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MetLife Life Insurance Review

MetLife Insurance Limited has over 150 years of experience in the financial sector and is one of the world’s largest life insurance companies. MetLife Australia was launched in 2005, offering group insurance through Super. MetLife Retail life insurance has been available since August 2018 — providing a range of life cover products, including life insurance, TPD cover, Trauma Insurance, and Income Protection.

Russell Cain

Fact Checked

Updated: 19 May 2024

To determine whether MetLife Australia offers the best cover for your circumstances, you may want to review the feature and benefits offered, policy pros and cons, and how easy it is to apply and lodge a claim.

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Company overview

MetLife Australia is owned by MetLife Incorporated, the holding company for the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company (MLIC) and its associates. The company has grown to the third-largest group insurer in Australia, protecting more than 1.79 million Australians. 

MetLife operates as a mutual company, which means they are owned entirely by their policyholders and don’t work with any external shareholders. This benefits customers because any profits earned by MetLife are either re-invested to improving their services and products or returned to customers in the form of lower premiums.

Is MetLife a good life insurance company?

MetLife has a stable financial history, operating in over 40 countries worldwide, including the USA, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. As the third-largest group insurer in Australia, they have paid out over $3.3 billion in claims. Additionally, they were named Life Insurance Company of the Year at the 2019 ANZIIF Australian Insurance Industry Awards.

Whether MetLife is the right option for you depends on whether their policy options provide the benefits and features you want and can afford. Review and compare their policies with similar policies from other major life insurance brands in Australia.

Review MetLife Protect policy options

MetLife Retail Life Insurance offers a variety of personal insurance options to meet your specific requirements. Carefully consider the type of policy you want by reviewing the benefits provided.

Life insurance

It provides a lump sum benefit to support your loved ones should you pass away or get diagnosed with a terminal illness.

General built-in benefits

Cover amount

There is no limit on your life cover amount. However, the minimum coverage is $50,000.

Entry and expiry age

Generally, the entry age is 15 to 73 years old on a stepped premium style policy, 15 to 59 years old on level premiums, and up to age 54 for a fixed term option (5 or 10 years). MetLife Life Cover policies held outside of Super expires when you turn 130.

Exclusions

No benefits are payable if you commit suicide within the first 13 months of applying for cover.

TPD cover

Pays a lump sum benefit if you are unable to work because you’re totally and permanently disabled due to an illness or an injury, your TPD cover could help to lighten the financial burden.

TPD definitions available:

General built-in benefits

Cover amount

The minimum amount of TPD coverage is $50,000, and the maximum is $5 million.

Entry and expiry age

Generally, your TPD cover expires once you turn 75 years old. The entry ages are 15 to 64 for stepped premiums and 15 to 59 for level premiums. The entry age for a fixed-term TPD policy (5 or 10 years) is between 15 to 54.

Exclusions

If your claim is a result of a self-inflicted injury, your benefits won’t be payable.

Trauma cover

Provides a lump sum payment when diagnosed with critical illness listed in your PDS. Trauma cover from MetLife Australia will help you pay for the medical expenses and support you and your loved ones to continue your lifestyle.

General built-in benefits

Cover amount

With Trauma Cover, you can apply for a minimum amount of $30,000 and a maximum of $2 million.

Entry and expiry age

You can apply for stepped premium critical illness cover if you’re between 15 and 64, and for level premiums between 15 and 59. You must be between the ages of 15 to 54 for a fixed-term option (5 or 10 years).

Your Trauma Cover expires once you turn 75 years old. However, it’s important to note that once you turn 70, you’ll only be able to claim benefits from tier 1.

Exclusions

Income
Protection

If you find yourself unable to work due to an accident or illness, Income Protection provides a monthly benefit up to 75% of your regular income.

Take note: Agreed value income protection is no longer available to new customers — only indemnity value income protection policies can be purchased.

General built-in benefits

Cover amount

Get up to 75% of your monthly income insured. The minimum coverage amount is $1,500, and the maximum is $30,000 a month.

Choice of excess period

Choose between a 30- or 90-day excess period (waiting period). Generally, choosing a longer excess period will result in a lower premium.

