Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
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Ultimately, the best life insurance provider will depend on your individual requirements, but with such a saturated market we can understand how daunting picking the right insurer can be. Many companies have attempted to quantify who the best life insurance provider is, so we've amalgamated their findings to deliver an overall rating.

How to choose the best life insurance for your needs

The cheapest cover is not always the best life insurance. UK's providers offer a variety of policies and the best life insurance is the one that suits your circumstances best.

Start by looking at your debts, your family’s needs, and their lifestyle. This will help you work out how much life cover you need and how long you need it for. Once you’ve decided, you can think about doing a life insurance comparison to compare quotes.

Choosing the amount and length of cover

Ideally, the amount of cover – known as the sum insured – should be big enough to cover the remaining balance on your mortgage.

Then, there should be enough leftover on top to make it easier for your family to cover some of their other expenses when you’re gone.

Think carefully about how the situation might change if you weren’t around. For example, if you work part-time so you can look after your children, what would your partner do if you weren’t around anymore? They might need to pay for childcare, or they might need to work less. Either way, it would affect their financial situation.

The term of your life insurance policy should also be at least as long as your mortgage. This will make sure the payout covers the remaining balance on your mortgage.

What are the top 10 best life insurance companies in the UK?

(Cheapest Quotes and Good Services)

1. VitalityLife - Comprehensive Cover

2. Scottish Widows - Protect Personal

3. Liverpool Victoria - Flexible Protection Plans

4. Zurich Insurance – Life Protection

5. Aviva - Life Insurance

6. Legal & General - Level or Decreasing Term Assurance

7. Aegon - Whole of Life Plans

8. Royal London - Pegasus Whole of Life Plan

9. AIG Life - Whole of Life Insurance or Care Coverage

10. Old Mutual - Protect Guaranteed Whole Of Life Plans

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Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK: Cheapest Quotes and Good Services

1. VitalityLife - Comprehensive Cover

Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
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Vitality Life is a UK-based company founded in 2007 (then known as PruProtect, but rebranded as VitalityLife in 2014) that specializes in selling life insurance to individuals and families in the UK. Its sister brand, Vitality Health, specialises in doing the same for private medical insurance. They’re both owned by a South African financial services company, Discovery Limited. Vitality Life's mission is 'to make people healthier and to enhance and protect their lives.

Vitality life insurance policy features

Vitality offers both life and medical insurance but it's important to understand the difference between the two types of policy.

Vitality private medical insurance

Vitality private medical insurance (also known as PMI or just health insurance) pays for medical care and treatment in a private hospital or as a private patient in an NHS hospital. Pre-existing medical conditions can be covered but often the level of cover is restricted. Normally patients are referred by their GP for immediate treatment, avoiding possible lengthy NHS delays. Premiums are usually paid monthly.

Vitality life insurance

Vitality life insurance pays out in the event of the death of a person insured under the plan within a specified term. If the lives insured do not die within the agreed term the policy lapses without value. Alternatively, it is possible to take out a whole life insurance policy that pays out when you die regardless of when that occurs. Premiums for both types of a life insurance policy are usually paid monthly.

2. Scottish Widows - Protect Personal

Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
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Scottish Widows has been helping people protect their financial futures since 1815 – initially set up as a general fund to help support female widows financially. The company was demutualized in 2000 and became part of the Lloyds TSB Marketing Group; and as of 2009, part of Lloyds Banking Group. Today it has around 6 million customers.

Scottish Widows' life insurance policies also come with extra benefits, outlined below. This is a ‘non-contractual’ benefit, which means it’s not related to the contractual conditions of your own policy. Everyone is eligible – though this is usually only made available if you buy your policy through an adviser.

In 2020, Scottish Widows paid out 99% of all life insurance claims. Claims not paid out are usually due to misrepresentation (providing inaccurate information when you apply for the policy) or because the claim doesn’t meet the required definition stated in the policy.

3. Liverpool Victoria - Flexible Protection Plans

Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
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Liverpool Victoria, commonly referred to as LV, is one of the UK’s leading financial service providers with over 5.8 million customers. They operate within the personal insurance sector, offering different types of cover including home, car, and travel insurance. LV also offers life insurance and their policies are available through us here at Reassured.

LV policy types

LV offers two types of life insurance; level term and decreasing term.

Both of these policy types run for a set period of time (or term) and if you were to pass away during this, a cash lump sum will be issued to your loved ones.

The key difference between the level and decreasing policies is the pay-out sum.

