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Prudential Life Insurance

4.35 Stars (1 Review)
Updated: January 20, 2023
By: Jonathan Trout
Jonathan Trout
Content Manager
Jonathan is a former product and content manager for Retirement Living. His background spans sales/marketing, finance, and telecommunications. Jonathan’s expertise in consumer wellness and research-backed data stories helped educate seniors on financial planning, retirement, and community resources. Jonathan graduated from Oklahoma State University with a B.S. in Environmental Sociology.
Content Manager
Edited By: Lauren Hamer
Lauren Hamer
Sr. Editor
Bringing more than a decade of editorial experience to Retirement Living, Lauren focuses on reporting senior-related issues, including retirement planning, finance, consumer protection, and health and wellness. Lauren has edited consumer content for Credible, Angi, Slickdeals, Jobs for the Future, and more.
Sr. Editor

Prudential is one of the most recognized names in life insurance, serving millions of people across the globe with individual life insurance policies and employer benefit plans. Prudential has been selling life insurance and other financial products for over 140 years and received numerous awards for environmental responsibility, best employer, diversity, military friendliness and business ethics.

Editorial Breakdown

Product Options 4.8 Stars
Availability 4.8 Stars
Policy Features 4.4 Stars
Customer Service 3.5 Stars

Overall Rating 4.4 Stars

Bottom Line

Prudential Life Insurance offers four life insurance policies: Term, Universal, Indexed Universal and Variable Universal. Elect optional benefit riders to tailor your policy to your personal needs.

Prudential Life Insurance Review

Life insurance is a good way to provide for family members after death while avoiding income taxes levied on survivors. Prudential provides both term and universal life insurance, with a variety of other financial products, including SimplyTerm, Prudential’s easy-to-apply-online life insurance. The company can also assist with financial planning, annuities, investments, and workplace benefits like retirement savings and health insurance.

Many Prudential life insurance policies are customizable with riders for flexible coverage to meet the consumer’s financial planning needs. Prudential offers 15 plans across four term and universal life insurance categories. Term policies are affordable and valid as long as you pay premiums for a term of five to 30 years. Universal policies build cash value and do not expire based on a term.


  • Large variety of life insurance policies
  • Well-known company with a long track record
  • Streamlined underwriting


  • Must purchase through agents, except for SimplyTerm
  • No whole life insurance policies

Prudential Life Insurance Accelerated Underwriting

Life insurance underwriting involves researching statistics and biometrics like body mass index and lifestyle choices to determine rates and whether to sell a policy to the applicant. Prudential uses a system called PruFastTrack to expedite the underwriting process while avoiding the need for medical exams. Consumers complete a survey and provide Prudential with permission to access pharmacy and medical records and the company returns a decision in days instead of the customary weeks.

Prudential Term Life Insurance Plans

Prudential offers six term life insurance plans, each designed to meet different financial needs. Riders are available for most policies to add various coverage options, explained in the chart below. All Prudential term life insurance includes:

  • Guaranteed Premiums with no increases over the term of your plan. If you keep the coverage after the term expires premiums can increase yearly through age 95.
  • Living Needs Benefit to give you access to your policy’s death benefit to pay for your care if you become terminally ill.
  • Income-tax Free Death Benefit per IRS rules, section 101.

SimplyTerm: This basic term life insurance is available for purchase directly from Prudential online. Applying is straightforward and quick: answer nine simple questions about your health and location. SimplyTerm offers a limited choice of term lengths and coverage with no riders and is a sound choice for single individuals.

Term Essential: Prudential offers Term Essential as an alternative to SimplyTerm when you need riders to customize your life insurance.

Term Elite: This life insurance plan builds on Term Essential benefits with the ability to convert the policy to permanent universal life insurance. Take advantage of the conversion feature within the first five years of the plan to get credit for the universal insurance first-year premium.

