies
John Hancock sells both term and permanent life insurance. To get a quote or apply for a policy, you’ll need to contact an advisor through the site.
Term life insurance. If you’re in the market for a temporary policy, John Hancock offers term life insurance lasting 10, 15, 20 or 30 years. You can get $750,000 to $65 million in coverage and in most cases, you’ll be asked to take a medical exam.
Permanent life insurance. John Hancock sells universal life insurance, variable universal life insurance and indexed universal life insurance, with coverage ranging from $50,000 to $65 million. These policies last your whole life, and build cash value over time at different interest rates. Once you’ve accumulated enough cash value, you can begin to borrow against your policy.
John Hancock has two wellness-focused programs for policyholders:
Vitality. When you buy a policy, you can enroll in Vitality Go, which works by tracking your data from a wearable device like a FitBit. As you reach specific health goals, like walking a certain number of steps per day, the insurer will reward you with discounts on sites like REI as well as grocery store savings.
You can also sign up to Vitality Plus for a fee. Along with offering discounts and gift cards, this program allows you to save up to 25% on your annual premium as you make progress with your wellness goals.
Aspire. John Hancock’s Aspire program is designed for people with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. It gives you access to a diabetes management app and health coaching, and rewards you for exercising regularly and eating healthily with a premium discount of up to 25%.
» MORE: Life insurance for diabetics
Available riders and add-ons
Depending on your policy and where you live, you can customize your coverage with these riders:
Accelerated death benefit rider.
Cash value enhancement rider.
Critical illness benefit rider.
Disability payment of specified premium rider.
Estate preservation rider.
Long-term care insurance rider.
Healthy engagement rider (Vitality Plus).
Overloan protection rider.
Policy split option rider.
Return of premium rider.
Total disability waiver rider.
Unemployment protection rider.
John Hancock complaints and customer satisfaction
Over three years, John Hancock drew fewer than the expected number of complaints to state regulators for a company of its size, according to NerdWallet’s analysis of data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
John Hancock ranked 8th out of 21 companies in J.D. Power’s 2021 U.S. Individual Life Insurance Study, which assesses overall customer satisfaction.
» MORE: Compare life insurance quotes
More about John Hancock
You can manage your policy, make payments and update your life insurance beneficiaries by logging into the online portal.
In addition to life insurance, John Hancock offers other financial products and services, including:
College savings plans.
Investment management, including socially responsible investment plans.
How we review life insurance companies
In our life insurance reviews, our editorial team considers both the customer and the insurer. These are some of the factors we take into account:
Policies offered. There are many types of life insurance on the market, and they fall into three key categories:
Term life insurance offers temporary coverage and a guaranteed payout if the policyholder dies during the term.
Permanent life insurance typically lasts a lifetime and builds cash value that can be borrowed against in the future.
No-exam life insurance issues coverage without the need for a medical exam.
Financial strength. We use A.M. Best ratings to confirm an insurer’s long-term financial stability and ability to pay claims. NerdWallet does not recommend companies with a rating lower than a B. Here’s the breakdown:
Exceptional: A+, A++
Strong: A, A-
Moderate: B+, B
Complaints. These ratings are based on complaints to state regulators relative to a company’s size, according to three years’ worth of data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. The best life insurance companies have fewer than the expected number of complaints.
Buy online. This indicates whether an insurer allows you to apply for and buy a policy completely online.
Dive deeper: Ratings methodology for life insurance
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. Ratios are determined separately for auto, home (including renters and condo) and life insurance.