How To Become A Conscious (Life Insurance) Consumer

Insights into why people buy - or postpone buying - life insurance. Studies from the disciplines of neuroscience, psychology, religion, and spirituality are called upon to explain consumer behavior.

How Business Owners Use Life Insurance to Make Charitable Gifts

Money - The best present

What is one trait that successful business owners share? An attitude of gratitude! Business owners who have advanced in their field don’t forget those who helped them get to the top. They honor their parents, they give credit where credit is due, and they see the importance of every contribution to the cause, whether from the janitor or the CEO.

On top of that, they also value and appreciate charities and the work they do. It might be that the business owner was touched and assisted by a religious congregation. Maybe a family member benefited from the services of a medical research group, hospital, or home care facility. Many business owners support universities or advocacy groups. Regardless of the reasons or the particular charities, they often desire to give back to the organizations that made a difference in their life. Other than donating funds from time to time, how can successful business owners give back in a way that will significantly impact the charities they choose?

Using Life Insurance to Give Back

Life insurance is ideally suited for charitable giving. By taking out a policy on yourself for the benefit of the charity, you can turn a small amount of money into a substantial gift. Each dollar of the benefit only cost pennies in the original investment. This means that the gift does not have to be an excessive expense for the donor, but the investment adds up and the charity’s cash flow is considerably impacted.

Here are three quick tips for business owners for using life insurance to make charitable gifts:

Familiarize Yourself With The Legalities

Make sure you understand the laws regarding the use of life insurance for charitable giving. Many states recognize that charities have an insurable interest in contributors. They realize that these organizations can be as dependent on donors as businesses can be dependent on key personnel. Work with an attorney who can guide you on the best way to structure the policy and help you answer the questions of who should be the owner, beneficiary or premium payer.

Get Creative With Permanent Life Insurance

The life insurance policy you are gifting will be part of your estate plan, and thus must last as long as you do. That means you need permanent life insurance. But just because the policy will last your lifetime doesn’t mean you have to pay for it for your entire life. You can design the policy so you can make one single payment, payments for ten years, or even payments for twenty years, yet still retain a lifetime guarantee. Work with your broker to generate some options and pick the one that best meets your financing preferences.

Work With a Team

Collaborate with your fellow contributors to maximize the benefits to the charity. The healthy charity is the one that receives support on an ongoing basis. Long-term contributions could be generated for a charity if donors of all different ages took out policies for its benefit. Year after year after year, big dollars could roll in as donors pass on and benefits are paid out.

Generous business owners can increase their donations to their charities by using life insurance. By naming a charity as a beneficiary, you can give that charity an extraordinary amount of money that can create a lasting legacy for a cause that is important to you. If you are interested in contributing to a life insurance policy for the benefit of a charity, I’d love to walk you through the process and answer any questions you may have. Ask anything by emailing me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com.

About Steve

Steven Kobrin is a life insurance expert with 25 years experience. He serves high net-worth individuals and business owners as well as high risk and uninsurable “impaired cases.” Steven offers concierge life insurance process to ensure the policy is approved as it’s quoted. To learn more, visit his website, read his blog, connect with him on LinkedIn, or request a policy audit today by calling his office at (866) 633-1818 or by email at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Why You MUST Change Your Life Insurance Beneficiary When Getting Divorced

29894340172_1f9c654e89_nCertified Divorce Financial Analyst™, Michelle Ash has a must-read article about financial issues after divorce in womensdivorce.com. Here’s an overview:

The divorce is finally over, the decisions have been made, and now life proceeds anew for the client. But it’s never really that easy, is it? For the newly-divorced client, the legal work may be done, but there’s often a long list of financial clean-up that lies ahead.

Expert advice

As a life insurance broker, I pay special attention when experts offer advice on how to avoid troubles with your policy. Michelle points to a big one regarding the need to change the beneficiary designation when the divorce is finalized:

According to estate planning attorney C. Randolph Coleman of The Coleman Law Firm, “There usually are a half dozen cases during a typical year where someone will call and ask whether there is anything they can do to avoid the ex-spouse of their recently deceased spouse, parent, child or sibling, from taking the life insurance or retirement plan that the ex-spouse was still the beneficiary designated on the decedent’s plans/policies. The short answer, there is nothing you can do. The beneficiary designation will trump the will or intestacy every time.”

Again from estate planning attorney, C. Randolph Coleman, “I probably see about 6 or 8 people a year who typically come in for estate planning 4 to 5 years after a divorce to ‘finally get around’ to updating their estate planning. Usually, during the course of our discussions I will suggest to them that they go back to their employer and check on the beneficiary designations for their life insurance and retirement plans. Invariably, about half of them will call back and tell me how much they appreciate the counsel to check because their ex-spouse remained their beneficiary.”

A big takeaway

One take away from the story is this: if you wait for a life event to prompt an update of your policy, you may end up doing too little too late. This problem can be avoided if you get into the practice of conducting regular audits of your policy. Policy audits can frequently head off trouble at the pass. To learn more, read here.

What about your policy?

What about your life insurance policy? Is the beneficiary designation is current?
Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question.

If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Practice Makes Permanent, Not Perfect

PracticeMakesPermanent

When we were children, we often took up some hobby or sport. Maybe it was piano playing, or tennis, or gymnastics. Inevitably, our coach or teacher tried to encourage us with these words: “practice makes perfect”.

This cliché probably sounded nice at the time, but it doesn’t ring true.

Perfection is Not the Goal

The idea of being “perfect” is quite lofty, but alas, an unattainable goal. Nobody achieves perfection. The real name of the game is perfecting yourself, but honestly, that notion is also very tough to relate to and frustrating to accomplish. For many people, the idea of becoming “perfect” in any way brings all kinds of self-doubt, anxiety, and pressure to perform. The quest for perfection introduces too many mental obstacles.

