Canadian Life Insurance Companies
Start with our list of Canadian Life Insurance Companies when choosing your coverage provider.
To help you in your quest for life insurance we have compiled a complete list and summary below with direct links to each life insurance company's website. Most of these companies are part of our life insurance quote calculator should you want to look at getting a quick and easy quote for life insurance.
When you're ready to start, make sure to take a look at our guide to help you with getting a life insurance quote online: " How to Get a Life Insurance quote online: The Good, The Bad and the Ugly".
Here's a look at all the life insurance companies in Canada.
ACA Assurance (also known as Association Canada-Americaine) is a full-service life insurance company in Canada. They are the only Franco-American fraternal benefit society of its kind. The association insures members all over North America but has its roots in mostly historically French-speaking areas like New Brunswick, Ontario, New England, Quebec, and Louisiana. Focused on individuals and families, they offer whole and term life insurance, accidental death and dismemberment, travel insurance, and more. Their most interesting product is Guaranteed Life. This is a whole life insurance plan for anyone aged 40 to 85 (an age where getting life insurance is typically difficult).
Alberta Blue Cross
For more than 70 years, Alberta Blue Cross has helped Albertans pay for medical care. Founded before universal health care existed in Canada, they have helped more than 1.7 million Albertans with health and dental benefits. With a focus on individual health and dental plans (by far their most popular product), they also have a robust group benefits and travel insurance business.
American Income Life (AIL)
Headquartered in Waco, Texas American Income Life (AIL) has served working-class families since 1951 with life, accident, and supplemental health products. Because of their focus on workers, they do most of their work through labor unions, credit unions, and other associations. Products offered include life insurance (both whole life and term) and supplemental health insurance.
Started in 1903 in Massachusetts, Assumption Life is now headquartered in downtown Moncton and dedicated to serving Canadian families. Their mission to enhance the financial stability of Canadian families. Assumption's core products focus on life insurance, investments & retirement, group insurance, and residential and commercial mortgages.
BMO Life Insurance
As a member of the BMO Financial Group, BMO Insurance has a history dating back to 1817. One of the advantages of being attached to a bank is financial stability. It also allows the ability to offer competitive pricing and terms on all of their products. BMO Insurance offers a variety of insurance products including life insurance, accident and illness insurance, travel insurance, and a variety of investment products. One of their most innovative products is EasyOne Life offering whole life insurance to applicants between 50 and 80 years old.
Founded in 1847, Canada Life is Canada’s first domestic life insurance company. Since then, they have expanded to offering insurance and wealth management products in Canada, the UK, Isle of Man, Germany, and Ireland through various subsidiaries. Canada Life is well known for their financial stability. They offer life and health insurance products from critical illness to disability, investment and retirement solutions, mortgages, and insurance solutions for businesses. Great West Life and London Life have just recently rebranded under the Canada Life banner.
Canada Protection Plan
Canada Protection Plan is a provider of life insurance, health and dental, travel insurance, and critical illness insurance policies. Their claim to fame is their quick quotes and no medical or “simplified issue” life insurance policies. These policies can be purchased much quicker (usually in less than 1 day) than traditional insurance products. They specialize in flexible underwriting and can provide coverage for both healthy individuals and those with serious medical conditions.
Canadian Tire Life Insurance
Canadian Tire Life Insurance is a partnership between Canadian Tire Financial Services and Canada Life. It was formed with the goal of providing affordable insurance plans to customers – especially those who have difficulty finding insurance elsewhere. In pursuit of greater accessibility, many of their life insurance plans do not even require a medical exam. But their products are limited, selling mostly term policies with a low limit of insurance usually $50,000 to $250,000.
Co-operators Life Insurance
Co-operators Life Insurance is the life insurance arm of the Co-operators group with subsidiaries in property, casualty and wealth management. They operate as a co-operative with over 70 years of history. Co-operators have members in communities all across the country representing all sectors of the Canadian economy from agriculture to retail. As a co-operative, they focus on balancing the needs of the business, their members, and their communities with long-term thinking. Products offered by Co-operators life include group benefits, individual life insurance, and travel insurance.
