Life Alert vs Medical Alert

Both medical alert systems deliver quality coverage, but with several differences including contract length. See which gets our pick.

Side-by-side comparison:

Side-by-side comparison: Life Alert Logo Medical Alert logo. Medical Alert is a medical alert company.
Editor's Rating
3 / 5 stars
4.4 / 5 stars
3.7 / 5
4.4 / 5
Price Range$49.95 - $89.95/mo$22.95 - $37.95/mo
Upfront CostsYes- variesNo
Contract RequiredYesNo
Return PolicyStrictStandard
Product OptionsLandline & cellular in-home, mobile + GPSLandline & cellular in-home, mobile + GPS
Battery Life10 years5 days
In-home Ranges800 ft600 ft
Water-safe OptionsYesYes
Fall DetectionNoYes - $10/mo
Smart WatchNoNo
Spouse Monitoring$49/ one time feeextra button included
Phone Number*877-909-6735
Website  View Website

*We recommend calling because representatives can sometimes offer special deals or pricing. We make every effort to provide and maintain accurate information on our site. However, the businesses reviewed on our site may periodically change their pricing, equipment, and packages and there may be a lag between the time they make such changes and the time we become aware of such changes. If you identify any outdated or inaccurate information, please contact us here.

Editors Recommendation

Generally, we recommend Medical Alert over Life Alert for their low costs and no contracts. Medical Alert’s pricing is less expensive whether you choose the monthly, semi-annual or annual plan. Medical Alert also includes two buttons with each plan so that a spouse or significant other is covered for no additional fee. However, if you are looking for a medical alert company that will install your system for you, Life Alert does offer that service for a fee.

Life Alert and Medical Alert are well-known throughout the medical alert industry for their reliability and commitment to helping seniors maintain their independence. They offer wearable devices that are waterproof and capable of two-way communication. Each system has earned an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and offer lifetime warranties for defective equipment.

Life Alert vs Medical Alert Differences

Life Alert and Medical Alert systems have significant differences in terms of contracts. Life Alert requires a 3-year contract, while Medical Alert requires a service agreement for monitoring. Their coverage areas also differ. Medical Alert provides services to subscribers who live in the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, in addition to those living in the United States. Medical Alert also includes the 365Access Caregiver app as part of its more advanced packages.

Medical Alert vs Life Alert Similarities

For all of the differences between the two companies, they have several similarities. Both companies offer optional fall detection and support over 100 languages (Life Alert/100, Medical Alert/140). Wearable devices are waterproof and safe to be worn in the shower where the majority of slip/fall accidents generally occur. Emergency response times are under 30 – 45 seconds for both companies. Both companies offer protection while the subscriber is at home or away for additional peace of mind.


Life Alert provides subscribers with devices that are waterproof and enabled with GPS technology that allows their call centers to receive alerts whether the subscriber is at home or away. Fall detection and home invasion detection are optional but available as add-ons to their existing packages. The system supports over 100 languages with devices that are capable of two-way communication.

Medical Alert offers devices that are capable of GPS tracking so the subscriber can send alerts while they are at home or away. Two-way communication is available through the base unit. Wearable devices are waterproof and are safe for use in the shower. Fall detection is also an option that can be added to the packages they offer.

Systems & Devices

Life Alert offers most of the traditional pieces of medical alert equipment, including wristbands, pendants, and shower buttons. Their base unit is the only device capable of two-way voice communication. A cell phone app is also offered. Although their system does not send monthly tests to their call center, the system will send a trouble signal. Each device has 72 hours of battery backup. Equipment offered by Life Alert is UL Certified.

Medical Alert offers wearable devices that are both waterproof and UL Certified. They include pendants and wristbands that are supported by a state of the art base unit. Medical Alert supports over 140 languages and offers nationwide coverage. Fall detection is an option that can be added to packages for an extra fee per month.

Costs & Contracts

Life Alert requires professional installation that costs anywhere from $95 to $200 depending on what package is chosen. Monthly monitoring packages range from $50 to $90. There is no charge for the equipment and no activation fee. If you choose to pay for your service by the year, you will get one month free. If you need to replace a device, the charge is $49. Life Alert does not offer senior discounts. A 3-year requirement is required to start service.

Medical Alert does not charge for their equipment and their packages are affordable. The In-Home Landline package starts at $20 per month for month-to-month or semi-annual payments. If paying annually, the price drops to just over $18 per month. The In-Home without a Landline uses only cellular service and starts at $30 per month. Semi-annual payments start at $28 per month, while annual payments are as low as $26 per month. Medical Alert does require a service agreement.

Emergency Response & Call Centers

Life Alert's call centers are Five Diamond Certified and offer an emergency response time of approximately 20 seconds or less. Emergency responders are dispatched within seconds of an alert being received at the call center. Numbers on the subscriber's contact list will also be notified via email or text.

Medical Alert's call center is not certified but it is company owned. Emergency response times average 20 seconds or less. When an alert is sent to the call center, emergency personnel are immediately dispatched and text/emails are sent tot he subscriber's contact list.

Our Conclusion

Life Alert is a good choice for subscriber's who want the professional service a well-respected and don't mind having to sign a lengthy contract.

Medical Alert offers several affordable package options for subscriber's who want a reliable service without a contract or upfront fees.

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