Believe it or not, the idea of “permanence” is much easier to work with.

Permanent Implies “This Is It”

Think about the idea of permanence. What words does it bring to mind? Solid? Everlasting? Sturdy? Unchangeable? These are concepts we can realistically relate to. Deep inside, we yearn for a state of permanence, of security, of stability, of something we can count on. Once something reaches a state of permanence, we know it will remain that way, for better or for worse.

Good Practice, Bad Practice

Once we start practicing something, we realize the compound effect of our activity. Toss a ball a certain way, and we will toss it that way again unless we change the way we throw it. The same goes for playing notes on a piano, performing surgery, and talking to clients. The entire world of human activity consists of people doing things the way they have been doing them because that’s how we’ve trained ourselves. The phrase “creatures of habit” is an understatement!

The Importance of Working Hard AND Working Right

People who have reached legendary levels of achievement understand this process. In every field of human endeavor, the masters strove to get it right every time.

An inspiring example is that of Ben Feldman. He was the Babe Ruth of the life insurance business. He literally changed the industry by raising the standards of sales and production. Nobody worked harder than he did at the sales process. He did all the behind-the-scenes research so he would know exactly what buttons to push in new prospects. He knew that regardless of his phenomenal reputation, each new client had to be won over. He would practice over and over and over again what he would say to them. He knew that when he finally booked the sales appointment, his presentation had to be natural and yet right-on. And it could only be that way by preparing for it the right way.

If he fell short, he understood that it was only because he had practiced insufficiently in the time leading up to the meeting.

The Only Way to “Win”

Does proper practice guarantee the desired results every time? Of course not. Not even Ben Feldman got the sale every day. But practicing right gives you two important benefits. First of all, it tilts the odds that the end result will indeed be what you want it to be. Clearly, the odds are against you getting what you want if you train incorrectly!

But more than that, practice gives you a feeling of contentment and accomplishment in spite of the results. There is a sense of satisfaction and enjoyment in a performance that is the product of thorough preparation. Whether you win or lose, you can say of the experience, “that was good!” And by the way, this is not an ego trip. It’s an appreciation of beauty, even a sense of wonder, of how the world can be when you try to put it all together after diligent and excellent practice.

So go forth and practice the right way, in whatever you do. Make the right way the permanent way.

Have you built a habit of practice into your life? If not, do you know where to start? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

About Steve

Steven Kobrin is a life insurance expert with 25 years experience. He serves high net-worth individuals and business owners as well as high risk and uninsurable “impaired cases.” Steven offers concierge life insurance process to ensure the policy is approved as it’s quoted. To learn more, visit his website, read his blog, connect with him on LinkedIn, or request a policy audit today by calling his office at (866) 633-1818 or by email at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

The Basics of Premium Financing

The Basics of Premium Financing

What Is Premium Financing?

Premium financing is basically just borrowing money to pay life insurance premiums. High-net-worth individuals and companies use this strategy to obtain large amounts of life insurance with a minimal upfront expense. It is a means to retain capital by only paying interest on a loan that pays premiums instead of paying the actual premiums.

How Does It Work?

First, you need to set up an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT). This trust will hold the life insurance policy and pay the loan interest. Upon your death, the insurance proceeds are paid to the ILIT. Once the trust has paid off the loan, the rest of the funds will be distributed to your heirs.

After application and approval, a third-party lender loans money to the trust. The ILIT then uses the borrowed money to pay premiums to the insurance company. The trust also must make interest payments on the loan. You, the insured, will need to gift the trust the money to pay the interest. Gift taxes may be assessed on the funds that you give the trust.

Whether or not you or your ILIT obtains the loan, you are responsible for providing the collateral. Usually, you must post collateral equal to the difference between the cash surrender value of the policy and the loan balance. Collateral requirements are set by the lender, though, so sometimes the actual value of the collateralized assets can be greater than the loan.

Why Do People Use Premium Financing?

Many different kinds of people take advantage of premium financing. Sometimes they are owners of thriving businesses who do not want to stunt the business’s growth by withdrawing capital. Sometimes they are high-net-worth individuals who simply do not want to reduce their current cash flow. Sometimes they are people with vast real estate holdings with no interest in liquidation. Sometimes they are very profitable investors, not wanting to cash out their lucrative investments and pay the capital gains taxes.

No matter their situation, people use a premium financing strategy because they need life insurance for inheritance, business or tax issues, but they want to keep the funds that they would have to spend on premiums in more profitable investments.

Premium Financing Example

Here is a fictitious example of premium financing that illustrates the benefits of leverage and the opportunity cost involved:

John wants to buy life insurance with a $100,000 premium. His assets are currently invested and earning 10% returns. He has two options. He can finance the premiums at a 5% interest rate or he can cash out some of his investments to pay the premiums.

Option 1: Premium Financing

John takes the loan at 5% interest, so his interest payment is $5,000. He is left with $95,000 growing at 10%. At the end of the year, he has $104,500, which continues to grow year over year.

Option 2: Self Funding

Instead of financing the premiums, John opts to pay them himself. The $100,000 that he pulls out of investments had been earning 10%, so it is a $10,000 opportunity cost. Because he liquidated an investment, he also must pay capital gains taxes. Instead of pulling out $100,000 he has to pull out $120,000 to cover the cost of the taxes as well. Now, aside from the $10,000 opportunity cost, paying the premiums himself has cost him an additional $20,000.

Which option seems like a better financial decision for John? Which option might be best for you?

If you’re interested in learning more about premium financing or discussing if it’s the right strategy for you, email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com.