Interested In Getting Life Insurance?Get A Quote Today
Equitable Life is a mutual insurance company and one of the largest and most financially stable in Canada. Being an Equitable Life policyholder makes you a part owner in the company and eligible for dividends based on performance. Equitable Life touts a stellar product line covering everything from individual life and health insurance, to savings and retirement, as well as group benefits. As a mutual company, they also give back extensively to their community through financial contributions to charities like United Way and Adopt-a-Family.
Empire Life Insurance
Founded in Toronto, Ontario in 1923, Empire Life is now nearly 100 years old. They are one of the top 10 life insurance companies in Canada in total assets. With their initial focus of life and health insurance, they grew quickly and began expanding their product offering into group benefits and retirement income investment products. Despite their long history, they have always been keen on innovation. Since 2014, they have started selling life insurance online and are still at the forefront of the digital transformation of the insurance industry.
For almost 150 years, Foresters Financial has made it their mission to build financial security for families all over the world through their life insurance products. Their motto is “life insurance with a larger purpose”. They have stayed true to that throughout their history, immediately mobilizing to help those affected by the San Francisco earthquake of 1907. On top of offering a comprehensive suite of life insurance products, one of their defining features is their democratic corporate structure. This structure allows any member to stand for election into leadership roles such as Branch Council, Branch President or Vice President.
Started by Alphonse and Dorimene Desjardins, Desjardins Financial is the very first cooperative insurance group in North America. The group was formed on the night of December 6th, 1900 when 100 people signed the cooperative’s rules and by-laws. Today, they still very much stand by those values focusing on improving the economic and social well-being of those affected by their business operations. Today, Desjardins operates a variety of businesses in this sector including:
- Savings and investments
- Wealth management
- Life and health insurance
- Group benefits
- Loans, and various financial services for business
Started in 1874, Humania Assurance was built around the idea of organizing mutual aid for the working class. When one of their members became ill or died, the group would provide relief payments to their families. Sticking to those roots, Humania focuses a lot on accessibility for their products. Humania offers a comprehensive suite of products such as:
- Life and health insurance
- Critical illness insurance
- Accident insurance
- Travel insurance
- Disability insurance
- Mortgage insurance
- Children life and critical illness insurance
Humania is another insurance company that is leading the way with technology and digital platforms for insurance brokers.
Hunter McCorquodale Inc.
Hunter McCorquodale is a special risk life, accident and health insurance provider for clients who cannot meet their needs in the regular markets. As a specialty life insurer, they specialize in insuring hard-to-place life insurance risks. An interesting feature of this company is that they do not deal directly with the public and only work through licensed intermediaries. As a specialty insurer, you can expect their premiums to be higher but for them to be more flexible with underwriting people in more challenging situations due to factors like health, lifestyle or occupation. Some of their more interesting products include:
- Individual life insurance with limits of up to $10M
- Kidnap and ransom insurance for corporations and high net worth families
Industrial Alliance (IA Financial Group)
Founded in 1892, IA Financial Group is now one of the largest insurance and wealth management groups in Canada and are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange. Currently, they have more than 4 million clients, 7,400 employees, 25,000 representatives, and manage over $175.7 billion in assets. IA offers a wide variety of insurance and financial products such as:
- Individual and group life and health insurance
- Home and auto insurance
- Life, critical illness and disability insurance
- Travel insurance
They are also well known for individual wealth and group retirement solutions.
Ivari (formerly Transamerica Life of Canada)
Ivari started their journey over 80 years ago before merging with Wilton Re. a life reinsurance company. As a life insurance company, Ivari has a vested interest in the health and well-being of its customers. That’s why Ivari is committed to supporting organizations teaching children healthy habits like eating and exercise through their Healthy Steps program. They focus mostly on insurance products like universal and term life insurance and critical illness insurance. Ivari also offers a limited number of high-quality investment products like segregated funds and annuities.
La Capitale Life Insurance
La Capitale has taken care of the well-being and financial security of Canadians for over 75 years through a variety of insurance and retirement savings products. La Capitale Life Insurance is their life and health insurance arm. Through this subsidiary, they offer individual life, travel, health and disability and accident insurance. They also offer a limited line of group benefits products aimed at small businesses.
