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Why We Started Fabric

By Adam Erlebacher Jan 19, 2017

Getting life insurance just got a whole lot easier for parents.

My name is Adam. Just over a year ago I decided to get life insurance. About a month later, I decided to rebuild the life insurance industry, starting with how policies are sold. Here’s why.

With my son’s arrival, I knew I needed to get my act together. My wife and I depend on each other, and if I’m not around it would be hard for my family to stay in our apartment, cover monthly expenses and set aside money for our son’s college. I wanted to make sure they’d have the financial support they’d need.

So I tried to buy life insurance online. I filled out the form on the insurance company’s website, but I didn’t expect what happened next. Instead of simply paying for it in a couple of minutes, I had to meet with an insurance agent for an hour at his office. I filled out a 15-page paper questionnaire. Two more meetings followed. It took weeks for me to get any real pricing, and the agent relentlessly up-sold me on complicated products I didn’t ask for or need (whole life insurance?). All told, it took ten weeks to get covered.

I had never tried so hard to buy a product. I hung in there only because it was the right thing to do for my family. After all, for life insurance to work, you have to get it. Wouldn’t more people protect their families if they could get simple and affordable life insurance in a couple minutes? Rather than solve that problem, it seemed the biggest insurance innovation over the last 30 years has been ever-more complex products with fatter commissions for agents.

As part of the team who brought beautiful no-fee banking to life with Simple, my co-founder Steven Surgnier and I knew that we could do better.

So we brought our founding team together, found the right partners, and started building a better alternative in Brooklyn.

One year later, and backed by a group of top-tier investors led by Bessemer Venture Partners, we’re welcoming a handful of parents as Fabric’s first clients. We’ve also partnered with RGAx, a subsidiary of the reinsurance powerhouse RGA, whose deep product development, capital, and data resources have provided fundamental support to us. Most importantly for our clients, our policies are issued by Vantis Life Insurance which has been serving families since 1942, and is rated “Excellent” for financial strength and claims-paying ability by A.M. Best.

Ready for the most exciting part? We built Fabric so that any time you have a couple of minutes free is the perfect time to check a critical to-do off your list. Whether you’re in line at the grocery store, waiting to pick the kids up at school, or in the back of a cab on your way home, you can come to on your phone and get the coverage you need for your family.

So why isn’t today our launch?

We made the process of getting covered quick and easy, but we’re taking everything else slow. By opening our doors in just a few states first, we’re taking the time we need to color-in our world.

We worked hard to remove any fine print. The few places it couldn’t be avoided, we went ahead and made it not so small. Or made a video to make it even clearer. Nothing is hidden. And nothing ever will be.

Please stay tuned. We can’t wait to show you what we’ve built. In the meantime, come join us!

Fabric exists to help young families master their money. Our articles abide by strict editorial standards.

Fabric by Gerber Life exists to help young families master their money. Our articles abide by strict editorial standards.

Information provided is general and educational in nature and is not intended to be, and should not be construed as, financial, legal, or tax advice. Laws of a specific state or laws relevant to a particular situation may affect the applicability, accuracy, or completeness of this information. Federal and state laws and regulations are complex and are subject to change. We make no warranties with regard to the information or results obtained by its use, and disclaim any liability arising out of your use of, or reliance on, the information.

Fabric by Gerber Life offers a mobile experience for people on-the-go who want an easy and fast way to purchase life insurance.

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Written by

Adam Erlebacher

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© 2022 Gerber Life Agency, LLC

Term Life Insurance Policy Series ICC22 2205-4004 WSA and Accelerated Death Benefit Rider policy series ICC22 2205-2623 WSA (and state variations where applicable) issued by Western-Southern Life Assurance Company, Cincinnati, OH which operates in DC and all states except NY, and distributed by Gerber Life Agency, LLC using Fabric Technologies. Gerber Life Agency, LLC is an affiliate of Gerber Life Insurance Company (est. 1967). All are members of Western & Southern Financial Group (Western & Southern). Issuance of coverage for Term Life Insurance is subject to underwriting review and approval. Please see a copy of the policy for the full terms, conditions and exclusions. Product provisions, availability, definitions and benefits may vary by state. Payment of benefits under the life insurance policy is the obligation of, and is guaranteed by, the issuing company. Guarantees are based on the claims-paying ability of the issuer. Products are backed by the full financial strength of the issuing company.

All sample pricing is based on a 30-year old F in Excellent health for the coverage amount shown and a 10-year term policy, unless otherwise stated. Gerber Life Agency, LLC (GLA) is an insurance agency licensed to sell life insurance products. GLA will receive compensation from Western-Southern Life Assurance Company for such sales. The NAIC Company Code for Western-Southern Life Assurance Company is 92622.

Western-Southern Life Assurance Company's A+ Superior A.M. Best Rating: Superior ability to meet ongoing insurance obligations (second highest of 13 ratings; rating held since June 2009). Ratings are subject to change from time to time. The ratings shown here are correct as of 09/03/2022. For more information about a particular rating or rating agency, please visit the website of the relevant agency.

Plan like a parent. is a trademark of Fabric Technologies, Inc.

Gerber Life is a registered trademark. Used under license from Société des Produits Nestlé S.A. and Gerber Products Company.

In the State of California, Gerber Life Agency, LLC is known as and does business as Gerber Life Insurance Agency, LLC.