Is Life Insurance A Good Career Path?

Charity Jerop
October 11, 2023
is life insurance a good career path
is life insurance a good career path

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Do you want to start a career as a life insurance agent?

Researching and understanding your future career is important for making informed decisions.

Your career path will majorly impact your life mentally, physically, and economically.

You’re in the right place if you’re considering a career in the life insurance industry.

Let’s dive deep and find out : Is life insurance a good career path? 

What Does A Life Insurance Agent Do?

Insurance agents range from casualty, property, health, life, and variable product to personal line and surplus line insurance.

The responsibilities vary depending on the insurance products you want to focus on as an agent.

As the name suggests, a life insurance agent sells life insurance products to consumers. 

You can be an independent life insurance agent, work with various insurance companies, or get a full-time job with one insurance company.

Working with one insurance company as an employee means you’ll focus on selling this particular company’s products, a route known as a captive life insurance agent.

A life insurance agent’s responsibilities include creating and maintaining a client base.

Typically, your job is to convince potential customers by discussing their insurance needs, goals, budget, and financial plans.

Furthermore, you’ll help your potential client understand the coverage and provide accurate quotes.

You’ll also help them complete the paperwork and get underwriting approval. 

Requirements To Be A Life Insurance Agent

Selling life insurance is for the thick-skinned.

Hear me out! You’ll get dozens of rejections before closing a deal.

And this means that a career in life insurance is excellent if you’re good in sales, customer service, desire to connect with people, adapt and learn.

Importantly, you need a license to practice as an insurance agent.

Your high school diploma or GED plus the insurance license are mandatory for you to sell policies.

You’ll need to pass a state licensing exam, which varies from one state to another, for the insurance type you want to sell. 

For instance, in California, you must get licensed by the California Department of Insurance.

There are different licensing types for agents who want to sell life insurance in this state.

You can take a certification to be a life agent, selling life, accident, and life policies, and PSI Exams administer the licensing examination. 

Remember, you might need several licenses to sell multiple policies.

Check with your state for exams and licensing.

Once you have your license, you can apply for a job as an insurance agent or an independent broker, working with various insurance companies. 

Is Life Insurance A Good Career Path For You?

Are you planning to work in the insurance industry?

Do you have the right skills to be a life insurance agent?

Selling a life policy is a marathon, not a sprint.

Data shows that the number of people buying life insurance keeps dropping, yet it is crucial financial security everyone should get.

Recent data shows that about half of Americans don’t have life coverage.

The number of those with life insurance has dropped by 2% in the last year and 13% in the previous decade. 

These figures show that you need more than your state license to become a life insurance agent.

As said earlier, you’ll often deal with dozens of rejections before closing a deal.

Many agents go as far as studying psychology to persuade their clients and close more sales. 

Do you have grit? Having the resilience to pursue a no to a yes answer requires determination, which can help you sell to more clients.

Keeping the relationship going for a long period is crucial, and it takes a committed and persuasive insurance agent to build a long-lasting partnership with a client. 

A genuine desire to help people is another thing that can set you apart from the crowd.

Many people don’t understand the benefits of having life insurance, and it is your job to convince them by explaining the advantages.

Offering detailed information can improve the signup rates for the policy. 

You also need to broaden your knowledge, focusing on business, finance, and marketing.

Earn your degree in these areas, besides taking the license exam, and boost your credibility.

This knowledge can come in handy, especially if you’re working as an independent contractor.

Business skills can help you understand how to manage your small business, while marketing skills are crucial in creating awareness and converting more sales. 

Is Selling Life Insurance A Good Job To Do? Benefits

Selling life insurance is an excellent job for the right candidate and offers amazing perks for dedicated agents.

First, it is a flexible job; many agents can create flexible working arrangements, including working from home.  

Another benefit of a career in life insurance is that it creates tons of space for personal growth.

The industry dynamics are ever-changing, allowing you to broaden your expertise and progress in your career. 

Furthermore, this career presents many opportunities to work in other sectors, including accounting, finance, marketing, customer service, IT, and research.

Are you looking for a lucrative earning potential?

Life insurance can offer exactly that! Life insurance will always be in-demand, creating job security for you.

Some veteran life insurance sellers earn more than six figures per annum.

Additionally, life insurance jobs are in plenty, and a quick search on job boards like LinkedIn and Indeed can yield hundreds of life insurance jobs.  

Importantly, being in this field is a great opportunity to help families create reliable financial security for unenforceable events. 

What License Do You Need To Be A Life Insurance Agent?

Your state regulates the insurance sectors, meaning having a license is necessary.

But don’t worry; it takes 52 hours—the prelicensing education time varies by state— to prepare and sit for the state-regulated exam.

Again, you’ll need several licenses to sell multiple coverages. 

An insurance agent license shows that you understand the products and the industry regulations.

Consumers like to buy from someone who demonstrates their credibility with something like a license.

Also, this license helps the state track you for accountability or in case of any disputes. 

Visit your state’s site to check the license type you need for life insurance and apply.

In addition to passing your state exam, you’ll need to pass a background check.

Do you want to sell insurance in multiple states?

You’ll have to meet the requirements of each state you intend to operate in.  

What Are The Career Paths In Life Insurance?

Life insurance offers many job opportunities, and you can hold one of the below titles.

1. Life Insurance Sales Agent

Working as a sales agent is perfect if you’re interested in educating and persuading potential customers to buy insurance.

