If people in your life depend on you for their wellbeing, you need life insurance to protect them when you are gone. However, with so many insurers to choose from, picking the right one can be a bit overwhelming. People often wonder if they should limit their search to only the big, well-known names, or if smaller insurers are worth taking a look at as well.
In our opinion, it is best to give yourself as many options as possible. And that includes considering smaller insurers, like CIBC. While they may not be a household name for life insurance, CIBC has enough experience underwriting life insurance policies to deserve your attention, especially if you are looking for a term life insurance policy.
Keep reading our CIBC life insurance review to learn more about this insurer.
What is CIBC Life Insurance?
CIBC stands for the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC), and is one of the top five financial institutions in Canada. They also have a presence in the United States, the Caribbean, and several European and Asian countries. CIBC sells life insurance products through its subsidiary CIBC Life Insurance Company. CIBC holds a relatively smaller market share in the Canadian life insurance industry, with total annual premiums being just $45 million.
CIBC Facts & Financial Information
- Founded: 1961
- Head Offices: Downtown Toronto, ON
- AM Best Financial Strength Rating: N/A
- Financial Assets: $200 million
- Insurance Premiums: ~$45 million annually
CIBC Insurance Reviews
Online insurance reviews are not always an accurate reflection of an insurer and its products. Statistically speaking, people are more likely to leave a bad review than a glowing one.
In general, while you should look at online reviews, you might not want to base your decision solely on them.
Coming back to CIBC, how are they seen online?
On Insureye, CIBC has only 3 reviews, which are too few for us to be able to pass a judgment. There are currently no google reviews for CIBC, however, other big insurers — such as Manulife — also do not have reviews on Google.
Products and Features
In Canada, CIBC offers term life insurance, guaranteed acceptance life insurance, and critical life insurance. They also have a permanent life insurance plan (Term 100), but it is only available through conversion.
Term Life Insurance
Term life insurance is affordable and simple to understand. For most people, it is sufficient. You can purchase a plan that provides you coverage for the years you are most likely to need it. Your family will receive the policy amount if you die within that period.
CIBC offers two term life insurance plans— 10-year and 20-year.
CIBC 10-year term life insurance
As the name suggests, the policy lasts for 10 years, though you can renew it up to a certain age. Your premiums will not change during a policy term (which in this case is 10 years) and the death benefit will remain the same throughout.
- The minimum coverage amount is $50,000. The maximum is $5 million
- Available for Canadians between the ages of 18 to 65 years
- Coverage expires at age 75
- Guaranteed level premiums. That is, the monthly premiums will not increase during a policy term
- Guaranteed level death. The death benefit amount will remain the same throughout the life of your policy
- You can convert your 10-year plan into a term-100 permanent plan
- Terminal illness benefit. If you are diagnosed with a terminal illness and have less than 12 months to live, CIBC will issue a cash advance equivalent to 50% of your policy amount. If you have multiple policies, the maximum cash advance you can receive is capped at $250,000
- Free-look period of 30 days. If you change your mind about your CIBC term policy, you can cancel it within 30 days of its issue and get a full refund
- You can apply for coverage online
CIBC 20-year term life insurance
A 20-year term policy can be an ideal solution for young families, allowing them to put a safety net in place until their kids become financially independent.
- The coverage amount available is from $50,000 to $5 million
- The coverage is available for Canadians between the ages of 18 to 55 years
- Coverage is until age 75
- Guaranteed level premiums and guaranteed death benefits
- Option to convert the plan into a term-100 permanent plan
- Terminal illness benefit. You are eligible for a cash advance of 50% of your policy amount if you develop a terminal illness and are expected not to live longer than 12 months
- 30-day free-look period. You will get a full refund if you cancel the policy within the first 30 days
- You can apply for coverage online
CIBC Guaranteed Acceptance Life Insurance
Traditional life insurance policies require a medical exam. But what if you have an underlying health condition? How can you get coverage?
One option is guaranteed acceptance life insurance. A type of permanent life insurance, it involves neither a medical exam nor health questions. Acceptance is guaranteed as long as you fall within a certain age group. The benefit amount, however, is small, but having some coverage is better than having none.
CIBC guaranteed acceptance life insurance is ideal for people who have an underlying condition and want to cover their end-of-life expenses.
