Heidi works with top-rated life insurance carriers to bring her clients the highest quality protection at the most competitive prices. She is a wife, mom, and former school teacher, specializing in helping families. As parents, it's our responsibility to ensure our family is financially sound, regardless of what life brings. Her goal is to make the process of obtaining life insurance as simp...

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Benjamin Carr was a licensed insurance agent in Georgia and has two years' experience in life, health, property and casualty coverage. He has worked with State Farm and other risk management firms. He is also a strategic writer and editor with a background in branding, marketing, and quality assurance. He has been in military newsrooms — literally on the frontline of journalism.

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Reviewed by Benji Carr
Former Licensed Life Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Oct 17, 2020

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Principal Life, a top-rated life insurance carrier, offers different forms of life insurance to meet the needs of their clients.

Should you buy a Principal life insurance policy? Possibly.

You will want to compare your financial needs with the products they offer before filling out an application.

Here, you will find a comprehensive guide to everything you need to know about Principal life insurance – a company overview, products offered, quotes, and the application process.

Principal Overviewprincipal group life insurance

Founded in 1879 by Edward Temple, Principal Life is headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa.

With over 140 years of business, Principal now has more than 19 million customers worldwide – and provides investment, retirement, and insurance solutions.

To date, there are $735 billion in total assets under management.

Principal is a popular provider of life insurance in the United States, offering both term and universal products.

Key Features

  • A.M. Best financial strength rating: A+ (Superior)
  • Competitively priced life insurance
  • Streamlined application process
  • No medical exam options
  • Credits for a healthy lifestyle

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Principal Life Insurance

In all, Principal offers five types of life insurance.

Coverage not just for your life, but for your life’s purpose.- Principal

Compare and contrast each life insurance product with your financial needs.

Principal is listed as one of the best life insurance companies.

Important – product details and availability are subject to change.

Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance offers protection for a specific amount of time, like 10 years.

Highly popular, term provides coverage during the phase of your life when you typically need it most. For example, you can buy protection while you are raising children.

Essential Facts

  • Term lengths of 10, 15, 20, and 30 years
  • Issue ages of 20 – 80
  • Face amounts: $200,000 – $50,000,000
  • Accelerated underwriting available
  • Tax-free death benefit

Conversion Options

You have the option to convert your term policy into one of Principal’s permanent products.

  • No need to demonstrate insurability
  • Available up to the earlier of the end of initial term or age 70
  • Partial term conversions are allowed
  • Two term policies can be converted into one survivorship policy

Is term right for me?

Term is the most popular form of life insurance coverage.

How come? Term allows you to get the biggest bang for your buck – large face amounts, affordable premiums, and coverage for the time in your life when you need it most.

Consider a term policy if you need temporary life insurance protection, are on a budget and have no interest in a cash-value component.

Universal Life Insurance

Universal life insurance (UL) provides policy flexibility, cash value, and permanent coverage.

Essential Facts

  • Flexible premiums and death benefit
  • Cash value component with a floating interest rate (includes a minimum rate guarantee)
  • Secondary guarantees are available
  • Policy loans and withdrawals available

Principal offers three universal life insurance policy options.

Universal Life Provider Edge

Universal Life Provider Edge is designed as a “low-cost permanent plan for coverage to maturity”.

The Provider Edge is Principal’s most affordable universal life insurance.

Key features

  • Issue ages: 0 – 85 years
  • Minimum face amount: $50,000 ($25,000 for ages 0 – 19)
  • No exam underwriting available
  • Multiple health classes
  • Optional death benefit guarantee – lesser of 35 years/age 95

Ideal for

  • Estate planning
  • Key person
  • Survivor income
  • Business protection

Life Provider Edge offers an optional Extended No-Lapse Guarantee (ENLG) rider that provides guarantees beyond life expectancy.

There is a low sensitivity to interest rate changes, which offers financial protection.

Universal Life Flex II

Universal Life Flex II includes a “value focus with moderate premiums and strong cash-value in years 15 – 30”.

For applicants willing to pay higher premiums, the Life Flex II offers greater cash value.

Key features

  • Issue ages: 0 – 85 years
  • Minimum face amount: $50,000 ($25,000 for ages 0 – 19)
  • No exam underwriting available
  • Multiple health classes
  • Optional death benefit guarantee – lesser of 35 years/age 95

Ideal for

Life Flex II offers low policy charges so that cash value growth occurs quickly, especially during policy years 15 – 30.

There is substantial flexibility in premiums and the death benefit. Further, policy endowment situations are competitive.

