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Bestow Life Insurance Review 2021

Bottom line: Bestow is a straightforward, fast option for some buyers, but has a limited range of policy options.
June 1, 2021
Insurance, Life Insurance
Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

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Bestow Life Insurance

  • Rated 3.5 stars out of 5 by NerdWallet.
  • Sells term life insurance online, without requiring lab tests or medical exams.
  • Available nationwide, except in New York.

Bestow overview

Bestow sells term life insurance policies online, offering nearly instant coverage to those who qualify. Applicants answer questions on Bestow’s mobile-enabled website, and the company uses data and algorithms to make decisions and set prices. The Dallas-based company launched in 2017 and began selling policies in 2018. It now does business in all states except New York.

Bestow life insurance

3.5 NerdWallet rating

Bestow earned 3.5 stars out of 5 for overall performance. NerdWallet’s ratings are determined by our editorial team. The scoring formula takes into account complaint data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and financial strength ratings.

» MORE: The best life insurance companies

Bestow life insurance pros and cons

Quick coverage without a medical examNot available to people over age 60 or to anyone in New York state
Fewer consumer complaints to state regulators than expectedNo riders can be added to your policy
Available in most U.S. states

Bestow life insurance policies

Bestow specializes in fast life insurance. It takes information from your online application, pulls instantly available data about you (with your permission) and uses algorithms to decide whether you qualify and set the price. Everyone who qualifies can get covered right away, without having to take a medical exam.

The company offers term life insurance with terms of 10, 15, 20, 25 and 30 years, with policies worth up to $1.5 million. There are currently no riders available to add to a policy.

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 non-tobacco users. For tobacco users, women 18-39 and men 18-37 may apply.
  • 30-year term: Ages 18-40 for female non-tobacco users and 18-39 for male non-tobacco users. For tobacco users, women 18-31 and men 18-30 may apply.

You can be denied coverage. Those who’ve been diagnosed with or treated for cancer (other than minor skin cancer) in the past 10 years will be denied.

The company doesn’t sell permanent life insurance such as whole or universal life policies.

Customer complaints for Bestow

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: Compare life insurance quotes

More about Bestow life insurance

Bestow’s website is clean and easy to navigate. You can start with a quick estimate of your life insurance rate by entering your birthdate, height, weight, gender and ZIP code; adding more detailed information will give you a final quote.

If you have questions about your policy, you can chat with a bot or an agent using the site’s live chat function. Beneficiaries can start the claims process with a simple online form.

Bestow doesn’t have a mobile app.

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.

Methodology: Life insurance ratings

NerdWallet’s life insurance ratings are based on weighted averages of financial strength ratings, which indicate a company’s ability to pay future claims, and complaint index scores from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners for individual life insurance. 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.

Methodology: Insurer complaints

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.