The sum assured from level term cover holds its value throughout the policy, meaning that if you were to die 2 or 20 years into the policy, your loved ones will receive the same amount.

With decreasing term life insurance, however, the sum assured decreases over time. Meaning that the later into the policy you die, the lesser amount your loved ones will receive.

This tends to be the cheaper option of the two and is designed to cover the balance of a repayment mortgage.

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4. Zurich Insurance – Life Protection

Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
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Zurich life insurance is part of the wider Zurich Insurance Group. Its headquarters is based in Zurich, Switzerland and the international company serves customers in more than 170 countries. They offer a range of protection products, including personal insurance (car, home, property), pensions, savings/investments, and of course life insurance. Their mission statement is ‘doing the right thing, in the right way, for the right reason’.

Zurich life insurance policy

Zurich level term life insurance

Level-term life insurance provides your loved ones with a fixed pay-out sum if you were to pass away during the defined policy term. You continue to make premium payments throughout the life of your policy and if you pass away before the end of the term, your loved ones receive a fixed payout. Because this pay-out sum remains the same in value throughout the policy, it's ideal for covering fixed costs such as an interest-only mortgage or providing an inheritance.

Zurich increasing term life insurance

Increasing term life insurance prevents your loved ones from experiencing the negative effects of inflation when receiving a payout. You can arrange for your pay-out sum to increase yearly by 3%, 5%, or in line with the RPI (Retail Prices Index). This increase will then be reflected within the cost of your monthly premiums. Ensuring your loved ones receive sufficient funds to maintain their existing lifestyle if the worst were to happen to you.

Zurich decreasing term life insurance

Decreasing term life insurance provides a one-off lump sum payout if you were to pass away during the policy term. However, unlike level term cover, the size of a payout reduces in value over time. It's ideal for paying off a repayment mortgage and is generally the cheapest form of cover. It's possible to change your life insurance with Zurich to increase by a fixed rate of interest of between 2% and 18% per year.

5. Aviva - Life Insurance

Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
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The history of Aviva as an insurance provider in the UK goes all the way back to 1696. Starting out as 'Hand in Hand', then 'Norwich Union' in 1797, and eventually becoming 'Aviva' in 2002. Aviva is now the largest UK insurance company and one of the biggest insurers in Europe. They also operate internationally in over 16 countries. Aviva is probably best known for its insurance products, such as car, home, and life insurance.

Aviva level term insurance

This works in the same way as other level term insurance policies. You arrange a fixed lump sum payout (or sum assured) to go to your loved ones if you were to pass away within the term. The cover remains in place for a specified term length, from 1 to 50 years, and the sum assured doesn't change. If you were to pass away before the term ends, then your loved ones will receive a full life insurance payout.

This type of cover is commonly used to cover:

  • Mortgage repayments
  • Outstanding debt
  • Day-to-day living costs of your family
  • Your children’s financial future

6. Legal & General - Level or Decreasing Term Assurance

Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
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Legal & General was founded in 1836 and by 1939 they had paid out their first life insurance claim. Nowadays they provide pensions, investments, and insurance products to customers all over the world. In 2021, they were named 'Best Life Insurance Provider' at the Moneyfacts Awards.

Legal & General life insurance secures the financial future of your loved ones if the worst were to happen to you. Monthly premiums are paid throughout the life of your policy; if you pass away whilst the policy is valid, a payout is issued to your loved ones.

Legal & General life insurance policy

Legal & General offer three types of life insurance:

  • Level term cover
  • Decreasing term cover
  • Over 50s life insurance

All policies come with fixed premiums and the amount of cover you can secure is unlimited, (depending on your personal circumstances). Life insurance with Legal & General starts from as little as £5 a month.

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7. Aegon - Whole of Life Plans

Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
Photo: aegonlife

Aegon started life as Scottish Equitable way back in 1831 in Edinburgh. Over the years they have evolved the brand, combining the strong UK heritage with their global strength.

Aegon's Life Insurance offers a comprehensive policy with the option to combine different types of cover from their Personal Protection Solutions menu plan. The policies are really flexible, allowing you to choose the combination of cover to suit you from life & critical illness cover as well as income protection and permanent disability benefits.

Aegon Life includes life cover and terminal illness cover: Critical Illness Cover can be added at an additional cost

Policyholders' age: You can take out a policy between 18 and 89 years of age (85 if it includes Critical Illness).

Types of cover available: Aegon offers Level Term Cover, Decreasing Term Cover, or Family Income Benefit.

