Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Questionable Client Tricks

Well, not so much "tricks" as judgement:

One of our P&C clients is going through Open Enrollment at work, and the voluntary term life for both himself and his wife is going up pretty dramatically. This happens because most of these plans use age-banding; that is, your premium is (for example) $10/week from age 30 to 34, then $115 from 35 to 39, etc.

So he called to see if buying his own plan might be a better way to go.

It usually is: group term plans are generally guaranteed (or at least simplified) issue, which means little or no underwriting, which means carriers inflate the rates to cover for the unhealthier employees. Healthy ones can almost always do better on their own. The biggest advantage for these plans is that they're payroll-deducted, so a lot more convenient than cutting a check (although most carriers will do auto-withdrawal for monthly premium, which is pretty close).

Anyway, Joe is in good shape, but Kelly's not quite tall enough for her weight, which adversely affects her rate going in. I suggested 20 year term plans, and the numbers looked good for Joe, but they're thinking about going with a 10 year plan for Kelly in the hope that she'll shed a few pounds in the meantime and qualify for lower rates down the road.

I countered thusly:

"If you can swing the 20 year premium-wise, it's a much better idea. For one thing, you can always request a rate review down the road if/when Kelly drops a few pounds. Plus, who knows what rates will be with these companies 10 years down the road or (even more importantly)  whether her medical history would change where she couldn’t even qualify for a plan – regardless of the weight issue.

She would have to lose about 10 pounds and be stable at that weight for at least 1 year to get to get the next better rate class, and down to another 10 or 15 and stable for 1 year for best.  Of course, that’s assuming overall history and findings look good such as lipids, any other significant history, etc.

Your call, and I’m happy to oblige whatever you want – but also want to give the very best advice I can

We shall see....
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