I started Insurance Blog by Chris™ because I have a passion for insurance. Here at the blog, our job is to educate and inform people about the best insurance for them. Since then, we have grown into national brands with a large team of researchers helping people understand all forms of insurance.

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Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health insu...

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Reviewed by Rachael Brennan
Licensed Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Nov 19, 2021

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Jackson National is a multi-billion dollar annuity company that got their start with term life insurance. Over the years, they have acquired annuity and life insurance companies to become the multi-faceted annuity company they are today. While their financials are strong, their customer service is questionable and they have a history of charging extraneous fees compared to other annuity providers.

Here’s What You Need to Know About Jackson National Life Insurance

Jackson National Life Insurance Company has been in business for almost 60 years. The company started out offering term life insurance policies before branching out into annuity products to aid consumers in retirement.

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Pros And Cons Of Jackson National Life Insurance Company

Jackson National Life Insurance Pros

1) Early adopter of insurance sales techniques: Since the 1960s, Jackson National has been paving the way in marketing their products. When other life insurance companies were using captive agents only, Jackson National decided to work with independent agents to broaden their reach. By the early 1980s, they had reached a record $1 Billion in assets.

2) Several annuity options available: If you’re looking for an annuity product, you’ll find one that fits your needs at Jackson National. They offer fixed, index, and variable annuity options with different minimum investment requirements and add-on benefits to assist you with additional income in retirement.

3) Longevity and financial strength: Jackson National has been offering annuity products for 25 years and has almost $300 Billion in assets after several lucrative acquisitions. 

4) Top seller of deferred annuities: Though deferred annuity sales have decreased compared to last year, Jackson National has been able to maintain their position as #1 in deferred annuity sales. Their top products sold are the Fixed annuity and Perspective II Flexible Premium Variable annuity.

Cons Of Jackson National Life Insurance Company

1) High customer service complaints: Though the company no longer sells life insurance products, they still have them in force from long-term customers. Jackson National currently has just over 1 out of 5 stars with the Better Business Bureau, with most complaints because of poor customer service, lack of transparency, premium charge issues, and lack of urgency in paying out claims.

2) Excessive fees and charges: Another complaint provided by customers and potential clients of Jackson National is their excessive fees and charges compared to other annuity providers.

3) No life insurance products available: Despite getting their start with selling term life insurance products, Jackson National no longer offers them. They now stick with only annuity products, so if you don’t have a need for an annuity, they won’t be a good fit.

What types of life insurance does Jackson National offer?

Jackson National used to offer term life or whole life insurance products, but only offers three types of annuities now through their asset company, Jackson National Asset Management, LLC.

  • Variable Annuities: With this annuity type, premiums are paid into a mutual fund portfolio pre-selected by the purchaser of the annuity. The money in the fund grows based on stock market performance, and funds continue to grow until they are distributed to the purchaser in retirement as income. Jackson National offers several options, determined by amount invested, age of purchaser, income needs, and withdrawal schedule. Charges vary by product.
  • Fixed Annuities: With a fixed annuity, the insurer guarantees a specific amount will be paid to the purchaser at an agreed-upon date in the future. It’s up to the insurer to invest the premium paid into safe vehicles, like treasury bonds and securities. Jackson National offers both immediate annuities, which are paid out within a year of contract purchase, or the Jackson RateProtector, which is scheduled for payout for a future date determined by the insurer and purchaser.
  • Fixed Index Annuities: Like a fixed annuity, a fixed index annuity offers a guaranteed amount of income in retirement, but also includes an option for additional income if the markets invested in do well. Where fixed annuities are conservative and variable annuities are risky, fixed index annuities are moderate. National Jackson Life Insurance Company offers both a fee-based and non-fee based fixed index annuity.

Who is a good fit? 

Annuities are not for everyone. If you don’t have a tolerance for the stock market, Jackson National may not be the right fit for you. However, if you are looking for a vehicle to help fund your retirement, provide living benefits as well as a death benefit to leave a legacy for your family, an annuity might be a good fit.

