Best Life Insurance for Seniors Canada: Top Policies & Companies

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The best life insurance for seniors in Canada is:

  • Term life insurance policies if you want flexible coverage.
  • Whole life insurance policies if you have complex estate planning needs.
  • No medical or guaranteed life insurance policies as a last resort if you’ve been denied coverage by traditional life insurance providers.

Senior life insurance isn't a separate type of life insurance. It refers to the policies seniors are eligible for. Though you're not a senior at 50, insurance providers and most life insurance companies often group people over 50 in the "seniors" category. That's because there's a large jump in premiums at this age due to becoming higher risk as you age and potentially develop health issues. Securing life insurance from reputable life insurance companies is crucial for ensuring financial security and peace of mind.

Not sure if life insurance is worth it for seniors? Here’s when you might need it.

  • Final expenses: Money to cover medical and burial costs, as well as other expenses required to settle your estate
  • Income replacement: Funds for a spouse or dependent who relies on your salary, pension or annuity for daily expenses.
  • Special needs child: Money to start a trust for a dependent who will need financial support for their lifetime.
  • Debts: Money to pay off significant debts such as a mortgage or loan.
  • Estate taxes: Funds to cover any possible estate taxes liability for your heirs.
  • Inheritance: A tax-free financial death benefit to your beneficiaries after you pass
  • Liquidity: A cash payout for an estate with non-cash assets, such as real estate or locked-in investments.
  • Charitable bequest: A one-time donation to support a non-profit that’s near and dear to your heart.

If you're unsure about your next steps, our advisors are here to help. Because they're not commissioned, you can trust that you're getting honest advice. They'll even tell you if you don't need coverage at all. Here's how an advisor can assist you:

  • Offering honest guidance to find the right amount of coverage
  • Helping you save money by only choosing the coverage you need, nothing more
  • Guiding you through the application and what comes next
  • Explaining life insurance basics like picking beneficiaries and understanding different types

The best type of life insurance policy for seniors will depend on coverage priorities. It's best to apply for a fully risk-assessed policy first, even if you're worried you'll be denied coverage. You might still be able to get a reasonable policy at a decent price.

Term life insurance provides coverage over a set period of time based on your specific needs. You can choose how long you want your term insurance policy to last, but the most popular term length to get is 15 years.

Term life insurance policies are usually the cheapest life insurance options for seniors with competitive pricing. But there may be some age restrictions around the term you can qualify for.

PolicyMe has some of the most affordable term life insurance premiums in Canada and they also prioritizes customer satisfaction. Afraid you won't be approved? A customer recently told us in this review: "I never thought I would ever get insurance at my age, but this company made it amazingly easy and affordable."

Whole life insurance also known as a permanent life insurance provides coverage for your whole life; as long as you continue paying the premiums, the whole life insurance policy will remain active.

A percentage of these payments are set aside in a savings or investment portion, so these plans can have a cash value component or a guaranteed cash value. But whole life insurance for seniors can be expensive and restrictive — there are a lot of rules when it comes to accessing the cash value portion.

No medical life insurance, also known as simplified issue life insurance provides coverage without a medical examination or many health questions. You may be asked a few short medical questions about your health, but that’s about the extent of it.

However, you’ll pay for this convenience – life insurance cost are much higher and premiums for no medical life insurance for seniors in Canada can be very high.

Guaranteed issue life insurance (also called "guaranteed acceptance life insurance") is a type of no medical policy that provides coverage to almost everyone, regardless of age, health or medical history.

But because approval is guaranteed, life insurance cost is very high and premiums for guaranteed life insurance coverage for seniors are the most expensive and provide the least amount of coverage.

Best Life Insurance for Seniors: Table comparing no medical life insurance vs term life insurance

Have a better idea about what type of life insurance coverage you need, but still not sure where to start looking? Here are a few of the best life insurance companies based on the type of policy you’re looking for.

Worried you won't be approved for term life insurance policies now that you’re over 60? Or that you'll need to pay a hefty price? You don’t have to be. PolicyMe offers some of the best life insurance prices in Canada to give you a peace of mind.

The cost of Canadian life insurance coverage for seniors and elderly parents will vary based on your age, gender, term length and health. We’ll walk you through how age influences life insurance cost. As you can see, life insurance cost or premiums go up as we grow up, so it’s wise to lock in your rate sooner than later to give both you and your loved ones financial security and a peace of mind.

Can you get life insurance coverage over 50 in Canada? Luckily for you, you're not technically a senior yet. But since you're probably prepping for retirement, it's essential to have a financial cushion for your loved ones to fall back on before your life insurance rates really start to climb.

