Life Insurance 

life insurance 

Life insurance is an important part of a comprehensive financial plan and protects the people you care about most. In the unfortunate circumstance that you’re not there to provide for your family, life insurance can.

But life insurance can also be more than just a safety net. It can be the basis of a solid financial plan. At Northwestern Mutual, several of our policies build cash value and are eligible for dividends.1 That’s money you can use to reduce your out-of-pocket premiums, increase your coverage, or receive as cash.

Key Features 

Our Advantage 

Permanent Life 

Term Life 

Combination Life 

Contact Us 

Key Features of Life Insurance

Death Benefit

If you die while the policy is in effect, it will provide financial support to the people you care about most.

Cash Value

In addition to the death benefit, many of Northwestern Mutual’s policies have a cash value. In general, cash value grows as you make premium payments and when interest or dividends are credited to the policy.

That’s money you can access through loans or by surrendering some or all of your policy. You could use your cash value to pay for things like college tuition, making a down payment on a house, providing cash for a new business, or helping to fund your retirement.2

Dividend Options

Many of Northwestern Mutual’s policies are eligible for a dividend.1

You may choose to use your policy dividends in multiple ways. Most policyowners choose to use them to increase policy values. You can also use them to help pay your premiums or let them accumulate and earn interest. In addition, you can choose to receive your dividends in cash.

Conversion Rights

You may be able to convert some term life insurance policies to permanent life insurance without having to go through the process to prove your insurability a second time.

Additional Purchase Benefit

Adding the Additional Purchase Benefit (APB) to a policy means you lock in the right to buy more insurance in the future based on your health today.

That means, at selected intervals up until you’re 40, you can buy more insurance. Even if you’re diagnosed with an illness or condition that would make it difficult or more expensive to get life insurance, you’re able to buy more insurance at the specified intervals at the same underwriting class as when you initially got your policy.

You can also add the APB to a life insurance policy you are buying for a child. This way, you are not only insuring the child's life, but also protecting the child's ability to purchase additional insurance later in life, no matter what happens to that child’s health.

Indexed Protection Benefit

If things cost more, your death benefit will go up.

What seems like plenty of money today may not be in the future. At the beginning of 1980, the median sales price of a new home in the US was $62,900. 10 years later, at the start of 1990, the median price of a new home was $125,000. At the start of 1996, the price of a gallon of milk was $2.54. By 2013, it was $3.52. On policies where the Indexed Protection Benefit is available, adding the IPB increases your death benefit based on the Consumer Price Index (a common measure of inflation), with an annual cap.

Waiver Benefit

By adding the Waiver Benefit, if you become totally disabled, after a period of time, you don’t have to pay your premiums and your policy stays in effect. During disability, premiums are credited to the policy and, for permanent insurance policies, contributions to the tax-deferred cash value will continue. With term insurance, a disabled policyowner may be even able to convert the term policy to a permanent plan and have those premiums waived as well.

Options Available if Premium Payments Are Missed

Nonforfeiture options on permanent life insurance protect you if you are ever unable to pay your policy premiums. Options may include:

  • Automatic Premium Loan (APL)
    If a scheduled premium payment is missed, money is automatically borrowed against the cash value of a permanent life insurance policy to pay the overdue premium, and interest is charged until the loan is repaid.

  • Extended Term Insurance
    Keeps the full death benefit in force for a limited period of time.

  • Paid-Up Insurance
    Keeps some level of protection in force by using the policy's entire cash value to purchase paid-up permanent life insurance. The face value of the paid-up insurance will, in most cases, be less than the face amount of the original policy, but no further premiums are required. The paid-up policy remains in force until the insured dies.

  • Cash Surrender
    Elect to receive the policy's cash value by surrendering the policy. Any outstanding loan balance and accrued loan interest will be deducted from the cash value
    .

1Dividends are not guaranteed but Northwestern Mutual has paid one every year since 1872. Although eligible for dividends, dividends are not expected to be paid on Universal Life and Variable Universal Life policies.

2Any loan or withdrawal of cash value will reduce your policy’s death benefit.

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Our Advantage

Founded in 1857, Northwestern Mutual is one of the most respected companies in operation today, an honor earned by providing excellence in financial management and personal service for more than a century and a half.

Northwestern Mutual has the highest financial strength ratings awarded to any life insurer by all four of the major credit rating agencies.

