Our Disclaimer: We are not affiliated with Lincoln Heritage Life Insurance Company. As a company, we do review many insurance companies for the benefit of consumers and our clients alike. This review will consist of facts and opinions based on industry and professional experience. Interested in speaking with Lincoln Heritage directly,… they can reached at 800-438-7180. If you are looking at Lincoln Heritage for life insurance, we do recommend that you fill out the “Life Insurance Quoting Tool” on the right side of your screen so you can quickly compare coverage with the other final expense companies. You may be quite surprised that you can get much better rates than what you may be quoted.
Good Day!! Your here to get the scoop on the Funeral Advantage offering from Lincoln Heritage. You made a good decision to check into their life insurance product. After reading, we are confident you will know how to proceed with making the best decision for your needs.
In this review, we will cover roughly 5 items.
- Lincoln Heritage as a Life Insurance Company. Who are they and where are they located?
- Is the Funeral Advantage Plan the best final expense insurance your needs?
- How the Funeral Advantage plan works.
- What makes this whole life policy different than the other guy (competitors)
- Last but not least…The price of their program. Is it affordable or not?
In this article, we will also explain how their plan works, the prices and the various ages and how their premium rates compare with the competition out there.
Finally, we are going to show you how to get final expense insurance for a considerably lower cost than what Lincoln Heritage Life will charge you.
So here we go.
Be sure to hang on because I am bringing the heat!!
Profile of Lincoln Heritage Life Insurance Company
Lincoln Heritage was founded in 1963 by Jack Londen, a life insurance agent. Growing from the first home office being in his personal residence, Lincoln Heritage has developed into a seasoned final expense company with their corporate headquarters located at 4343 E Camelback Rd. Suite 400, Phoenix, AZ 85018. Their phone number is (800) 433-8181. As a company, they sell more burial insurance than any other company in the country. The company can be reached on the web at www.ihlic.com, or searched out by using funeral advantage com etc. www.funeraladvantage.com should also work.
The Funeral Advantage Policy
The Funeral Advantage plan from Lincoln Heritage is a whole life insurance policy designed to pay up to $20,000 of the insureds final expenses. This policy is issued and underwritten by Lincoln Heritage Life Insurance company.
Claims are reportedly payed quickly once the death claim has been processed. Upon approval, you beneficiary will receive the policy benefit amount. The Funeral Advantage policy includes a membership to the Funeral Consumer Guardian Society. The intention of this organization is to help the loved ones arrange the funeral.
Please be mindful of the terms final expense insurance, burial policy etc. They all mean the same thing. The Funeral Advantage plan is just the name of the whole life insurance plan designed for seniors. Funeral insurance is another loose term to remember.
How Does This Policy Work?
Upon death, whether it is you or another, a certificate of death would be filed with Lincoln Heritage Insurance company on the appropriate policy number on their claim form.
Once this is received, they will process the claim. Be aware, it is standard procedure for insurance companies to investigate the cause of death.
Do not be put off. Insurance companies must rule out claims not covered under the term of the policy that was purchased.
Once this is complete, Lincoln Heritage will promptly release the funds to the beneficiary.
As a life insurance company, they specialize in final expense coverage so naturally this is where the sales emphasis is.
Are they a large life insurance company like Transamerica or AIG?
Lincoln Heritage agents are selling this one product and that is the focus of this company.
It is important to remember that just because Lincoln Heritage may sell the most burial insurance policies does not indicate it is the best product.
Many life insurance companies just have a broader market and have several life insurance products including final expense insurance.
Take Mutual of Omaha for example…excellent provider of burial insurance and a history of very satisfied people.
What is most important to you right now?
The Lincoln Heritage Insurance Rates
I told you earlier I was going to bring the heat.
Here is where it all starts.
The Funeral Advantage whole life policy can be more than double the cost of the competition!
Now, maybe your thinking that I am not comparing apples to apples.
You’d be mistaken.
I am actually comparing their policy to numerous life insurance companies that offer the same exact product.
We are going to put some numbers below for you to see. Be ready to be shell shocked!!
I have selected the comparison to be with Mutual of Omaha because they are a name many people are familiar with and seem to trust.
Yes, they are also very competitive. I love the company as they treat my clientele as well as myself first class.
And…my favorite show as a youngster was Mutual of Omaha’s “Wild Kingdom!”
Getting back on track…
At Maple Valley Insurance Group, we work with dozens of life insurance companies.
Mutual of Omaha is not always the lowest price, but overall, quite competitive among final expense insurance companies. We would have to see if they are your best option.
The tables below have the prices shown for a non tobacco applicant. You must be able to qualify for Mutual of Omaha, but the health questions on the Lincoln Heritage policy are very similar.