About Steve

Steven Kobrin is a life insurance expert with 25 years experience. He serves high net-worth individuals and business owners as well as high risk and uninsurable “impaired cases.” Steven offers concierge life insurance process to ensure the policy is approved as it’s quoted. To learn more, visit his website, read his blog, connect with him on LinkedIn, or request a policy audit today by calling his office at (866) 633-1818 or by email at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Financial Independence vs. Independent Wealth

This was my view of Macy's 4th of July Fireworks. It was an awesome show. I'm really happy that I got this shoot from this position. Nikon D3000, shot in RAW, edited in Adobe Lightroom 5.

Today we celebrate the independence of the United States of America. Happy birthday, USA! Let’s talk about what independence means from a financial point of view. There are two common ideas related to independence and money: financial independence, and independent wealth. What is the difference between them?

Two ways of taking advantage

Here’s a quick way to answer the question: do you want to be rich? Of course you do. If you were rich, you wouldn’t have to answer to anybody. You could tell anybody you wanted to go jump in the lake. That could be your boss. It could be your biggest client who drives you crazy. It could be the banker or other lender who puts the squeeze on you because he knows you don’t qualify for better terms. Or anybody else taking advantage of you.

On the other hand, it could be the parent who very kindly bails you out time and time again. It could be the government agency who throws money at you simply because you qualify for big government benefits due to a technicality. Or any other entity of which you were taking advantage, albeit legitimately.

The focus is on freedom

Financial independence means you are finally on your own. But here’s the catch: once you are on your own, do you want to have to work 60 hours a week to stay on your own? To put up with all the stress and aggravation and problems of retaining your independence? No, you really don’t. You would like to have a life free of the rat race, even if it is your own rat you are chasing. You want enough money to work because you want to, not because you have to. To do the things you want, on your own time. To not have to worry about paying your bills, or working for the Man – even if you are the Man, your own boss. To do this, you have to be more than financially independent – you have to be independently wealthy. There is the difference between the two.

So, when we plan for our careers and our businesses, let’s strive for Independent Wealth. When we purchase life insurance and plan for the welfare of our survivors, let’s help them remain independently wealthy. And when we chart a course for the future of our country, let’s reclaim our independence and get ourselves wealthy enough to keep it. God bless America. Land of the free, home of the brave, and a country that should be the most prosperous on earth.

Here are a few more resources for you on this topic:

Finally, A Definition Of ‘Independently Wealthy’ We Can Really Get Behind

What Does Independently Wealthy Mean?

Financially Independent vs. Independently Wealthy

Does the distinction between financial independence and independent wealth make sense to you?

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

What are the Habits of Wealthy People?

HabitsofWealthy

What sets the wealthy apart? What helps them rise above the rest and stay successful? The answer may surprise you. The key is not working eighty-hour weeks or hiring a bigger staff. It’s simple, really. Wealthy people say thank you.

They Foster an Attitude of Thankfulness

Wealthy people go out of their way to say thank you all the time, even when it may not be necessary. In fact, the less necessary a thank you, the more impact it seems to make on the recipient. Here are a few examples:

  • When their spouse makes them their favorite meal or remembers to fix the closet door, they say thank you.
  • When their kids do a good job around the house, they say thank you.
  • When their waitress brings them the food they ordered with a smile, they say thank you.
  • When their secretary, manager, or executive vice president helps them out, they say thank you.
  • When the janitor finishes mopping the floor, they say thank you.
  • When their biggest client gives them a sale, they say thank you.
  • When their smallest client gives them a sale, they say thank you.
  • When their number one vendor comes through for them, they say thank you.
  • When the vendor on the bottom of their list comes through for them, they say thank you.

They say thank you to their banker, their gardener, their attorney, their garbage man, their pool boy, and the chairman of their board. You get the idea.

They Appreciate Everyone

Wealthy people take no one for granted. They are acutely aware of the vital contribution everyone makes to their success. This means everyone around them; whether the contribution is large or small.

Wealthy people make others feel glad to be part of their team. They spread goodwill. As a result, they get significant amounts of cooperation and 110 percent effort from those they work with. That gives them enormous success.

They Don’t Give Up

Their attitude of gratitude keeps a smile on their face throughout the ups and downs of life. Gaining wealth is a hard job. Keeping wealth is a hard job. Spreading wealth is a hard job. If you remain grateful for what you have, then each step of the journey is worth taking. Gratefulness can keep you going, step after step after step.

Wealthy people feel rich because they are grateful for everything the world has given them, even those things that would make other people complain and quit.

Wealth does not just represent an external lifestyle or financial situation. Wealth is an attitude, a way of looking at the world, a perspective about others. When this attitude permeates their life, it makes them wealthier in every way. They feel rich, so they get rich.

What perspectives do you have about wealth? Do you practice thankfulness every day, despite the circumstances? Do you have a question about life or life insurance? Ask anything by emailing me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com.

About Steve

Steven Kobrin is a life insurance expert with 25 years experience. He serves high net-worth individuals and business owners as well as high risk and uninsurable “impaired cases.” Steven offers concierge life insurance process to ensure the policy is approved as it’s quoted. To learn more, visit his website, read his blog, connect with him on LinkedIn, or request a policy audit today by calling his office at (866) 633-1818 or by email at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Did Prince Have a Will?

A Prince insider is reporting that the great musician did not have a will at the time of his recent, sudden passing:

EXCLUSIVE So far, no one has shown up with a last will and testament for Prince.16391373104_ca1153905e

I am told that it’s likely there is no will despite Prince’s great fortune and holdings. “He thought he’d live until he was one thousand nine hundred and ninety nine years old,” Prince’s long time former attorney and close friend Londell McMillan told me today. McMillan never had a will with Prince. It’s unlikely any other lawyer drew one up either. “He didn’t think he would die. He couldn’t face it,” observed McMillan. “Some people are like that.”

I am sure many people can relate to this unfortunate predicament. Many of us have trouble facing our own mortality. Consequently, things can get messy when our estate is settled, for the state government will have a major role in distributing our assets.

