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Liberty Bankers Life Annuity Review

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This review was produced by SmartAsset based on publicly available information. The named firm and its financial professionals have not reviewed, approved, or endorsed this review and are not responsible for its accuracy. Review content is produced by SmartAsset independently of any business relationships that might exist between SmartAsset and the named firm and its financial professionals, and firms and financial professionals having business relationships with SmartAsset receive no special treatment or consideration in SmartAsset’s reviews. This page contains links to SmartAsset’s financial advisor matching tool, which may or may not match you with the firm mentioned in this review or its financial professionals.

There are a wide range of insurance and annuity products available through Liberty Bankers Life, including fixed and immediate annuities, Medicare supplemental health insurance and whole life insurance. The company can trace its history back to 1958, when it was originally founded under the name Royal Oak Life Insurance Company.

Annuities are a complicated topic, so don’t be afraid to ask for help if you don’t know what’s best for you. If you have questions, SmartAsset’s financial advisor matching tool can pair you with knowledgeable advisors in your area.

Annuity Fees Annuity Type Minimum Initial Premium More Information
Bankers Elite Series Find an Advisor

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  • No annual contract fees
Fixed annuity $10,000

Annuity Type

Fixed annuity

Minimum Initial Premium

Liberty Bankers Life SPIA Find an Advisor

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  • No annual contract fees
Single premium immediate annuity $25,000

Annuity Type

Single premium immediate annuity

Minimum Initial Premium

Liberty Select Find an Advisor

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  • No annual contract fees
Fixed annuity $5,000

Annuity Type

Fixed annuity

Minimum Initial Premium

Bankers 5 Premier Plus Find an Advisor

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  • No annual contract fees
Fixed annuity $10,000

Annuity Type

Fixed annuity

Minimum Initial Premium


As part of their evaluation processes, insurance companies receive financial strength ratings from outside sources. A.M. Best, one of the top ratings companies on the market, recently rated the company’s strength at a B++, which is the fifth-highest score on its scale and corresponds to “Good-Excellent.”

Bankers Elite Series

The Bankers Elite Series comes in four variations: Bankers Elite 3, Bankers Elite 5, Bankers Elite 7 and Bankers Elite 9. Each of the numbers associated with these annuities refers to the length of the interest rate guarantee period for the contract, as well as the withdrawal charge schedule. These work similar to certificates of deposit (CDs).

All four contracts have a $10,000 minimum initial premium, but the maximum issue ages vary:

  • Bankers Elite 3 & 5: 90 years old
  • Bankers Elite 7: 85 years old
  • Bankers Elite 9: 80 years old

The death benefit for this contract is equal to your account’s value at the time of your passing. If you have a surviving spouse, they can elect to carry on your contract as the new annuitant.


While this series of annuities doesn’t have any annual fees, there are withdrawal charges if you take out any money before the conclusion of your interest rate guarantee period:

Withdrawal Fee Schedule
Product Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5
Bankers Elite 3 7.9% 7% 6.2% 0%  
Bankers Elite 5 7.9% 7% 6.2% 5.3% 4.4%
Bankers Elite 7 7.9% 7% 6.2% 5.3% 4.4%
Bankers Elite 9 7.9% 7% 6.2% 5.3% 4.4%


Withdrawal Fee Schedule
Product Year 6 Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 Year 10+
Bankers Elite 3          
Bankers Elite 5 0%        
Bankers Elite 7 3.5% 2.7% 0%    
Bankers Elite 9 3.5% 2.7% 1.8% 0.9% 0%

If you withdraw from your annuity before age 59.5, you’ll incur a 10% income tax penalty. This is in addition to your standard income tax rate.

Realistic Return Expectations

The longer the contract you choose, the better the interest rate you’ll receive. Here’s what Liberty Bankers Life is offering as of Feb. 2021:

  • Bankers Elite 3: 2.15%
  • Bankers Elite 5: 3.00%
  • Bankers Elite 7: 3.00%
  • Bankers Elite 9: 3.00%

Liberty Bankers Life SPIA

The Liberty Bankers Life SPIA offers regular income payments based off a minimum initial premium of at least $25,000. At contract issue, you can pick from monthly, quarterly, semi-annual or annual payment schedules.

This contract comes with a few different income options, including:

  • Period certain: You or your beneficiaries will receive payments for a period ranging from 5 to 30 years, with beneficiaries continuing to receive payments after your death for the remainder of the period.
  • Life income: Keep getting payouts for the rest of your life, or for the rest of your life with a backup period certain of 5, 10, 15 or 20 years.
  • Joint income/qualified joint income: This allows you, your spouse or both of you (depending on who’s alive) to receive payments.

Annuitants who go with the period certain option will have a maximum issue age of 90, whereas all other options come with an 80-year-old maximum issue age.


As this is an annuity built around income, there are no annual fees or withdrawal charges.

If you’re under 59.5 years old and you make a withdrawal from your contract, the IRS will levy a 10% income tax penalty on you. You will be on the hook for standard income taxes as well.

