A Guide to Life Insurance in Pennsylvania (PA)

Considering what you need to know to get the best possible Pennsylvania Life Insurance Quotes is important because you can then ensure that you get the very best deal possible on your life insurance.

There are a lot of different factors to consider and in this article I will be discussing not only issues that directly impact on your own life insurance, but also how life insurance in Pennsylvania is handled across the state, and the economic impact that it has as a whole on the state.

Let’s begin by getting an overview of Pennsylvania.

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Pennsylvania – A Little Background…

Pennsylvania is ranked as the 33rd largest state in terms of area at 46,055 square meters (approximately 280 miles wide by 160 miles long) and is located in the North-East of the country.

In terms of population it does however punch well above its size, and is the sixth largest state in the United States with a population of 12,702,379 in 2010.

The State Capital of Pennsylvania is Harrisburg which had a city population of 49,528 in 2010, but a metropolitan population of over half a million people.

The largest city in Pennsylvania is Philadelphia which had a city population of 1,526,006 and a metropolitan population of 6.1 million people in the 2010 census, and is important to broadcasters in the United States as it is the fourth largest media market in the country (where all the people can pick up the same TV signals, radio broadcasts etc.) It also has a rich, vibrant history which dates back to the very origins of the United States itself, and was the nation’s capital from 1790 to 1800 whilst Washington D.C was being constructed.

Pennsylvania is often associated with the Amish community, of which there are an estimated 51,000 people in 2010 in Pennsylvania, second only to Ohio with 55,000 people.

As you might expect from the state with the 6th largest population in the United States, Pennsylvania has an economy to match, with the sixth highest GDP of $575.6 billion in 2010, which is larger than the economies of Portugal ($223 billion) and Thailand ($312 billion) combined.

Pennsylvania Life Insurance – The Facts About PA Life Insurance

There are 506 Pennsylvania Life Insurance Companies who are licensed to sell life insurance in Pennsylvania, and forty-two who are domiciled in the state.

Life Insurance is a massive business in Pennsylvania, and there are 43,000 people directly employed by the life insurance companies, and a further 65,000 people who work in non-insurance jobs which are supported by the sector.

Overall, the residents of Pennsylvania have a massive $1.2 trillion worth of death benefit cover, and group life insurance in the state amounts to $450 billion.

If we hone in on individual life insurance which is what most Pennsylvanians will be buying, we see that the residents of the state own 8 million individual PA life insurance policies, and that the amount of cover purchased in 2009 alone topped $60 billion.

Focusing in on individual policy holders we can see that each of those 8 million policy holders had an average amount of $92,000 worth of life cover.

Whilst these figures are impressive, it is even more impressive when you look at how much this translates into in the form of policy dividends, maturing endowments, surrender values and death benefits on a yearly basis, with $20 billion being paid out in 2009, and a further $4 billion paid out in annuity benefits in the same year according to the American Council of Life Insurers.

Six Reminders Before Getting PA Life Insurance Quotes

1/ Make sure you can afford the premiums…

All of us would like millions of dollars in life insurance if it were free! But unfortunately, you will have to pay for the privilege. So factor in not only what you can afford to pay now, but also what future premium increases may be, and make sure that you can afford them before proceeding.

2/ Make sure you get a copy of your policy document and read it carefully…

Your life insurance is an important financial document and you should make sure that you read it carefully. Even after you have signed up you generally have the right to cancel the policy without penalty within 10 days of taking it out (check with your insurance company for specifics – it can be up to 30 days); and so you have plenty of time to read the small print and make sure that there are no nasty surprises or clauses that give you pause for thought.

This is often known as a 'Free-Look" period, and the ten day minimum is enshrined in Pennsylvania Law, so it is not dependant on the insurer.

3/ Print off any receipts of payment and never pay cash

If you buy PA Life Insurance online then you will automatically get a receipt of payment, and the payment will almost invariably be traceable because you will have paid with a debit or credit card.

If however you get life insurance through an agent directly (which is also fine). You should make sure to get a receipt for any payment, and also pay by check or card so that you have proof that the transaction happened. You should not pay with cash, because it is untraceable in the event that there are problems with the agent.

4/ Call up the insurance company or agent if you aren’t sure about anything

Remember, you have the ‘free look’ period of a minimum of ten days after taking out the policy to make sure it is right for you.

So avail yourself of that time by doing exactly that, and thoroughly checking any details you aren’t sure about.

5/ Make sure that your agent and/or life insurance company is properly licensed to do business in Pennsylvania

You can check this on the Pennsylvania Insurance Departments website here:


6/ Review your life insurance regularly to make sure you are getting the best possible deal

Prices and amounts of cover on offer can change quite dramatically over a period of years. So it is worth periodically checking and getting some new PA Life Insurance Quotes to make sure that you are still getting the best possible deal.


Pennsylvania Life Insurance – The Details…

In terms of the regulations and laws that surround how life insurance in Pennsylvania is regulated, this is handled by The State Insurance Code of Pennsylvania.

You can find a copy of the Pennsylvania Insurance Code here:


Pennsylvania Life Insurance Resources

Pennsylvania Insurance Department

It is the Pennsylvania Insurance Department that is tasked with overseeing how the above State Insurance Code of Pennsylvania is implemented.  It is also home to lots of useful information for consumers in Pennsylvania, and acts as a hub for PA Insurance Companies and PA Insurance professionals to stay compliant with the rules.


Pennsylvania Life & Health Insurance Guaranty Association (PLHIGA)

In the event of an insolvency by a life insurance company (or health insurance company) in Pennsylvania, then it is the Pennsylvania Life & Health Insurance Guaranty Association that steps in to help out consumers.

They cover an insurers default up to a cash surrender value of $100,000, or death and annuity benefits up to $300,000.



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