The Equitable Life Insurance Company of Canada is familiar to a lot of us, but is it the right insurer to protect your family?
I think this is a question that many of my clients ask themselves as they review the huge list of companies that are available to them. When you look at the extensive offerings it can really get overwhelming.
The thing is, it’s so important for you to know that each and every company has a different approach when assessing you. Everything from your age, family history, and health impact what sort of rate you receive.
…but then you need to consider underwriting process, products and the financial stability of the insurer you are evaluating. This is why I am writing this series of reviews.
I want you to feel confident when you call an independent life insurance company like Policy Architects. It’s true, a little information can go a long way.
Now let’s dig into the meat and bones of this Equitable Life Insurance Review!
Who Am I & Why Do I Care?
My name is James Heidebrecht and I'm the founder of Policy Architects. I really love my job because I get the opportunity to meet people like yourself. Individuals that love their families and and want to protect them from an unexpected death, taxes and final expenses.
At the end of the day, we aren't here forever - but what will happen if we check out sooner than anticipated? Even if you live a long full life, planning ahead is in the best interest of those you care about. Let's face it funerals cost a bomb and the government will take as much as they can.
....that's where I come in. Consulting an independent life insurance agent like me BEFORE you commit to an insurer will save you lots of tim and money. Most importantly, it will ensure you get the right protection for your situation with the best guarantees and features. The good news is, the consultation is free. It's a win-win for you.
But the biggest change he’s observed is how unwilling people have become to spend a lot of money. “A full-blown funeral can cost $20,000,” he says. “A lot of people believe that might be better spent elsewhere.” CBC, Baby boomers moving toward cheap and cheerful funerals
Ok so you're just trying to sell me some insurance right?
Sure I am. That's what I do and this is what you're looking for if you're Googling insurance company reviews. Life insurance is an important purchase especially if you have loved ones that rely on your income.
We can plan for a lot but our demise isn't one of those things...
To paraphrase what John Lennon sang, Life happens while you’re busy making other plans. We all know we’re going to die someday but it’s not something we talk about. Yet, it’s a basic fact of life. One thing that really stands out to me is how ill-prepared most of us are for a tragedy to strike.
Sadly I know a couple of stories where someone failed to plan and their families were thrown into chaos. It takes a lot of money to keep a family in the lifestyle they’ve become accustomed to. If a breadwinner suddenly isn’t there, it can be devastating. Mortgages, lenders, and schools don’t stop sending bills when someone dies.
When I meet with clients we do a quick needs assessment and often people are shocked by just how much money will be needed to maintain the current lifestyle for their family. And we’re not talking about livin’ high on the hog.
At Policy Architects we help keep this from happening. Of course, we don’t enjoy hearing about the early demise of a client. However, it’s comforting to know when the time comes, we have the privilege of handing over the tax-free check that will keep one family from falling through the cracks.
Equitable Life Insurance: A Strong Foundation?
Equitable Life of Canda has been around since 1920 which means they have weathered some serious storms.
Depressions and World Wars be damned, they are still ticking. I have to admit this is something that really appeals to me. It means they know how to run a business and have done so through thick and thin. In my humble opinion, this bodes well for how Equitable Life will treat your business.
Did You Know Equitable Life is a Mutual Life Insurance Company?
Equitable Life is the largest federally regulated mutual life insurance company in Canada. Most interestingly, policyholders share in the success of the company. They are eligible to participate in the profits from all lines of business including insurance, wealth management and Group Benefits. Also, Equitable Life’s Board of Directors is elected by the policyholders who also have the right to vote on Company issues.
Because there are no shareholders, there is less pressure to achieve short term results. This means Equitable can focus more on the long-term interests of its policyholders and the sustainable growth of the company. With no shareholders, dividends are also higher. In 2017 Equitable Life of Canada had record earnings of $106 million resulting in a return on policyholders’ equity of 16.8%. In 2018, earnings were $86.8 million and return on policyholders’ equity was 11.9%. Not bad considering how much markets were down in the fourth quarter!