If you die without a will, it means you have died “intestate.” When this happens, the intestacy laws of the state where you reside will determine how your property is distributed upon your death. This includes any bank accounts, securities, real estate, and other assets you own at the time of death. Real estate owned in a different state than where you resided will be handled under the intestacy laws of the state where the property is located.

The laws of intestate succession vary greatly depending on whether you were single or married, or had children. In most cases, your property is distributed in split shares to your “heirs”, which could include your surviving spouse, siblings, aunts and uncles, nieces, nephews, and distant relatives. Generally, when no relatives can be found, the entire estate goes to the state.

We’ll have to see just how Prince’s assets can be now protected.

This troublesome situation does point to a virtue of life insurance. Typically, proceeds do not pass through probate:

The proceeds from life insurance policies do not pass through probate as long as named beneficiaries are available to take the payout. When you buy a life insurance policy, you name beneficiaries who will receive the payout when you die. After your death, your named beneficiaries deal directly with the insurance company to receive the money. As a result, most life insurance policy payouts do not require involvement from probate, even if probate is required for other property in the deceased person’s estate.

Something to keep in mind when you continue with your estate plan and take out a policy.

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question.
If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Champions See Life Insurance as an Eternal Gift

“The great ones separate truth from fact.” (1)

This is how mental toughness expert Steve Siebold describes the role perception plays in how we view the world:

Champions use their critical thinking skills to make a clear distinction between truth and fact. Fact is reality. Truth is our perception of reality, and perceptions are subjective. One person perceives giving to charity as an expense, while another perceives it as an investment in someone else’s life.

For me, this statement explains in a nutshell why very wealthy people will gladly buy huge amounts of life insurance. Does the policy cost a lot of money? Sure. Will creative financing be needed sometimes to leverage assets and pay for the premium? Could be. At the end of the day, the purchase is still a bargain. Each dollar of benefit still costs only pennies.

You could simply appreciate life insurance as an economical way to secure an amount payable upon the death of the insured, and in reality, you would be right. But looked at from a broader part of view, the benefit is a “gift from heaven.” It can help surviving family members live long and prosper. It can secure the continued success of the insured’s business. It can fill the coffers of numerous charities to help multitudes of people.

Factually speaking, life insurance is a good financial deal. In truth, it is a gift that keeps on giving.3128638021_0a3e0ef9b8_n

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

(1) Steve Siebold, “177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class,” London House, pp 29-30

http://www.amazon.com/Mental-Toughness-Secrets-World-Class/dp/097550035X

 

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Champions Cross Big Emotional Hurdles When Purchasing Their Life Insurance

“Champions are driven by emotional motivators” (1)14254753323_65b2c329da_m

What is it that keeps champion performers going when the going gets tough? Mental toughness expert Steve Siebold teaches that the key is emotional motivators.

World class leaders know the secret to motivating themselves and others is discovering what they will fight for when the going gets tough. The great ones move from logic-based motivators to emotion-based motivators. They know the key to finding the true power of the individual lies in the deep recesses of the psyche.

Siebold goes on to describe how the world class is motivated intrinsically, by their dreams, desires, and passions. Developing a world-class vision is the secret to world-class motivation. When the pain hits, and things get rough, it is this mental clarity that kicks in and reminds them of why they are in the fight in the first place.

As I see it, this vision is at the core of their life insurance purchase. They want from the bottom of their heart for their family to have the best of everything; for their businesses to thrive and prosper; and for their estate to endow numerous just causes. This is why they will endure the tedium, intrusiveness, and expense of the purchase.

They will cooperate with every step of underwriting, which is probably the most thorough and comprehensive vetting process in the market today for a financial product. They will pay big dollars for their attorneys, accountants, and other advisers to arrange creative financing for the hefty premium. If need be, they will rebalance their portfolio to get the most value from their policy. And they will do this all with the full understanding that they will not personally reap one dime from the death benefit, because it will be paid out when they pass away.

You can bet that champions have to cross numerous emotional hurdles to make this entire ordeal worth their while. Each one could probably think of dozens of “better” uses of their time and money. Nonetheless, they persevere and get it done – and done right – because their vision of life stretches far beyond themselves. They know that one of the best ways to fund that vision into the future is with a life insurance policy.

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

(1) Steve Siebold, “177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class,” London House, pp 27-28 http://www.amazon.com/Mental-Toughness-Secrets-World-Class/dp/097550035X

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Champions Buy Life Insurance to Keep Their Dreams Alive

“Champions have an immense capacity for sustained concentration.” (1)

Mental toughness expert Steve Siebold describes how champion performers are literally living their dream 24/7:

World-class performers invest an inordinate amount of time and energy in selecting their major goals… When the goals are set, champions put mental blinders on and move forward with dogged persistence and ferocious tenacity. World-class performers create such an intense level of concentration to overcome challenges and achieve goals that it is the last thing they think about before they fall asleep, and the first thing that hits them when they wake up.

We all have seen multiple examples of what he means. Champions have achieved great things in every field of endeavor: business. Science. Athletics. They have become experts at making their dreams a reality. These dreams have improved the lives of countless other people – their families, their businesses, their communities. Numerous charities.

Does the dream die with them when they pass away? Many times it does not. One reason is because they buy life insurance, to financially fuel the fire in the next generation of dreamers. Their legacy – their achievements, standards, and principles – inspires their heirs to carry the dream on. The survivor benefit provides the money to make those dreams come alive.

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

(1) Steve Siebold, “177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class,” London House, p 26

http://www.amazon.com/Mental-Toughness-Secrets-World-Class/dp/097550035X

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

The World Class Knows Life Insurance Solves Big Problems

26777207683_43e11ab443_n“World-class wealth begins with world-class thinking.” (1)

Mental toughness expert Steve Siebold has this to say about money: either you control it, or it controls you. What makes the difference? The way you think about it.

