Lincoln Financial Group Life Insurance Review 2017

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At a glance

  • Offers both term and permanent life insurance.
  • NerdWallet ranking: No. 6 life insurance company


Lincoln Financial Group got permission to use its brand name from President Abraham Lincoln’s son Robert Todd Lincoln in 1905. President Lincoln’s profile still serves as the company’s recognizable logo, symbolizing strength and integrity. The company is headquartered in Radnor, Pennsylvania.

NerdWallet rank: 6th

Lincoln Financial ranked No. 6 out of 18 large companies scored by NerdWallet. NerdWallet’s life insurance company rankings combine its A.M. Best rating, consumer complaints and J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction score.

» MORE: The best life insurance companies

A.M. Best financial strength rating: A+ (superior)

Lincoln Financial’s financial strength is “superior,” according to ratings agency A.M. Best.

Financial strength is important because it indicates how well an insurer can pay claims. It’s especially important when choosing a life insurance company because claims might not be made until many decades after a policy is purchased.

Consumer complaints: Better than the median

Lincoln Financial drew far fewer than the median number of complaints to state regulators in 2015 for a company of its size, according to the latest data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

The association assigns a complaint ratio score to insurance companies, based on the number of complaints to state insurance commissioners, adjusted for market share. The median score is 1. A score less than 1 means fewer complaints. Lincoln Financial’s score for individual life insurance in 2015 was .10.

J.D. Power ratings: GENERALLY below AVERAGE

In a survey of customer service by J.D. Power published in 2016, Lincoln Financial scored with “the rest” (the lowest score) in four categories and “about average” in the fifth.. The insurer ranked No. 16 overall out of 21 companies included in the survey.

Lincoln FInancial customer satisfaction scores
Overall satisfaction The rest
Billing and payment The rest
Price The rest
Policy offerings The rest
Interaction About average
Source: J.D. Power 2016 U.S. Life Insurance Study


Lincoln Financial products sold
  • Term life insurance

  • Universal and variable universal insurance.

  • MoneyGuard policies combine universal life insurance with a long-term care rider, so policyholders can either access funds for long-term care expenses or provide a death benefit to beneficiaries, depending on their needs.

Getting the best life insurance rates

Every life insurance company has its own specific rules about how to qualify for coverage or get the best rates. Here are some of Lincoln Financial’s underwriting guidelines:

  • Blood pressure: For the best rates at Lincoln Financial, called “preferred plus” rates, applicants up to age 69 should have a 12-month average blood pressure of 130/80 or lower; age 70 and up should have 140/90 or lower. For the next best “preferred” rates, applicants up to age 69 can have average blood pressure up to 140/90; for those 70 or over, up to 155/90. Within these requirements, applicants can have treated or untreated hypertension.
  • DWI (driving while intoxicated): A DWI conviction or license suspension within the past five years will result in a denial for both “preferred plus” and “preferred” applicants.
  • Nicotine: For “preferred plus” rates, there must be no nicotine use for the past three years; occasional cigar use up to 12 cigars a year is acceptable if a urine test is negative for nicotine. For “preferred” rates, there must be no nicotine use for the past two years and up to 24 cigars a year are permitted so long as a urine test is negative for nicotine.
  • Substance abuse: For the best rates, there must be no history of alcohol or drug abuse for the past 10 years; for preferred rates, within the last seven years.