Realistic Return Expectations

The size of your payments will depend on your premium amount, the income option you select and the frequency with which you’d like to receive them. Therefore, it’s difficult to pinpoint the kind of returns you’d receive without knowing specifics.

Liberty Select

The Liberty Select fixed annuity is fairly accessible even for those without a lot of money, as its minimum initial premium is just $5,000. Prospective annuitants up to age 85 are eligible to open an account.

Like any fixed annuity, your contract will grow based on a predetermined rate that’s chosen by Liberty Bankers Life. A major benefit of this annuity, though, is that annuitants receive a 1.50% rate bonus for the first year of their contract’s life. There are also market value adjustments (MVAs) with this contract.

The death benefit for this annuity is standard: Your beneficiaries will receive an amount equal to your contract’s accumulated value, if it's before you've annuitized.

Payout options with this annuity include:

  • Life only: Payments last for the rest of your life.
  • Life with 10 years certain: Payments last for the greater of 10 years or your life.
  • Fixed period payments: Payments last for a specific period of time.


There are no annual fees with this annuity.

If you need to make an early withdrawal from your account, Liberty Bankers Life lets you take out as much as either what you’ve earned that month in interest (if $100 or more) or your accumulated interest twice a year. Anything above these amounts is subject to the following withdrawal charges:

Withdrawal Fee Schedule
Your Age Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Year 6 Year 7 Year 8+
Up to 55 12% 11% 10% 8% 6% 4% 2% 0%
56 and up 8% 7% 6% 5% 4% 3% 2% 0%

The IRS’ 10% income tax penalty is waiting for any annuitants that withdraw from their account prior to turning 59.5 years old. This is in addition to your standard income tax rate.

Realistic Return Expectations

The Liberty Select fixed annuity comes with a lone fixed interest rate, alongside which your money will grow over time. However, the company is currently not releasing fixed rates for this annuity. However, your minimum guaranteed fixed interest rate will be 1%.

Bankers 5 Premier Plus

The Bankers 5 Premier Plus contract is the top-tier variation of Liberty’s “Bankers Series” of fixed annuities. At 3.55%, it features the highest interest rate available at the company as of Feb. 2021, though this only lasts for one year. For the second through fifth years of your contract’s life, this interest rate will shrink to 2.55%, though even that still falls in the upper echelon of what Liberty currently has to offer.

In order to open this account, you must have at least $10,000 ready to invest. The only other requirement is that you are 90 years old or younger, as that’s the maximum issue age.

This contract provides a standard death benefit that’s equal to the accumulated value of your account. There are no death benefit riders available to upgrade this.


There are very few upfront costs with this annuity, as it has no fixed-rate or percentage-based annual contract fees.

The five-year guaranteed interest rate period you receive with this contract also acts as your withdrawal fee schedule. Although Liberty Bankers Life lets you take out your accumulated interest twice a year or your monthly interest if it’s $100 or more, withdrawals above these caps will induce extra charges.

Withdrawal Fee Schedule
Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Year 6+
8.1% 7.3% 6.4% 5.5% 4.5% 0%

If you’re younger than 59.5 years old, the IRS will charge you a 10% income surtax on any annuity withdrawals. This is in addition to the standard income tax you pay on annuity income.

Realistic Return Expectations

The 3.55% interest rate associated with this contract as of Feb. 2021 is about as good a rate as you’ll find from Liberty Bankers Life. However, during the last four years of your five-year guarantee period, this percentage will drop to 2.55%, which is still a solid rate.

Tips for Building an Investment Portfolio

  • If you want some help managing your retirement income planning, consider working with a financial advisor. Finding the right financial advisor that fits your needs doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with financial advisors in your area in 5 minutes. If you’re ready to be matched with local advisors that will help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
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All information is accurate as of the writing of this article.

Best Places for Small Business Owners

SmartAsset analyzed data to find the best places for small business owners in the country. This interactive map shows the best counties for small business owners in the U.S. and in each state. Zoom between states and the national map to see the top spots in each region. Also, scroll over any county to learn about that region's small business statistics.

Rank County Small Business Returns Small Business Income Income Taxes

Methodology Which places are best for small businesses owners? To answer this question, we considered three factors: the proportion of people in a county with small business income, how much business income those people reported and the amount of tax a potential resident must pay on their income.

To determine how attractive a region is for small business owners, we compared the number of tax returns that report small business income compared to the total tax-filing population of the region. Next, we compared the total amount of small business income to the overall amount of income reported in each region.

Small businesses are typically incorporated as pass-through entities, meaning that the business owners pay income taxes on the company profits rather than the company itself paying income tax. Because of this, income taxes can play a major role in determining the financial success of a given small business. To determine income tax burdens across counties, we used the national median household income. We then applied relevant deductions and exemptions before calculating federal, state and local income taxes for each location.

These three factors were then indexed and equally weighted to yield our small business index. Places with the highest small business index are the places which ranked the highest in the study.

Sources: Internal Revenue Service (IRS), US Census Bureau 2018 American Community Survey, Government Sources, SmartAsset