Equitable Life’s mutual status allows it to maintain continuity and stability for employees, policyholders and producers. As other insurance companies experience volatility in the insurance space, Equitable remains focused, stable and strong. Between 2012 and 2017, Equitable Life’s earnings increased by 137%, from $44.7 million to $106 million. Currently, they have $4.3 billion of assets under management. Pretty Good!
All said and done the Equitable Life of Canada has a long and successful history!
That's awesome! I like that policyholders own the company!
Me too, but let's take a quick peek to just to make sure their financial ratings are sound...
Equitable Life Insurance Reviews: Financial Rating
Financial ratings are really important!
This is because you need to know how the life insurance company you invest in handles their own finances. At the end of the day, you want them to be there to honor a payout should the time come. So this is where a little homework can really help you with your final decision.
Luckily you don’t have to start from scratch. There are financial rating agencies that do the leg work for you, which means there are no excuses. Hence, you should always be aware of this information before you sign the dotted line.
DBRS, a global credit rating agency, has rated Equitable Life of Canada a Financial Strength Rating of “A” and an Issuer Rating of “A”. So, It looks like your premiums are safe with them.
OK! This sounds good now can you get me some quotes?
Hold on, do you want some fries with that? Remember, life insurance is a major purchase. It may not seem like a big monthly output but over 20 or 30 years, you could be paying $10,000 - $50,000, easily.
Equitable Life Insurance Reviews
…and speaking of reviews – what’s the word on the street when it comes to Equitable life?
Before I get started on this part of the review, I’ve got to warn you. Since I have been doing this series I come across more negative comments than I do positive. There are two ways you can look at this.
- All life insurance companies are doing a poor job with a couple of rare exceptions, OR
- People who are making claims are stressed out and have less patience
For me, it’s somewhere in the middle. Let’s face it, people love to complain, it’s human nature. You’re far more likely to complain than to write a glowing review. Did you know only about 1.5% of people actually leave online reviews?
That being said, Equitable Life of Canada’s google reviews are pretty good: 3.8 stars out of 5 (34 reviews). One thing you should be aware of though when you look at this number, is that most of the negative feedback seems to be about Equitable group benefits.
Insureye Independent Life Insurance Reviews for Equitable Life
Ouch! Looks we have another bad result. 1.6 stars out of 5.
The complaints run the gamut from Health Insurance to Life Insurance. There also seems to be an emphasis on poor customer service. However, at the end of the day, this would NOT be the only criterion I would use to decide on whether to purchase a policy from Equitable Life or not.
Equitable Life Insurance Reviews - What Do Employees Think?
Equitable Life was named top employer of the year for 2019 by the editors of Canada’s Top 100 Employers. Equitable has received this honour in the Kitchener-Waterloo area 12 years in a row. Impressive, if that doesn’t tell you something about this company, I don’t know what else will!
Some of the employee perks that make Equitable Life Insurance Company a great place to work:
- Equitable Life encourages healthy lifestyles that include onsite fitness classes and massage therapy.
- Exceptional employee performance is rewarded in a variety of ways including trips to the Stratford Festival and generous gift cards.
- Equitable Life Insurance’s health benefits plan includes a health spending account (HSA.) This lets employees top-up coverage, ranging from $850 for single coverage to $1,500 for families.
Equitable Life is rated by employees 3.3 stars out of 5 on Glassdoor.ca and 4.3 out of 5 on Indeed.ca. Frankly, these are among the higher scoring reviews I’ve seen since I’ve been doing life insurance company reviews.
“People are definitely a company’s greatest asset. It doesn’t make any difference whether the product is cars or cosmetics. A company is only as good as the people it keeps.” Mary Kay
So what do I care if the employees at Equitable are happy? Insurance is insurance...the only thing that really matters is whether they pay out at claim time.
Remember there's a direct relationship between how workers are treated and how a company performs. It's well documented. Happy employees = happy customers = better service, experience, products, etc.
