North American Life Insurance Review | 2020 Update

Heidi Mertlich Heidi Mertlich Posted in Reviews
Last updated on June 30, 2020

North American Life Insurance Company, a leader in the industry, offers different life insurance products to meet their clients’ needs.

Should you buy a North American life insurance policy? Perhaps.

First, you will want to discover their products and rates and compare them against your needs.

Think of this resource as your go-to guide for everything you need to know about North American – product details, quotes, and frequently asked questions.

Table Of Contents

  1. Company Overview
  2. Life Insurance
  4. FAQs
  5. Next Steps
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North American Overview

Founded in 1886, North American Life Insurance Company has been operating for over 130 years.

North American’s life insurance division is headquartered out of Sioux Falls, SD. They pride themselves on a “conservative and disciplined investment style”.

Today, North American has over 600,000 active policy and annuity contracts, with over $431 million claims paid.

North American is a member of the Sammons Financial Group, Inc. (SFG). SFG is an insurance holding company offering various insurance products, like life insurance, annuities, and securities.

Key Features

  • Privately owned
  • Strong financial rating: A+ (A.M. Best)
  • BBB Rating: A+ (accredited since 12/20/2019)

North American Life Insurance

North American is one of our best life insurance companies and offers a number of insurance products to meet the varying needs of policyholders.

So what kind of life insurance is right for you? That depends on your concerns. – North American
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Here, you will find a detailed overview of the primary types of coverage they offer.

Quick Navigation Guide

  1. Term
  2. Universal
  3. Indexed Universal
  4. Other Products

Important – product details and availability are subject to change.

North American Term Life insurance

Term life insurance is the most popular form of coverage.

Why? Highly affordable, term provides financial protection during the years that your loved ones need it most. Term is often a form of cheap life insurance


  • Term lengths of 10, 15, 20 and 30 years
  • Level premiums for initial term
  • Option to convert to a permanent product

North American offers term life insurance via their ADDvantage Term Life Insurance product.

ADDvantage Term Life Insurance

A term life insurance product in which you may purchase coverage from $100,000 to over $1,000,000.

Essential Facts

  • Issue ages: 18 – 75
  • Minimum face amount of $100,000
  • Renewable up to age 95
  • Annual policy fee of $65
  • Multiple health classes available
  • Conversion period lasts through initial term (age restrictions apply)

Living Benefits

Additional features to your life insurance contract, living benefits (riders) are helpful during a time of need.

ADDvantage Term Life Insurance offers the following:

  • Accelerated Death Benefit – for terminal illness (no extra cost)
    • Up to 75% of the death benefit – a maximum of $750,000
  • Waiver of Term Premium – for disability
    • Effective after total disability for 180 consecutive days
    • Age stipulations apply
  • Children’s Term Insurance – for dependent children
    • Any unmarried child, stepchild, or adopted child
    • Issue ages of 15 days – 20 years
    • $5,000 – $25,000 in coverage

Who buys term life insurance?

Term is a popular form of coverage.

With typically affordable premiums, you can secure a large face amount for the period of your life when you need it most.

Term is best for those who are on a budget and are interested specifically in the death benefit.

North American Universal Life Insurance

Considered an alternative to whole life insurance, universal policies through North American provide guaranteed death benefit protection.

Custom Guarantee Universal Life Insurance

Custom Guarantee guaranteed universal life insurance, part of North American’s universal life insurance line of products, provides guarantees that align with the features of whole life insurance.

Although, unlike a whole life product, Custom Guarantee also includes policy flexibility.

Essential Facts

  • Guaranteed death benefit for the period of time client desires
  • No premium payments beyond age 100
  • Policy exchange privilege, up to age 75
  • No hidden fees
  • Minimum face amount of $50,000
  • Issue ages: 15 days – 85 years
  • Cash value component
  • Policy flexibility
  • Automatic distribution options
  • Flexible death benefit options

Currently, North American limits premium payments to $500,000 in all years. This limit applies to lump sums, 1035 exchanges, and ongoing premiums.

Further, there is a 2.5% guaranteed interest rate for the cash-value in all years of the policy. The current rate is established by the carrier and is guaranteed for the first policy year.

Partial withdrawals of up to 50% of the net cash surrender value may begin the first policy year.

For subsequent policy years, up to 90% of the net cash surrender value may be withdrawn.

Surrender charges decrease each policy year and are not applied after age 95.

Extended No Lapse Guarantee

Included with every policy purchase, the Extended No Lapse Guarantee means that your policy will not enter into the grace period when certain requirements are met.

For each monthly anniversary, if the total of all premium guarantee accounts is greater than (or equal to) the policy debts, you have some security.

The policy will not go into the grace period, even if the net cash surrender value is less than the monthly deduction payments.

The Extended No Lapse Guarantee lasts until age 120.

Riders and Benefits

North American’s Custom Guarantee Universal Life offers the following riders and benefits:

  • Accelerated Death Benefit – option to accelerate a portion of your death benefit should you be diagnosed with a critical, chronic or terminal illness
  • Accidental Death Benefit – an additional death benefit paid if death occurs as a result of a qualifying accident
  • Children’s Term – life insurance protection for dependent children
  • Guaranteed Insurability – option to purchase additional life insurance with no underwriting
  • Waiver of Monthly Deductions – premiums are waived during a prolonged qualifying disability

Who buys universal life insurance?

