As you get older, you have to start preparing for the time when you’re no longer around. While you need to prepare emotionally, it’s just as important to make sure your family is financially secure, especially when it comes to funeral and burial costs.1 That’s where life insurance comes in handy.

Yet picking out the right life insurance can be a struggle; each plan offers different perks and benefits. To help in this important decision, here are three of Australia’s top life insurance policies.

TAL Life Limited

Formerly known as TOWER Australia, TAL Life Limited has paid out billions of dollars in life insurance claims to everyday Australians since founded in 1990. In 2016 alone, it paid out $1.4 billion.

In 2011, TAL Life Limited was purchased by Dai-ichi Life Group, but foreign ownership hasn’t stopped this company from providing excellent service. In fact, TAL Life Limited won over a dozen prestigious awards just in 2017. Some examples of these recognitions include six titles awarded at the Strategic Insight Direct Life Insurance Awards, the ANZIIF Australian Insurance Industry Award for Women’s Employer of the Year, and the insurance award at the SMA Innovation in Action Awards.2

TAL Life Limited offers highly customizable insurance plans that you can change based on your circumstances. For instance, this company offers a basic life insurance program that includes a death benefit, a terminal illness benefit, and a grief counseling benefit. This plan also includes an advanced payment benefit that allows the beneficiary of a life insurance plan to receive up to 10 percent of the benefit amount immediately after your death certificate is issued. Other types of insurance offered include total and permanent disability (TPD) insurance, critical illness insurance, income protection insurance, and business expense plans.

TAL Life Limited’s insurance policies are highly rated by independent consumer rights organizations. Plus, it offers competitively priced plans that are significantly more comprehensive than many major competitors.3

Zurich Australia Limited

Founded in 1872, Zurich Insurance Group is one of the oldest and most prestigious international insurance companies. While it is headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, this company’s Australia branch is located locally in Sydney.4

There are four main life insurance products that Zurich provides. Zurich Wealth Protection includes death coverage, TPD, trauma insurance, and income protection. Ezicover is a more customizable option that includes life insurance, accidental death insurance, Ezicover Income Protection, and Funeral Advantage, which helps cover your funeral expenses. Zurich Active combines life insurance with trauma coverage, plus you can add income protection to the plan. If you want Zurich’s most comprehensive plan, go with Sumo, which includes upgraded versions of the company’s basic coverage options.

For those looking for affordable plans, Zurich offers a multi-policy discount if you purchase more than one Protection Plus policy. Zurich also offers family discounts for each family member who also purchases a Zurich Australia limited plan.5

MetLife Insurance Limited

Although MetLife Insurance has been around for a long time, its Australia branch opened in 2005.6 Despite the late start in the country, it has become very competitive in the Australian insurance market.

MetLife’s highly customizable life insurance package includes term life coverage, TPD, trauma coverage, and income protection. To determine which types of insurance are best for your situation and establish your monthly or annual premium, you’ll need to provide several types of information such as the amount of coverage you desire, your age, your gender, and whether or not you smoke. It will also be necessary to state your occupation, your overall, health, and your hobbies.

Almost all Australians between the ages of 16 and 79 are eligible for life insurance from MetLife. To make things even sweeter, the company offers a 10 percent coverage discount if you take out $500,000 or more in coverage.7

Allianz Australia Insurance Limited

Allianz Australia Insurance Limited is the Australian arm of Allianz SE, which is one of the biggest public insurance companies in the world8, according to the 2018 annual rankings by Forbes. Allianz SE is headquartered in Munich and was founded in 1890. Allianz Australia Insurance Limited was established in 1914 and operates across Australia and New Zealand, offering life insurance products through its subsidiary, Allianz Life.

Allianz Life offers term life insurance that will pay a lump sum in the event that the insured dies during the term of their coverage. The insurance also pays a lump sum in the event that you are diagnosed with a terminal illness that has a substantial likelihood of your death within the next 12 months.

In order to apply for Allianz life insurance coverage, you must be between the ages of 16 and 65 and either has citizenship or permanent resident status in Australia or New Zealand. Once you are approved, the company will allow you to renew your coverage up to your 99th birthday as long as you continue to pay your premiums. Allianz does not require a medical exam when you apply for life insurance. Plus, two people are able to be in the same life insurance policy.

Premiums are calculated each year, and your premium payment is due in advance on an annual basis. You can either make your premium payments in full each year or by the month through direct debits. Several factors may influence how much you might have to pay, including the following:

  1. Age
  2. Health status
  3. Gender
  4. Tobacco use
  5. Other Allianz policies that you hold
  6. Pasttimes

Allianz states that you are able to get up to $500,000 in life coverage starting at $9.50 per week. You should expect to pay higher premiums the older that you become.9

How to Choose the Best Life Insurance

Now that you’re aware of the important details regarding Australia’s top three life insurance policies, it’s time to decide which plan is right for you. As you make a decision, remember to compare the different plans that are offered to ensure that you get the best price.

First, it’s important to research each life insurance provider. Take a look at customer reviews for each company and cross-reference this information with the insights provided by professional review websites. It’s also important to find out how long each company has been in business as older companies are usually more reputable and new companies might not have the experience to properly handle the needs of their customers.

Next, compare the prices of each plan based on your coverage needs. If you want to make sure that you leave plenty of funds behind for your family to use, you might want to pick a bigger policy with a heftier fee. If you just want to make sure that the people close to you will be able to take care of your affairs without incurring any additional expenses, however, a smaller plan with a minimal premium might be better. Keep in mind, determining your coverage needs is an integral part of picking the right plan for you since this process will help you find the best price for the insurance you need.

Lastly, keep in mind that it’s sometimes possible to get better deals on insurance by working with third-party brokers. Get a quote from each insurance company directly, and then talk to a third-party broker to see if you negotiate for a better price.