Life Alert Emergency Response has been a pioneer of the medical alert system industry since its start in 1987. Popularized by its "Help! I've fallen and I can't get up!" ad campaign, the Life Alert system has become a household name; the brand is so synonymous with medical alert systems, that many know the medical alert industry simply as the Life Alert industry.

However, despite its well-known name, there are many concerns with its medical alert services. Common Life Alert complaints include scamming tactics, high prices and fees, poor customer service, and lengthy contracts (three years). We highly suggest going with a more reputable company with positive reviews. 

Below we have provided you with the Good, Bad, and Bottom Line about Life Alert in order to give you a quick breakdown of the facts to help you decide of Life Alert Emergency Response is the right medical alert system for you or your loved ones.

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The Good

  • CSAA Five Diamond Certified
  • Free Shipping and Warranty
  • Large Monitoring Call Assistance
  • Transparent about Successful Services
  • Family Notifications
  • Waterproof Pendant
  • Multiple Emergency Services

CSAA Five Diamond Certified

Most medical alert companies should be CSAA five diamond certified if they're worth their salt. This certification implies the company maintains a high-quality call center service.

Free Shipping and Warranty

Life Alert offers free shipping and a free equipment warranty. However, the duration of the warranty is unclear, so you may have to pay for equipment replacement after a certain period of time. 

Large Monitoring Call Assistance

Being one of the largest medical alert companies in the industry, Life Alert operates its services with its own monitoring center. A lot of medical alert companies will contract with a third party monitoring center.

Transparent about Successful Services

In 2014, Life Alert assisted authorities in saving approximately 54,490 lives. That's roughly one life saved every 10 minutes!

Family Notifications

At the push of a button, the customer's emergency contact, along with an emergency dispatch unit, will be immediately notified of the problem. This could be a family member, a friend, or a trusted neighbor.

Multiple Emergency Services

Life Alert also offers services for a host of situations aside from an occasional medical emergency. These include fire protection, carbon monoxide gas protection, home intrusion, mobile tracking through GPS, and a cell phone app. These services aren't just for seniors, either.

The Bad

  • Three-Year Contract
  • Expensive Service 
  • No Automatic Fall Detection
  • Few Equipment Details
  • Poor Website
  • Negative Life Alert Reviews

Three-Year Contract

With a three-year contract, Life Alert locks customers into one of the longest contracts in the industry. Top competitors offer contracts that operate from month-to-month, which provides consumers the peace of mind of not having to buy out of a contract.

Havings such a long contract in an industry that doesn't typically require them is concerning. The company's contract is also one of the most common Life Alert complaints among the majority of its customer reviews. Overall, consumers on our site are not happy with the long-term contract, and they find it difficult, and sometimes impossible, to get out of Life Alert's contract. 

Expensive Service

Because Life Alert is so well established in the industry, the company does not frequently rely on or offer discounts on its products and services. Although the company lists that it offers free equipment, shipping, and a warranty on its website, Life Alert is one of the more expensive medical alert providers on the market.

Many medical alert companies have a similar offer of free equipment, free shipping, and a free warranty, but they also include no long-term contracts, free activation, and affordable monthly monitoring (as little as $19.95 per month). Life Alert, on the other hand, requires a three-year contract, charges upwards of $70 per month, and calls for a hefty activation fee of nearly $100.

Many Life Alert reviews also note that the company increases its prices without notice and relies on locking customers into a long-term contract of three years. We suggest being aware of the life alert contract before committing to its services.

No Automatic Fall Detection

Many medical alert systems in the industry today offer automatic fall detection. Automatic fall detection is a medical alert capability that will immediately notify the medical alert company's monitoring center if pendant wearers experience a fall, even if they cannot press the button themselves. It's a way to give users peace of mind that they do not have to do anything on their part if they experience a fall; the medical alert company will take care of contacting emergency responders if necessary. 

Life Alert does not currently offer any products with fall detection capability. This is definitely a con of Life Alert, especially since most medical alert companies offer fall detection features. 

Few Equipment Details

The website offers next to no information on equipment details or company policies. In comparison to other companies that offer transparent details on multiple medical alert devices, this is concerning.

According to the company's website, a Life Alert medical alert device does include the typical base station and an alert button that can be worn as a pendant or a wristband, a backup battery life of 72 hours, and US-based monitoring services.

There is no information on other medical alert service features such as two-way communication, automatic fall detection, and built-in GPS tracking. 

Most medical alert companies are transparent about their equipment and offerings online, so it is worrying that Life Alert is selective about what little information it does share on its website. 