The work of a life insurance sales agent is to reach out to potential customers and market insurance products and related financial resources.

Furthermore, they help clients pick the right insurance policy that fits their needs.

Another responsibility is assisting clients in filing claims. 

2. Case Manager

A case manager ensures that the client receives their health benefits.

Typically, they guide the beneficiary on how to file for a claim.

They also assess the risk factors and recommend updated changes to the current policies.

Another role is working with other insurance team members to ensure all claims are paid accordingly.

The average income of a case manager is $52,533 per year or $25 an hour. 

3. Underwriter

An underwriter’s work is to review the insurance application forms, assess them on a case-by-case basis, and approve them.

You need a bachelor’s degree and state licensing to work as an underwriter.

The average underwriter’s salary is $76,390 annually or $36.73 an hour.

You can earn as high as $75k annually, depending on the city you work in. 

4. Claims Processor

A claims processor helps the policyholder claim their policy.

They act as the intermediary between the consumer and the insurance company, ensuring that claims are processed and cleared.

The claims processor fact-checks the insurance policy, ensuring that it covers the event claimed. 

They also verify claim applicants, ensuring the claimant is the right person receiving the benefits.

Additionally, they enter and update policy data in the system for record keeping.

A claims processor also keeps tabs on the federal and state regulations on insurance, ensuring that all parties comply. 

Furthermore, they can perform administrative duties like contacting clients, setting appointments, and filing applications.

Importantly, they calculate the claims due and send the amount owed to the claimants. 

The average salary for a claims processor is $54,673 annually or $26/hr.

5. Customer Service Representative

The customer service rep plays a crucial role in life insurance.

They respond to client queries on insurance products and connect them with agents who will initiate an application or upgrade. 

Another role of a customer rep is responding to customer complaints and managing them in the database.

The annual salary for an insurance customer representative is around $40,720.

Is A Life Insurance Job Stressful?

Working in the insurance industry is rewarding, albeit it has many work challenges.

Convincing someone to buy a policy to cushion them in case of death can be an emotional rollercoaster.

And not to burst your bubble, but many people quit their life insurance jobs.

People don’t understand what or how life insurance works, and it can take a lot of work to convince someone to spend money on it.

Plus, you’ll have to deal with many people daily, which can be pretty challenging.

While interacting and pitching your insurance products to some people can be easy and fun, some don’t acknowledge their mortality, making it stressful to sell.

You need impeccable people skills to deal with various people hassle-free.

Learn how to relate with other people!

Another reason is that most agents deal with commission-based work, which means you earn income after making a sale, and there is little to no pay for no sales.

Commission-based work may not sustain you enough, making it hard to keep working in the industry.

Also, there is litigation risk resulting from client disputes.

The last thing you need in your line of duty is to find yourself in the middle of disputes in court. 

Can You Make Good Money In Life Insurance?

Working in the insurance sector has a high earning potential.

Independent insurance agents have opportunities to earn more since they can work for multiple insurance companies.

You can make an average of $72,563, equal to $35 an hour.

This industry’s top earners earn as much as $250,000 per year. 

Looking for the best life insurance company to work with is crucial.

Research shows that 56% of insurance companies plan to recruit more talent.

Focus on a company with excellent ratings by former employees.

Prioritize work-life balance, paid time off, and other benefits like health insurance. 

Where To Find Jobs For Life Insurance Agents?

Data shows that over 350k employees are working as life insurance agents, which has increased by 2.5% since 2018.

And there are a lot of opportunities in this one trillion-dollar industry.

The job opportunities for life insurance and annuities employees went up by 2.1% in 2021.

The internet makes it a breeze to find life insurance jobs.

Create a CV and use job boards like LinkedIn to get your dream job.

Other sites you can try job hunting include ZipRecruiter, Indeed, and Insurance Journal.

Pros And Cons Of Life Insurance Careers


1. Stability: Life insurance careers offer long-term stability in a growing industry.

2. Earning Potential: With commission-based structures and incentives, life insurance careers provide the opportunity for significant income.

3. Flexibility: Many life insurance jobs offer flexibility in work hours and locations.

4. Fulfillment: Helping individuals secure their financial future brings personal satisfaction.

5. Skill Development: Life insurance careers allow for the development of valuable skills like sales, communication, and financial planning.


1. Prospecting Challenges: Building a client base and generating leads can be demanding.

2. Rejection and Pressure: Life insurance agents face rejection and experience pressure to meet sales targets.

3. Regulatory Requirements: Compliance with regulations and licensing can involve additional obligations.

4. Emotional Demands: Handling sensitive topics like death and financial planning requires emotional resilience.

5. Market Competition: The competitive nature of the industry means agents must differentiate themselves.


Working in the insurance sector can be exciting and rewarding.

No job without challenges and a career in life insurance is no exception.

If you are a people person, have excellent customer support skills, and enjoy educating people about insurance, this is the right career path for you.

Get the right state license and hit the road running.

Do you need more career tips? We help readers like you discover the right career path.

Join our newsletter and get helpful career tips.


Yes, life insurance offers stability as it is an industry that continues to grow, providing long-term career opportunities.

Yes, the life insurance industry has the potential for high earnings, especially through commission-based structures and performance incentives.

Yes, life insurance careers provide growth opportunities through advancement, specialized training, and the potential to build a strong client base.

Key skills for success in the life insurance industry include strong communication, sales, relationship-building, and financial planning abilities.


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