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Navy Mutual life insurance review 2020

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Portable life insurance that follows military members wherever they go.’s rating: 4.5 / 5.0


  • Get a quote if you or a loved one is currently serving in, or has retired from, the military.
  • Use a different policy provider if you have no connection to military service.

18 to 85

Issue Age

$10,000 to $1,000,000



Medical Exam Required


Issue Age18 to 85
Coverage Amount$10,000 to $1,000,000
Term Lengths5 to 30 years
Medical Exam RequiredNo
Policy Riders OfferedYes

Expert review

Katia Iervasi

Review by

Katia Iervasi is a writer from Sydney, Australia. Her writing — and curiosity — has taken her around the world, and she now calls New York home. With a journalistic eye for detail, she navigates insurance and finance for Finder, so you can splash your cash smartly (and be a pro when the subject pops up at dinner parties).

Expert review

Military members are usually hit with higher life insurance rates because of their hazardous work. That’s not the case with Navy Mutual. The insurer caters to the military by offering portable coverage and getting rid of the restrictions for aviation, travel and war. But the customer service window is short, and customers report huge discrepancies between the quoted and final rate.

Best of 2020
Finder experts pick Navy Mutual as a 2020 best brand for life insurance.

What types of life insurance coverage does Navy Mutual offer?

As a policyholder, you can carry term life or whole life coverage. These are the options.

Term life

  • Flex Term
    Navy Mutual’s most affordable policy, this plan has level premiums based on the amount of coverage you choose. Flex Term guarantees your coverage and monthly premium until age 50, or 40 if you use nicotine. With the Guaranteed Convertibility Feature, you can convert to a whole life policy up until two years before the end of the term. Otherwise, when it expires, you can purchase another term policy or let it lapse.There are no restrictions, and the coverage continues after you separate or retire from the military.The death benefits range from $50,000 to $1,000,000, and you can add an accelerated death benefit or child rider to this policy.
  • Express Term Plus
    This simplified issue policy doesn’t require a medical exam. Designed for those who need coverage quickly — like military members preparing for deployment — it’s a 10-year policy with a fixed monthly premium and a death benefit of $250,000. To apply, you must be between 18 and 55 years old.Like the Flex Term, there are no military restrictions and you can carry the coverage with you into retirement. There isn’t much room for customization, but you have the option to add an accelerated death benefit rider.
  • Level II Plus
    Open to those 45 to 85 years old, this term life policy offers level coverage and stable premiums. You’ll have to commit to five years of coverage; after that, you can purchase more in one-year increments.Coverage starts at $50,000 and goes up to $1 million in increments of $10,000.There are three rate tiers based on health:

    • Standard: For those with average health.
    • Select: For people with a payment plan of 30 years or less, in above-average health.
    • Super-Select: For those with a payment plan of 30 years or less, in above-average health. To qualify, you must be a nonsmoker with a low-risk lifestyle and a good family health history.

    You can dress up this policy with riders and convert to a whole life plan with no physical. If you pass away during the term, your beneficiaries will receive a guaranteed death benefit.

Whole life

  • Flagship Whole Life
    Navy Mutual’s only permanent policy is available to those 18 to 80 years old. It offers lifelong coverage as well as a fixed premium. Over time, the policy accumulates cash value and policyholders are eligible to receive dividends based on the company’s profit. Once you’ve built up enough cash value, you can borrow against your policy to pay for things like college tuition or a home. The limit is 75% of the available cash value.Coverage starts at $10,000 and is capped at $1 million. You can opt into the accumulated death benefit or paid up additions rider. If you have children, you can purchase a Flagship Whole Life policy in their name, up until they turn 26.When you die, your beneficiaries will receive a guaranteed death benefit and a cash value benefit.

What is the Guaranteed Convertibility Feature?

If you’ve purchased Navy Mutual’s Flex Term policy, you can convert to the Flagship Whole Life policy before you turn age 48 — or 38 for nicotine users — without a medical exam. Your new premium is based on your age and the insurer’s standard rate at the time of conversion.

What riders can I add to my life insurance policy?