Equitable Life Insurance Products
I really enjoy reviewing all the products that are out there. As an insurance agent, it’s VERY important to keep abreast of the different offerings because every insurance company puts a different spin on things.
Equitable Life of Canada has a nice range of life insurance products to meet all your needs. They offer Term life, Participating whole life, Universal Life and Critical Illness insurance. Unlike some of the other companies I have reviewed, Equitable Life has a smaller range of products but I think that can be a good thing.
If you’ve read any of my other posts you’ll be familiar with my stance on this…there’s something to be said for having a strong niche. It leaves less room for casting your energy in too many directions.
At the end of the day though, this preference is personal and you may not feel the same. So let’s dip into their offering now!
Pssst...If you want a quick refresher, check out my Life Insurance 101 post here
Equitable Life Term Insurance
Term life insurance provides temporary coverage for a set period of time. It’s the most affordable type of life insurance and the most appropriate for 90% of people. Premiums are guaranteed for a given period of time, usually, 10, 20 or 30 years, depending on the plan selected. At the end of that period, the policy either renews at a higher premium for the next payment period or it terminates. Most term plans can be switched to permanent protection to cover your long term needs or if you become uninsurable.
Term life insurance is the best solution hands down for replacing income if something happens to you.
Equitable Life Insurance has the following Offerings:
- 10 Year Term: This policy renews every 10 years until age 85
- 20 Year Term: This policy renews every 20 years until age 85
- Term 30/65: Premiums are payable to the later of 30 years or age 65. For example, If you’re 40 years old and you get an Equitable life term 30/65, you’ll pay level premiums to age 70 (30 years).
Equitable’s term coverage comes with the standard riders: Disability waiver of premium, Additional accidental death and child protection rider. You can also bundle this policy with EquiLiving Critical Illness insurance rider to provide more comprehensive protection.
Equitable Permanent Participating Whole Life Insurance
Whole life is probably the best-known type of permanent life insurance. It is also known as cash value life insurance because, in addition to the insurance component, it has an investment feature. This feature allows you to build up a cash investment in your policy that can be used for any number of things. Some people use it for extra retirement income, estate tax protection or wealth accumulation.
Equitable Life’s participating whole life insurance offers guaranteed monthly costs, cash values and death benefits. Policyholders also participate in company profits which are annually credited to their policy as a dividend payment. In 2017, earnings were up by 33% resulting in a return on policyholders’ capital of almost 17%. With Equitable whole life, you have the option of paying premiums for life or paying them off in 20 years.
Equimax Estate builder
This policy may earn annual dividends, which can be:
- paid to you
- used to purchase additional life insurance coverage including Enhanced Protection
- used to pay policy premiums
Equimax Wealth Accumulator
Equitable Life’s Equimax Wealth Accumulator has all the same features of Equimax Estate Builder. How is it different then? It is designed for individuals looking to grow their money in the shorter term (ie. 20 years) through cash value and the accumulation of annual policy dividends. As such, monthly premiums for this product are higher.
Equitable Universal Life Insurance
Similar to whole life, Universal life is also a cash value product with both an insurance and investment component. The main difference is that it’s more flexible and you get to choose how the money in the policy dividend account is invested.
With whole life, the insurance company decides where the money is invested and as such, they offer basic cash value and death benefit guarantees. On the other hand, because you’re the one who chooses how the money is invested in your universal life policy, you shoulder the risk. The carrier doesn’t offer the same guarantees. However, the potential for significant cash accumulation and growth is higher, especially if you make savvy investment choices.
For a more in-depth look at Universal vs whole Life Insurance, read my post here.
Equation Generation IV
Based on your investment choices, Equitable Life’s Equation Generation IV policy may earn dividends, which can be:
- re-invested and allowed to compound and grow tax-deferred
- used to pay policy premiums
- borrowed against within prescribed limits
- used tax and surrender charge-free, in the event of a disability, critical illness or long-term care requirement
Equitable Life Critical Illness Insurance
Critical Illness insurance or “CI” is becoming increasingly popular these days. With longer life expectancies and exponential technology, the odds of surviving a serious illness are significant. The only question is whether your bank account or lifestyle will survive. CI coverage is designed to pay a one-time, tax-free, lump-sum payment when you develop a critical illness as laid out by the definitions in your policy.
