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Company Review: Manulife Insurance



Founded in 1887, Manulife is now the largest insurance company whose headquarter – The Manufacturer Insurance Company – is based in Toronto, Canada. The company also has numerous offices in other regions of Canada, Asia and Europe. Manulife operates as John Hancock in the United States. The company offers a wide range of services, ranging from personal insurance to investment consulting. 

One of the reasons for Manulife’s high reputation is that they pioneer in many aspects of the Canadian insurance industry. In 1981, they were among the first insurers to offer lower premium rates to those who don’t smoke. In 2016, Manulife became the first insurer in Canada to provide life insurance coverage to HIV-positives.

By 2020, Manulife has earned $5.5 billion of core earning (previously in 2000, they were the first Canadian insurance provider to reach the milestone of $1 billion net income). Their common share dividend is worth $1.12/share, an increase of 12% compared to 2019 despite the Covid-19 situation. They have served 30 million customers, with more than 37,000 employees, 118,000 agents, along with thousands of distribution partners.


Overall, Manulife in Canada has excellent ratings by independent rating companies such as Moody’s, A.M Best, Fitch Rating. As of September 30, 2021. For example, in terms of financial strength rating, The Manufacturer Insurance Company is rated AA- by S&P Global Ratings, A1 by Moody’s Investor Service Inc., A+ by A.M Best, AA- by Fitch Rating. 

In other categories such as senior unsecured debt ratings, subordinated debt ratings, Term Deposit Notes, Short Term Deposit Notes and Limited Recourse Capital Notes, the company also receives very high ratings.

For those who want to know more about the rating of Manulife, please go to Manulife’s official website and check their public information or contact us via here, call us at 1-877-611-6722 (toll free) or chat using the bubble at the right corner.

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Manulife offers a wide range of product lines for personal insurance coverage from health insurance, travel insurance and life insurance. Each product line has different insurance policies that cater to different needs.

Health Insurance

The three main products offered by Manulife are Health and Dental Insurance, Disability Insurance and Critical Illness Insurance. 

Health and Dental Insurance

FlexcareDiscounted rates for families with more than 3 children
Online access to claims and consultancy
Travel coverage maximum: up to $5 billion
Up to 7 personalized plans available
Optional add-ons available
Earn rewards and save premiums with Manulife Vitality
FollowMeDiscounted rates for couples and families
Online access to claims and consultancy
Travel coverage maximum: up to $5 billion
Up to 3 personalized plans available
Earn rewards and save premiums with Manulife Vitality

Disability Insurance

ProguardIncome replacement for a covered disability
Partial or residual benefits if working in a limited capacity
Automatic 5% increase annually to the policy amount
Financial flexibility in the event of a severe disability, e.g., loss of sight, with 25% higher benefits
Long term care insurance policy conversion option available
5 optional add-ons available
VentureIncome replacement for a covered disability
Automatic 3% increase annually to the policy amount
Long term care insurance policy conversion option available
5 optional add-ons available
Personal Accident Disability InsurancePersonal Accident Disability Insurance: Policyholders receive monthly payouts in the event of disability due to an accident
Cash Hospital: Policyholders receive monthly payouts in the event of being hospitalized due to a sickness or accident.
ExpenseCompReimbursement of business expenses in the event of a total disability
Reimbursement of several expenses related to the sale of the business
4 optional add-ons available
Manulife buy-sell plusCash payout – either a lump sum or through an income stream – to purchase a disabled owner’s share of the business Ability to transfer insurance to a new business without medical evidence
Ability to purchase additional insurance in the future without medical evidence

Critical Illness Insurance

Link: Sample contract
Maximum coverage: up to $2 million
Multiple coverage terms available (including permanent coverage)
Number of payout illnesses: 25 critical illnesses
Partial benefit payouts: 25% payout up to $50,000 when there’s a non-life-threatening illness
Children’s LifeCheque rider: protect policyholder’s children and give them the opportunity to get their own policy when they get 21 without undergoing the Online application available
Return of premium and limited pay options
Payment for temporary loss of independent existence
Expensive return of premium options Payments for loss of independent existence is on a monthly basis
No option for second event coverage 
Lifecheque BasicReturn of premium if you don’t make any claim when you get 75Limited coverage amount:
+ $25,000, $50,000 or $75,000 for those between 18-55
+ $25,000 or $50,000 for those between 56-60
+ $25,000 for those between 61-655 covered illnesses only
CoverMeOnline application available
No medical underwriting required
Maximum coverage: $75,000
Covered illnesses: 5
Available term: 5 years, renewal means an increase in premium rate.
Coverage terminates when the policyholder reaches 75

Travel Insurance

CoverMe(For Canadians)Maximum coverage: up to $10 million
Single-trip or multi-trip plans availableCOVID-19 Pandemic Travel Plan available
Open to Canadians with Pre-Existing Medical Conditions

In addition to CoverMe, there are other travel insurance policies that are available to visitors to Canada and students.

