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Getting life insurance in Quebec: the basics.

While no one really wants to think about life insurance, most people should. Life is unpredictable and accidents and illness affect us all at some point. Life insurance makes sure that your loved ones are financially protected should something happen to you.

A life insurance policy will provide your beneficiaries with financial compensation that they can put towards funeral costs, or pay off a mortgage and other debts.

In the larger scope of things, a life insurance premium a small price to pay for peace of mind it can provide for you and your loved ones.

Life insurance does not have to cost a lot of money and some policies even give you some control over your payment schedule.

The cost of your premium depends on a number of factors, the main factor being your age and current health status. Because of this, it is actually beneficial to take out life insurance while you are young and healthy.

Your questions about life insurance in Quebec, answered.

What type of life insurance is available in Quebec?

There are two basic types of life insurance that are offered in Quebec: term and permanent insurance.

Term life insurance:

Term insurance is the most popular type of life insurance in Quebec. It is the more cost-effective option, giving the insured person temporary coverage for an allotted amount of time.

This timeframe is either a set amount of years (10, 20, or 30-year terms are common) or until the insured person reaches a specific age (usually age 65). The death benefit is only paid out if you die within the term of the policy.

You choose your length of coverage, your coverage amount, and your beneficiaries. The premium of the insurance does not go up during your insured term and you can often renew coverage at the end of the term or convert to permanent life insurance. That's why term life insurance is great for people on a budget and younger people.

The two caveats to term insurance are that your premiums will go up when you renew it (because you’ve aged by at least a decade) and there is no cash value, so the only time your death benefit is accessible is when it’s paid out to your beneficiaries in the wake of your death.

Permanent life insurance:

Permanent life insurance is more expensive but provides coverage for your entire life, and it also has a cash value that builds as you continue paying the premiums. The premiums stay level throughout the entire time of the policy.

There are a couple of types of permanent life insurance: whole and universal.

Whole life insurance: Premiums do not increase over time and the benefit stays constant as well. You will also receive a guaranteed cash surrender value should you choose to terminate the insurance coverage early. Your cash value is invested, professionally managed by the life insurance company, but the returns are more conservative.

Universal life insurance: Offers more flexibility than whole life, allowing you to change your premiums and the value of your death benefit throughout your lifetime. With universal life insurance, there’s also an investment component, and instead of leaving it to the insurance company to manage, you get to choose how you want to invest your cash. There’s more risk to this, but also potentially more reward.

Term 100: While its name might lead you to believe otherwise, term 100 insurance is actually a type of permanent insurance policy. When you purchase term 100 life insurance, your coverage is permanent, and you must pay premiums until you turn 100.

Term 100 is usually less expensive than universal or whole life insurance but is more expensive than term insurance. This policy type doesn't have a cash value. 

There are many insurance providers in Quebec and it is important to shop around when it comes to getting a life insurance policy. That is why we make it easy to compare life insurance quotes right here on LowestRates.ca.

Some major providers of life insurance in Quebec are:

  • CAA
  • Costco
  • Sun Life Financial
  • RBC
  • CIBC
  • TD Canada Trust

How much life insurance do you need in Quebec?

The amount of life insurance you need is less dependent on where you reside, and more dependent on what your loved ones would need. The payout from life insurance is a tax-free lump sum that will help your beneficiaries with their financial needs.

You will want to consider your current financial situation and the cost of living in your area to determine the amount of coverage you need.

Some data points to consider:

  • The average property value in Quebec is $326,000 - make sure you take what is left on your mortgage and property taxes into account when deciding the amount of life insurance coverage you need.
  • The average income per person in Quebec is $45,000 - This is important to know as it is suggested that you take out a life insurance policy worth around six to 10 times the amount of your yearly income or more.
  • It is also important to factor in any debt that you currently have, as that will need to be settled by your estate.
  • The average value of life insurance per person in Quebec is $156,000, well below the national average of $440,000.

How much does life insurance cost in Quebec?

The cost of life insurance is dependent on multiple factors. Many insurance companies will require you to submit to a medical exam prior to being granted coverage, as the premium is often based on your current health. Your age at the time of your application will also be a big factor in determining the price.

The price of your premium will also be dependent on the amount of coverage you choose.

It is very difficult to give an approximation of your life insurance costs without obtaining a quote, and since the premium will also vary depending on the insurer, it is also a great idea to obtain multiple quotes. 

Regardless, we’ve assembled a sample quote to show you what insurance could cost you in Quebec:

Male, 30, non-smoker

Location: Quebec

Coverage amount: $400,000

Term 30: $40 - $83 / month

Whole life: $220 - $340 / month

Female, 30, non-smoker

Location: Quebec

Coverage amount: $400,000

Term 30: $29 - $70 / month

Whole life: $200 - $330 / month

What other factors might impact my life insurance rate in Quebec?

The type of insurance you choose will be the biggest factor in determining the price. Term life insurance is considered the most cost-effective form of life insurance.

Other factors that can raise your premium include whether you work in a high-risk job like being a farmer or a trucker. Same deal if you participate in extreme sports or hobbies (think: skydiving, downhill skiing or snowboarding).

How is life insurance regulated in Quebec?

While there is no governing body that regulates what insurance companies can charge for life insurance in Canada, there is the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF): the provincial watchdog for life insurers operating in Quebec.

The AMF has a list of insurance companies that are registered with them and is also where consumers can place complaints about insurance providers.

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