Principal Financial Life Insurance Company Review

By Jim Tobin, CFP®

Company Highlights

  • A.M. Best Rating :  A+
  •  Competitive Pricing with No Exam Up to 1MM
  • Lenient on Weight/Build
  • Excellent Customer Service
Principal Financial Life Insurance Image

Bequest Mutual Rating


Please note the Bequest Mutual is not in any way affiliated with Pricipal Financial. This article is our personal review of the term life insurance product offered through Principal Financial as well as alternatives. If you are looking to contact Principal Financial directly, call them at 800-331-2213. If You need help with a lost policy, contact the NAIC policy locator service.

Principal Financial Life Insurance Carrier Specifics

Policy Options

Term, Universal Life

Term Lengths





A+ - A.M. Best


NY Unavailable

Mo. Pricing


Customer Service


Issue Age


Min. Coverage


No Exam Option


Expert Review Of  Available  Options For  Life Insurance with Depression

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Reviewed by

Jim Tobin, CFP®

Why you can trust this review

At Bequest Mutual, we value our editorial independence. We keep our reviews strictly factual so you can use them to make informed decisions. Life insurance carriers referred to on this site do not approve reviews. 

This Principal Financial life insurance review will address the primary points of comparison between life insurance carriers. Specifically, this review will address company history, financial ratings, product offerings, underwriting niches, pricing and customer service. 

Principal Financial Life Insurance Company History

One of the nations older life insurance  carriers, Principal Financial Life Insurance Company  began as famed financier Edward Temple's Bankers Life Association  in 1879.

While Principal Financial Group has evolved into a significant financial services company with over 600 billion  in assets under management, life insurance remains a driving force in their business model.

Principal Financial Life Insurance Financial Ratings

Almost a hundred and forty tears later financial ratings for Principal remain strong. The carrier is rated as A+ by A.M. Best, the predominant ratings service for the life insurance industry. 






Principal Life Insurance Products

Term Life Insurance

Principal offers fixed term life insurance in 10, 15, 20 and 30 year terms. Principal is best known for underwriting policies up to 1 million dollars with no medical exam. These policies are not a fit for everyone, as you need to be scored as "preferred" or "preferred plus" to qualify. Nonetheless, being that they are priced as fully underwritten, it is a huge leap forward in the world of insurance underwriting.

Universal Life Insurance

The Principal Financial Life Insurance Company offers several "flavors" of universal life insurance, including a a traditional UL, an indexed UL and a variable UL. The traditional model is tied to interest rates, the variable UL is tied directly to the equities markets and the popular indexed is a hybrid that credits interest based on stock index performance but is not actually a security instrument like the VUL. While much safer now, universal life has a tumultuous history, you can read about here??.


Although the Bequest Mutual is dedicated to discussing life insurance options, we'd be remiss if we didn't mention the Principal is a significant player in the annuity marketplace. Principal offers annuities in fixed, variable , immediate and deferred options. In fact a visit to the home page prompts questions about rolling over an old 401k. 

Principal Life Insurance Riders

Available term policy riders include:.

  • Children’s insurance:  $5,000 to $25,000.
  • Conversion extension
  • Waiver of premium for Disability
  • Accelerated benefit 
  • Extended no-lapse
  • Cost of living increase

* Riders are not available on all plans*.

Additionally there is a privilege to convert to permanent coverage without proof of insurability.  Conversion privileges vary with product.

Principal Financial Life Insurance Rates

Principal Life Insurance tends to be priced competitively, slightly more than the usual price leaders. However,  pricing is not always "apples to apples. Rather, it comes down to the underwriting class a specific carrier assigns you.

For instance if Principal, after applying "lifestyle credits" for using a CPap to treat sleep apnea, rates a moderately overweight 53  year old man  "standard " while other "better priced" companies rate him as Table 2, the more expensive Principal is the better deal. 

So as you can see in this example , the final price has just as much to do with the underwriting decision as it does with the rates you see on quote tools.

Prudential will always be viewed as "more expensive", but sometimes there is more to the story than meets the eye. 

Prudential  Underwriting Highlights

Unlike some of the other carriers we have reviewed, Principal uses a healthy lifestyle crediting system that allows for better ratings for people with a medical history that have taken proactive steps to become healthier.

Principal tends to be more lenient than many carriers with respect to build charts, and family history with the exception of death from cardiovascular disease, stroke or diabetes before age 60.

Additionally, Principal is tolerant of cholesterol & blood pressure medications.

 For these reasons Principal is worthy of a look certain situations.

Principal  No Exam Options

Accelerated Underwriting

The accelerated underwriting program discussed earlier, that allows for up to 1MM with no blood or urine is a niche of sorts , but the rest of the industry is working hard to catch up with similar products. However, until they get there Principal is a leader in no exam policies up to a million dollars. 

Principal Life Insurance  Customer Service

The NAIC complaint report shows a spotless record for Principal for the most recent year. This is materially better than the national average of 1 percent.  

J.D. Power & Assoc. rank Principal 4/5. The Better Business Bureau grades A+B- for Principal.

Principal Financial  Contact Information


711 High St.
Des Moines, IA 50392

Phone:(800) 986-3343


Principal  Financial: Final Thoughts

Principal is a solid carrier with a strong history and strong financial ratings. Regardless of your need Principal is worthy of consideration.  

The accelerated underwriting program is one of the few in the industry that will go to a million dollars of coverage.

alternatives to Principal

In cases where Principal is not among  the most competitive rate (for example tobacco users), there are over 50 carriers available at the Bequest Mutual. Whether it's a condition that Principal  chooses not to see more favorably than others  or an accelerated underwriting option you are looking for, the Bequest Mutual will be happy to help you get the best deal possible. 

Your Next Step

Thank you for choosing The Bequest Mutual to research Principal financial life insurance company reviews. Should you have any questions please do not hesitate to call or send over an email.

Bonus: The most common mistakes people make buying life insurance and how to avoid them

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