It’s simple. We answer to you.

Mutuality means a lot.

  • No Shareholders

    New York Life is a mutual company, which means we operate for the benefit of our policy owners.

  • Long-lasting Security

    We’ve stood by our clients since 1845. And we’ve paid dividends every year since 1854.

  • Enduring Values

    Humanity and integrity are at our core. We’ve kept our promises for more than 170 years.

Why does mutuality matter to you? 

Mutuality means we are collectively and entirely owned by our clients,* not outside investors. And since we don’t have to continually appease the bulls and bears of Wall Street, our exclusive focus—every decision we make—is in the best interests of our policy owners. 

Being able to look beyond short-term profits to invest for the longterm produces results that speak for themselves. We’ve amassed a cash reserve in excess of $22 billion. And we have unfailingly met our financial obligations for over 170 years. 

And, we expect, for generations to come.

The fact is, mutuality is at the core of everything we do. It’s what enables us to stand by our principles of humanity and integrity every single day. To strive for greatness, but never at the expense of goodness. To keep our promises, and do what’s right. 

Mutuality also enables our clients to be active participants in the life of our company. Those who purchase participating policies have the power to elect members of our board of directors. And, of course, those policy owners have also enjoyed the benefit of annual dividends, which in 2016 totaled $1.7 billion.**

We’ve paid dividends every year since 1854. And we don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.

"Our #1 priority continues to be meeting our obligations when they come due, whether that’s tomorrow or 10, 20, 30 years or more down the road."

Ted Mathas, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer


In the 1990s, U.S. insurance companies began trending toward demutualization. Many went from being mutually owned to shareholder controlled. New York Life stood firm in the belief that our clients must come first, so we bucked the trend to stay true to our values. With more than 170 years of financial stability behind us, we believe we made the right choice.

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  • New York Life Insurance Company is a mutual insurance company, which means it is not publicly traded and has no shareholders. Instead its policyowners are the ones who share in ownership rights of the company. WIth a mutual company, customers who purchase participating products are entitled to vote in the board of directors elections are are eligible to share in annual dividends that are declared. The company's priority is to safeguard their interests.
  • Dividends are based on the policy's applicable dividend scale, which is neither guaranteed nor an estimate of future performance results. Some policies are participating, but are not expected to receive dividends.