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If you’ve ever played the game of Monopoly, you might recognize those street names from the famous New Jersey resort town of Atlantic City, home to the world’s longest boardwalk. New Jersey is also the site of the first ever baseball game, college football game, and professional basketball game in history. A high life expectancy, a low rate of gun deaths, and the lowest suicide rate in the country bodes well for New Jersey life insurance rates.
Finding good, affordable life insurance shouldn’t break your bank. But unfortunately that’s often the case.
How can you combat that? Turn to QuoteWizard. We’ll put you in touch with New Jersey's top insurance companies so you can find the best rates for you and your budget.
Below are the major factors that affect life insurance rates
Age - Age is one of the largest factors affecting life insurance rates. The younger you are when you purchase a policy, the less likely it is that it will pay out, so the lower your rates will be, other things being equal.
Life expectancy at birth in New Jersey is 80.3 years, the one of the highest for any state. The life expectancy at birth for the US overall is 78.9 years. So, if you purchased a 30-year term life policy in New Jersey at age 52, you would be more likely than not to pass away before 82 years of age, the end of the term.
On the other hand, if you were 32 years old and purchased a 30-year term life policy, you would be well under New Jersey’s life expectancy of 80.3 years old when the policy term ended. You’d be a much lower risk to insure and would therefore pay much lower rates than the person in the former example.
Driving Record - This might seem like a confusing inclusion, as this page is about life insurance, not auto insurance, but car accidents are incredibly common; they kill more than 30,000 people per year. If someone has a driving record littered with moving violations, they are at an increased risk of a premature demise. The result is higher rates.
Firearm Deaths - Places that have higher rates of accidental or premature death generally have higher rates. A significant part of these untimely deaths comes from firearm injuries, which account for about 33,000 deaths in the US every year. In New Jersey, the death rate from injury due to firearms is 5.7 per 100,000 deaths, the sixth-lowest rate in the country. Nationwide, the average firearm death rate is 10.4 per 100,000.
Gender - Since women live longer than men on average, they pay less for insurance than a similar man would, other things being equal. In New Jersey, the percentage of the population that’s female is 51.2%, and the percentage that’s male is 48.8%. In the US as a whole, women are 50.8% of the population, and men are 49.2% of the population.
Health History - While most of us have one or two minor health issues, if you have been diagnosed with a serious illness, or if you have a family history of such illnesses, this can have a significant impact on your rates.
There are certain conditions, such as heart disease or certain kinds of cancers, which can make your premiums much higher if you have them or a family history of them. In some cases, a pre-existing condition can make you ineligible altogether, which is why it’s important to get life insurance before something serious happens.
Lifestyle & Hobbies - People who engage in adventure sports or who have potentially dangerous hobbies will pay more for insurance, other things being equal, than those who don’t. This is especially relevant in New Jersey, where skiing and hunting are common recreational activities.
Marital Status - Research shows that on average, married people live longer and are healthier than similar single people. So, if you’re married, you can get a modest discount on life insurance. According to the most recent data available from the US Census, in New Jersey in 2009, the rate of marriage for people over 15 was 28.1 per 1,000 people, the rate of divorce was 12.1 per 1,000 people, and the rate of widowhood was 11.1 per 1,000 people.
Occupation - People with hazardous jobs like logging and fishing will pay more for insurance than someone with a less dangerous, mundane office job, other things being equal. The most common job in New Jersey, proportionally, is a marriage and family therapist.
Tobacco Use - Because tobacco users don’t live as long as non-tobacco users (other things being equal) tobacco users pay substantially more for life insurance than an identical non-tobacco user would pay for the same policy. Tobacco use is associated with a number of health complications, such as heart disease, stroke, and COPD, any of which may cause higher rates and an earlier death.
As of 2013, the national average rate of smoking was 19%. To compare to the most recent data available, in 2014, approximately 15.7% of New Jersey adults smoked cigarettes – about 1,085,000 adults.
Travel - If you regularly travel to developing countries, particularly countries on the US State Department’s Warning List, you will pay more for insurance than a traveler who sticks to developed countries.
Value of Policy - It shouldn’t come as a huge surprise that one of the largest, if not the largest contributing factor, to a policy’s premiums is the value of the policy. As with anything, you get what you pay for; the more protection that you purchase, the higher the premiums.
Weight - Obesity has surpassed smoking to become America’s largest public health cost and problem. Like tobacco use, obese or seriously overweight people have a lower life expectancy, which means an increased probability of their policy being paid out. Because obesity increases the likelihood of health problems such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and some cancers, overweight and obese individuals can expect to pay higher rates than similar individuals who are not obese.
As of 2013, the adult obesity rate in New Jersey was 26.3%. This makes New Jersey the #39 most obese state. Overall, the average obesity rate in the US is 34.9%.
While each of these factors plays a big role in the cost of your policy, some aspects of life insurance are entirely individual. Insurance companies calculate your rates based on your own health, habits, and lifestyle. That’s why shopping around and comparing quotes is so important–to make sure you’re getting the best rate possible.
|Rank||Cause of Death||Total Deaths||Death Rate||State Rank||US Death Rate*|
|3||Lower Respiratory Disease||3,245||31.1||47th||42.1|
|6||Alzheimer's Disease||1,812||16.2||45th (tie)||23.5|
|*Death Rate calculated as: (deaths from that cause / total population) / 100,000|
|Rank||Company||Direct Premiums Written (in thousands)||Market Share|
|1||Prudential Financial Inc.||$3,790,676||17.4%|
|4||American International Group||$1,070,567||4.9%|
|5||Jackson National Life Group||$1,069,221||4.9%|
|6||AXA Life Insurance Co.||$1,045,081||4.8%|
|7||Lincoln National Corp.||$873,939||4.0%|
|8||Guggenheim Capital LLC||$848,505||3.9%|
|9||TIAA - CREF||$692,022||3.2%|
|10||New York Life Insurance Group||$698,902||3.2%|
Source: A.M. Best (Ratings as of 9/2/2015)
Insurance in New Jersey is governed by the laws defined by Titles 17 and 17-B of the New Jersey Statutes, as outlined by the Dept. of Banking & Insurance of the State of New Jersey.
This legislation is used to regulate claims and provide certain protections to New Jersey consumers, for example:
Grace Period: Any life insurance policyholder in New Jersey is entitled to a 30-day “grace period” to make up a missed payment without punishment or file a death claim after the missed payment. This is to prohibit the insurance company from withholding a claim or cancelling a policy because of a slightly late payment. If the insured individual passes away during the grace period, the insurance company is responsible for paying the claim.
Timely Payment of Claims: In New Jersey, it is required that insurance companies pay out claims in a timely manner, meaning within two months. If unreasonable delay occurs, the state will fine, penalize, and/or sanction the insurance company and interest will accrue based on the length of the delay. The interest is then paid to the beneficiary as well.
These regulations don’t just protect consumers; they also protect insurance companies from fraud. For example, New Jersey insurers may challenge any information in your insurance application for up to two years from the policy’s effective date. If they find any evidence of fraud, they can terminate your policy immediately.
This organization assists the customers of any insurance company that is found to be insolvent. If you have concerns about the financial well-being of your carrier, you should contact the NJLHIGA. Their contact info is below:
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