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Prudential Life Insurance Review 2018

July 6, 2018
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at a glance

  • NerdWallet ranking: No. 16 life insurance company (out of 23 evaluated).
  • Prudential offers six types of term life policies and a wide variety of universal life policies.
  • Was first U.S. life insurer to offer coverage to people living with HIV.


Prudential Financial offers a broad slate of term and universal life insurance policies. Extra features can be added to some policies to customize coverage.

» MORE: The best life insurance companies

Learn more about each element that goes into our Prudential review by clicking below.

NerdWallet rank: 16th

Prudential ranked No. 16 out of 23 large companies scored by NerdWallet. NerdWallet’s life insurance company rankings are based on the insurer’s A.M. Best financial strength rating, J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction score and volume of consumer complaints to state regulators.

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

Financial strength is important because it indicates the insurer’s ability to pay claims. The policy may not pay out for many years after you buy it, so you want to choose a company with the strength and stability to stick around for a long time.

Consumer complaints: Better than the median

Prudential’s life insurance subsidiaries drew fewer than the median number of complaints to state regulators, compared with other life insurers. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners assigns consumer complaint ratio scores to insurance companies based on the number of complaints to state regulators, adjusted for market share. The national median score is 1, and a score lower than 1 means fewer complaints.

The average score, weighted for market share, for Prudential’s life insurance issuers was 0.25 for individual life insurance in 2017.

J.D. Power ratings: About AVERAGE

Prudential scored “about average” in four categories and among “the rest,” the lowest rating, in one category of J.D. Power’s 2017 life insurance customer satisfaction study. The insurer ranked No. 16 overall among 24 companies.

Customer satisfaction category Prudential's score
Overall satisfaction"About average"
Billing and payment"About average"
Price"The rest"
Policy offerings"About average"
Interaction"About average"

More about Prudential

Types of life insurance soldOther products and services
  • Term life
  • Universal life
  • Indexed universal life
  • Variable universal life
  • Annuities
  • Investments
  • Workplace benefits
  • life insurance options

    Several varieties of term life: They come with different features and options, and prices vary. The most basic and affordable is Term Essential. Other policies:

    • MyTerm offers quick coverage of $50,000 to $250,000; no medical exam is required to apply. Prudential suspended sales of the product through Wells Fargo in December 2016 but continues to sell MyTerm policies through its own website. The suspension of sales through Wells Fargo came after allegations by former Prudential employees that some bank customers were signed up for policies without their permission.
    • TermElite and Term Essential offer more options, such as the ability to add life insurance coverage for minor children. If you convert a TermElite policy to permanent coverage within the first five years, you get a one-year premium credit.
    • PruTerm WorkLife 65 provides coverage up to age 65. If you become disabled, the policy waives the premium until you turn 65 or are no longer disabled. It also waives the premium for a year if you become unemployed.
    • PruLife Return of Premium returns the premium at the end of the term if you’re still alive.
    • PruTerm One offers coverage for one year at a time. This may work for small-business owners who want coverage as they pay off short-term loans.

    Wide selection of universal life policies: There are 11 products: four types of universal life, three of indexed universal life and three of variable universal life. These permanent policies let you accumulate cash value. The potential for cash value growth varies among the products. The cash value growth in the indexed policies is based on the performance of a financial index, such as the S&P 500. With the variable policies, you pick the underlying investments that will be the basis for cash value growth.