How is Jackson National Life Insurance Different?

Jackson National started out as a life insurance company and has since become focused on a different aspect of life insurance to help fund retirement for individuals. The company has been in the life insurance industry for decades and is financially strong, suggesting they are able to make good on any claims filed for benefits. 

For anyone interested in annuity life insurance products, Jackson National offers a range of products for all income levels, including products with higher fee-based charges for better expected returns.

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What types of insurance can you purchase from Jackson National Life Insurance Company?

Life Insurance Products Offered through Jackson National Life Insurance Company

The only types of life insurance products offered through Jackson National are annuity products, which provide retirement income. The variable and fixed index annuity policies offer a death benefit option, where the fixed annuity is for living benefits only.

What Policies Does Jackson National Life Insurance Company Offer?

At Jackson National, you can apply for the following annuity products:

  • Fixed Annuity
    • Jackson RateProtector℠
    • Immediate Annuity
  • Fixed Index Annuity
    • MarketProtector®
    • MarketProtector Advisory® (fee-based, death benefit option)
  • Variable Annuity
    • Perspective II® (death benefit option)
    • Perspective Advisory II® (fee-based, death benefit option)
    • Elite Access II℠ (return of premium death benefit rider option)
    • Elite Access Advisory II® (fee-based)

Add-on benefit options vary by product, but most have the following additional coverages you can include in your annuity product for an additional cost:

  • Accelerated Living Benefit: If you are diagnosed with a qualifying medical condition, you can access some or all of the accumulated value in the annuity.
  • Death Benefit
  • Rebalancing
  • Reinvestment of earnings
  • Guaranteed interest rate (fixed only)
  • Multiple investment options (variable and fixed index only)

A Brief History Of Jackson National Life Insurance Company

Jackson National got its start in 1961 as Jackson National Life Insurance Company. A few years after they began, they chose to branch out from captive life insurance agents to independent, cementing their reach in the industry. They reached $1 Billion in assets 20 years later, doubling that amount just two years later. Another big change in the 1990s.

In 1995, the first Jackson National variable annuity launched. Fixed index annuities came the following year, and the company began to acquire other assets within the industry to maintain a profitable financial standing. They created a subsidiary in New York in 1998, expanding the company’s footprint across all 50 states. 

Though they stopped offering life insurance policies, they still have millions on the books, as they have purchased several life insurance companies over the years, including Life Insurance Company of Georgia and SRLC America Holding Corp. Jackson National has expanded to also include:

  • Jackson National Life Insurance Company of New York
  • Jackson National Asset Management, LLC
  • Jackson National Life Distributors LLC
  • PPM America, Inc.

Today, Jackson National Life Insurance Company is one of the top sellers of annuities in the country. Recent expansion has allowed them to now offer brokerage and asset management services to Jackson National’s clients.

Jackson National Life Insurance Products

Jackson National offers annuity products with the option for add-on benefits to include a death benefit. If you were to pass away, your beneficiary would receive either the accumulated cash value or the total amount you paid in premiums, whichever is greater. Some products provide the option for your spouse/partner to continue the contract after your death.

Jackson National Life Insurance Company coverage details and guidelines

Who Issues Their Policies

All annuity products are issued by Jackson National Life Insurance Company in Lansing, Michigan. Variable annuities in New York are issued by Jackson National Life Distributors LLC. Fixed index and variable annuities are distributed by Jackson National Life Distributors LLC.

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How Do I Get An Online Quote Through Jackson National Life Insurance Company?

Jackson National does not offer online quotes. You can contact them directly at 877-565-2968 or get in touch with independent agents and brokers offering Jackson National Life Insurance products.

How do I get a low rate?

Who is Jackson National Life Insurance Company For?

Someone who wants an additional layer of guaranteed protection in retirement. Specific annuity products can also include add-on benefits like tax-deferred growth, a death benefit (including accelerated death benefit rider), and ability to create a legacy for future generations.

Who is the Ideal Jackson National Life Insurance Company Applicant?