Even in the wealthiest nation in the world (the USA), 99% of the population is being controlled by money. The effect is lack of money. The cause is thinking.

Siebold describes how small thinking solves small problems, and big thinking solves big problems. So, ideas that solve big problems are worth big money. It makes sense to me that people who make big money solving big problems for others, would appreciate ideas that solve their own big problems. I think this is why so many tremendously successful people – men and women with world-class thinking – buy life insurance. It solves a huge problem, namely: how to leverage their assets to guarantee their estate, business, and favorite charities a significant amount of money – at the precise time the money will be needed. Life insurance gets that done in royal fashion, using discounted dollars. Every dollar of benefit literally cost pennies.

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

(1) Steve Siebold, “177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class,” London House, pp 24-25

http://www.amazon.com/Mental-Toughness-Secrets-World-Class/dp/097550035X

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

The World Class Faces Reality and Buys Life Insurance

“The World Class Operates From Objective Reality”(1)30857401553_b4a7b0c32a_m

Mental toughness expert Steve Siebold points out a distinguishing feature of the consciousness of the world class: they look reality in the face. Not only that – they err on the side of over-practicing and over-preparing.

Amateur performers operate from delusion, pros operate from objective reality. The great ones’ habits, actions, and behaviors are totally congruent with the size and scope of their ultimate vision. It’s why we call them champions.

This mindset is operative in their financial decision-making, including regarding life insurance. Their own mortality is a given. That day will come, guaranteed. And the fact of the matter is they don’t know when. They don’t delude themselves into thinking they can avoid every hazard in the world. They understand that there are many mortality risks way beyond their control.

So they do the prudent thing. They get the life insurance they need – maybe even more than they need, just to be on the safe side. Having faced that threat square in the eye, they can then move on to the next challenge.

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

(1) Steve Siebold, “177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class,” London House, page 21.

http://www.amazon.com/Mental-Toughness-Secrets-World-Class/dp/097550035X

 

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Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Why We Should Think About Life Insurance on St. Patrick’s Day

29875104903_fc6681b164St. Patrick’s Day is a celebration of Irish religious and national heritage:

St. Patrick’s Day, or the Feast of Saint Patrick (Irish: Lá Fhéile Pádraig, “the Day of the Festival of Patrick”), is a cultural and religious celebration held on 17 March, the traditional death date of Saint Patrick (c. AD 385–461), the foremost patron saint of Ireland. St. Patrick’s Day was made an official Christian feast day in the early 17th century and is observed by the Catholic Church, the Anglican Communion (especially the Church of Ireland), the Eastern Orthodox Church, and the Lutheran Church. The day commemorates Saint Patrick and the arrival of Christianity in Ireland, and celebrates the heritage and culture of the Irish in general. Celebrations generally involve public parades and festivals, céilithe, and the wearing of green attire or shamrocks. Christians also attend church services and the Lenten restrictions on eating and drinking alcohol are lifted for the day, which has encouraged and propagated the holiday’s tradition of alcohol consumption.

There are many such days in the Jewish calendar, as well as in the calendars of other religions. We need observances like this to keep our identity strong.

Religions have both a ritual and a financial component

The financial end of religion complements the ritual end. It takes money to keep religious institutions going. Houses of worship, community centers, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, and many other places of service need a constant influx of funds. And people give generously, generation after generation.

In case you were unaware, many charitable gifts come in the form of life insurance. Donors take out a policy to benefit the charity of their choice. When they pass on, the charity receives a significant benefit. You can imagine how much money a charity could receive if donors of various ages took out policies. Year after year, decade after decade, money would come flowing in.

How life-insurance can take care of the financial component

Life insurance makes all this possible because of its tremendous leverage. Each dollar of benefit cost pennies. Even small donors can give big gifts by spending their donation money on life insurance premiums. Big donors can make really big gifts. This is something to keep in mind as we move throughout our various religious calendars and take pride in who we are and what we stand for. Money helps make Good Work possible. Life insurance can provide a lot of that money.

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Three Reasons to Buy That Life Insurance RIGHT NOW!

OK, here’s the scenario:

Your broker has worked diligently to prequalify you for coverage. He has identified the most competitive and reliable company, product, and price for you. You approve of his work, and have submitted an application. You have met all the underwriting requirements, and have been approved for coverage. Of course, the rate at which you have been approved is the rate that you were quoted. That goes without saying, because that’s the way the life insurance purchase should be handled.

The company is ready to issue the policy. They will send it to your broker, who will deliver it to you for signature and payment. You will then have the protection you need, and move on with your life.

But you wait. Things have come up! Business. Kids. Parents. Big deals. Client demands. All important stuff. But you know what? You really need to buy the policy. Today. Here’s why:

You could lose the offer.31545626416_15ccd6e976

The longer you wait, the greater the possibility something will happen to kill the deal. You might unfortunately get sick. Or hurt. A medical condition previously undetected might act up. Maybe you will take on a new job that requires foreign travel, and therefore a higher premium. The carrier has the right to demand proof of insurability from you until you take the policy. Don’t give them a reason to raise the price, or to deny you altogether.

You could pay a higher price later on.

Let’s suppose nothing happens to change your insurability, but you wait anyway. You postpone the purchase for another six months. Then, when you are finally ready to buy, guess what? The price is higher because you are now older from an insurance underwriting point of view. You are closer to your next birthday. So the price will go up simply due to age. If you are in the older age brackets, such as 60 through 80, that higher rate could be significant.

You could trigger unwanted liabilities and unexpected cash flow problems.

Is the life insurance intended to fund a buy-sell agreement? If so, then no funding will be in place until the policy is in force. If tragically you die before you have coverage, then your business partner may have a bill he or she can’t pay. Is the life insurance intended to preserve your income for your surviving spouse? If so, then without an insurance benefit, he or she may have insufficient income to pay household bills, taxes, and so on. What will she then do – go back to work?