Poor Website

The Life Alert website appears as though it hasn't been redesigned in many years. It seems outdated and difficult to navigate, especially since there is no live chat available.

Life Alert provides limited details on its website regarding its specific offerings, and the company requests that you call in for a brochure to receive pricing and other information. Many people in Life Alert's customer reviews note that after calling to receive a brochure, they received endless follow-up calls even after expressing their disinterest in the company. 

Negative Life Alert Reviews

The majority of Life Alert reviews are overwhelmingly negative, many of them noting that the company locks you into a long-term contract (36-month contract) and then makes it extremely difficult (or refuses completely) to allow customers to cancel its medical alert services. Many customers also mention scamming tactics, including upping the prices without notice, having faulty equipment, and neglecting customer service quality. 

One customer addresses Life Alert as a scam: "It is a scam. Once you sign up [Life alert] uses every tactic to frustrate your ability to end the service...They get you to sign up for one amount and then jack up your monthly fee unilaterally."

Another frustrated consumer says something similar: "[Life Alert] locks you into a contract and makes it nearly impossible to cancel...This is just a scam to try to ring as much money as possible out of elderly people on a fixed income."

With such negative feedback, we highly suggest going with an alternative medical alert provider with positive reviews and a trustworthy reputation. 

View Best Medical Alert Companies

The Bottom Line

Life Alert Emergency Response is not the best system on the market. While Life Alert as a company has many positives such as the coveted CSAA five diamond certification, its high installation fee ($95-$295), hefty long-term contracts (three years), and average system features should encourage potential buyers to explore Life Alert alternatives. Read Life Alert reviews below to see what customers have to say about the Life Alert's medical alert systems and customer service. Unfortunately, the majority of Life Alert reviews are negative, and we suggest going with a more reputable medical alert company. 

View Best Medical Alert Companies

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User Reviews

Star Rating

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127 Reviews

Review Breakdown

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Barbara Bunch

March 28th, 2017 Richmond, VA

If you get this system, be prepared to use it til you die. It is incredibly difficult to get out of the contract.We are moving to Assisted Living Facility and they need to verify that they are a 24 hour care facility. Why does Life Alert care where we go. We DO NOT WANT THEIR SERVICE.

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KC

March 28th, 2017 Chicago, IL

My Grandma has one & she fell (104 years old) The button did not work. Unbeknownst to anyone, you are supposed to call in once in awhile and do a check to see if it is working. That information would've been helpful at time of sale. Although, I do believe it was a bs story to cover their behinds. Don't even get me started on the secret contract that we found out about when trying to cancel after this issue. Invest in some Ethics Classes life alert!!

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R. Zin

March 24th, 2017 Hyattsville, MD

I was an installer for Life Alert and I can tell you for a FACT that they abuse the customer's lack of knowledge. They wanted to have me install a Carbon Monoxide system in a customer's home. Upon arrival I informed the Customer and Home Office that the customer had a home that was totally "Electric", Heating, Cooking and Water Heater. The home also did not have a garage. The home had a "0" chance of Carbon Monoxide intrusion. I was basically told to mind my own business by the "Technical and Sales dept. They also filled the poor elderly home owner with fear tactics. That was the last day I worked for them after seeing how they treat their customers, who are mostly the elderly.

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fiestymom128

March 11th, 2017

so far I have no complaints, they answer the phone they do what you ask

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Dale

February 6th, 2017 High Point, NC

Life Alert is a ripoff. They didn't tell me Ithat they had put me in a 3 year contract until the very end of the sale. The lady told me that I could not cancel now because she had put me in a 3 year contact and she would not cancel it. She was very rude. My 3 year contract will be up April 2018 and I will not continue this lousy service from these rude people.

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Rhonda

January 5th, 2017 Pikeville, KY

Life Alert never mentions a three year contract on the phone. Only if you read the paperwork closely will you know ithat you signing a 3 year contract. They told my mother it was a month to month after specifically asking if she had to sign a contract. Fraud.

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Sparky

January 3rd, 2017

Very hard to cancel if under the 3 year contract. You had to proof why you want to cancel if going to a nursing home or death not because you found a cheaper and better company or you will pay a penalty.

