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RBC Life Insurance Company Review (2020)

12 Minute Read

Published
Highlights
  • A Financial Security Rating
  • RBC is one of the largest and most powerful corporations in Canada
  • RBC Insurance offers a huge range of property and life insurance products
  • RBC Insurance products are only available to Canadian residents
  • There are standard and non-standard options available for both term and permanent insurance policies

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In This Article
Frequently Asked Questions
  • Coming Soon
RBC Insurance: Company Overview
  • Year Founded: 1864
  • Head Office: 6880 Financial Drive Toronto, Ontario
  • AM Best Rating: A
  • Assets: Over $15B
  • Annual Premiums: Approx. $4B
  • Website: https://www.rbcinsurance.com

The Royal Bank of Canada — a household name. Many Canadians will have grown up with the familiar logo introduced in the 1970s: a bright yellow lion, his paw resting comfortably on a globe against a vivid blue background. As well as being the nation’s largest bank by capitalization, RBC is also one of Canada’s most trusted insurance providers.

RBC has a long and storied history in Canada that stretches back over 150 years and in fact predates the nation’s official founding. Originally established at the Merchants Bank of Halifax in 1864, the bank quickly grew. In 1901, it officially changed its name to the Royal Bank of Canada (from now on referred to as RBC) to reflect its aspiration to serve the whole country. Over the decades, the company grew fast through several key mergers and acquisitions and in 1961 became the first Canadian bank to install a computer system. Interestingly, in 1998, RBC acquired the Atlanta based Security First Network Bank, the world’s first internet-only bank. Who knew they were such tech pioneers!

RBC has become a pillar of Canadian cultural events over the years. A portion of their annual revenue is regularly set aside in a charitable donations and sponsorship fund. Consequently, it has become one of the largest sponsors of the Toronto Film Festival, several literary awards, and on an international note, the Olympic Games. If you’re a hockey fan, you will likely have spotted the logo at games as RBC used to be Hockey Canada’s premier sponsor. All this to say, RBC is much more than a bank: they are deeply ingrained in every aspect of Canadian living, from sponsoring our sports teams and arts festivals to managing our finances.[1]

RBC developed their insurance services in the 1960s, merging with a major Ontario company at the end of the decade in a major expansion. Since this first merger, RBC Insurance has become the single biggest bank-owned insurance provider in Canada. It’s services cover a whole range of property insurance as well as life insurance (which is what we’ll focus on in this article) to over 5 million people.[2] So, whether you are looking to bank with RBC, or to have your life insured by them, you are guaranteed to be working with one of Canada’s most powerful and well recognized organizations.


[1] https://web.archive.org/web/20140102084323/http://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/siminovitch-prize-theatre-announces-partnerships-191900278.html

[2] https://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/royal-bank-of-canada

Continue reading to learn more about the individual insurance products which RBC Insurance offers to Canadians.


RBC Insurance: Pros & Cons
ProsCons
– Financially strong and able to pay claims

– Very competitively priced for life and critical illness products

– Term life insurance (YourTerm) is one of the most best priced term life insurance products in Canada

– YourTerm life insurance product allows you to choose the exact term length (e.g. choose any year from 10 to 40)

– Accepts DocuSign for application submission which reduces paperwork and makes applying a breeze for customer

– Ability to add a wide range of riders to all types of policies (life, critical illness and disability)
– Currently there is no digital policy option, paper policies are still being delivered to clients

– No whole life insurance product available (coming beginning of 2021)

– You are unable to purchase RBC permanent life insurance products unless you already own a RBC term life insurance product which you are able to convert

– Bad reviews online can make RBC less desirable, but they are a great company to deal with


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RBC Insurance: Insurance Products

RBC Insurance offers a large array of coverage including, home, auto, travel, health, and, of course, life insurance. In this article we’ll outline what these life insurance products look like and what they entail.

One thing worth noting: RBC life insurance products are only available to Canadian residents.

RBC Insurance: Term Life Insurance

Term insurance is the most popular kind of life insurance policy, especially for first time buyers. Here are the primary advantages of term insurance:

  • Affordability: The relatively low cost of term insurance is one of the main reasons for their popularity and makes them a terrific option for young families. 
  • Flexibility: RBC’s term policies range in duration from 10 to 40 years, allowing you to determine exactly what you need your protection for. For instance, if you’re looking for coverage as you pay off your mortgage, you can line up your life insurance with the term of your loan.
  • Simple: At RBC, your premiums and your coverage are guaranteed, meaning once you purchase your policy you can relax knowing it is stable, reliable, and simple.
  • Convertible: If you find yourself wanting more extensive coverage, RBC lets you convert your policy into a permanent or universal plan without any extra medical examinations until your 71st birthday.