These are some of the unforeseen – and undesirable – consequences of postponing the purchase of your life insurance, just when the stage has been set to get it done. How can you avoid them? Take a breath, call your broker, and tell him to bring you that policy. You’ll be glad you did.

If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Why Stay-at-Home Moms Need LOTS of Life Insurance

22779373068_1a9fb8a1cdI am a big advocate of men and women both having careers. However, I am a bigger advocate of children getting the parenting they need. That is why I applaud those households in which Mom can stay home with the kids. Or Dad! Whatever works for them. I have seen families in which both Mom and Dad manage to split the chores. This takes some creativity in getting the right jobs and managing time, but the effort is well worth it. Everybody wins – especially the kids.

You can read any number of studies that prove children flourish under consistent and stable parental influence. They develop emotional resilience and a deep sense of security. They form a strong identity and a healthy personality. They learn how to behave. They are given the basics for succeeding in life and love. And for weathering the storm when life gets rough.

Death is quite a blow to kids

Perhaps the most severe storm to weather is the death of a parent. Maybe you have tragically experienced that yourself, or are close to someone who has. Talk about the proverbial rug being pulled out from under you! It’s hard to imagine something as devastating to a child’s world, as losing one of the pillars of that world – Mom or Dad.

People buy life insurance to secure themselves again such a fate. The question is: what exactly should they do with that insurance money, should a claim unfortunately have to be paid? I think a lot of people jump to rash conclusions when planning for such a possibility. They don’t think through the process their family survivors would need to go through, to move forward from such a tragic loss. It takes time, lots of time. Lots of crying. Lots of family togetherness, hugs, supporting one another. People need to heal. Healing won’t erase the sorrow; just make it manageable.

Kids can’t afford to lose Dad, too

But if Dad has to work his 40 or 50 hours a week, then he will really not have the time to be there for his kids. If he has to scramble to get the household chores done, he will be too busy to be with them. Even if he has the money to hire a nanny or full-time housekeeper, these folks will be poor substitutes for Mom. His kids will need him more than ever, and he really should make himself available as much as humanly possible. For their sake. They will have already lost one parent to an untimely death; why should they lose their only other parent to the job?

For this reason, I believe stay-at home-Moms need tons of life insurance. With a sufficient amount of coverage in place, Dad could afford to work less and stay home more. He could take the time needed to lead his family through this tremendously difficult transition, into the next stage of their lives.

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Three Reasons to Have Life Insurance on Your Children

30717926215_754aaee5b0Nobody likes to think about insuring kids, but you know what? There are really good reasons to do so. Here are three:

Huge cost savings

We all know that the price of a new policy goes up with age. If a 20-year old and a 40-year old were each to buy a new policy, the 40-year old would of course pay more. (For sure, once their policy was purchased, the premium would remain guaranteed for whatever period they chose.)

You can see how low the premium would be on a one-year-old, or a five-year-old! Can you imagine how much money could have been saved if $1 million had been placed on your life when you were five years old, instead of having to buy it when you were 25 or 35? Even if you factor in paying the premiums all throughout your childhood, odds are great that your total net outlay would still be lower than if you buy a policy at a higher rate as an adult.

Significant cash accumulation

Some life insurance policies are designed to accumulate a lot of cash. They need time to do this. (And you need to leave the cash alone – no picking at it for odd cash needs.) Once you factor in the favorable tax treatment, over the span of decades a huge amount of cash can grow.

Policies on children are ideal for this scenario. The whole strategy calls for keeping the policy in force, and leaving it alone, for a period well into adulthood. With the right product from the right company, enough cash can grow to make good things happen: buy a house, start a business, supplement retirement.

Insuring insurability

God willing, every one of our children grows up healthy and strong, and lives a good long life. But things happen. Some families predispose their kids to certain genetic conditions, such as diabetes or breast cancer. Sometimes children get sick as adults, such as with adult onset diabetes, and any number of other ailments. Sometimes they adopt higher-risk lifestyles: maybe they take on scuba diving or rock climbing as a hobby, or get a corporate job that requires travel to remote places across the globe.

In all these situations, the cost of insuring them could be higher than usual. It might even be so high that they would have to settle for insufficient coverage purely for budgetary reasons. Or they may not even qualify at all, unfortunately. But had their parents the foresight to put a life insurance policy on them when they were young, then they would enter adulthood already with coverage in force. They’d be way ahead of the game.

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

The Seven Don’ts of Buying Life Insurance

LifeInsurance2Believe it or not, buying life insurance can be a most satisfying experience. Like anything else, you just need to know what you’re doing. A lot of it comes down to avoiding the pitfalls that give many people frustration and aggravation.

Here are the Seven Don’ts of Buying Life Insurance that I have identified in my 25 years of working with consumers. Steer clear of them, and I guarantee you will be quite happy with your purchase.

1. Don’t kid yourself about the risks involved.

Sure, you are healthy. Sure, you take care yourself. Sure, you are a very safe climber or diver. Sure, the problems with alcohol/drugs/finances/the law are all behind you.

But here’s the thing: in the final analysis, nobody really knows when his final day on this earth will come. It could come at any time, and in any way. There are a multitude of threats beyond our control: undetected medical conditions, such as aneurysms. Drunk drivers. Freak accidents. Household fires. Car crashes. Street violence. Terrorism.

You and I can certainly take care of ourselves and live a good life, to tilt the odds in our favor. These efforts can help keep the cost of our life insurance down. But don’t think that a lower premium guarantees longer life longevity. If you are indeed committed to securing the financial future of those who have become financially dependent on you – your family, your business, and your favorite charities – then you have to admit that their future without you could very well start tomorrow.

So buy the life insurance now.

2. Don’t treat insurance like an investment – or a form of gambling.

People tend to lump all financial products together. Insurance, annuities, investments, etc., seem all too similar. This is especially true when life insurance products build cash value and provide a benefit while the insured is still alive.