If you wish to see how other competitors (besides Mutual of Omaha) compare to Lincoln Heritage, you can use the final expense quoting tool on the right to receive quotes from roughly 25 carriers in the funeral insurance business.
Male Rates Per Month
|Mutual Of Omaha|
|Mutual Of Omaha
Female Rates Per Month
|Mutual Of Omaha|
|Mutual Of Omaha
So what is your reaction to the month cost of the Lincoln Heritage Funeral Advantage Plan? If you did the math, it is easy to see how you could get drastically overcharged. Thousands of dollars over a few short years.
Ask yourself…is this life insurance plan really better than the same thing issued by Mutual of Omaha? I think most of us know the answer.
If you took the time to use the free instant quote wizard on the right, you found out that the vast majority of life insurance companies offering burial insurance are going to keep your extra money where it belongs…in your bank account.
Are you questioning how a life insurance company survives being so expensive like this?
Well, it comes down to aggressive marketing and persistency. Lincoln Heritage wants to be the solution to something you want taken care of.
So, Lincoln Heritage aggressively recruits salespeople to market their products stressing what a market share they have for burial insurance. They train prospective sales people/agents to market their Funeral Advantage plan by selling a bonus not found in the actual policy.
So what is the “bonus” I’m talking about? Well it is just a fancy bow on a expensive senior life insurance policy…a membership with the FCGS. I will discuss “the fluff” later in the article.
Let’s keep pushing forward
Lincoln Heritage Funeral Advantage Gets a Sudden 3X Pay Raise!
What if I told you that the rates you saw above are the best case scenario with life insurance from Lincoln?
Would you believe me if I told you they could go up an additional 3 times?
That’s right, multiply the above premium rate per month times 3!!
To make the situation worse, the Funeral Advantage from Lincoln Heritage could stick you with a waiting period on the policy before it will pay out the full death benefit.
You see, if you are medically diagnosed with certain medical conditions, Lincoln’s underwriting will red flag you and only offer you their Modified Whole Life insurance.
Ok. What’s so bad about that?
Here is where people get real upset. A lot of folk just cannot afford to keep it long term or even at all.
If you are tight in your budget, getting hit with costs 2 and 3 times the industry standard just isn’t going to cut it at all. Even Guaranteed Acceptance life insurance from the likes of AIG is not that expensive. That final expense product is typically used for people with very poor health, even terminally ill. It has no health questions at all.
How does the Lincoln Heritage Funeral Advantage plan help seniors on a fixed income?
Health Issues That Raise the Red Flags Placing You In The Lincoln, Modified Plan
If you have one of the following conditions and elect coverage with Lincoln Heritage, you will only have 1 option…The Modified Plan. That will result in a 2 year limited benefit period for full coverage. You will be getting a much higher premium which I will illustrate in the table below.
First, here are the knockout questions that the company uses to evaluate you as a risk:
- Full Stroke
- Heart Attack
- TIA (Transient Ischemic Attack) or Mini Stroke
- Circulatory Surgery (Stents, Bypass, Angioplasty)
- Blood Clots
- Heart Surgery
- Irregular Heartbeat (AFib)
- Peripheral Artery Disease
- Pulmonary Hypertension
- Blood Thinner Medication and Heart Medication (high blood pressure medication ok)
If you have had any of these conditions/medications, Lincoln Heritage life insurance is going to dip into your back pocket if you want what they are offering.
All of these medical conditions above are acceptable with the companies we work with. There is no outrageous discrimination. That’s right, no two year waiting period nor a 3X payday!!
For those that clear that Lincoln Heritage screening test, here come the next batch. You also are entitled to their Modified plan for any of these:
- Kidney Disease
- Chronic Bronchitis
- Cystic Fibrosis
- Diabetic Related Blindness
- Cirrhosis of the Liver
The list just keeps going on and on, cherry picking who isn’t going to get financially hammered!!
Will Lincoln Heritage Insurance Pay Claims in 24 Hours? That’s Really Fast.
Take a look at the first bullet point of the sales literature from above for the Funeral Advantage plan. It highlights that Lincoln will pay claims in 24 hours. That statement is followed with “once a claim is approved.”
So a consumer looks at this and says…wow…that it fast!!
We must look deeper to see the reality of the claims process.
The key phrase is… once it’s approved.
That is how life insurance works. There is an approval process at claim time. While final expense coverage is designed to move quickly, an investigation is conducted after receipt of certificate of death.
Insurance companies don’t simply send out $10,000 within 24 hours because someone makes a phone call.
All good life insurance companies pay claims promptly after the death certificate and investigation is complete to verify the terms of the policy have been met.
Your probably clear now that there is no way a claim against this policy can be paid with 24 hours of the insured passing on.