Critical Illness insurance was invented in the 1980s by Marius Barnard, a South African surgeon who did the world’s first heart transplantation. He wanted to create something that helped alieve the financial stress his patients experienced when they were forced to stop working and focus on fighting their illnesses. He noticed a correlation between lower stress levels and more positive outcomes.
Critical illness is best suited and most affordable for someone who’s already healthy and wants to safeguard their family’s finances against the threat of a life-threatening condition.
EquiLiving Critical Illness Insurance
Equitable Life’s EquiLiving Critical Illness protection is a renewable product. Coverage lengths include Term 10 and Term to age 75. It covers 26 conditions including Heart attack, Stroke, Cancer & Coronary Artery Bypass. Five additional childhood illnesses are also covered to age 25.
It can be added onto Term, Whole Life or Universal Life plans as a policy rider.
Equitable Life Insurance - Savings & Retirement
Equitable Life of Canada has a really nice range of investment and retirement products.
If you’re looking for something designed to meet your savings and wealth management needs, look no further. From RRSPs, TSFAs, Seg Funds to payout annuities, Equitable Life has something to offer. They also had a banner year in 2018, with sales of $380 million in their Savings and Retirement business. That’s an increase of 22% from 2017.
Not bad, now let’s check out their full offering…
Equitable Life Investment Products
What is a segregated fund?
A segregated fund is an investment product and an insurance product combined. Similar to a mutual fund, investors pool their money together and a fund manager makes strategic buy-sell decisions in accordance with the financial objectives of the fund.
Equitable Life’s Pivotal Select seg funds may be a good choice if you’re concerned about growing and protecting your investments. Features include:
- 75% – 100% of your premiums are guaranteed when your contract matures or on your death
- Bypass probate by naming a beneficiary
- No deferred sales charges at death
- Quick settlement to loved ones after you pass away
- Private and confidential beneficiary designations
- Creditor protection in the event of bankruptcy or lawsuit
- Choice of 34 different Pivotal Select segregated funds
- Can be used with a variety of Equitable life plans including RRSP’s, TSFAs and RIFs.
This type of product is also known as a Guaranteed Minimum Withdrawal Benefit (GMWB).
Guaranteed Interest Account
Equitable Life’s Guaranteed Interest Account is ideal for those looking for capital security. It pays a fixed interest rate on the entire value of your original lump sum investment for a defined period of time. As this type of investment risk is conservative, interest rates tend to be on the low side.
- Flexible access to your money anytime
- Creditor protection
- No policy fees
- Guaranteed rates
Equitable Life’s payout annuity offers you a guaranteed income for life or for a defined term of your choosing.
An annuity is when you make a one-time, lump sum deposit and then receive guaranteed monthly income payments. The amount of cash you receive depends on the amount your initial deposit, interest rates, your age and the type of annuity you choose.
- Choice of life or term payout
- Guaranteed income for you and your beneficiaries
- Guaranteed income for a specific term
- Flexibility for tax purposes
Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP)
Contributing to an RRSP is a great way to sock away cash for retirement.
Remember, you can reduce your taxable income dollar for dollar by optimizing your contribution to your RRSP annually. Money invested in an Equitable Life RRSP can grow and compound tax-deferred. The best part? Your RRSP is like a wrapper, you decide what goes inside. Will it be mutual funds, ETF’s, Seg funds, GICs, Stocks and Bonds? The choices are really endless.
Tax Free Savings Account (TSFA)
A TFSA is a tax-advantaged savings account. How does it work? You deposit after-tax dollars into your TSFA account and all growth & interest earned on the cash inside the account is never subject to tax. Sounds pretty sweet!
Equitable Life of Canada offers Guaranteed interest accounts and Pivotal Select Seg Funds as an eligible TSFA option.