As a mutual company, Northwestern Mutual has no stockholders. That means we can focus on providing value to policyowners, rather than splitting that focus between customers and shareholders. Because of this, Northwestern Mutual can take a longer-term investment approach with the assets in its general account, which can result in greater value for you.

Power of Our Dividend

One of the ways Northwestern Mutual’s permanent policies provide value is with a dividend.1

Northwestern Mutual's structure as a mutual company and its unique investment approach allows us to return to policyowners a portion of investment gains as well as the savings incurred from claims and expense in the form of dividends. Although these dividends cannot be guaranteed, Northwestern Mutual has paid one every year since 1872.

Most policyowners reinvest that money in their policies. But you could also use it to reduce your premiums or take it as cash.

In fact, Northwestern Mutual has paid nearly $73 billion in life insurance dividends over the past 20 years.2 Northwestern Mutual has consistently paid the highest total life insurance dividends in the industry.3

A Northwestern Mutual Representative – Your Strong Partner

Making the right choice for your life insurance protection requires the expert guidance of a professional you can trust. The personal relationship you build with your Northwestern Mutual representative is an important step in developing innovative solutions to your needs today and in the future.

1Dividends are not guaranteed but Northwestern Mutual has paid one every year since 1872. Although eligible for dividends, dividends are not expected to be paid on Universal Life and Variable Universal Life policies.

2Northwestern Mutual analysis of ordinary life insurance dividends based on historical SNL data.

3Source: SNL Financial. Prepared and calculated by The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company, Milwaukee, WI.

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Permanent Life Insurance

Permanent life insurance is designed to provide protection for your entire lifetime.

When you die, your beneficiaries will receive your death benefit, generally income tax-free.2

Permanent life insurance also offers cash value that can grow tax deferred. That’s money that you can borrow against or take out of the policy over time.

Our permanent life insurance is also eligible for annual dividends.1 If a dividend is paid, you can use it to buy more insurance, or cover your premiums, or take it as cash.

You should consider permanent life insurance if:

  • You want protection that can last as long as your need it.
  • You want to leave a legacy by giving your death benefit to people or charities you care about.
  • You want a policy that can build cash value and for which the death benefit may increase.
  • You want to accumulate money you can use for life’s emergencies and opportunities.

Northwestern Mutual offers a variety of permanent life insurance options to meet your unique needs.

Compare different types of policies side-by-side.

Learn more about our permanent life products.

1Dividends are not guaranteed but Northwestern Mutual has paid one every year since 1872. Although eligible for dividends, dividends are not expected to be paid on Universal Life and Variable Universal Life policies.

2As long as sufficient premiums are paid.

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Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance offers you coverage for a fixed period of time. Term offers a larger amount of coverage for a smaller amount of premium early on for people who have a temporary need for coverage. Unlike permanent policies, term life insurance does not offer a cash value. It’s an economical way to cover a shorter-term need and make sure the people you care about most won’t have to worry financially if you’re not there to provide for them.

You should consider term life insurance if:

  • You want a large death benefit but need lower premiums currently.
  • Your need for coverage is temporary, perhaps until your children finish college.
  • You’re interested in term conversion, which allows you to convert to permanent insurance over time and to pay rates based on your health when your term policy started.

Compare different types of policies side-by-side.

Learn about our term life products.

1Dividends are not guaranteed but Northwestern Mutual has paid one every year since 1872. Although eligible for dividends, dividends are not expected to be paid on Universal Life and Variable Universal Life policies.

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Combination Life Insurance

Combination life insurance allows you to mix permanent life insurance and a term insurance component combined with additional purchase of paid-up life insurance coverage (death benefit). The policy can be mixed in almost any proportion and generally becomes an entirely permanent plan over time. Combination life insurance gives you an affordable way to purchase permanent life insurance while still offering a large death benefit on the life of the person insured.

You should consider combination life insurance if:

  • You need a flexible and affordable way to purchase permanent life insurance.
  • You want a comprehensive insurance policy with a competitive premium.
  • You want a life insurance policy custom designed for your situation, allowing you to put more emphasis on protection or accumulation.

Compare different types of policies side-by-side.

Learn about our combination life products.

1Dividends are not guaranteed but Northwestern Mutual has paid one every year since 1872. Although eligible for dividends, dividends are not expected to be paid on Universal Life and Variable Universal Life policies.

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