Understand that the impression one may be given by the sales material on their website or an agent of Lincoln Heritage is looking thru rose colored glasses. Remember, they are asking you to pay well above the going rate for whole life insurance, period. A whole life insurance plan is what guarantees the money to your loved ones not the “value” bonuses not written inside the actual policy.
The bottom line, no one told you that you that your loved ones would be paid in 24 hours did they? The marketing is trying to put a spin on the normal course of business that any reputable life insurance company uses. None of this marketing hype is written in the policy either. It is just talk to encourage good people to pay a much higher premium with no guarantee of “perceived” extra value beyond the whole life insurance.
Lincoln Heritage Life Insurance Company is not doing much beyond the scope of other senior final expense insurance carriers.
The Funeral Consumer Guardian Society Membership – FCGS
As I started of writing this article, I referred to the FCGS, This stands for Funeral Consumer Guardian Society. I chose to leave this for the tail end of this Lincoln Heritage life insurance review because it really steps outside the insurance itself. It is the shiny bow to deflect the consumer from seeing the better options out there.
On the FCGS website they suggest they are an independent senior advocate organization. They have no connection with a particular religion, cemetery, funeral home etc.
After 2015, the FCGS no longer allowed just anyone to obtain membership.
Oddly enough, the only way now to obtain membership in the FCGS is to buy a Lincoln Heritage life policy.
These days, Lincoln Heritage agents are trained to pitch how great this bonus is…the FCGS.
What Are the Benefits of the FCGS?
There are four different benefits touted as part of the FCGS membership. Take a look and see what you think.
Funeral Planning Assistance
Under this benefit, you will receive a written document that lays out your wishes on how you want your funeral carried out. You loved ones will have a preset plan in place since the decisions at the time of death require snap decisions and may add to their emotional stress.
The written documents will simply question have you fill out information like:
- Would you like to have a traditional burial or be creamated?
- Would you like a viewing or not?
- What type and color of flowers do you want?
- Is a certain type of music more appropriate?
These questions from the document deal with the moving parts of planning a funeral. You complete the form and send it back to the FCGS where it is filed away
Our Feedback on this benefit…
Getting your final wishes preplanned is a good thing to do. I know it is hard for some people to really handle, but your loved ones will really appreciate it.
This is a great idea but you don’t need the FCGS. You can do this yourself. What we have recommended for over 20 years is to take your final expense policy down to the funeral home of choice. The funeral home has all the forms needed. They will write all the plans and wishes down for you after discussing it with you. It will be attached it to your final expense policy for your beneficiary(s) benefit. This is a superior approach to dealing with the FCGS. The funeral home already knows what they need. The life insurance company provides the resources and the funeral homes knows where the money is coming from to cover your funeral wishes.
If you don’t want to do this with a funeral home, here are the planning docs you would need. Work at them at your leisure.
Funeral Funding Information
This benefit gives your family member or friend a contact at the FCGS when the final expense money is need to pay the funeral costs. The thing is they are just calling Lincoln Heritage instead of the person you assigned to handle your final wishes. Why not just call Lincoln Heritage directly to get it done right away? Kind of a waste of time and loved ones can’t be assured that task is done pronto.
Sorry, not a benefit at all in my opinion.
Funeral Plan Security Service
Remember the funeral planner docs from above? Well if you send the FCGS docs back to them, they will scan your plan into their computer. It will become available to your family by a special coded identification card they issue.
Sounds great doesn’t it?
What is you just went down and planned everything at the funeral home and had them attached it to your final expense policy? Wouldn’t your family have immediate and secure access to it? Heck, you could print out the documents to the planner I included above. Fill it out and attach it.
Why is the FCGS valuable here?
Funeral Plan Activation Help
The feature allows the loved one handling your funeral to notify the FCGS of death. The FCGS with notify the funeral home you chose and give them the arrangements from the planning documents that you sent back to them. The claim is that may be able to find some discounts if the costs are out of the ordinary.
One the Lincoln Heritage website, they suggest is saves the average family at $1800 on a full funeral. $600 was estimated for cremations.
This one rubs me the wrong way.
This benefit is really pushed by Lincoln Heritage agents to help build value in you paying very high insurance premiums. While they may negotiate on your families behalf, if the cost of flowers and casket are the going rate, there will be no discounts. You can do a little checking around well in advance to compare costs. Again, none of this is written in the policy. Nothing legal and binding to the Funeral Advantage plan at all. While this maybe best intentions, your family could be saving zero in reality.
So let’s us say that the FCGS saves $1800 from a full funeral that would have costed $10,000 in your state.
Would you really want to pay anywhere from 20% up to even 300% additional to possibly save $1800?