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pat Patterson

December 30th, 2016

I am a Senior widow & have decided I was scammed by a very high powerful sales lady to sign up & pay a high amount on the phone before even receiving all the equipment that i had to pay for before even receiving the equipment. It was not a one button to wear with GPS but one for home--only if you were in the room where the central monitor was, & one to wear if you were away from that monitor. the button came apart during a fall & they were going to send another which took 2 weeks by postal mail. then, it broke again & another week to replace. My son called to complain I was paying $90/mo. for something didn't work. After 3 transfers, we were connected to an agent that would give me the month of Nov. free. I tried to call & cancel & was told I couldn't as I unmistake ly signed a contract. Selling Agent said 2 years, supervisor said 3 years. They took advantage of a 74 widow.. I need help & looking to file a fraud report & cancel my service..Luckily, I have 3 attorneys in my family whom I trust Please don:t make this mistake==READ THIS ARTICLE & DO YOUR HOMEWORK==WITH HELP/

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Dan Hedrick

December 25th, 2016 Crystal City, MO

My mom had fallen and her Life Alert is suppose to sense that she is on the floor. Well....... It didn't, and her button around her neck did not work. I had to manually push the big ole button on the equipment y her phone to see if it even worked. It did but...... The call was dropped on Life Alert's end, and it took them forever to call her back. This is a real cause for concern. I will be talking to her to change who she uses. Life Alert is not reliable when they need to be!!!

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Sarah W.

December 25th, 2016 Brazil, IN

Have used it. Have one. As far as am concerned, it is useless. (1) It is to costly for the one's who depend on it. (2) I disconnected mine. No one should have to have a contract. (3) What if you don't need it anymore? You are locked in a contract and have to continue to pay monthly until the contract is up. Someone is getting rich! (4) I will give you a example. When I would push the button, just to test, it takes more than 15 minutes to answer. I could have had a heart attack and died before they even got here!.

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Barbara

December 23rd, 2016 New York, NY

Yesterday I ordered Life Alert for my father. I didn't know about all the other companies out there. My father was upset with me for not doing more research before ordering. We found another company, Medical Guardian, which was rated #1 this year. They have lower rates, better equipment & better customer service. My father & I called Life Alert to cancel. The rep was so rude with us. He tried scaring & bullying my father to stay with them. Plus, he said they would charge him the $198 for the cancellation. This company is awful! Don't waste your money. Keep looking.

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Ann Ciraldo

December 18th, 2016

thought the salesman who came to bring me the product and sign the contract talked so quickly that I did not fully understand or read the contract which was a carbon copy with small print. I did not know I was signing a 3 year contract. Calling customer service was impossible and my issues were not resolved. They should spend more money on customer service instead of on TV ads!! The representative who came to my house reminded me of a used car salesman. A repairman who came to my apt. was a contract person and not a Life Alert employee, thank goodness. He told me my base unit was outdated for a longer time than my installation date. I had to wait quite sometime before a serviceman came.It has been awhile since I cancelled my contract after the 3 year period so I cannot recall all the problems I had with them. The only time I used my pendant, help arrived quickly.

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Josephine Hall

December 8th, 2016

I've been a customer for 5+ yrs. Sometimes when calling to check equipment the service is slower than it should be. But, I must say that I've only used them a couple of times. Once when I accidentally pushed the button while working in the yard. They called the people I had designated and couldn't get in touch with any of them and immediately sent the fire department out to check on me. Another time someone came to my door late at night and I was alone and a little afraid. I pushed the button and asked them to call the police. They did and the police arrived within a few minutes. So, I wish the response time was faster when trying to call them, but on the whole I feel comfortable using Life Alert.

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T J Anderson

December 6th, 2016

The agents are arrogant, not really interested in subject. When I showed displeasure they were nasty. Slow to answer. They are terrible. Previously had mobile alert mistake to change. Will be happy when contract ends.

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Bob Adams

November 23rd, 2016 Irmo, SC

Life Alert service was contracted for my mother-in-law's residence. The service was supposed to do routine check ins with her to ensure that she was alright. This was misrepresented to us during the salesget sat cycle, and they do not do this. When we tried to cancel the service the process is SO COMPLEX and has so many steps that you cannot easily cancel. In today's world consumers expect ease of use and great care. Life Alert provides neither of these. It is unreal how hard they make it to complain and try to frustrate the customer into not pursuing complaints. I work in a field where you have to build customer relations and address issues professionally. The sad response from Life Alert is very telling that they do not care about customers. They are all about selling and not servicing.

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Janet

November 22nd, 2016 Los Angeles, CA

Once my grandmother was diagnosed with cancer, we didn't know what to expect so we immediately called Life Alert. They helped us pick and choose which services she may need and answered all our questions. The rep was very kind, patient and informative. We are very happy we chose Life Alert.