A North American universal life insurance policy makes sense for someone who wants flexible policy design, cash-value accumulation, and the option to utilize the coverage for estate planning.

North American Indexed Universal Life Insurance

Indexed universal life insurance (IUL) provides permanent protection with a cash-value component that is influenced by market performance via indexed subaccounts.

Keep in mind, your money in the cash-value accounts (separate from the death benefit) is not directly invested in the stock market. Rather, stock market performance influences its growth.

North American IUL products

  • Builder IUL
  • Builder Plus IUL
  • Smart Builder IUL
  • Rapid Builder IUL
  • Guaranteed Builder IUL
  • Legacy Optimizer
  • Survivorship GUL

Each North American IUL product offers specific functions and features, while they all maintain the same foundational components.

Essential Facts

  • Flexible premiums
  • Death benefit
  • Cash-value component, placed into fixed and indexed accounts
  • Policy loans and withdrawals

It’s important to note the difference between the two cash-value subaccounts – fixed and indexed.

  1. Fixed – grows at a flat (and typically modest) interest rate determined by the carrier
  2. Indexed – grows at an interest rate that is influenced by the performance of indexed accounts that are invested in the stock market, like the S&P 500 and NASDAQ 100

Important – indexed accounts are subject to caps and floors – protective measures put in place for the carrier and you. Caps limit the amount of interest a carrier will pay, while floors safeguard you from losses.

Riders and Benefits

  • Accelerated Death Benefit – option to accelerate a portion of your death benefit should you be diagnosed with a critical, chronic or terminal illness
  • Accidental Death Benefit – an additional death benefit paid if death occurs as a result of a qualifying accident
  • Children’s Term – life insurance protection for dependent children
  • Guaranteed Insurability – option to purchase additional life insurance with no underwriting
  • Waiver of Monthly Deductions – premiums are waived during a prolonged qualifying disability
  • Premium Guarantee – you can extend the death benefit guarantee period beyond the initial period to your choice of age or length of time up to age 120.2

Other North American Products

North American also offers a number of annuities, typically used as a source of retirement income.

Annuities include important features:

  • Provides a stream of income, usually used by retirees
  • Two phases exist: accumulation and annuitization
  • Different vehicles exist for flexibility: immediate, fixed, and traditional

Who buys an annuity?

If you have money set aside for retirement, after you have paid into accounts such as an IRA, an annuity could make sense.

You will need to be comfortable with setting money aside for a number of years before accessing it.

North American Life Insurance Quotes

For a general idea of cost, consider the following sample North American term life insurance quotes. 

Keep in mind, quotes are merely examples and are not necessarily reflective of your personal rates. 

Quotes are for a 10-year term policy for a healthy, non-tobacco individual. 

North American Term Life Insurance Quotes Male

20 Year Old$8.80$15.40$25.08
30 Year Old$8.80$15.40$25.08
40 Year Old$10.03$20.68$33.88
50 Year Old$15.58$45.32$79.64
60 Year Old$32.47$119.24$223.08
70 Year Old$89.85$362.56$690.36
10-year term. Subject to change.

North American Term Life Insurance Quotes Female

20 Year Old$8.27$14.96$23.32
30 Year Old$8.27$14.96$23.32
40 Year Old$9.42$18.92$31.24
50 Year Old$13.90$36.52$65.56
60 Year Old$24.55$82.28$151.80
70 Year Old$58.78$228.80$421.93
10-year term. Subject to change.

For more advanced life insurance products, an independent life insurance agent will walk you through the quoting process. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently asked questions about North American Life Insurance Company and their answers.

Is North American life insurance good?


With strong financial ratings, a conservative mindset, and over 130 years of business experience, North American is a strong carrier.

As a privately owned insurer, North American is not beholden to the stock market performance.

Further, North American received an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.

Should I buy a North American policy?

It depends.

Only purchase a policy through North American if a product matches your needs.

First, conduct a needs analysis to determine the best policy to apply for. To start, answer the following questions:

  1. What is my annual income?
  2. How many years until I retire?
  3. Do my beneficiaries have specific monetary needs?
  4. How long will my dependents or business associates rely on me financially?
  5. Are there health conditions (e.g. type 2 diabetes) that would impact my ability to be approved for traditional coverage?
  6. Do I have charitable giving goals?
  7. Who is the life insurance for? Me? My parents

Are there forms of life insurance that North American does not offer?


Life insurance comes in all shapes and sizes. Currently, North American does not offer the following:

Next Steps

Plan to do two things before submitting a life insurance application, regardless of the carrier. 

First, it’s in your best interest to work with an independent life insurance agent. Why? They are not held captive to a particular company and can provide you multiple quotes from multiple carriers. 

Second, organize your important information. Write down your financial needs, beneficiary information, and monetary goals. Also, jot down your health, lifestyle, and occupation information so that it is ready to be communicated. 

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