WorkLife 65: Prudential designed WorkLife 65 for people in their working years. The premiums remain fixed until you reach 65, and then you can keep your policy with a premium increase until you turn 85. Prudential WorkLife 65 waves premiums if you become disabled, or for one year if you become unemployed after holding the policy for 12 months.

PruLife Return of Premium Term: If you live beyond the term set on a PruLife Return of Premium Term policy, Prudential refunds premiums tax-free. You can add life insurance for your minor children to this plan.

– PruTerm One: PruTerm One life insurance is for those who need short-term coverage with a one-year term renewed annually. Ideal policyholders are small business owners who are paying off a small loan, those who are between jobs or just started new employment with limited benefits.

Prudential Term Life Insurance
Major Riders
Rider Term Elite Term Essential WorkLife 65 PruLife Return
of Premium Term
PruTerm One
Conversion to
Universal Insurance
Disability Premium
Accidental Death Rider X X X N/A N/A
Minor Children

Prudential Universal Life Insurance

Prudential offers four universal life insurance policies with many riders to enhance the plans. Each universal life policy comes with monthly, quarterly, annual, or biannual payments.

  • PruLife Universal Protector: The core policy in Prudential’s universal life insurance plans is PruLife Universal Protector with an adjustable death benefit and no lapse guaranteed premiums. This plan offers a choice of a death benefit with no age limit, or pay a lower premium to have coverage for fewer years.
  • PruLife Essential UL: Prudential’s PruLife Essential UL offers many of the same features of the PruLife Universal Protector policy with additional flexibility for accessing cash if you become chronically ill. Prudential offers a no-lapse rider, so your life insurance coverage continues if you take out a loan against the policy and it causes the portfolio to fall into a negative value. This policy has a wide choice of riders.
  • PruLife SUL Protector: Known as survivorship universal life insurance, Prudential’s PruLife SUL Protector provides a death benefit to allow couples to distribute inheritance to heirs or give a financial gift to a charity. This policy pays the death benefit after the second covered individual dies. Add a guaranteed policy split or estate protection rider for estate planning.
  • PruLife Universal Plus: Consider Prudential’s PruLife Universal Plus if you are looking for life insurance with cash value growth potential. The rate of return is variable, but Prudential guarantees a minimum interest rate. The accumulated cash value is accessible throughout the policyholder’s life via loans or cash draws against the policy, although an unpaid loan balance can affect the death benefit amount or tax status.
Prudential Universal Life
Major Riders
Rider PruLife Universal Protector PruLife Essential UL PruLife SUL Protector PruLife Universal Plus
Living Needs
Benefit Rider
Enhanced Disability
Premium Waiver
Accidental Death X X N/A X
Children Level
Term Rider

Prudential Indexed Universal Life Insurance

An indexed universal life policy has the benefit of cash value that grows at a fixed rate or follows financial indexes like the S&P 500 or Nasdaq. Prudential guarantees a minimum interest rate on indexed universal life insurance with three plans and a variety of riders.

  1. PruLife Founders Plus UL is the core policy of Prudential’s indexed universal life insurance. These policies include the option of an indexed variable rate or a fixed interest rate and an adjustable no-lapse guarantee.

  2. PruLife Index Advantage UL life insurance has the most significant potential for cash value growth of any of Prudential’s indexed universal life insurance. The death benefit can be protected for 20 years using the no-lapse rider, and plans offer four interest crediting options.

  3. PruLife Survivorship Index UL life insurance from Prudential covers two people, allows for indexed cash growth and pays a death benefit after the second policyholder dies. These plans have an adjustable no-lapse rider and are a useful estate planning tool for providing a cash benefit to surviving family members or charity.

Prudential Variable Universal Life

Prudential Life Insurance offers three variable universal life plans. These policies attempt to grow the invested cash value portion with investments the insured selects.

  1. VUL Protector life insurance is for consumers with a moderate investment risk profile. A no-lapse guarantee keeps the plan in place should investments fall to a negative value. Over 60 investment choices include bonds, stocks, fixed-rate instruments, and more.