RBC offers two kinds of term life insurance:

RBC YourTerm Life Insurance

This is a fairly standard term plan and most recommended if buying term life insurance from RBC Insurance.

You get to pick a term (10, 15, 20, 40 years, or anything in between) and get to set a coverage amount, which will then dictate your premiums. In order to calculate your eligibility for a YourTerm policy, simply subtract the number of years you wish to purchase coverage for from 85 (maximum issue age). So, if you need a 40 year policy, you must be 45 or under to purchase.

Here are some of the key features of the RBC YourTerm plan:

  • Coverage: You can purchase a policy worth anywhere from $100,000 to $25,000,000.
  • Tax-Free Benefits: Your beneficiaries receive their insurance payout tax free.
  • Flexibility: As previously mentioned, you can convert your policy at any time without providing medical evidence. So, if you have purchase a 10 year policy and wish to exchange if for a longer term plan or permanent coverage, you can do so seamlessly.

There are also a variety of riders you can add to your policy. Some of these include:

  • Children’s Term Rider: This automatically extends your coverage to your biological or adopted children.
  • Accidental Death Benefit: This guarantees an additional payout should you die in an accident.
  • Total Disability Waiver: If you find yourself completely disabled for more than six months, your premiums and policy fees will be waived for the duration of your disability.
  • Joint First-to-Die Option: Rather than purchase separate policies, you and another family member can combine your life insurance. You will receive a one-time payout in the event one of the insured parties passes away.
RBC Simplified Term Life Insurance

RBC Simplified coverage allows those who are difficult to insure to access adequate coverage. You may struggle to find life insurance if you struggle with health issues such as chronic illness, or if you work in a particularly dangerous environment.

Simplified life insurance streamlines the application process and does not require any medical exams or extensive questionnaires so you get your protection no matter your circumstance. The one catch is that coverage amounts are significantly lower for simplified policies.

Here’s the breakdown:

  • Online Application: You can get a quote instantly at RBC’s website and apply online in as little as 15 minutes.
  • Coverage: Choose a policy worth anywhere between $50,000 and $1,000,000.
  • Affordability: Simplified insurance plans at RBC are the most affordable with rates starting as low as $12.67 per month.
  • Flexibility: Choose any of the available terms: 10, 15, 20, 30, 40 years, or anything in between.

Unlike the YourTerm plan, RBC Simplified policies do not come with the full range of policy riders.


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RBC Insurance: Permanent Life Insurance

Permanent insurance allows you to have full protection for your entire life time, from the time of purchase to the time of death, no matter when that may be. Although more expensive than term plans, permanent plans are perfect for those looking to guarantee long-term financial security for their loved ones.

As of December 2020, permanent life insurance plans from RBC Insurance can only be purchased if you convert your RBC term life insurance policy to a permanent life insurance policy. This means that if you do not currently own a term life insurance policy with RBC, you cannot purchase a permanent life insurance policy from them.

There are three kinds of permanent plans available from RBC:

RBC Guaranteed Acceptance Life

This kind of permanent life insurance is designed specially for customers aged 40-75. Here are the key features:

  • Online Application: You can scope this policy out from the comfort of your home, get an instant online quote and apply entirely through the RBC website.
  • No Medical Exam: Just like simplified term plans, you won’t need to face a medical exam or health questionnaire to qualify.
  • Stable Rates: Once you purchase your policy, your premiums will be charged until age 95 at which point you will no longer have to pay but your will still be covered.
  • Coverage: Choose coverage between $5,000 to $40,000 in $5,000 increments.

Included in this policy is a Compassionate Advance clause which specifies that if your diagnosed with a terminal illness and have one year or less to live, you could receive a percentage of your death benefit to help support you.

These policies are typically quite expensive compared to other guaranteed acceptance life insurance policies available in Canada. We recommend that you contact us to discuss your options to compare policy types and pricing.

RBC Term 100 Life

As mentioned above, RBC’s permanent life insurance products are only available for conversions from term life insurance. This means that you cannot purchase permanent life insurance from RBC unless you currently own a RBC term life insurance policy.