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Jeanne Gravitt

November 13th, 2016

I love both of my Life Alert "buttons". I love the fact that they tell you to test your equipment once a month too. It is a little expensive, $69.95 a month, but so far not matter here I go, it has been there if I need it. I have found that it takes a few minutes to get a live person, and hope that if I can't talk, they will still send someone sent to find out what's wrong. I also like the fact that if I am on the road, they are suppose to be able to get help, that's why I chose them over the Guardian. Life Alert was the only one I found that had the "travelling pager" It's heavier like the old pagers as far as weight goes, but you can talk to it and get a response, and while it's expense, it's been worth it for my peace of mind.

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Doris Annick

November 11th, 2016

The contract is for three years. They will not let you cancel unless you die. The monthly charge is very expensive.. I live in a retirement community. I advise people not to use this service.

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V Trujillo

November 8th, 2016 Santa Fe, NM

Oct 2016 I cancelled three years of service for my mom. The rep on the phone was very pushy and wanted me to continue service. We have had five false alarms in 3 years. Once when I was in a restaurant WITH my mom! Another time my moms phone was not working and my brother was in route (15 min) to her house to make sure she was ok. I told this to the operator and asked her to wait until I heard from my brother. The operator DID NOT LISTEN and called the paramedics anyway. It was a huge problem that my brother had to resolve with the men who showed up from the fire dept. I CLEARLY TOLD THE OPERATOR TO NOT CALL THE PARAMEDICS and she did anyway. My Mom was fine, her phone was out of order. You must be at the site of the "box" in order to cancel service. No instructions were given for disconnecting the phone. I ended up messing up my moms phone service. We had to wait two days till the phone company came and fixed the problem. In summary the reps are extremely pushy and the operators don't listen. I now hate Life Alert and do not recommend them.

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William wright

October 20th, 2016 Wakefield, RI

I had a malfunction of their system, and I can only describe their response as RUDE. Also there are other systems with more features for less money. When my son signed up, they did not explain it was a three year contact.

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annhadley

October 19th, 2016 Los Angeles, CA

i was told i had a 3yr. contract which i have no memory or copy of. my card was compromized and the company could't access my account because of the new card issued. if i paid the 49.99 they were unable to collect, they would lower my fee to 39.99. i was told i could not cancel. i have never used the alert in over 2 years but i have tested it and it takes a long time for them to respond.

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P L McCrindle

October 7th, 2016 Necedah, WI

I fell in the kitchen and could not get up , had severe pain and swelling in my right ankle. I pressed the button and the contact was " life alert, please hold," this message was repeated 10 times with no personal contact. I pressed the button with the same results for a total of 10 times. We live in a rural community with mostly second homeowners who come up either every other week or whenever, I sort of side swam to my door and yelled out "HELP" and as luck or happenstance one of my neighbors who happened to come up for the weekend heard me and took me to the emergency site. My right ankle was fractured on both sides. When I relayed this to Life Alert they said it was my error as they did not receive any call from my pendant. I researched other providers and switched asap!

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Bruce

October 4th, 2016 Groveland, CA

in asking for details about how the system works all the rep. wanted to do is talk about the condition of the person who it was for not how the system works. We live in the country so the cell service is pool and when I would ask about what was needed he kept going back to what is the persons condition.

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Augusta Lynn Eaglin-Porter

September 12th, 2016 North Fort Myers, FL

Customer service bad got my equipment was unable to contact anyone till Monday . Poor communication . Have to be in the room with monitor to talk with person when bottom pushed. iAs a retired nurse I feel it's not user friendly. I'll see how trying to close account is.

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Paul Castrovinci

July 7th, 2016 Nashville, TN

I called Life Alert for information and pricing. They are sending me a brochure. I said I wanted information "TODAY, as I am pricing medical alert systems. I was transferred to a sales representative. He gave a very long sales pitch, too much information. He did not give me pricing information until the end of his boring sales pitch. He asked me too many questions, which was very annoying. I just wanted pricing, not a sales pitch. He was also very pushy and I did not appreciate that. I will NOT consider Life Alert for my medical alert system.

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[email protected]

June 30th, 2016 Dallas, TX

On 2/5/16 My Mother was enrolled for for Life Alert . On 2/19/16 Janice cancelled the order at my request. On 4/11/16 Supervisor Rene told me they only provide refunds when the customer asks for it; he said the equip was received on 2/19, and he was going to release the refund of $125.96. On 6/30/16 (Over 80 days later) I was told they are waiting on a Supervisor to approve the refund. They refused to let me speak directly to a Supervisor or Senior Manager, would only take my name and send me to a voice mail.

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John White

April 22nd, 2016 Atlanta, GA

Y'all are charging me an installation fee but are sending it to my house and asking me to plug it in and set it up.