“The maximum someone can contribute is cumulative. As long as you were a Canadian resident and over the age of 18 in 2009, if you’ve never opened a TFSA, you can contribute the full amount, which today totals…$63,500.” Matt Smith, Good Times
Registered Retirement Income Fund (RRIF/ LIF)
A registered retirement income fund (RRIF) is a registered account that is designed to provide you with income from your RRSP. In Canada, you must convert your RRSP to a RRIF, a payout annuity or cash by age 71. Funds you withdraw from your RRIF are taxable but the growth inside of it is not.
Equitable Life’s Segregated funds and guaranteed income account are eligible to be used inside your RRIF.
Equitable Life Insurance - Group Benefits
One of the advantages of employment is group life benefits…and if you’re an employer that provides them, you’re sure to stand out from the crowd!
Equitable Life of Canada offers a wide range of flexible Group Benefit solutions to meet the needs of different businesses. They pride themselves on their personal touch and ability to customize a solution for each unique situation.
Equitable Life’s myFlex Benefits offers “big benefits for small business”! Employers of 3 to 35 people can take advantage of their competitive, customizable benefits plans. Once business owners pick the basic options of the plan they want, employees are allowed to personalize their own benefits within the plan limits. You know what they say: happy employees equal happy customers.
Life, Accident & Critical Illness Insurance
Equitable Life’s group benefit plans offer employer-sponsored life insurance including options for employees to buy additional life protection. This is a standard feature of most group insurance plans, providing workers with peace of mind that if something happens to them, there is some basic coverage for their loved ones.
Plan members can also benefit from Equitable Life’s group accidental death and dismemberment (AD&D) coverage. This protects employees and their loved ones from the financial devastation of an unforeseen fatal accident. AD&D benefits can also provide bereavement, child and funeral expense support.
Equitable Life of Canada provides group critical illness coverage through ACE INA Life Insurance. This protection allows plan member employees to focus on recovery from a life-threatening illness. It provides a one-time, tax-free, lump-sum benefit that can help members and their families survive the financial stress of dealing with a critical illness. Not to mention, a quicker return to work is in the best interest of the employer as well.
Health & Dental Benefits
If you’re a small to mid-size business, health and dental benefits are an essential way to incentivize future employees.
Equitable Life’s flexible claim systems allow for custom tailored health benefits coverage to meet the specific needs of your employees. Plans can provide full protection or include deductibles or co-payments.
Similarly, Equitable Life dental benefits are designed to provide a custom plan for your business. Using any combination of deductibles and reimbursement levels, plan members select the right level of dental benefits at the right cost.
Disability Management Solutions
Statistically, “one in six Canadians will be disabled for three months or more before age 50. “When I ask clients what their largest asset is, they often say it’s their house,” says Tim Landry, a living benefits consultant in Montreal. “But for many people, their largest asset is their future income-producing ability. If you have 30 years left to retirement and you’re making $100,000 a year—that’s $3 million. Ensuring that is crucial for peace of mind.” Julie Cazzin, MoneySense
Disability and absences can be a challenging time for both employees and employers and can have devastating effects. Employers that offer this type of coverage can take serious stress off an employee and may even help them return to the workplace in a better state.
Equitable Life of Canada’s disability and absence management team offer service and contract provisions to support plan members in returning to work through long and short term disability solutions.
Health, Wellness & Online Services
Equitable life provides health and wellness solutions to keep business owners and employees happy, healthy and productive.
Equitable’s HealthConnector services provides employers with flexible options and resources to help employees manage personal challenges whether they be a serious illness or a mental health issue. If you’re an employer, that means decreasing absenteeism, increasing productivity and maintaining retention. For employees, HealthConnector helps them get the assistance they need to deal with work-related and personal issues.
Personal Health & Dental Coverage
If you’ve recently lost your health and dental protection through a group benefits plan, Equitable Life of Canada’s Coverage2go can help. It allows you to purchase health and dental that is affordable and works like the group benefits plan you recently had.
