Chelsey Tucker graduated with a Bachelor of History degree from Metropolitan State University in 2019. She now writes about insurance with her specialty being life insurance and has been quoted on Help Smart Phone and MEL Magazine.

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years. He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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Aflac vs. Tennessee Farmer's Life Insurance

All insurance companies are different, both in their approaches to their business and in the ways they choose to serve their customers. AFLAC operates in all 50 of the United States, and it is one of the leading insurers in Japan.

Tennessee Farmers Life Insurance Company, on the other hand, operates only within the state of Tennessee. Both insurance providers are strong financially and maintain good relationships with their customers.

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In large part thanks to the AFLAC duck and the company’s extensive and ongoing advertising campaign, AFLAC is one of the most recognizable insurance brands. Though AFLAC offers policies to employers, the company’s focus is on the individual and his family. Even business policies are paid by employees, so businesses offer their employees a portal to AFLAC but bear none of the cost themselves.

Founded in Georgia in 1955 as the American Family Life Insurance Company of Columbus, the company changed its name to American Family Life Assurance Company of Columbus in 1964. That remains its official name, but the company adopted the acronym for American Family Life Assurance Company – AFLAC – as its common name in 1990.

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Types of Insurance

AFLAC is best known for its supplemental health insurance coverage that pays the individual directly. AFLAC pays cash that can be used for any purpose that the policyholder chooses. It can be used for groceries, the power bill or for any other routine expense that other insurance coverage – such as major medical – does not even consider for payment. The company offers many other types of insurance, however. Some other types of coverage include:

  • Accident
  • Cancer or other Specified Disease
  • Dental
  • Hospital Confinement, Sickness or Intensive Care
  • Life
  • Lump Sum for Cancer or Critical Illness
  • Disability for Short Term Needs
  • Vision

AFLAC also offers flexible spending accounts for expenses such as dependent daycare, transportation for medical reasons and otherwise unreimbursed medical expenses.

Accident Insurance

When a policyholder suffers a covered accident, AFLAC sends cash benefits in a predetermined amount directly to the policyholder, unless the policyholder requests that the cash benefit be paid to a care provider. Some of the types of services that AFLAC will pay for after a covered accident include dental repair of broken teeth, ground or air ambulance service, concussions, lacerations and emergency room visits.

Cancer/Specified Disease Insurance

When the diagnosis is cancer, AFLAC pays cash benefits that can be used for expenses that major medical insurance will not pay. Some of these expenses include the major medical company deductible, out of network specialists, travel and lodging when the patient must travel for treatment, and routine household expenses.

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Dental Insurance

AFLAC dental insurance has no dental network restrictions. There is a waiting period from the beginning of coverage until AFLAC will pay for services, but once that waiting period is past, there is no deductible at all. The company even pays a portion of routine, preventive care such as cleanings and x-rays.

Hospital Confinement Indemnity

The company offers a cash benefit that becomes active with any hospital stay, whether that stay is a few days or several weeks. The policyholder can choose to use the cash received from AFLAC to pay expenses not paid by his major medical insurance company, or for any other out of pocket expense.

Hospital Confinement Sickness Indemnity

This policy is similar to the Hospital Confinement Indemnity, except that it requires a hospital stay as a result of some illness. It excludes hospital stays for reasons that do not involve illness, such as for child birth.

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Hospital Intensive Care Insurance

This also is a policy similar to the Hospital Confinement Indemnity policy, but is specific to a hospital stay that involves some length of time in the hospital’s intensive care unit.

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Life Insurance

Though AFLAC is better known for its supplemental payments for medical issues, it began as a life insurance company and continues to offer life insurance policies for adults and children. In its Juvenile Life policies, AFLAC offers both whole life and term policies. AFLAC prides themselves on fully explaining how life insurance works.

The whole life policy doubles in coverage with no increase in premium on the policy anniversary that follows the child’s 18th birthday. If parents or grandparents select a juvenile term insurance policy, that can remain in effect until the child’s 25th birthday. At that time, the insured young adult has the option of converting to a whole life policy up to double the value of the original term policy.

