It promises coverage at “pennies a day.” But is this 45-year-old company any better than the rest?
Life insurance isn’t something any of us wants to think about. But making the decision to invest in your future and the future of those you love is an important one. After all, the earlier you purchase a policy for yourself or your family, the lower your lifetime premiums tend to be.
Gerber is just one company focused on covering the people you love through multiple options for, as its advertising suggests, “just pennies a day.” We break down what it offers, what you can expect and potential drawbacks with this big-name insurer.
|Terms available||10, 15, 20 or 30 years|
|Payment methods||Credit or debit card, check or money order|
|Medical exam required||No, depending on policy and age|
|Temporary underwriting coverage||N/A|
- Many policies to choose from.
- Medical exams not required.
- Not your best savings option.
- A child rider might provide the same protection.
- Only one rider mentioned on its website.
At least a few Redditors question whether life insurance for this specific situation is a sound financial decision, what with other products out providing peace of mind and stronger return on your investment.
As for the company itself, Gerber Life Insurance Company is an accredited business with the Better Business Bureau, which gives it an A+ rating. A.M. Best also awards Gerber Life Insurance with an A rating, which means the industry believes it has the financial standing to pay out claims far into the future.
What is Gerber known for?
Gerber is in the business of babies, known for the iconic Gerber baby that appears on its products found in most grocery stores across the US.
But Gerber doesn’t just provide wholesome nutrition for your little ones. It also offers life insurance products for children and adults with a variety of available coverage and terms.
Formed in 1967, Gerber Life Insurance Company is a subsidiary of Gerber Products Company, headquartered in White Plains, New York. It provides insurance products across the US, Canada and Puerto Rico, with more than 3.3 million active policies in place.
What began as a life insurance product crafted to protect and safeguard young children soon blossomed into a full product line of insurance policies designed for adults, children and even a specialized college plan for young adults.
In many cases, no medical exam is required to apply for Gerber life insurance, and you can easily get a quote for term and whole life policies online in minutes.
One of the largest insurers in the nation, Gerber’s policies can provide security and even college savings, depending on your plan. But you’ll want to watch for potential drawbacks before signing a contract.
- Many policies to choose from.Gerber’s many policies focus on protecting your little and not-so-little ones while potentially saving for the future.
- Medical exams not required.A simple process often forgoes exams for those ages 18 to 50.
- Not your best savings option.Dual life and college savings plans sound easy. But you’ll likely see a better return on your money with a high-yield savings account or 529 plan.
- A child rider might provide the same protection.Most adult life insurance plans allow for extending your policy’s benefits to cover your children.
- Only one rider mentioned on its website.While most insurers offer a range of policy add-ons to expand coverage, Gerber only advertises one: its waiver of premium.
What life insurance coverage does Gerber offer?
The majority of Gerber’s plans are whole life policies, offering life insurance with the ability to build cash value, though you’ll find a small term life policy in the mix.
- Term life insurance. Coverage ranges from $25,000 to $150,000 with a guaranteed premium over terms of 10, 15, 20 and 30 years, with payments as low as $8 monthly.
- Whole life insurance. Coverage of up to $150,000 with guaranteed premiums and the potential to build cash value over the life of the policy that you can borrow from at 8% interest.
- Guaranteed life insurance. Whole life insurance designed for applicants ages 50 to 80 with guaranteed acceptance with no medical examination required. Select coverage from $5,000 to $25,000.
- Accident protection insurance. Offers cash benefits in the event of accidental death or a policy-covered injury as a result of an accident, with coverage of up to $100,000 available and rates as low as $0.07 a day.
- Gerber Life Grow-Up Plan. Coverage of up to $50,000 available for children ages 14 days to 14 years. Monthly premiums are guaranteed for life, and coverage automatically doubles at 18.
- Young Adult Life Insurance. Whole life insurance designed for children ages 15 to 17 with cash-building coverage of up to $50,000. Coverage automatically doubles at 18 with no monthly premium increase.
- Gerber Life College Plan. Rolls life insurance and college savings into one plan that offers a guaranteed $10,000 to $150,000 payment on policy maturity. If anything happens to the policyholder before the maturity date, a beneficiary receives the full benefit.
Does my child need a life insurance policy?
It’s a complicated question, because all parents want the best for their children in preparing them for adulthood.
But life insurance isn’t designed to protect the policyholder, exactly. Rather, it’s designed to provide for beneficiaries who rely on the policyholder — for instance, providing multiples of your salary to your children if you die unexpectedly to carry on your legacy.
Also, the typical adult life insurance plan offers children’s riders that extend your benefits to the little people in your life, covering them under one policy sometimes until they reach 25. At that point, you can often convert them into individual policies.
A life insurance policy for your child may not be the best way to protect your little ones, even if the plan offers a college savings component. Generally, you’re better off taking advantage of the compound interest that comes with a savings or state-sponsored 529 plan.
What’s not covered in my policy?
A standard life insurance policy often covers the essentials, but it can expose gaps that don’t account for all you’d like covered.
Investing in a policy rider can helps you tailor your life insurance to fit your specific needs. Gerber’s website only mentions one rider:
- Waiver of premium. Enables your coverage to continue uninterrupted if you become disabled and are no longer able to pay your policy. You can also use this rider during periods of pregnancy.
How can I get the best rate?
Gerber suggests that a clean bill of health is your best bet in securing a preferred rate. Any of the following lifestyle and health factors could reduce your potential of paying the lowest rates:
- Tobacco or nicotine use
- Weight over a specified guideline
- High cholesterol level
- High blood pressure
How do I file a life insurance claim with Gerber?
Gerber doesn’t offer the ability to start a life insurance claim online. You must call and speak with one of its insurance agents.
Claim forms require details that include:
- The deceased’s full name and personal details.
- Birth, marriage or other life event dates for all beneficiaries.
- A copy of the death certificate.
What other services does Gerber offer?
Aside from its life insurance plans, Gerber is likely best known for its infant, toddler and children’s products sold across 80 countries. It also manufactures baby toys, juices and skincare products for babies, toddlers and young children.
Gerber’s strives to help parents raise happy, healthy children, starting with a line of baby products in 1927. Today, Gerber supports parents and children as they grow with a range of life insurance products focused on whole life policies. Other products include a term life plan and the Gerber Life Grow-Up Plan.
But before signing up with Gerber, you might want to first narrow down your goals. If you’re looking to build up cash value that you can use toward your child’s education, a savings or 529 plan designed for that purpose might reap bigger rewards.
If it’s to protect your children with a life insurance plan, look into whether your existing plan offers a child rider. Or compare your options for life insurance that do allow for them.