Choice of a benefit period

Select for how long you want your benefit to payout. Generally, the longer your benefit period, the more expensive your premium will be.

Entry and expiry age

A stepped income protection policies are available when you’re between 15 and 64 years old and up to age 59 for a level premium style policy. Your Income Protection Policy expires when you turn 75.

Exclusions

MetLife Protect + Extras

Choose an insurance policy that meets your current requirements and familial obligations by including Extras as your circumstances change. However, you’ll need to pay an additional fee for these Extras.

Pros and Cons of a MetLife retail policy

Advantages
  • A strong financial rating with a Standard and Poors Global rating of AA-, indicating that the company has enough capital to pay out claims today and in the future.
  • Variety of policy options, including the ability to add Extras as your circumstances change.
  • The Life Events Increases Feature allows you to increase your cover without additional medical underwriting when you get a salary increase.
  • You can generally choose up to five beneficiaries.
  • Policies are automatically updated on the next policy renewal date when the company makes changes to its cover.
  • Get discounts when applying for multiple policies or making healthy lifestyle choices.
Disadvantages
  • Specific exclusions apply to policies — for example, a 13-month suicide exclusion on life cover.
  • Extras are only available at an additional fee, thus increasing the price of your policy.
  • Income Protection does not cover redundancy.
  • Each Extras benefit has a specific list of exclusions that may prevent you from claiming your benefit.
  • Your choice of income protection waiting period is limited to only 30 or 90 days.

How to apply for a policy

To apply for a policy from MetLife Australia, visit their website. Download the relevant MetLife insurance application documents and make an appointment with one of their financial advisers. Alternatively, you can contact them over the phone, request a call-back, or use their online contact option.

For a quick online quote and comparison, complete the form at the top of this page.

How to lodge a MetLife claim

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

You can only claim your Income Cover if you contract the Coronavirus, and cannot work at full capacity for longer than your excess period (waiting period). However, the virus generally runs its normal course in approximately 14 days, so you are likely to recover before your excess period expires, meaning you won’t be eligible to claim your income protection.

No, the Covid19 virus is not one of the medical conditions listed in MetLife’s PDS. However, if the virus causes you to develop one of the more severe conditions covered, you’ll generally be able to claim for that specific condition.

Generally, you can only claim if the Coronavirus left you totally and permanently disabled and unable to work in your Own or Any occupation, as specified in your PDS.

Your life insurance premium depends on a variety of factors. These generally include the amount and type of cover you choose, the Extras you add, your age and gender, medical history, lifestyle factors, and the state you live in.

Premiums typically increase slightly every year to stay in line with the Consumer Price Index (indexation benefit). You can generally request to remove this benefit if you’d like to keep your insurance costs low. If you have a stepped premium style policy, your premium will usually increase every year as you get older and more likely to claim.

You can request a MetLife quote by visiting their website and sending them an email. Alternatively, if you want to receive an immediate MetLife quote online and compare their offering to other major life insurance brands in Australia, fill in the quote form above.

Generally, you won’t be required to go for a medical examination. However, this depends on the information provided in your Statement of Health. The Statement of Health is a questionnaire that asks you to disclose lifestyle and health factors such as whether you smoke or if you’ve ever had high blood pressure.

If you’d like to cancel your policy, contact MetLife or your financial adviser. If you cancel during the 30-day cooling-off period, you’ll generally receive a full refund if no claim has been made. If you paid your policy in advance, you’d typically receive a pro-rata refund of premiums.

Yes, MetLife provides worldwide coverage. However, it’s best to confirm with the company before going overseas.

Coles Life Insurance, underwritten by MetLife, originally started as an affordable cover option to complement their established car and home insurance products. However, after only two and a half years, they stopped new policy sign-ups, and on January 1, 2017, all their life insurance cover transferred to MetLife Essentials.

If you have a Coles life insurance policy, your policy will remain unaffected – MetLife Life Insurance will adhere to the terms and conditions of your policy.

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Specialist

Russell is the founder and CEO of Life Insurance Direct and has been quoted in The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, Independent Financial Adviser, Risk Adviser, Adviservoice, and Insurancenews. Russell has over 15 years’ experience in the Australian life insurance & financial services sector and is instrumental in driving the latest innovations in our insuretech platform.

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