As long as you apply before or within 60 days of losing coverage under your current group benefit plan, no medical evidence is required. Coverage2go allows you to choose the level of protection that suits your specific needs.
Health Care Spending Account (HCSA)
What is a health care spending account?
A Health Spending Account is a group benefit that allows you to be reimbursed for a range of health-related expenses, over and above traditional benefit plans. It can also offer greater tax credits than personal health and dental plans.
An Equitable Life HCSA provides plan members greater flexibility in how they choose to spend their health dollars. For employers, it offers greater certainty by providing a maximum cost per benefit period per plan member. It addresses the following marketplace trends:
- Everchanging job market and the need for plan flexibility
- Rising costs
- Employee retention and recruitment challenges
Taxable Spending Account (TSA)
An Equitable Life taxable spending account (TSA) is an excellent way to motivate employees. It also promotes healthy living and increases productivity at the same time. A TSA is considered a business expense and therefore can be written off. Cash bonuses cannot.
How does it work?
Employees can get reimbursed under an employer member plan for various health-related expenses including childcare, smoking cessation programs, professional development, nutrition programs, etc. Equitable Life offers employers a plethora of eligible services to choose from so they can customize a plan for their unique situation.
Taxable spending accounts are easy to implement and are a win-win for employee and employer.
Wow! I had no idea that Equitable had this many products on their shelf. I have to say I am pleasantly surprised by this. Let's take a look at the application process.
Equitable Life Insurance Reviews - Application Process
Equitable Life’s website has product information available but nowhere do you see any “apply now” or “find out more” buttons. This would enable you to enter your personal info so you could be contacted by an independent advisor who could provide additional information or sell you a policy. This isn’t unusual as most life insurance companies in Canada look to a distribution network of independent agents and advisors to facilitate this.
Electronic applications or “E-apps”, have become ubiquitous in the Canadian insurance marketplace to speed up the process and keep wait times to a minimum. It can take anywhere from 4 to 8 weeks for the life insurance company to process your application so who wouldn’t want to speed things up? EZcomplete is Equitable Life’s E-app which you can complete conveniently with your independent insurance advisor. Equitable’s InsuranceAssist allows agents to complete non-face to face applications with clients over the phone.
Part of the application process involves figuring out how much coverage you’re going need. The reality is, most folks low-ball this amount and are underinsured.
How much life insurance do I need?
It sure ain’t rocket science but it’s something you want to get right the first time…because, there is no second time.
What’s your age? Married? kids? Mortgage? Any debt, car loans or LOC? Any other dependents? Parents?
…These are the kinds of questions you want to be asking yourself. Basically, if you’re not here tomorrow, how much money do your loved ones need month to month to carry on so they don’t face financial devastation?
When you ask, “how much life insurance do I need?”, you’re really asking, “how much of my income do I need to replace for my family and for how long?“.
If you have a family depending on you, a good rule of thumb is 10 times your gross salary. So, if you’re earning $75 thousand a year, $750,000 of life insurance protection will put you in the ballpark. If your salary’s $100k, your family will need $1 million of coverage. Just remember, if you’re 40 making a $60,000 salary, you’re earning potential, assuming you retire at 65, is 25 years. That’s 25 years X $60,000 per year = $1.5 million. If something happens to you this year, that’s money that your family will never see.
If you’re interested in Equitable Life insurance quotes, contact Policy Architects now at 1-888-501-9583! We’ll be happy to provide you with the information you’re looking for.
Wow, I never thought about it that way...Now I want to make sure I get the right coverage so if God forbid, something happens to me, my family doesn't slip through the cracks!
Yeah, I know, $250,000 may seem like a lot of money but when you think about how far that will take a family of four, it's sobering. Obviously, some insurance is better than none but for most people, term is very affordable so there's really no excuse! Let's check out some rates now...
Equitable Life Insurance Rates
Equitable Life of Canada, 20 Year Term, Standard, Non-Smoker Rates
*Quotes above are for Equitable Life’s Term 20, monthly, Standard Health Class, non-smoker. Your rates may differ depending on your unique circumstances. March 2019.