  2. PruLife Custom Premier II is a higher-risk variable universal life policy from Prudential. This plan includes two no-lapse guarantee periods to guard against losing insurance in the early years of the policy while working toward long term growth. PruLife Custom Premier II takes advantage of over 60 investment options.

  3. PruLife SVUL Protector is a survivorship plan from Prudential with cash value growth options for couples who want to provide a more substantial death benefit to heirs, a charitable organization, or to provide for a family business. PruLife SVUL Protector pays a second-to-die benefit.

prudential screenshot

Source: Prudential

Prudential Life Insurance Complaints

The majority of Prudential Financial consumer reviews we found online are positive. Google surveys and reviews show average customer satisfaction with Prudential at 4.8 out of 5 stars. BestCompany gives the company 4.5 out of 5 stars, and Prudential Insurance has a “B” rating from the Better Business Bureau, with 45 complaints closed in the last three years. ConsumerAffairs readers weren’t happy with Prudential’s lack of communication or receiving inaccurate information about life insurance policies and gave the company only 1 out of 5 stars.

Prudential Life Insurance Q&A

  • How can I determine the cash value of my Prudential universal life insurance?
    Prudential has an online service center where policyholders have easy access to the values of dividends, investment funds, and other portfolio holdings. Prudential’s helpline representatives are ready to assist policyholders with setting up their online portal account with one phone call.

  • Which is better? Prudential Term or universal life insurance?
    While term policies are less expensive than universal life insurance, term insurance expires with no payout if you outlive the term. Still, term insurance has its place in many financial plans. Universal life insurance costs more but can accumulate significant returns with a cash value with the flexibility to be used for several purposes. Your financial goals and life circumstances dictate whether you should buy term or universal life insurance. Many people purchase both types of policies.

  • Can I change a beneficiary on my Prudential life insurance policy?
    Yes, you can change beneficiaries by logging on at Prudential’s online portal for life insurance customers. You can also complete a change of beneficiary form, available online and through Prudential advisers, and send it to the address listed on that form.

  • What happens if I lose the printed copy of my Prudential life insurance policy?
    If you lose the physical policy documents, you will need to request an All Values Quote Letter to have all the information required to file a claim. Request this letter by calling a Prudential adviser or the Prudential customer service helpline.

  • Can a Prudential life insurance policy be reinstated if it lapses?
    You can reinstate your Prudential life insurance policy after lapsing in many situations if your plan is qualified for reinstatement. First notices of policy lapse include payment instructions and a deadline for submitting funds required to reinstate your policy. Beyond this, policyholders can contact their Prudential adviser or the customer service line for assistance with restoring the plan.

  • Do I have to pay taxes on loans against the cash value of a universal Prudential life insurance policy?
    In most cases, proceeds from loans against the cash value of a permanent life insurance policy like a Prudential universal life plan is income tax-free.


Some form of life insurance covers over 60 percent of Americans. Options such as universal life allow consumers to provide a death benefit to pay final expenses and potentially grow a cash value to diffuse retirement expenses or increase inheritances. Prudential life insurance offers a diverse selection of plans from a well-established company to help nearly all consumers find the right life insurance to meet their goals.

1 Prudential Life Insurance Reviews

Write Review
2 Stars

September 26 2019 7:07PM

I originally obtained my life insurance through my employer and the premiums were reasonable, I had $150,000 on me and $100,000 on my wife. Unfortunately, after paying for 30 years, by payroll deduction, while working and then continuing, self pay, after I retirement the premiums started climbing and I had to lower the both to $80,000 to afford the quarterly payments that rose to over $700 a quarter.

Hopefully by the time either of us need the insurance payment we will have paid for it out of our pocket over the years. It is ridiculous that they take advantage of you after you retire and are healthy. You have no choice, you either pay the ridiculous premium, reduce the amount or cancel and lose everything you paid for all those years. Be very careful and ask questions.

Mark S G.
Endicott, NY