Universal Life Accumulation II

Life Accumulation II is designed for “long-term growth and income”.

Consistency is a primary focus as the interest rate is fixed.

Key features

  • Issue ages: 0 – 85 years
  • Minimum face amount: $50,000 ($25,000 for ages 0 – 19)
  • No exam underwriting available
  • Multiple health classes
  • Death benefit guarantee – 10-year no-lapse guarantee

Ideal for

  • College education funding
  • Supplemental retirement funding
  • Businesses requiring high early cash surrender values
  • Key employee benefits

Life Accumulation II offers an automated income process for straightforward distributions.

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Indexed Universal Life Insurance

Indexed universal life insurance (IUL) offers permanent coverage, policy flexibility, and cash value that is influenced by, but not directly connected to, the stock market.

An indexed universal life policy’s cash value subaccounts include:

  1. Fixed – a fixed interest rate determined by the carrier
  2. Indexed – an interest rate that is affected by the stock market performance – with floors and caps to protect the policy owner and the carrier

Essential Facts

  • Flexible premiums and death benefit
  • Cash value component with interest rate growth
  • Interest earned influenced by linked stock market index
  • Policy loans and withdrawals available

Principal provides two indexed universal life insurance policy options.

Indexed Universal Life Flex

Life Flex includes low policy charges.

Strong policy performance is seen in a variety of situations.

Key features

  • Issue ages: 20 – 85 years
  • Minimum face amount: $100,000
  • No exam underwriting available
  • Multiple health classes
  • Optional death benefit guarantee – lesser of 25 years/age 90

Ideal for

  • Policy endowment
  • Key person
  • Exit planning
  • Key employee benefits

Life Flex includes an S&P 500 Total Return index-linked account, which includes the value of re-invested dividends of underlying stocks.

Indexed Universal Life Accumulation

Life Accumulation is intended for long-term growth and income.

The policy’s design is for someone who is interested in the potential for higher interest earnings compared to traditional universal life.

Key features

  • Issue ages: 20 – 85 years
  • Minimum face amount: $50,000
  • No exam underwriting available
  • Multiple health classes
  • Death benefit guarantee – 10-year no-lapse guarantee

Ideal for

  • Individual retirement planning
  • College funding
  • Key employee benefits
  • Businesses requiring high early cash surrender values

Life Accumulation offers two S&P 500 index-linked accounts for ideal performance in varying market conditions.

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Variable Universal Life Insurance

Variable universal life insurance (VUL) is a form of permanent coverage that offers policy flexibility and cash-value that is subject to stock market performance.

Focused on accumulation, variable life insurance is often purchased to provide supplemental income.

Essential Facts

  • Flexible premiums and death benefit
  • Cash value component with interest rate growth
  • Interest earned directly affected by stock market performance
  • Policy loans and withdrawals available

Principal offers two types of variable life insurance.

Note – Principal sells a separate VUL policy for New York only – Principal Benefit Variable Universal Life II

Variable Universal Life-Business

Specifically designed for funding business-owned solutions, Variable Universal Life-Business provides long-term cash value growth.

Key features

  • Issue ages: 20 – 75 years
  • Minimum face amount: $100,000
  • No exam underwriting available
  • Multiple health classes
  • Death benefit guarantee to age 85

Ideal for

With over 100 investment options, Variable Universal Life-Business works well for business situations in which high early cash values are important for balance sheets.

Variable Universal Life Income III

Focused on long-term, market-based, cash-value growth, Variable Universal Life Income III offers efficient income distribution for individuals.

Key features

  • Issue ages: 0 – 85 years
  • Minimum face amount: $100,000
  • No exam underwriting available
  • Multiple health classes
  • Death benefit guarantee options to age 65, 85, or 100

Ideal for

  • Individual with a maxed out 401k plan
  • Individual who does not qualify for a Roth IRA
  • Key employee benefits
  • Key person
  • Exit planning

Variable Universal Life Income III offers a wide variety of investment options, with target-risk, target-date, and managed-risk funds.

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Survivorship Insurance

Survivorship life insurance is designed to cover the lives of two people.

Also referred to as second-to-die insurance, survivorship policies are typically used for estate planning purposes. Aptly named, the policy pays a death benefit when the second person dies.

Principal offers one type of survivorship coverage, in the form of universal life insurance.

Survivorship Universal Protector III

Ideal for clients seeking affordable, guaranteed protection on two lives.