If you look at the math, it does not make sense. The high monthly premiums you pay to Lincoln Heritage Life Insurance will eat any discount the FCGS may be able to negotiate very quickly.
Why go thru all that?
Conclusion Of Our Lincoln Heritage Life Insurance Review
So by now you’re probably a little taken back at how easy it is to get gouged with Lincoln Heritage life insurance. The Funeral Advantage plan does not fair well against the competition.
The value added with the FCGS is small at best.
Is it worth overpaying thousands of dollars on life insurance?
If you had to drop the life insurance due to cost and tough time, all your plans could be with the FCGS. How does that help your loved ones?
More seniors drop life insurance over the cost, not because they don’t think they need it. Those who don’t purchase it self insure final expense costs themselves, purchased a prepayed burial or left it up to their families to figure out.
Is it even remotely reasonable for Lincoln Heritage to expect a consumer on a fixed income to pay 2 to 3 times more money than the top life insurance companies out there?
In the humble opinion of this veteran agent, NO!!
With the underwriting standards they expect seniors to meet and being one of the most expensive burial insurance companies out there I cannot give this product a thumbs up. They pay their claims like any other reputable life insurance company but that is where it ends.
We recommend that you store your own insurance documents with your life insurance policy. Have the complete funeral plan you arranged with the funeral home of choice or simply use the planner I included above.
The best “funeral advantage” plan you can create is simply saving money on your whole life policy by finding the most competitive coverage, buying it and taking it down to the funeral home. Work with them and prepare the last wishes, document it and have the funeral home attach it to your whole life policy.
Sock the prepared policy and arrangements in your fire safe. Nothing is easier on your family!!
It is done.
Those are your handmade arrangements. You were able to negotiate and pick out just what you would like rather than burdening the family with calling for help from the FCGS and hoping they would help out.
The FCGS is mute point if you already sat down with the funeral home years before. You saved a lot of money in the process and able to afford more life insurance to take care of you loved ones in your absence if you elected to.
Lincoln is that expensive! You can buy thousands of additional coverage for the same premium you would be paying them.
Where do you want your money to go to…the insurance company or loved ones?
With the FCGS business…You family will lose access if you are not with Lincoln Heritage as a policy owner down the road. Store your own documents and policies in a good fire safe you can now afford by not overpaying on your coverage with Lincoln Heritage. Your loved ones will have it all organized were it needs to be to handle everything in peace. Contact numbers all in one secure box.
Ladies and gentleman, I do not have an ax to grind beyond the cost versus the benefits of their whole life insurance, Funeral Advantage.
You may be wondering why I seem to know so much about Lincoln Heritage and how this all works. If you hadn’t guessed it, I used to represent the company. They came into a agency I used to work for and recruited me. My review is not hearsay or just research, it is from real experience and research.
I’ve always been an independent agent/broker, but a Lincoln recruiter asked me to give the company a chance before I saw the rates.
Yes, it was a short stint.
This was probably 1999 to 2000. It has been a while so I’m not able to be specific.
I actually went out in the field with the zone manager of the company to visit people who wanted to purchase final expense insurance from their company.
On those calls, I watched him take applications from multiple seniors. Some of the applications were take while suggesting they could add more coverage in the future if their finances improved.
Why did he say they could buy more down the road?
Because the cost of the benefits these applicants wanted to purchase was too expensive. In other words, instead of buying a $7,000 policy, they purchased $5,000. In some cases I saw people who just would not buy… even though the card they sent in for the Lincoln Heritage Funeral Advantage life insurance had said they had the need. They liked the idea but were just overwhelmed by the high cost of protection and their budget.
Sitting thru all these cases, I knew there was a real problem with Lincoln and their offering.
Seniors on a fixed income cannot afford these kind of rates and likely it wouldn’t change in the future.
The frustrating part was… out in the car was my good old black leather bag. In it, I had applications from 4 different life insurance companies that would accept all of these folks and would save them hundreds of dollars a year. Over several years, thousands.
So what did I do?
Told the Lincoln Heritage zone manager that Lincoln Heritage life insurance products were not going to work out for me.
From there, I gave the names and addresses to a agent/broker friend who would later become my business “partner.” I simply asked him to take care of these folks. It was inappropriate for me to go back personally. They needed an independent agent who had their best interests in mind, not Lincoln Heritage Life Insurance Company.
Every single referral bought from him and were tickled to death at how much more affordable life insurance could really be.
Lesson learned for me and hopefully for you today. Make sure you are doing business with an independent professional who knows this business inside and out and has access to all the best life insurance options for you.
Be careful of marketing hype. It can cost you and your loved ones dearly.
Hope this review of Lincoln Heritage life insurance has been helpful.
For further help: 269-244-3420
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