The company also offers whole life and term policies for adults, as well as a term life rider that can be added to adult policies to cover children of the insured. AFLAC’s term life policies usually are written for terms of either 20 or 30 years. AFLAC’s whole life policy can remain in effect for the insured’s lifetime, as long as the insured continues to pay the premiums. Both juvenile and adult whole life insurance policies can be borrowed against, collected or used to pay premiums on the policy.

Lump Sum Cancer Insurance

This AFLAC policy pays a lump sum to the insured after s/he has received a cancer diagnosis. As is the case with all of AFLAC’s other supplemental medical policies, the funds received from the company can be used for any personal expense, whether or not it is directly related to the disease.

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Lump Sum Critical Illness Insurance

This policy is intended as coverage for non-cancer critical illnesses, such as heart attack, stroke, end-stage renal disease, organ transplant, coma or paralysis. Again, the predetermined lump sum amount can be used any way that the insured needs to use the funds.

Policies Available Only Through Employers

All of the preceding policies are available to individuals who come to AFLAC on their own, representing only themselves. Two other types of policies, Short Term Disability Insurance and Vision Insurance, are available only through policies offered by employers.

Short Term Disability Insurance

A doctor-documented short term disability often results in loss of income, even if the insured’s employer offers some form of income continuation. AFLAC pays a percentage of the insured’s gross income each month in the case of short term disability. There are many options available with this policy, including income requirements, the number of days after which the policy begins paying, premium price and others.

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Vision Insurance

AFLAC’s vision insurance pays for the standard expenses covered by most other vision insurance providers, but it goes much further than eye exams and glasses. AFLAC’s vision insurance also provides benefits for eye surgeries, permanent blindness issues and specific eye diseases. AFLAC allows the individual to choose his own care provider, as well as the level of vision insurance coverage s/he wants to carry.

Tennessee Farmers Life Insurance Company

Founded in 1948, Tennessee Farmers Life Insurance is offered through independent agents located in each of Tennessee’s 95 counties. In addition to life insurance, the company also offers auto insurance, homeowners insurance, personal umbrella liability insurance and a variety of annuity products.

Types of Insurance

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Life Insurance

Tennessee Farmers Life Insurance Company offers term, whole life and universal life insurance policies. Its term policies are for a specific length of time and then expire. The company mentions 1, 10, 20 and 30 year term lengths. All of the company’s term policies are convertible either to whole life or universal life policies.

The company’s whole life policies build cash value, and the company has paid a dividend on its whole life policies every year since its inception. Those dividends – which have been paid in the past but are not guaranteed in the future – can be used to purchase additional coverage, increase cash value or reduce premiums.

The Farm Bureau Insurance Company that offers Tennessee Farmers Life Insurance is the largest provider of universal life insurance in the state of Tennessee. Universal life insurance offers flexible premiums and a death benefit that either remains level or increases over time.

Auto Insurance

Tennessee Farmers Insurance Companies operates through several subsidiaries, one of which is the Tennessee Farmers Mutual company that is one of Tennessee’s largest auto insurers, which also enjoys a customer renewal rate of more than 95 percent. This subsidiary company offers all of the types of insurance required by the state of Tennessee, as well as insurance for auto rental expense when an insured vehicle is being repaired for a covered loss. This subsidiary can often help with many frequently asked auto insurance questions.

Property Insurance and Umbrella Coverage

Tennessee Farmers Insurance Companies offers homeowners, farm owners, renter and small business property insurance. The company also provides property insurance for condo owners, mobile homes, seasonal dwellings, and boats and boat-related equipment. In addition, it offers personal liability coverage for those individuals who want to be certain that they are covered beyond the limits of basic property liability coverage.

Comparing the Companies

AFLAC is a huge company that operates throughout the country, and Tennessee Farmers Life Insurance Company operates only within the state of Tennessee. Each offers similar types of life insurance, but AFLAC prefers to work with companies rather than directly with individuals. Tennessee Farmers offers auto insurance that AFLAC does not. Each company offers benefits to customers, who can choose between the two on the basis of their specific needs.

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