Manulife Financial is a global financial services group that operates as John Hancock in the United States and Manulife everywhere else. Since their inception:
- They have grown to manage over $1.2 trillion in assets
- Employing 35,000 people globally
- Have paid out $30.4 billion in claims and benefits in the last 12 months.
Manulife provides financial advice, insurance, and wealth management services to individuals, groups, and institutions like pension funds. One key way Manulife has been able to stand out from the competition is with their early adoption of technology. They have introduced the Manulife Vitality program, and using it to encourage healthy behavior from their plan members.
Medavie Blue Cross
For over 75 years, Medavie Blue Cross has provided health services for individuals, businesses and governments in Canada. Because of this strong track record, they are now the leading Blue Cross plan in Canada with over 1 million members. As an all-in-one carrier, they offer health, dental, travel, life, and disability insurance to individuals, families, and organizations of all sizes. Examples of government organizations they work with include Veterans Affairs Canada and Citizenship Canada.
National Life Insurance
Founded in 1848, National Life Insurance Group has always focused on making an impact and building strong connections within the communities they serve. This is reflected in their company's mission to “do good, be good, make good.” For individuals and families, they offer a full suite of insurance products like:
- Life insurance
- Living benefits
- Wealth management products like retirement plans, annuities, and mutual funds
For business, they focus on helping small and large businesses with employee retirement planning products and services.
Primerica Life Insurance
Founded in 1986 Primerica Life Insurance prides itself on serving the needs of Main Street North Americans. They played a big role in pioneering “buy term and invest the difference”. This idea encourages people to buy a term life insurance policy instead of a whole life policy, and invest the difference for the future. With a full complement of individual life and wealth management products, Primerica Life Insurance Company is now one of the largest financial services marketing organization in North America. Primerica allows people to become an agent and build a business in a network marketing style.
Reliable Life Insurance
Reliable Life Insurance was founded in 1887 and is a federally licensed Canadian life insurance company with headquarters in Hamilton, Ontario. For the last four decades, Reliable Life Insurance has made its name as a specialized provider of niche insurance products for private label use or custom policies. Outside developing niche life insurance products, they also have subsidiaries in property and casualty, mortgage guarantee, and title insurance.
As an offshoot of the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), RBC Insurance specializes in personal insurance and retirement products geared towards the needs of their bank customers. Some of their products offered include home insurance, auto insurance, life insurance, health insurance, travel insurance, loan protection, and retirement investment solutions. Because of their focus on personal insurance products, their business insurance offerings are limited; only providing niche products like key-person, buy-sell, and business overhead insurance.
SSQ Life Insurance Company
SSQ Life Insurance Company is a mutual insurer offering all types of individual insurance from auto to home to life and critical illness. As a full-service insurer, they also offer an extensive range of group insurance products, investment and retirement products including RRSP, segregated funds, and loans. In 2020, they became the largest mutual insurance company in the country with emphasis placed on the well-being of their employees, members, and communities.
Sun Life Assurance
Sun Life Assurance (sometimes referred to as Sun Life Financial) has laid down deep roots in Canada since its founding over 150 years ago. Starting with the sale of insurance products, they rapidly expanded into wealth management solutions for clients. Their mission is to help Canadians achieve financial security and live healthier lives. For individuals, they help them build wealth through investment products and preserve them with life insurance. And for small and large businesses, they help with group benefits and group retirement solutions.
Wawanesa Life Insurance
Wawanesa Life Insurance is an offshoot of mainline property and casualty insurer Wawanesa. Corporate parent Wawanesa was started in 1896 in Wawanesa, Manitoba and quickly grew to service all of Western Canada and then the rest of the country. In the 2000s, they expanded their operations into the United States. Today, Wawanesa life boasts a full range of life and wealth management products for individuals and groups. Examples of products offered include life insurance, critical illness, disability, extended health and dental, and investment products.
Interested In Getting Life Insurance?Get A Quote Today
Written by Jacques Wong
Jacques grew up around the insurance industry and began actively participating in 2013. Since then, he has gotten a Level 2 license, won Insurance Council of BC awards in 2015 and 2020 for academic excellence in the insurance licensing courses. He educates insurance professionals through PNC Learning and as a Thought Leader at ReFrame Insurance.
In his day job as an insurance broker, he helps businesses with creative risk management solutions and strategic advice when it comes to insurance.