Someone who is in a high income tax bracket with disposable income willing to take some risk in the stock market for tax-deferred growth, future income, or legacy protection.

What If I’m Not Perfectly Healthy?

While some life insurance products require extensive underwriting and review of your personal and medical history, annuities don’t. This is because the end goal of life insurance is to pay your beneficiary a death benefit, whereas an annuity’s goal is to fund retirement with a potential death benefit as an optional benefit. 

An annuity application doesn’t require medical information. Instead, you’ll be asked for personal information, including proof of identity, existing life insurance and annuity contract information, funding accounts, and allocation requirements.

How to apply for life insurance with Jackson National Life Insurance Company

Signing Up for Jackson National Life Insurance Company

To sign up with Jackson National, you can apply over the phone directly through the company or with a registered independent agent. You’ll be asked questions to determine if you qualify for coverage and be able to choose the best annuity product to fit your needs in retirement.

How Does The Application Process with Jackson National Life Insurance Company Work

Once you’ve determined an annuity is a right fit for you, it’s time to choose which product is the best for your future goals. Some products are better for growth, while others are better for income. 

  1. You’ll receive a quote for the product, detailing interest rates, charges, fees, and add-on benefits selected. 
  2. If you’re happy with the quote, the rate will be locked, and the application pre-filled with your information:
    1. Personal information: Name, date of birth, social security number, driver’s license number, etc.
    2. Spouse information
    3. Beneficiary information: Name, date of birth, address, etc.
    4. Proof of identity: The agent will request a driver’s license or social security card to prove you are the applicant.
    5. Plan type
    6. Source of income: The means you’ll use to fund the account, plus account details.
    7. Premium allocations
    8. Existing annuity or life insurance contracts
    9. Tax forms
    10. Certificate of disclosure: A detailed list of provisions and features contained in the contract. 
  3. After receiving and signing the application, the first premium is due. If you’re paying directly, you’ll be expected to submit the premium along with the completed and signed application. If funds are being transferred from your IRA, 401k, mutual fund, or other asset account, the transfer process will be initiated.
  4. The contract is issued within two weeks of the premiums paid or transfer requested.
  5. Once the contract is received and signed for, you now have a 10-day free look period to decide if you want to keep the contract as applied for. If not, you can cancel it and receive a full refund of premiums paid or transferred.

Jackson National Life Insurance Company Financial & BBB Ratings

Despite not being accredited by the Better Business Bureau, Jackson National has an A- rating for financial strength. Here is where they stand with other financial rating companies:

  • A.M. Best: A
  • FitchRatings: A-
  • Moody’s Ratings: Baa2
  • Standard & Poor’s: A

Overall, Jackson National is financially strong, meaning they have the funds to pay out dividends and claims.

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Jackson National Life Insurance reviews and complaints

Jackson Financial suffers in the reviews and complaints department. They have a poor rating with the BBB, at 1.12 / 5 stars. Most people noted lack of payout on older life insurance policies and frustration with customer service. Some have had to resend documents, are unable to get to the right department to ask pointed questions, or don’t get a response to repeated messages left with the general customer service team.

You can find similar complaints on Yelp, where the company has a 1.5 / 5 stars rating. There is also mention of class action lawsuits since 2002 over breach of policy contracts and erroneous charges included to reduce customer fund value.

Compare Jackson National Life Insurance VS New York Life Insurance

New York Life Insurance may be best known for their term life insurance products, but they also offer annuity products like Jackson National. New York Life offers a fixed and indexed annuity, either immediate income or deferred. 

The two companies have similar financial strength, with New York Life being slightly higher in BBB ratings. However, 2019 LIMRA sales data shows Jackson National with over $19 Billion in annuity sales with New York Life having just over $13 Billion.

Jackson National Life Insurance Company Alternatives

If you’re looking for an annuity alternative, New York Life could be a better option if you aren’t looking for legacy options. Principal is our pick as the best for estate planning options and Lincoln Financial for cash value investing.