But life insurance is not an investment. Investments are for you while you are alive. The longer you live, the more value that investment can attain. Life insurance is for your financial dependents when you die. The sooner you die, the more bang for your premium buck these beneficiaries receive.

It makes no sense to say, “Well, I can take the same premium amount and invest it. With good returns I should be able to self-insure at some point in the near future.” That may be very nice for you, but it will do your beneficiaries absolutely no good if you die sooner than you hope. Besides which, what if you get hurt, or sick, or lose your job, or the market crashes? Your plan to self-insure may fall short, and so your dependents may end up with absolutely no security at all. That is called gambling with their financial future, not insuring it.

3. Don’t compare your quotes to somebody else’s.

Life insurance is probably the most comprehensively underwritten product in the financial marketplace. Many diverse factors are assessed for their impact on your mortality: age. Gender. Current health. Medical history. Family medical history. Lifestyle. Hobbies. Job. Smoking. Alcohol and drug use. Financial record. Criminal record. Driving record. Foreign travel.

Insurance actuaries have compiled a gigantic amount of mortality statistics to help them set reasonable rates. Trends emerge that prove to be consistently true: women typically live longer than men, so they pay less. Smokers typically die sooner than non-smokers, so they pay more. You can have two people of the same gender, same exact date of birth, and same everything else, but if one has high blood pressure, and the other one doesn’t, then their rates for life insurance could be different. It goes without saying that if the face amounts and guarantee periods of their policies are different, the rates will be different as well.

Also remember that you may not know every factor that contributed to somebody else’s premium. People disclose personal information when they apply for a policy. Many times, their spouse, children, and business partner don’t know the whole story. This information is kept confidential by the professionals involved, of course. But friends and family are often not in a position to really know how somebody else qualified for the rates they were given.

One other point: let’s suppose that you have been assessed an extra premium because of a higher risk. Maybe it’s a medical condition, or an adventurous hobby. Is it worthwhile knowing what the rate would be for somebody who didn’t have that extra risk? Could be – but only if that gives you something to shoot for by improving your health, or dropping the hobby. For now, you have to bite the bullet and pay extra until you qualify for something lower.

4. Don’t let your doctor play insurance man.

Doctors are supposed to be in the business of healing, of diagnosing and treating medical conditions. A good doctor upholds the ethic of “do no harm,” and tries his or her best to abide by that. If a mistake is unfortunately made, or things just turn for the worse, they should do their darndest to help the patient recover.

Either way, they get paid. That is the stark truth. Hopefully, you as the patient live a long, healthy life; but if tragically you do not, the doctor bills your family anyway – and expects prompt payment.

The life insurance underwriter, on the other hand, often makes a much more critical assessment of your mortality and possible life longevity. The reason is very simple: he has to put his money where his mouth is. He has one shot – the time of your application – to determine what risk you represent to his company. Based on his assessment, his company will be liable for hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars to your beneficiary. And that amount would have to be paid even after only one monthly premium was submitted, if tragically that is when a claim is filed. Quite a deal.

Frankly, I have found many times when the mortality assessment of an underwriter has more credibility than the doctor’s prognosis. It is simply the business of the underwriter to be an expert in this matter. They don’t pretend to be doctors and don’t give medical advice. Physicians should show the same professional courtesy. They shouldn’t pretend to be underwriters, and so shouldn’t venture their opinion on whether or not their patients could qualify for coverage.

5. Don’t second-guess your advisor.

You hire professionals to do things you don’t know how to do. They are experts in their field. You are not an expert in their field. That is why you hire accountants to do your taxes; lawyers to defend you in court; and doctors to treat your illnesses.

Life insurance brokers are hired to get you the best value for your premium dollar. Our job is to get to the lowest cost, the most benefit, or the longest guarantee. You don’t pay us out of your pocket, but your premium includes our compensation.

Let us do our job. We make an upfront investment in you as our client. We don’t get paid until you are satisfied. We have a huge incentive to make sure you are happy now, and stay happy throughout the duration of your coverage. We don’t want to give you restless nights, worrying that you have the wrong policy. If you have selected the right professional – an independent, life insurance specialist, who prequalifies you before you submit a formal application – then you are in good hands.

6. Don’t expect the perfect product.

A life insurance policy is comprised of three main factors: face amount, premium, and guarantee period. In an ideal world, we would all buy all the coverage we would ever need, for as long as we would ever need it, and at a guaranteed rate. It would make sense to keep it in force for our entire life, so we can be sure a claim will be filed and the benefit paid.

Many times, though, we cannot do that. There are often budgetary constraints. And, we don’t always know how much insurance we will need in the long term. So what do we do? As with any case like this – facing multiple considerations – we set priorities.

There is no doubt that the number one priority is face amount. Make sure you have enough coverage in force today. This is simply because, as we said above, you simply do not know when a claim will have to be paid. Too often, people try to get a “good deal,” and skimp on the face amount in favor of a long-term guarantee. But if their family or business tragically loses them sooner rather than later, the beneficiary will have been short-changed. They would rather have the extra benefit than the longer guarantee. That’s why I tell clients that if your budget is forcing you to choose between $2 million of 10-year term insurance, and $1 million of 20-year term, for example, you take the product with a higher face amount and the shorter guarantee period.

It is smart business sense to have a budget for any purchase. With such a constraint, it is often hard to get maximum coverage with the longest guarantee period. If you find yourself with this dilemma, then first look to alternative premium funding sources. You might be able to leverage, liquidate, reallocate, refinance, or use any of a number of other techniques to free up funds. If this is not possible, then shorten the guarantee period. Revise your financial planning to secure funds in the near future for additional coverage. There is nothing wrong with buying life insurance in stages – as long as you make sure you remain eligible for coverage.

