Why Choose Woodmen of the World?
When you buy a Woodmen of the World product, you become more than just a "policy holder" or a "customer." You become part of a company large enough to offer you security, but small enough to care about each individual.
Different by Choice
We're a different kind of life insurance company: we're not for profit. We give back revenues to our members,1 not investors, in the form of refunds2 and benefits.3
You receive these valuable money-saving benefits at no additional cost, just for doing business with us. These include up to $500 to help with repair costs if your home is damaged in a natural disaster, access to community events and family activities, and financial assistance for catastrophic illnesses.
Founded in 1890, Woodmen of the World also gives back on a local level through chapters that help us lead community service projects you care about. We show our caring in many ways, including presenting American flags to civic and community organizations, and by providing assistance to senior citizens, the physically impaired and orphans through our local chapter system.
How strong is Woodmen of the World? In 2013:
- Our asset-to-liabilities ratio was 1.12, indicating Woodmen of the World has $112 of assets for every $100 of liabilities.
- Benefits paid to members and beneficiaries totaled $563 million. Refunds to members were $66 million.
- Life insurance in force, the total amount of life insurance owned by Woodmen of the World members, stood at $36.7 billion.
LIMRA, an independent life insurance research and consulting company, conducts a customer assurance survey of new members monthly. Ninety-eight percent of Woodmen of the World customers who responded to the survey say they consider the service they receive from their Representative at the time of the sale to be "extremely" or "very" helpful.
What to look for in an insurer
One way to judge a company is to look at how its financial strength and performance are rated by objective rating agency. Woodmen of the World was again awarded a rating of A+ (Superior) with a Stable outlook by A.M. Best for its 2013 financial strength and operating performance. A.M. Best ratings range from A++ (Superior) to F (Liquidation). A+ (Superior) is the second-highest rating out of 15 awarded. A.M. Best is an independent rating company that is nationally recognized for its objective reporting and rating of insurers.
Investing in trust
In an industry based on long-term success, you want to invest your time and money with a company you can trust to perform. An company's investment philosophy directly affects its security and is a vital factor in its growth and stability.
Woodmen of the World does not chase profit to please stockholders; we pursue the best interests of our member customers. Some companies today are taking loans to stay in business, but we're not like other companies. Woodmen of the World has lasted more than a century by taking the long view and doing what is right.
One of today's safest investments is bonds, and because of their stability, you'll find over two-thirds of our invested assets there. A large portion of our bond portfolio contains investment-grade corporate bonds.
Bonds commonly referred to as "investment grade" are those included in the top four rating categories – Aaa, Aa, A and Baa. Bond ratings are like grades on a report card, with Aaa carrying the smallest degree of investment risk, and C being the highest. At year end 2013, 98 percent of Woodmen of the World's bond holdings were investment-grade bonds.
Real estate & mortgage loans
Real estate accounted for less than one percent of Woodmen of the World's invested assets in 2013. These holdings consist of property that is either leased or owned and occupied by Woodmen of the World.
At the end of 2013, about 16.4 percent of our total invested assets were in mortgage loans. As an additional means of securing solid loans, Woodmen of the World is always a first-mortgage holder, and we finance no more than 75 percent of a property's value.
Stability for the future
Despite economic ups and downs, Woodmen of the World's outstanding financial performance included a total income of nearly $1.17 billion in 2013. Assets stood at $10.07 billion, and certificate reserves – funds held to guarantee future benefit payments – were $7.7 billion in 2013.
1. An individual becomes a member by joining our shared commitment to family, community and country, and by purchasing a Woodmen of the World product.
2. Refunds are declared annually by the company. The payment of refunds is not guaranteed because they depend on the company's investment, expense and mortality experience.
3. Fraternal benefits are not contractual, are subject to change and have specific eligibility requirements.