Known in the healthcare sector, Aetna's subsidiaries also offer affordable burial insurance

Aetna – Burial Insurance Review: 2021

Senior Life Services is an independent broker that can do the shopping for you to save time and money. We’ve helped thousands of seniors buy affordable life insurance — by comparing rates from the top final expense carriers in the nation, including Aetna, Gerber, Transamerica, and more. We make it easy to get started! Compare rates with FREE burial insurance quotes.

If you’re looking for the inside scoop on Aetna Burial Insurance, this review is for you. Before you buy a policy from any company, it’s important to know their financial strength, product features, prices, and life insurance company rating from A.M. Best. Let’s dive in.

Company Background

Aetna, one of the largest insurance companies in the United States, was founded in 1853. Mostly known in the healthcare industry, Aetna has maintained a long history of financial stability and delivered on its promises. What many people may not know is that Aetna provides an affordable option when planning for funeral and burial costs. You can trust that they’ll pay your claim when that day arrives. 

To clarify, Aetna has two affiliates that actually write their burial policies: Continental Life Insurance Company and American Continental Insurance Company.

Continental Life Insurance Company (CLI) started in 1983 and was the support team for Aetna’s senior supplemental coverage. American Continental Insurance Company (ACI) was established in 2005. They became a member of the Aetna family of companies in 2011. A.M. Best gave CLI and ACI an A (Excellent) rating.

Why Burial Insurance?

Burial insurance is often called final expense insurance or funeral insurance. They’re all the same product. Here are a few reasons to purchase burial insurance:

You may have heard by now that the average funeral can cost $10,000 or more. Social Security currently pays just $255 as a death benefit to qualified dependents. Plus, the majority of healthcare costs increase in the final stage of life — when people may live with chronic illnesses that eventually become fatal. The costs associated with treatments can be very intense. 

Fortunately, there’s a solution. Aetna burial insurance can help reduce the emotional and financial burden on your family while they’re grieving your loss. And as a whole life insurance policy, it builds cash value over time. Your beneficiary can use the money that has accumulated (known as the death benefit payout) to take care of any pressing needs. 

Why Aetna?

Of all the companies you could buy burial insurance from, why choose Aetna? They’re dedicated to their policyholders, and they have financial stability, competitive rates, and lenient underwriting guidelines. Aetna’s affiliate American Continental is one of the only carriers that an applicant can purchase life insurance for ages 86 to 89.

The Aetna burial insurance is a whole life insurance policy. This means that the premiums and death benefit will NEVER change, as long as you’ve made the payments. They have a program that may be a good option depending on your health. If you have a history of heart issues or diabetes, you should look elsewhere for a final expense plan. Here are some fast facts about Aetna’s burial insurance plans:

  • Coverage NEVER expires
  • 3 plans are available, including immediate coverage
  • Monthly premium can’t increase
  • Benefit won’t decrease

If your health worsens, Aetna cannot cancel your policy. Once you get one of their burial plans, it’s always there — unless YOU decide to cancel by not paying the premiums.

Questions to Consider

When you sit down with an Aetna burial insurance agent, they may ask you the following questions:

  1. Have you considered the costs related to end of life health care? 
  2. Have you taken care of your final expenses?
  3. Are you aware that Social Security benefits pay only $255?
  4. Can your family afford to bear the costs of your funeral?
  5. Have you considered other expenses or debts, including hospice or skilled care?

After addressing these questions, you and your agent can determine the face amount, which varies by age — but is based on your age at application. You’ll want to lock in good rates as early as you can.

They Take Applicants Under 50

Most burial insurance companies have a hard rule of imposing 50 as their minimum age to apply. However, you can qualify for Aetna’s program as early as 45. You’ll likely pay much lower premiums if you’re between the ages of 40 and 50.  

No Rider Options

Unfortunately, American Continental Insurance Company doesn’t offer any additional coverage through riders. But most other final expense companies give you several rider options, which may include:

  • Terminal illness/Accelerated Benefit Rider 
  • Accidental Death Rider
  • Nursing Home Rider
  • Child Rider
  • Grandchild Rider

What Burial Insurance Offers You

🕊 Peace of Mind

💲 Funds when needed most

💰 Affordable, permanent coverage!

👉 Level, graded, or modified death benefit plans

📞 Telephone based approval process – no medical exam

The best part? You get coverage through Aetna, a company with proven financial strength AND commitment to the senior market. 

Note: Plan options vary by state, and the product is available in all states except Alaska, California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, New York, Vermont, and Washington.

Average Monthly Aetna Burial Insurance Rates

Policyholder Age$5,000 Male$5,000 Female$20,000 Male$20,000 Female$35,000 Male$35,000 Female
60$28$23$100$82$173$140
65$33$28$123$100$210$173
70$43$35$160$127$278$220
75$56$45$212$169$371$290
80$75$60$290$234$502$409
85$101$83$396$320$670$558

Females typically pay less than males. But also, the older you are when you buy the Aetna burial insurance, the higher your rates will be, no matter your gender. 