Key features

  • Issue ages: 20 – 85 years (second life may be issued up to age 90)
  • Minimum face amount: $250,000
  • Fixed premiums
  • No exam underwriting available
  • Multiple health classes
  • Death benefit guarantee options of face amount only or face amount plus accumulated value
  • Policy loans and withdrawals available

Ideal for

As a single policy that covers the lives of two individuals, Principal’s Survivorship Universal Protector III is an affordable option to secure permanent protection.

Riders and Benefits

Contractual provisions to your policy, riders provide helpful features should you encounter a difficult period in your life.

Principal offers the following riders and benefits. Availability varies by policy.

Riders offered through Principal’s term policies:

  • Accelerated death benefit – option to accelerate a percentage of the death benefit if the insured is diagnosed with a qualifying illness.
  • Children’s term – ability to extend life insurance coverage to dependent children
  • Waiver of premium – ability to forgo premium payments during a time of total disability

Principal also has a broad offering of riders via their universal policies:

  • Change of insured
  • Chronic illness death benefit advance
  • Cost of living increase
  • Death benefit advance
  • Death benefit guarantee
  • Enhanced cash surrender value
  • Estate tax repeal
  • Extended no-lapse guarantee
  • Four-year term
  • Life paid-up
  • Modified cash-surrender value
  • Policy change endorsement
  • Salary increase
  • Supplemental benefit
  • Surrender value enhancement
  • Terminal illness death benefit advance
  • Waiver of monthly charge
  • Waiver of specified premium

Healthy Lifestyle Credits

Principal offers a unique underwriting feature called, Healthy Lifestyle Credits (HLC).

What is it? Applicants can earn up to two tables of credit, based on positive lifestyle choices and family history.

For example, if you can demonstrate you proactively caring for your health, despite having a few health concerns, you may be able to improve your health rating – and subsequently, save money on your premiums.

Note – some health concerns are excluded from the Healthy Lifestyle Credits program:

Principal Life Insurance Quotes

Consider the following quotes for Principal’s term life insurance.

For advanced life insurance products, like universal coverage, work with an independent agent to guide you through your options and the quoting process.

Quotes are for healthy non-tobacco individuals and are only examples.

Sample rates are for 10-year term life insurance:

Principal Term Life Insurance Quotes Male

 $250,000$500,000$1,000,000
20 Year Old$17$27$45
30 Year Old$10$14$21
40 Year Old$13$19$28
50 Year Old$24$42$73
60 year Old$59$112$213
70 Year Old$169$332$626
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10-year term policy.
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Principal Term Life Insurance Quotes Female

 $250,000$500,000$1,000,000
20 Year Old$14$22$37
30 Year Old$9$12$18
40 Year Old$12$17$26
50 Year Old$21$35$60
60 year Old$41$76$140
70 Year Old$106$206$372
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10-year term policy.
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Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently asked questions about Principal life insurance and their unbiased answers.

Is Principal life insurance good?

Yes.

Principal has strong financial ratings and a successful history of providing high-quality insurance products to clients worldwide.

Additionally, they are competitively priced and have positive customer reviews.

Should I buy a Principal life insurance policy?

Possibly.

The best company to buy a policy with is the one that meets your financial requirements – and includes affordable premiums.

Before applying with Principal, or any carrier for that matter, work with an independent agent to conduct a needs analysis.

Will I need to take a medical exam?

Maybe.

Principal utilizes accelerated underwriting.

What is that? The accelerated underwriting process includes asking you a series of health and lifestyle questions to determine if you qualify for no exam life insurance.

According to Principal, approximately 45 – 55% of applicants qualify for accelerated underwriting.

In other words, you will need to be in good health to avoid a physical.

What type of policy should I buy?

The type of policy you should purchase depends on the purpose of the coverage.

First, who is the policy for? For instance, are you looking for coverage for:

Next, you will need to determine if the coverage needs are temporary, like a 20-year term, or permanent.

In addition, it is a good idea to assess your budget, as some policies cost more than others. Typically, term life insurance is considered a form of cheap life insurance.

Finally, be sure to assess your health. For example, if you have serious health conditions (e.g. a history of cancer), your coverage options may be limited.

How To Buy

There are three primary steps to buy life insurance.

First, you will want to understand your needs.

  • Who is the purpose of the policy?
  • How long does the coverage need to last?
  • What are the financial requirements of the dependents?
  • Are there charitable giving goals?
  • What type of debts are there?

Second, collaborate with an independent agent.

Why? Independent agents will access quotes from multiple carriers, including Principal. That way, you can find the best policy for your needs and budget – and not be limited to just one company.

Finally, to prepare for the application, gather your important information.

Write down your beneficiaries’ full name and address, your occupation, medical history, and physician’s contact information.