Chart outlining life insurance rates by age for seniors in Canada over 50

Life insurance coverage for seniors over 60 years old is a good idea for those looking to take care of smaller outstanding debts. In your 60s, you're (hopefully!) entering your retirement, which also means you likely won't have an active income.

But like in your 50s, you may still have debts (like the final years of your mortgage) to pay. Having a life insurance policy in place means that if something were to happen, your loved ones can stay in your family home, providing financial security for them.

Chart outlining life insurance rates by age for seniors in Canada over 60

For seniors over 70, life insurance coverage becomes quite pricey. At this age, you might be looking for life insurance plans to cover final expenses like funeral expenses or to leave something behind for your beneficiaries and loved ones with the tax free death benefit payout.

Chart outlining life insurance rates by age for seniors in Canada over 70

While prices do increase dramatically at this age, there's good news. As a senior, you might not need as much coverage or a long policy term compared to someone younger. This means your monthly life insurance premiums could be comparable to those in their 30s or 40s looking for a longer-term length.

Some types of life insurance and term lengths may be restricted to those under a certain age. For instance, most life insurance providers, including PolicyMe, won't issue term life insurance policies once you're over 75 years old.

Because the risk of insuring you in your 70s is much higher, chances are you'll have to complete a medical examination and answer health questions if you're applying for a term life insurance policy. With PolicyMe, if you're between the ages of 70 to 74, this medical examination will include:

  • Vitals
  • Fluids
  • Attending Physician Statement (APS)
  • Electrocardiogram (EKG)

Once you hit the age 80 mark, getting life insurance coverage is tricky. There are two main options for 80-year-old seniors, but preparations should be made prior to turning 80. Firstly, final expense insurance (sometimes referred to as burial expense insurance) generally has a maximum issue age of 79. This type of coverage is usually for smaller payout amounts— at most, $50,000— and much more expensive than other types of coverage.

Otherwise, converting an existing term life insurance policy over to a permanent life insurance policy is a good option. Most term life insurance policies have this feature, but you must ensure that you convert your policy before the age limit stipulated by the insurer. Usually, the maximum age for converting your policy is at age 75, but this should be verified with the insurer prior to doing so.

Another consideration for conversion is that the older you are, the more expensive converting your policy to a permanent one will be.

To get the best life insurance as a senior, you’ll need to do some research and compare policy options. Here are some things to consider:

Finding the right balance between your coverage needs and the cost of your monthly premiums. Your policy term, amount of coverage and other features, like convertibility or guaranteed issue, will all impact life insurance cost.

Generally, your need for life insurance decreases as you get older. If everything has gone according to plan, you’ve paid off your biggest debts while your assets have had a chance to grow. But if you’re likely to leave behind debts or have family members or loved ones dependent on your income for their daily expenses, then it’s necessary to have a life insurance policy in place for their protection and providing them with financial security.

Find a reliable life insurance company that can get you approved and covered. For example, PolicyMe is backed by Canadian Premier, an insurer that covers over two million Canadians and has been in operation for more than 60 years, so you can rest assured that you’re getting trustworthy protection and providing you with customer satisfaction.

Life insurance rates for seniors are determined by your age, coverage amount, smoking status and health status. These are the key characteristics that factor into the cost of your monthly premium. Hint: they’re the same factors that determine life insurance rates when you’re younger, too.

best life insurance for seniors canada

1. Age

You become higher risk the older you get. So you might have to shell out more for a life insurance policy if you buy it when you’re 60 instead of when you’re 40.

2. Gender

Women have a longer life expectancy than men, according to Harvard Medical School. That means men will find themselves paying higher rates for the same policy.

3. Coverage amount

Having a higher coverage amount means that your insurer will have to give your beneficiary more money also known as a death benefit if you pass.

4. Smoking status

Being a smoker automatically makes you riskier to insure in the eyes of your insurance company. Be prepared to pay higher premiums if you’re looking for smoker life insurance.

5. Health

If you have pre-existing medical conditions or illnesses, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, or heart disease, you’re riskier to insure. As a result, your insurance company will charge you more for coverage and may even deny your application.

If you’re a senior looking for life insurance, there’s no need to worry. There’s usually a way to get insured and protect your family and loved ones at a reasonable cost. Seniors can best use life insurance coverage for:

  • Outstanding debts or financial obligations that your family members will need to pay off when you pass away
  • Covering your end-of-life expenses, including medical and funeral costs
  • Living expenses for loved ones who are dependent on your income
  • Managing financial assets that you’d like to leave behind as an inheritance.