- Coverage is available from $5,000 - $25,000 (in the increments of $5,000)
- Available for Canadian residents between the ages of 40 – 74 years
- Death benefit amount remains the same throughout
- Your premium will not change, as long as your smoking status does not change
- In the event of a non-accidental death within the first two policy years, CIBC will refund the premiums paid
- Spousal coverage is available. The coverage amount available is $5,000 - $25,000
- Accidental Death Benefit is included. If you die due to an accident before the age of 80, your family could receive a death benefit equal to five times the coverage amount up to a maximum of $125,000
- Living Benefit is included. If you develop a terminal illness after two years of continuous life insurance coverage and are likely to live less than 12 months, you could receive up to 50% of the death benefit while you are still alive
- 30-day review period. You get a full refund if you cancel your life insurance policy within the first 30 days
CIBC Critical Illness Insurance
Critical illness insurance creates a financial safety net you can fall back upon if you become seriously ill. If you are wondering whether you need it, ask yourself these questions:
- If I were to become critically ill, would I be able to cover out-of-pocket expenses without draining my savings?
- Would I be able to maintain my lifestyle, or would I have to take extended time off work because of a severe illness?
If you said ‘no’ to either of the two, you probably need critical illness insurance. CIBC lets you purchase critical illness for a 10-year or 20-year term. Health conditions covered are heart attack, cancer (life-threatening), coronary artery bypass surgery, and stroke.
- The minimum coverage amount is $15,000. The maximum is $200,000
- You can buy critical illness life insurance coverage as a 10-year or 20-year term policy. The 10-year plans are available for Canadian residents between the ages of 18 – 65 years. The 20-year plans are available for Canadian residents between the ages of 18 – 55 years.
- Guaranteed level premiums. Your premiums will not increase during a policy term, even if your health deteriorates
- Coverage expires at age 75
- Only four health conditions are covered. Exclusions and limitations may apply.
- Waiting period is 2 years. If you die from a natural cause within the first two policy years, the insurer will not pay the death benefit but will refund the premiums paid into the policy
- If you have more than CIBC critical illness policy, the total payout in no condition will exceed $200,000
- Free-look period. You can cancel your policy within 30 days of its issue and get a full refund
- You can apply for coverage online
CIBC Life Insurance Rates
Each life insurance company uses a unique algorithm to set rates. This means you are likely to receive different rates for the same kind of coverage from two insurers. So, how affordable are CIBC life insurance solutions? To find out, we grabbed quotes from them.
These quotes are for 20-year term life insurance with $4,000,000 in coverage for healthy men and women of different ages.
Why We Like CIBC
Online quotes and application
No CIBC life insurance review would be complete if it does not include this point. Unlike many Canadian insurers, CIBC makes it easier to compare its rates by providing online quotes. Its online quoting system is easy and quick, only requiring some basic information from you.
Apart from online quotes, CIBC also gives you the freedom to apply and buy life insurance online. However, if you would rather speak to an agent first, that is an option too. It is important to note that depending on your location, some of the plans might not be available online. For example, CIBC guaranteed acceptance life insurance product is not available online in Quebec.
CIBC offers 10-year and 20-year term plans. However, should your insurance needs change, you have the option to convert your term plan into a permanent one.
Guaranteed acceptance life insurance
Not everyone qualifies for medically underwritten life policies. For such applicants, CIBC offers a guaranteed issue policy. It can help them take care of their end-of-life expenses or leave a small legacy.
What We Did Not Like About CIBC
Only two coverage terms are available
You can buy a 10- or 20-year term policy with CIBC. By contrast, most Canadian insurers offer more options. Often, the longest term available is 30 or 35 years. Plus, CIBC does not give you the option to buy joint coverage.
Limited life insurance riders
Life insurance riders add benefits not present in the base policy. You can use them to ensure the selected policy meets all your unique needs. However, CIBC does not offer much room for customization as its list of riders is a pretty small one.
Rates are usually more expensive than those of larger insurers
Most applicants may be able to get a better rate from larger insurance companies.
Maximum age to apply for term life is 64 years
If you are over 64, CIBC will not offer you coverage. By contrast, many Canadian insurers offer term life insurance to people until ages 70 to 75.
Conclusion – Is CIBC Right for You?
CIBC makes buying life insurance easy. You can get online quotes in a few clicks and complete the entire application process online in less than 10 minutes. However, its product line is not as impressive as that of many other Canadian life insurers, offering you a choice of only two term life plans. There is no universal or whole life insurance in its portfolio. Also, its life insurance products, while competitively priced, are more expensive than similar plans offered by larger Canadian insurers.
All in all, keep CIBC on your radar if you are looking for term life insurance but also consider other names. Compare CIBC’s rates with those of other insurers and pick the company that offers you the best value.