As you can see from this rate chart, term life insurance really is affordable!
Remember though, underwriters base their figures on risk. So from their perspective you're a bigger one as you get into your 50's and 60's. Check out my article on term life insurance for senior citizens here.
Now let's take a look at Equitable Life's Pros & Cons!
Equitable Life Insurance Pros
Excellent Claims & Policy Service Experience
What Equitable Life lacks for in size, they make up for in service! The fantastic support they provide their network of independent advisors trickles down to clients and input personnel who deal with claims and policy service. Not to mention, they treat employees well and in turn, advisors and policyholders.
It's hard to believe that Equitable Life's entire application and claims process was almost entirely paper based up until 2014. Since that time Equitable has come a long way fast! They've launched and are constantly improving upon a series of online applications to make it easier for clients and advisors to do business. These include EZcomplete, InsuranceAssist and their EZClaim mobile app. EZcomplete has recently been implemented for Equitable's Segregated Fund products as well.
Equitable Life continues to focus on making an already good customer portal even more user friendly. This focus and commitment to improving their online experience makes Equitable Life a Digital Leader in the Canadian insurance space.
Mutual Life Insurance Company Status
Did I mention Equitable Life of Canada is a mutual life insurance company? They're owned by participating policyholders, not shareholders, allowing them to focus on long term growth and providing clients with personalized service. I don't know about you but I like the idea of a company that's accountable to it's policyholders!
Excellent Participating Whole Life Insurance Product
Equitable Life has hands down one of the best participating whole life policies in the Canadian market today. In 2018, record revenues resulted in a 11.9% return on policyholders’ equity, despite and an economic downturn. As a result, Equitable has the highest paying dividend in the market and their return on policyholders' equity has averaged 13.5% over the last 5 years.
Rated 'A' by Dominion Bond Rating Service (DBRS), Equitable Life of Canada is on solid footing. They finished 2018 with one of the highest capital ratios in the industry, as graded by the Life Insurance Capital Adequacy Test (LICAT).
Equitable Life has very robust underwriting department that's willing to engage reinsurance partners for more challenging cases. They have also attained some key personnel from Manulife in recent years to add to their experience base.
Equitable Life of Canada offers very competitive pricing on their term and permanent insurance products.
Strong, Community Based Culture
Equitable Life is an intimate, hometown shop that likes to be involved in the local community. They sponsor the Waterloo-Wellington Autism Speaks Canada Walk and support many other initiatives including a local organic food share program.
Equitable Life Insurance Cons
Too Eastern Centric
With the exception of a group benefits office in Calgary, Equitable life of Canada's critical mass is located in Kitchener - Waterloo, Ontario. Like other carriers, this makes it more challenging for them to support advisors in the West due to the time difference.
Limited Product Shelf
This is a partial Con as Equitable Life does have a decent range of products and there is something to be said for narrowing your focus. However, it would be nice if they had a larger offering.
Is Equitable Life Insurance The Best Company For YOU!?
OK, the more I find out about Equitable Life, the more I like them! I don’t know what it is but I’m a sucker for companies that make money while treating employees, advisors and policyholders well.
As one of the largest mutual life insurance companies in Canada, Equitable Life produces huge results for policyholders with finite resources. They offer a nice range of products including one of the best performing participating whole life policies on the market today!
The lightning speed at which Equitable Life has adapted to the online marketplace is impressive and they show no signs of slowing down!
That being said, they may not be for everyone.
All Life Insurance Companies Are NOT the same!
Remember life insurance companies are not interchangeable. They have different products and underwriting guidelines can vary substantially between carriers. If you have any insurability issues, you really want to find the carrier that will view you most favourably. It could mean the difference between saving thousands of dollars or not.
That’s where Policy Architects comes in…we have relationships with the best insurance companies in Canada. If you think Equitable Life of Canada is right for you, give us a call, we’ll be happy to give you an honest second opinion.