Navy Mutual’s policies are pretty basic, but you can enhance and customize your coverage with these riders:

  • Paid Up Additions (PUA). Available with whole life policies, this rider increases your policy’s total death benefit and cash value. You can purchase up to three times the base annual standard premium per policy year, with a total lifetime maximum of $500,000.
  • Accelerated Death Benefit. In the case of chronic or terminal illness, you can receive the majority of the death benefit as a lump sum. To qualify, you must have carried coverage for more than five years at the time of diagnosis.
  • Extended Guaranteed Convertibility. This rider allows you to convert to a whole life plan up to age 70 or five years before your term life policy expires.
  • Child Benefit Rider. For $2.50 per month, you can purchase protection for your children six months to 26 years old. There’s a level death benefit of $10,000 per eligible child, and you can convert the coverage to Flagship Whole Life before the child’s 24th birthday.

How can I get a low rate?

Your premium is a product of your age, health, lifestyle and hobbies, as well as the length and amount of coverage you purchase. Unlike most insurers, Navy Mutual won’t hike up your rate for having a dangerous occupation.

Its underwriting considers:

  • Tobacco use. To qualify for the highest rate class, you’ll have to prove you haven’t smoked tobacco in the past five years.
  • Age. Young, healthy applicants are privy to cheaper premiums.
  • Gender. Women have a higher life expectancy than men, so they usually pay lower premiums.
    Driving record. If your recent record is free from major traffic violations and DUI, you’ll most likely get a better rate.
  • Criminal history. People with a criminal conviction may find it harder to get coverage.
  • Health.
  • Hazardous hobbies. While Navy Mutual doesn’t have military service, aviation or travel restrictions, it does look at your lifestyle outside of work. If you have high-risk hobbies like deep diving or race car driving, the insurer may charge a higher premium to compensate.
  • Alcohol and drugs. Navy Mutual can’t extend coverage to those who have a recent history of alcohol or drug abuse.

Pros and cons


  • Portable coverage. If you transition out of the military, your protection stays in place.
  • No-medical-exam option. The insurer offers expedited coverage for those preparing to deploy, or have no time or desire to undergo a physical.
  • Online application. While the provider prefers doing business over the phone, you can submit an application online.
  • No military service restrictions. By covering hazardous duty, travel and aviation, Navy Mutual makes it easier for military members to get life insurance.
  • Lack of war or terrorism clauses. Most insurers won’t touch these situations, but Navy Mutual covers you wherever you are in the world.
  • High retention rate. According to the website, the insurer has a 97.3% member retention rate.
  • Financial strength. Navy Mutual has over $3 billion in total assets and holds an A+ rating with Fitch. These stats point to its ability to pay out claims.
  • Flexible eligibility. Coverage is open to all active duty, reserve and retired military members, and honorably discharged veterans in some states.


  • Limited customer service. The team is only available by phone during business hours, 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET. Outside of those times, you’ll have to fill out the contact form or leave a voicemail.
  • No live chat. Unlike most major insurers, Navy Mutual doesn’t offer real-time help.
  • Strict health conditions To reach the Super-Select rate class, you must prove you’re a non-smoker with a low-risk lifestyle and a stellar family health history.
  • Discrepancy in rates. Customers report there can be a discrepancy between the quoted rate and the final rate.

How does Navy Mutual compare?