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Life Insurance

Term Life Insurance
4 plans are available for individuals, families and businesses
No medical term life insurance is available, including CoverMe Easy Issue and Manulife Quick Issue Term
Permanent Life Insurance* Whole Life Insurance
Manulife Par: Coverage starting at $100,000
No policy fees
Guaranteed payment duration for 10 or 20 years
Single life or Joint last-to-die options
Performax Gold:
Coverage starting at $25,000Spread out the cost of insurance to age 100 or pay them all in 15 years
* Universal Life Insurance
Innovision: For those who want to invest in wealth accumulation and estate planning goals
Security UL: Include guaranteed minimum interest rates
Manulife UL: Coverage starts at $50,000 or $100,000 
Multiple investment account options are available
Guaranteed rate enhancement on managed accounts
Guaranteed premium for a shorter, guaranteed period of time
* Guaranteed Whole Life Insurance: CoverMe Guaranteed Issue life insurance
Available for those from 40-75
Guaranteed premiums and coverage
Coverage amount: $5,000 to 25,000

Manulife Synergy: 3-In-1 Insurance


Manulife Synergy is a unique product offered by Manulife that combines three types of insurance: life insurance, critical illness insurance and disability insurance. 

Instead of buying 3 standalone products, you just need to buy one. This option can save policyholders up to $100 per month. Besides, the process to apply for this option is quicker. Manulife Synergy is considered a comprehensive, affordable product for those who want to cover their risks.

Coverage Plan

Manulife Synergy offers from 100,000 to $500,000 in coverage. It is able to convert to permanent life insurance as long as the policyholder is under the age of 65. Its benefits are a combination of critical illness, life and disability insurance benefits. 


Policyholders can choose to add a renewable 10-year term or Term-to-65 life to their insurance policy. Manulife Synergy also offers riders for children’s life and critical illness insurance up to age 25.

How Manulife Synergy works

Imagine your policy coverage as a pool of money for all 3 types of insurance. If you make a disability claim, the amount of coverage available for life and critical illness claim declines accordingly.

Typically, your disability claim pays out 0.5% of the coverage amount per month in the event of your disability (there’s a 90- day waiting period). Premiums are waived if you become totally disabled. The payout for critical illness insurance is 25% of the coverage amount. For life insurance, your claim pays out 100% of the remaining amount of your coverage.

Take a look at the following example: Alex buys Manulife Synergy with the coverage amount of $500,000. 

  • Eight years later, he makes a disability claim for 5 months. He gets $2,500/month for a total of $12,500, which means that he has $487,500 left in coverage
  • 3 years later, Alex gets diagnosed with diabetes type II and makes a claim for $121,875, so she has $365,625 left.
  • She passes away in 6 years, leaving her beneficiary with $365,625  in death benefit.


The coverage amount for term-10 Synergy for the first ten years is around $95 for males and $121 for females at the age of 30, non-smokers. That for Term-65 is $172 and $205, respectively.

To illustrate, let’s look at Table 1 and Table 2:

Table 1: Term-10 monthly premium illustration

Table 2: Term-65 monthly premium illustration

Pros and Cons

Manulife’s strengths

Overall, Manulife is the biggest insurance provider in Canada that has more than 130 years of experience. Their ratings all indicate that they have an excellent financial base; therefore, clients will be assured that the company is able to give clients a payout during the policy period.

Next, we can see that Manulife offers a wide range of insurance and investment products for their clients. Thus, the clients have more choices when choosing Manulife. In addition, Manulife also offers permanent life insurance with a very competitive rate. Manulife also enables clients to convert their term plans to longer term.

Manulife has developed a powerful online platform for their clients even before the Covid-19, so everything can be assessed online, which is more convenient and time-saving. Manulife is also the only Canadian insurance provider to develop a reward system called Manulife Vitality product that rewards policyholders with lower premiums.

As regards customer satisfaction, Manulife receives high customer satisfaction ratings. Their agents and brokers are known for being professional and helpful.

Manulife’s weaknesses

The shortcomings of Manulife’s insurance products are mainly with their term life insurance. The premium is slightly higher compared to other companies, and there are restrictions on the term lengths available (10-year, 20-year, Age 65).

There are also bad reviews online about Manulife. Most are about delays in the claiming process and unreasonable additional charges.


To be brief, Manulife is a powerhouse in the industry with various insurance options and a unique reward scheme for their clients. Manulife is very strong at permanent insurance plans and other investment plans. The choice of insurance depends on the policyholder’s specific needs and demands. Therefore, you should be able to consider if the products of Manulife suit you or not. You can also consult independent brokers who partner with Manulife, such as Insurance Direct Company, so that they can advise you on the product that best fits your needs, provide you with insurance quotes, etc.

There are reviews for other top insurance companies in Canada available, TD Life Insurance, Canada Protection Plan, iA Financial Group, etc.

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