Accidental Death Benefit Aegon's policy automatically includes accidental death benefits. You are covered for accidental death for up to 60 days whilst applying for the policy.

8. Royal London - Pegasus Whole of Life Plan

Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
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Royal London life insurance is a product offered by the wider Royal London Group who provides a variety of financial services such as pensions, income protection, and investments to name a few. Their life insurance policies are obtainable directly from Royal London, through an independent financial advisor, or through an FCA-regulated broker. At Reassured we can't compare Royal London policies. However, we can compare a number of other market leaders to ensure you secure the best deal.

Royal London life cover

You can take out any life cover policy from Royal London if you’re a UK resident aged 18 - 70 and are not a member of the armed forces or reserves. With Royal London, your policy can be as short as 5 years or it can cover you for up to 50 years, however, the cover must end by the time you are 80. You can get coverage of up to £500,000 on a single policy, or a total of £500,000 across all Royal London life insurance policies.

Royal London offers a range of cover options including:

  • Level term life insurance
  • Decreasing term life insurance
  • The whole of life insurance
  • Over 50s plan
  • Family income benefit
  • Diabetes life insurance
  • Funeral plans

9. AIG Life - Whole of Life Insurance or Care Coverage

Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
Photo: aiglife

AIG Life Limited financial products are available to people in the UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man, and Gibraltar. You can't apply for life insurance through AIG directly. Instead, you'll need to use an FCA-regulated broker, such as Reassured.

Term life insurance is a form of coverage that pays out a lump sum to your loved ones if you pass away during a set term. Hence, if you outlive your policy no payout is issued. The term length with AIG can be set between 2 - 70 years but must end before your 90th birthday. AIG term cover is available to applicants aged 17 - 86 and can be taken out as either a single or joint policy. The policy can be taken out with either a level, decreasing or increasing sum assured (payout amount).

The whole of life through AIG is available to applicants aged 17 - 84 and can be taken out as single or joint life cover. Unusually, AIG offers a whole of life policy with either level or increasing cover. With level cover, the sum assured remains fixed throughout the policy. And with increasing cover, the sum assured would increase annually in line with the Retail Prices Index (RPI), up to a maximum of 10%.

AIG care cover the whole of life

AIG offers the option to add care cover to your whole of life policy.

With care cover, you can make an early claim of 75% of the sum assured, up to £300,000, if you have an accident or an illness and require life-long care.

If you have care cover and a claim is not made, 100% of the sum assured will be paid out on your passing.

If you choose to have care covered with the whole of life insurance, the maximum sum assured is £400,000, with an additional £300,000 for care cover.

Only one of these sums will be paid out, whether you make a claim on death or a terminal illness, or for care cover.

10. Old Mutual - Protect Guaranteed Whole Of Life Plans

Top 10 Best Life Insurance Companies In The UK
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Old Mutual Life Insurance was founded in South Africa in 1845 as the Mutual Life Assurance Society of the Cape of Good Hope by John Fairbairn, who in addition to his insurance pursuits was instrumental in establishing the education system in present-day South Africa. Originally based in Cape Town, the company has since relocated its world headquarters to London.

Old Mutual Life cover

The Old Mutual Life cover aims at creating a comfortable life for those that you leave behind. The policy protects and builds your legacy by securing your family’s financial stability once you are no longer there to do it yourself.

Old Mutual Life cover provides a cover of up to R3 Million. The quoting process is fast and easy. The application process is done online and is paperless with a quote sent to you just in 1 minute of processing.

The good thing about the life cover is that the approved claims are paid within 48 hours. This is a very short period in the life insurance arena. When applying for a life cover there are no extensive medical checks so the process is easy, fast and convenient.

Here are the benefits of the Old Mutual Life cover:

  • There is no premium increase for the first 23 months of the policy. Thereafter, there will be a 5% annual increase in premiums.
  • Comes with a free HIV test nationwide. You can choose from a standard HIV blood test or a rapid HIV test.
  • There is no extensive physical medical examination.
  • You can load as many beneficiaries on the policy.
  • The cover amount is flexible according to your cover needs.
  • You can choose a cover amount between R150,000.00 and R3 Million.

Why Is Life Insurance Important?

Before asking the question of which is the best Life Insurance it is important to make sure it is appropriate. Life Insurance is really only valuable if you would be leaving loved ones or an outstanding debt behind.

For many of us, there are families who would be left in financial difficulty or mortgages that need repaying. That’s where Life Insurance can step in to provide invaluable financial support should the worst happen.

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