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Pacific Life vs. Transamerica life insurance

The battle between two companies best known for their universal life insurance policies.

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Fact checked

Pacific Life and Transamerica are both financially strong insurers with decades of experience in the life insurance industry. They have similar offerings, but their differences in rates and riders might affect your decision.

Life insurance products with Pacific Life and Transamerica

Pacific Life
Transamerica
Term
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Whole
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Universal
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Variable
Variable universal
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Indexed universal
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Final expense
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Protect your loved ones
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Costs

Your rate is tailored to you and will reflect your age, gender, occupation and lifestyle. But generally, Pacific Life offers cheaper premiums than Transamerica.

If you’re a healthy nonsmoker, here’s an idea of what you can expect to pay for a $250,000, 20-year term life policy.

GenderAge
Pacific Life
Transamerica
Male20
$15.66
$19.35
Male30
$15.91
$17.20
Male40
$21.48
$30.32
Male50
$47.24
$57.83
Male60
$123.29
$127.49
Get a quote on Policygenius
GenderAge
Pacific Life
Transamerica
Female20
$12.99
$13.33
Female30
$13.47
$14.62
Female40
$18.57
$24.94
Female50
$36.95
$47.08
Female60
$87.12
$125.78
Get a quote on Policygenius

*Based on sample rates from Policygenius, August 2019.

Policy riders

Transamerica has a more robust selection of riders than Pacific Life. Depending on your policy, you might be able to customize your coverage with these add-ons.

Pacific Life Riders

  • Waiver of premium rider
  • Accelerated death benefit rider
  • Conversion rider
  • Child rider
  • Long-term care rider
Get a quote on Policygenius

Transamerica Riders

  • Waiver of premium rider
  • Estate protection rider
  • Final expense rider
  • Child and additional insured rider
  • Return of premium rider
  • Decreasing coverage rider
  • Whole life guaranteed insurability rider
Get a quote on Policygenius

Financial strength

As a policyholder, you want to be sure your insurer has the financial resources to pay your beneficiaries when you die. Both Pacific Life and Transamerica scored good ratings with the four major financial ratings.

As for customer satisfaction, Pacific Life edged out Transamerica in J.D. Power’s latest life insurance study, ranking ninth out of 23 companies surveyed.

Pacific Life
Transamerica
A.M. BestA+ (Superior)A (Excellent)
Moody’sA1 (Good)A1 (Good)
Standard & Poor’sAA- (Very strong)AA- (Very strong)
FitchAA- (High quality)A+ (Very high quality)
J.D. Power3 out of 5 circles or “about average”2 out of 5 circles or “the rest”

Customer reviews and reputation

Both insurers have work to do in terms of customer service. While Pacific Life has an A- rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), customers award the company 1 out of 5 stars. But the BBB records only three complaints in the past three years, which is relatively low for an insurance company.

It’s a similar story with Transamerica. Also rated A- by the BBB, the insurer was awarded 1.5 out of 5 stars by its customers. They filed 363 complaints against the company in the last three years, with many of the complaints pointing to a frustrating claims process.

Bottom line

These insurers offer a diverse product lineup and stand out for their universal policies and lenient underwriting standards. While they’re similar in many ways, Pacific Life’s policies tend to be cheaper, while Transamerica has a longer list of riders.

To find the policy that best suits your budget and needs, compare life insurance companies.

Compare life insurance companies

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$10,000
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Bestow
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Affordable 10- and 20-year term life insurance policies with instant quotes and no medical exams.
Everyday Life
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Fabric
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