The Term 100 policy is more conventional that the Guaranteed model. Here’s our run down:

  • Coverage: Set the amount your policy is worth starting at $50,000.
  • Lifetime Coverage: Your coverage will be for life and your premiums will never increase.
  • Tax-Free Benefits: Your beneficiary will receive your death benefit tax-free.
  • You can purchase a Term 100 plan anywhere from ages 18 to 85.

If you want to learn more about RBC Term 100, you should contact us and speak with an agent.

RBC Universal Life

A Universal Life Insurance policy is essentially a permanent insurance plan (meaning you are covered for your whole life) with rolled in tax-preferred investment and savings opportunities. Here are the highlights:

  • Decreasing Protections Option: If you have certain long-term loans, such as a mortgage, you can choose for your insurance policy to decrease in line with your mortgage payments. This means your policy becomes more affordable as you pay back any debts.
  • Flexibility: You get to select how much you pay into you insurance plan and access flexible payment options.
  • Investment opportunities: This is universal coverage’s most exciting feature. You will be able to make a range of investments with your payments and create an investment portfolio that helps you grow your personal wealth.
  • Payout: In the event of your death, you policy will either pay your coverage amount or the worth of your accumulated investments, whichever is a larger amount.

Optional riders include:

  • Additional Term Insurance: This allows you to layer a term policy over your permanent policy to address specific temporary needs. This comes at no extra cost.
  • Children’s Rider: This provides temporary protection for any biological or adopted children.
  • Accidental Death Benefit (as outlined above).
  • Total Disability Waiver (also as outlined previously). 

In short, universal insurance is fantastic if you want to combine your investment endeavor’s and permanent life insurance policy.


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RBC: Other Insurance Products
RBC Critical Illness Insurance

RBC offers a comprehensive critical illness insurance plan called Critical Illness Recovery Plan. Critical illness plans provide a lump sum pay out, tax free in the event that you are diagnosed with one of the 25 covered conditions. Choose from a simplified issue product with basic coverage or enhance your covered with the full Critical Illness Recovery Plan product. Coverage is available for 10 years, to age 65 and age 75.

RBC Disability Insurance (Income Protection)

With one of the most competitive disability insurance product line ups in Canada, RBC is a leader in providing disability insurance. They have a suite of products available for all types of occupations and incomes which has them as one of the largest disability insurance providers in Canada.

  • The Professional Series
  • Quantum
  • The Foundation Series
  • Bridge Series
  • The Fundamental Series
  • Retirement Protection
RBC Disability Business Protection

Own a business? RBC has the products business owners require to protect their key employees, business income and more. Products that they offer include:

  • Business Overhead Expense
  • Key Person Protector
  • Business Loan Protector
  • Disability Buy Sell
RBC Personal Accident Insurance

We included RBC’s Personal Accident Insurance because it’s often used to supplement existing life insurance policies. If you’re a Canadian resident aged 18-69 and already an RBC customer, you’re guaranteed acceptance. Personal Accident Insurance includes:

  • Policy amounts between $50,000 and $250,000.
  • No medical exams.
  • Accidental Death Benefits.
  • Education Benefits and Child Care Benefits which reimburse costs for tuition and/or care in the wake of an accident.

RBC: Customer Satisfaction

Many customers report excellent experiences with RBC Insurance’s claims services. By many (verified) customer accounts, the company provides speedy and secure access to your claims and supplies regular updates about your policy’s status. Customers also report positively about the company’s proactive attitude and the speed with which they offered assistance to those who experienced property damage while insures with RBC Home and Auto. There is relatively little specific to RBC Life Insurance online (which is generally a pretty good sign) but, on the whole, clients admire the company’s range of products and their affordability.


RBC: Customer Criticism

The usual disclaimer: People like to complain. Many customers are more motivated to leave reviews when dissatisfied which is worth keeping in mind when looking at reviews. Nevertheless, RBC is a huge corporation and some customer’s experiences reflect a lack of personal connection between clients and service providers. Some report RBC representatives seem detached from struggling customers, or don’t seem to have the proper training or expertise to address client’s claims directly, especially with customers inquiring about unexpected charges.

Indeed, Glassdoor reviews of the company reflect a certain level of employee dissatisfaction. Some advisors feel excessive pressure to sell specific products and experience a lack of training. This is disappointing, especially from such a powerful corporation. As much as we’d expect RBC to invest large amounts in employee training, this does not seem to be the case and it directly affects employee-customer relations through no fault of either party.


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