How Aetna Determines Your Eligibility

Aetna will review your health profile to see if you qualify for their burial insurance. They’ll ask you the formal health questions and then run a prescription history check. These pieces of information are all they require to determine your eligibility. 

  • No build chart (height to weight ratios) as part of their underwriting
  • No physical or medical exam
  • No MIB (Medical Information Bureau) check

“Point of sale” interviews are normal in the final expense industry. During this interview, you, your agent, and the insurance company will do a short three-way phone call. The company will obtain your authorization that lets them access your medication history, and they’ll also ask you the health questions. The health questionnaire is the primary step when you apply. 

Below, we’ve listed the “knockout” questions for American Continental Insurance Company.

Knockout Questions

If you answer yes to any of these questions, you’re not eligible for any of their burial insurance plans. They will also deny you if they find a medication history that’s consistent with any of the conditions listed:

  1. Do any of the following apply to you:
    • Are you currently hospitalized, in a nursing facility, confined to a bed, or receiving hospice care?
    • Do you require the use of oxygen for any lung or respiratory disorder?
    • Have you been diagnosed by a medical professional to have an aneurysm that hasn’t been surgically repaired?
  1. Have you ever been diagnosed or treated by a medical professional or had surgery for any of the following:
    • Any condition requiring bone marrow, stem cell, or organ transplant?
    • Kidney disease requiring dialysis?
    • Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, or a mental incapacity?
    • Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS)?
    • A life expectancy of 12 months or less?
    • AIDS, ARC, tested positive for HIV?

If you said yes to any of the above, don’t worry. There are still options, including a guaranteed issue plan from Gerber Life.

Levels of Coverage

Aetna offers different levels of coverage for burial insurance. The best option for you will depend on your age and health. The younger and healthier you are when first buying the policy, the less you’ll pay in premiums. 

Level One – The Immediate Death Benefit

Aetna’s “Level Benefit” final expense plan provides 100% immediate coverage to those who qualify. This means your benefits are available, in full, starting on day one. No waiting period!

To be eligible, you must answer “no” to all the health questions and must not have any significant health conditions in the past two years. Common issue ages are 60 to 89, and the coverage amount ranges from $3,000 to $35,000 — they vary based on your age. For example, a female aged 65 who doesn’t smoke will pay around $45 per month for a $10,000 death benefit.  

Aetna’s level plan is competitively priced and freely accepts things like hypertension, cholesterol, arthritis, mental health issues, and health events 2+ years ago. We recommend this plan to those who qualify.

Level Two – The Graded Death Benefit

Aetna’s “Graded Benefit” Burial Insurance has a slightly higher payout than most graded plans. It pays 40% in the first year, 75% in the second, and 100% in the third year and after. The most common issue ages for this policy are 60 to 80, and you can buy $3,000 up to $35,000 of coverage. 

To qualify, you can’t answer “yes” to any of the knockout and modified conditions. And you can’t have a history of treatment. 

Overall, this is a well-priced plan for folks who are not in excellent health, considering the conditions covered. Crohn’s disease, cancer, and Ulcerative colitis are some of the health conditions that this graded plan is suitable for. 

Level Three – The Modified Death Benefit

The “Modified Benefit” by Aetna pays your chosen beneficiary all the premiums you paid into the policy, plus 10% interest. This plan has a standard waiting period that begins on the first day of your policy and ends exactly 24 months later. Should you pass away during this period, Aetna will refund 110% of your premiums.

But you could get your full death benefit during the waiting period. If you die due to an accident, they’ll pay out the death benefit in full.  

To qualify for their modified plan, you must be 75 or under and not have or have been treated for any of the “knockout” conditions. But even if your health means you’d qualify, we DO NOT recommend this plan. You can get a better deal with AIG or Gerber life guaranteed issue plans.

Aetna Summary & Next Steps

Ultimately, it’s up to you to compare burial insurance plans and rates and choose the one that’s best. Using a broker can free you of that responsibility. The carrier pays us a commission, and it costs you NOTHING to use our services. 

With Aetna’s well-rounded burial insurance program, your age and health will determine which level of coverage you qualify for and how much your premiums will be. Their application is simple, the point of sale interview is quick, and they don’t have any height and weight restrictions. At Senior Life Services, we believe Aetna’s Level One (Level) and Level Two (Graded) plans could be valuable to you in certain situations. We insist that you avoid Level Three (Modified), as it’s a bad choice for everybody.

Just be open and honest about your health issues, which will allow your Senior Life Services agent to advise you properly. Aetna Life Insurance Company — or one of its subsidiaries — might be the frontrunner, but there are other options, too. You can rely on us to shop the market for you and find the MOST coverage for the BEST price from whichever company it happens to be. Call (800) 548-3249 or fill out our form to get started.