Although only active in a handful of states, the life insurance companies under the Protective Life Insurance umbrella share a history of growth and innovation. By acting as a brokerage as well as an insurance company in its own right, Protective Life Insurance also offers products from many of its competitors.
Protective Life Insurance’s three main life insurance subsidiaries, Protective Life Insurance Company, Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company and West Coast Life Insurance Company, all hold A+ (superior) ratings from A. M. Best, AA- (very strong) ratings from Standard and Poor’s and A (strong) ratings from Fitch. In addition, Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company and West Coast Life Insurance Company also hold A2 (good) ratings from Moody’s.
History and Structure
Protective Life Insurance is perhaps the only life insurance company in the country founded by a former state governor. William Dorsey Jelks, who had served as governor of Alabama from 1901 to 1907, founded Protective Life Insurance in Birmingham soon after leaving office.
By the 1920s Protective Life Insurance established an aggressive growth policy, becoming a major regional life insurance carrier in the South by the end of the decade. Over the years the company became somewhat national in scope. This culminated in the 1997 acquisition of the like-minded West Coast Life Insurance Company, which among other things became the first life insurance company to operate in Hawaii.
Despite this growth, Protective Life Insurance today is only licensed in 14 states, primarily in its Southern base. However, the company’s brokerage business opens it up to most of the rest of the country as well.
Protective Life Insurance currently operates as four different companies: Protective Life Insurance Company, Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company, West Coast Life Insurance Company and the Lyndon Insurance Group, since renamed the Protective Asset Protection Division. Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company is active only in New York state, while the Protective Asset Protection Division primarily offers finance and insurance (F&I) products on automobile and marine purchases. Another subsidiary, First Protective, is a brokerage that offers agents appointed with Protective access to life insurance and annuity products sold by Protective Life Insurance other carriers.
All of the Protective companies are based in Birmingham. However Protective Life Insurance continues to maintain a large office in San Francisco, the former headquarters of West Coast Life. The Protective companies contracts with independent insurance agents. The Atlanta-based ProEquities serves as the company’s broker/dealer for variable products, offering products from both Protective and other companies.
The following product discussions are intended to be a generic representation of the policies Protective Life Insurance offers. Not all products may be available in every state as described. In addition policy features and underwriting requirements may change without notice. Consult with a Protective Life Insurance agent for the most up-to-date information.
Protective Life Insurance Company, Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company and West Coast Life Insurance Company all offer term life products. Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company’s Empire Term Series offers term insurance in 10, 15, 20 and 25 year increments. The West Coast Life WCL Secure-T product offers all of those options plus a 30-year term product.
West Coast’s Income Replacement Term Series pays its death benefit in increments rather than a lump sum, operating similar to an annuity. Because it is a term life insurance product, unlike an annuity it does not accrue any sort of cash value and has a predefined term.
West Coast Life’s Golden Legacy Term is a last survivor, or “second-to-die” two-party term survivorship policy that pays its death benefit at the death of the second party. West Coast Life pioneered this form of insurance, offering the first of its kind in California.
None of the Protective Life Insurance companies offer a whole life policy. However, whole life policies underwritten by other life insurance carriers are available to Protective agents through the company’s First Protective brokerage. Through the brokerage whole life policies from Lincoln Life, Mutual of Omaha, New York Life, Prudential and others are available to Protective Life Insurance customers.
Although none of Protective Life’s companies directly underwrite whole life policies, variable whole life products are nonetheless available through the company’s ProEquities broker/dealer.
West Coast Life’s LifeTime Advantage Plus UL is a typical fixed universal life policy funded by a cash value mechanism that allows for variable premium payments. It is available in level or increasing death benefit options. The company’s LifeTime Platinum III Plus UL operates in a similar manner but is only available in the fixed death benefit option.
Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company’s ProClassic NY Universal Life is also a typical fixed universal life policy available to residents of New York state. Variable universal life (VUL) products underwritten by Protective Life Insurance and others are available through the company’s ProEquities broker/dealer.
Annuities and Other Products
Protective Life and West Coast Life fixed annuity products. West Coast Life offers the Sure Advantage and Secure Advantage fixed annuities, which can be purchased as either qualified or non-qualified plans.
Both West Coast Life and Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company offer single premium immediate annuity (SPIA) products. Used primarily for tax and estate planning purposes, an SPIA is funded by a single, substantial premium and begins its distribution phase immediately, providing the annuitant with a guaranteed monthly income for life. Available products include West Coast Life’s Income Advantage Plus and Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company’s ProPayer Income Annuity NY.
Protective Life and Annuity Insurance Company also offers a single premium deferred annuity, which works much the same as an SPIA but doesn’t enter the distribution phase right away, allowing for time for interest to accumulate. The ProSaver Secure II NY is the product available in New York.
First Protective and ProEquities operate as brokerages available to Protective agents, giving them access to life insurance and annuity products available from other insurance carriers. Through these companies, Protective agents can also offer variable annuities, wealth transfer solutions, long-term care (LTC) insurance, disability insurance and mutual funds.
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