Name Product Issue Ages Minimum Coverage Maximum Coverage Medical Exam Required State Availability
Navy Mutual
18 to 85 years old
Affordable life insurance for active duty, reserve, and retired United States military service members. Get a free quote online.
LadderLife™ Life Insurance
20 - 60 years old
Not available in New York
Term life insurance with no policy fees and the freedom to cancel anytime. Simple application process that can get you approved for coverage instantly.
18 - 100 years old
This life insurance broker combines technology and the human touch to match you with a policy tailored to your needs.
20 - 85 years old
Depends on policy.
Products and product features may not be available in all states.
This well-established life insurance provider could offer you $250,000 worth of coverage for as low as $14 per month.
21 - 54 years old
Not available in New York
Affordable 2-, 10- and 20-year term life insurance policies. Instant quotes and no medical exams.
25 - 60 years old
Available in all states except NY, CA and MT
Get affordable term life insurance with accelerated underwriting or no-exam coverage up to $1,000,000. Available in all states except CA, NY and MT.
18 - 85 years old
Depends on provider and policy
All 50 states
Compare affordable quotes from 12+ A-rated life insurance companies side-by-side.
18 - 80 years old
Depends on policy
Haven Life
18 - 64 years old
All 50 states
Customized term life insurance policies up to $3 million, no medical exam for certain applicants.
Everyday Life
20 - 75 years old
All states & DC
Build a customized laddering strategy to target specific financial responsibilities and save on term life.
18 - 80 years old
Depends on provider and policy
All 50 states and D.C.
Get a quote within minutes from more than a dozen insurers.
JRC Life Insurance
20 - 80 years old
All 50 states
Quickly get a quote for coverage with this marketplace, which compares term & whole life insurance policies from 45+ carriers.
25 - 83 years old
Depends on policy
Get a term life quote from eCoverage - starting at as low as $15 per month.
Leap Life
18 - 75 years old
Depends on provider and policy
Currently unavailable in New York
Apply for a simple instant-decision policy free of charge. Compare quotes from multiple A-rated carriers.
Ethos Term Life Policies
18 - 75 years old
Medical exams not required in most cases
Not available in New York,
Term life insurance with no medical exams for $1 million of coverage or less. Online application gets you a decision in 10 minutes.
Globe Life
18 - 64+ years old
No – simple application
All states except New York
Simple application process with no medical exam and no waiting period. Pay $1 for the first month of coverage.

Compare up to 4 providers

What is Navy Mutual’s reputation?

Navy Mutual isn’t accredited with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), but it’s earned an A+ rating for its operations and customer satisfaction. The BBB registered three complaints in the last three years, all of which were addressed and closed by the insurer.

Though there are no reviews on TrustPilot or Feefo, Navy Mutual has positive reviews on personal blogs and military-minded websites, like Customers praise the insurer for catering to military members by customizing policies and removing clauses for war and travel. Some customers said there can be a discrepancy between the quoted rate and the final rate.

While Navy Mutual has a positive reputation, its policies may not suit everyone. If that applies to you, get the most value for your money by comparing providers.

How do I sign up?

Get started online in four steps by clicking the Go To Site button below:

  1. Enter your contact information.
  2. Choose who the coverage is for, enter a birth date, and whether or not you’re a nicotine user.
  3. Select a life insurance product, and how much coverage you want & for how long.
  4. Review your information and click Submit.

To sign up with a representative, call Navy Mutual at 800-628-6011.

How do I file a life insurance claim with Navy Mutual?

To file a claim, call 800-628-6011 or 703-945-1440 during business hours Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET.

Outside of these hours, go to the website.

  1. Click Contact Us > Report a Death.
  2. Fill out the online form with your contact information, and the policyholder’s date and cause of death and policy number, if you know it.
  3. Press Submit.
  4. A Navy Mutual representative will contact you within one to two business days to process the claim.

What other services does Navy Mutual offer?

Navy Mutual also sells annuities to provide its members with retirement income. There are three products on offer:

  • Single Premium Immediate Annuity. This requires one lump sum deposit between $10,000 and $1 million and the payments can be monthly, quarterly, semi-annually or annually.
  • Single Premium Deferred Annuity. This also asks for a one-time deposit, but has an interest rate lock-in period of five, seven or 10 years. There’s a minimum guaranteed annual interest rate of 1% and a range of payout options.
  • Flexible Premium Retirement Annuity. Designed to maximize tax-deferred growth, this annuity has a minimum initial contribution of $100. The interest rate is variable but 1% is guaranteed.

Frequently asked questions

Life insurance ratings

★★★★★ — Excellent

★★★★★ — Good

★★★★★ — Average

★★★★★ — Subpar

★★★★★ — Poor

Our experts analyze life insurance companies to help you to find the strongest possible policy and premium for your family’s needs. We assess their financial strength, customer satisfaction, policy features and riders. We then give each insurer a score between one and five stars that reflects their offering and reputation in the industry.

Learn more about our methodology here.

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