7. Don’t put the investment cart before the insurance horse.

How do people get rich? We work hard. Earn. Borrow. Invest. Leverage. Provide greater value to bigger payers.

How do we stay rich? Insurance. Insurance prevents catastrophes from wiping out your riches. You could have a huge amount of savings and investments, but any number of man-made or natural disasters could clean them out. Even if you could afford to sustain the loss, why pay dollar for dollar to do so? Every dollar of life insurance benefit costs pennies. It’s much smarter to let an insurance company take on the risk.

So, it makes sense to have a strong insurance portfolio in place to serve as the foundation of your financial portfolio. Now the question is this: there are many types of insurance policies. Which is the most important?

That’s an easy question. Do you know why? Because the type of insurance that is the top priority should be the one that protects you against the most likely risk. And that is life insurance. You can buy medical insurance, but you may never get hurt or sick. You can buy disability insurance, but you may never lose your ability to work. You can buy professional liability insurance, but you may never get sued. You can buy business liability insurance, but you may never sustain workplace damage. You can buy auto insurance, but you may never have an accident. And on and on. But you know with 100% certainty that you will die, and that therefore a claim will be filed on your life insurance policy. As long as you keep it in force. This is why you need to buy insurance before you invest your money, and why buying life insurance is a top priority.

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Yes, the rich DO pay their fair share.

797499450_8d782a99cdI spend a lot of time helping “rich” people protect what is valuable to them. Do you know what many of them hold dear? The welfare and prosperity of their families. The continued success of their businesses. Their key executives. Their rank-and-file employees. The numerous charities and good causes they support. Life insurance gets the job done quickly and efficiently in every one of these cases. And you know what? You don’t have to be rich for these things to be valuable to you. Even a poor man wants his family to have the best of everything.

All too often “rich people” are targeted by politicians as the bad guys. They claim that society will be “better” once everyone else has some of what these guys have. They pledge to use the the power of their administration to make these “exploitative villains” pay their “fair share.”

No thanks.

UCLA Professor of Economics Leo Ohanian has a short and sweet presentation proving that the rich already pay their fair share. And more. It is showcased on Prager University, and runs under five minutes.

Check it out. Here are some highlights to get you started:

There are not so many “rich” people out there.

Even the top 5% of income earners don’t make the big money that everybody talks about, let alone the top 10%.

The top 1% has paid their dues.

The vast majority of these people did not get a free lunch. They took on enormous risk, spent many years working hard, and paid enormous debt to get to where they are. No reason to begrudge them what they have.

The rich people already pay more than their fair share.

The people that make most of the income already pay most of the taxes – and disproportionately so. If you really wanted the tax system to be more fair, you would tax them less and make a lower wage earners pay more, at least in terms of percentage of income.

High tax rates stifle economic growth.

If you tax rich people too much, they will invest less. Start fewer businesses. Reduce the size of their existing businesses. And that means cutting jobs. The rich would still be OK. But who do you think would suffer?

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Have You Been Able to Face Your Own Death?

Dutch Harbor/Unalaska, Alaska

Life insurance is one creepy product. It pays out when you die.

Nobody likes to think about that. Nobody especially likes to think about the financial distress their death may cause their family or business.

People who have a serious medical condition often have an ultra-hard time thinking about death. It is hard enough to deal with the stress, the strain, the symptoms, the exams, and the extra cost of tests and treatments. Who wants to think about this all going to a lost cause and failing to prevent an early demise?

To make matters worse, physicians often downplay the seriousness of the prognosis. What physician really wants to give a dismal report? It is much easier to be overly optimistic and leave your patient believing in the virtual impossible.

The fact of the matter is that serious medical conditions unfortunately can make death more likely. It can come much sooner then the 120-year lifespan we all would like to have :(. Not only that: even for people in perfect health, death can be right around the corner. Undetected medical conditions, such as aneurysms. Drunk drivers. Freak accidents. Household fires. Car crashes. Street violence. Terrorism. There is so much that can happen to us..

How can people wake up and face their mortality right in the eye? How can people face the fact that today could be their final day on this earth? How can people accept the fact that they may have higher-risk factors that make their mortality a higher probability than those who do not have those factors?

Have you done this? Have you been able to accept that death is part of life? Please tell me how you have done it. Let me know the thought train you followed. Also please share how it has helped you make the tough but important decisions in your life – such as buying life insurance.

I am sure many people will be inspired by your brave tale. Thank you.

Please feel free to comment, or to contact me directly with a specific question. If you need a quote now, or a second opinion on a quote you have received, the best thing to do is to call me toll-free at (866) 633-1818. Or email me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I also encourage you to download my free Life Insurance Guide – see the above tab. Many people have found it to be extremely educational.

 

Want to learn more?
Read my free guide, How To Get Great Life Insurance Rates and learn how you can get life insurance companies to compete for your business, at no risk or extra cost.

Who Else Caused the GSK Scandal?

greedThe Guardian reports that pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline has admitted to horrific corporate misconduct:

The pharmaceutical group GlaxoSmithKline has been fined $3bn (£1.9bn) after admitting bribing doctors and encouraging the prescription of unsuitable antidepressants to children. Glaxo is also expected to admit failing to report safety problems with the diabetes drug Avandia in a district court in Boston on Thursday.

I am not at all reluctant to call a spade a spade, and rage against corporate greed when it takes place. I hope that the stockholders of this company share that rage, and take their investment dollars elsewhere until when and if this firm makes complete amends. At the same time, I understand that corporate misconduct does not take place in a vacuum. Corporate personnel, sales people, marketing affiliates, and centers of influence all have a hand in the misdeed.

I think the Guardian article highlights how all these parties voluntarily helped GSK perpetrate this fraud. Here are some examples I see:

Sales reps

The company encouraged sales reps in the US to mis-sell three drugs to doctors and lavished hospitality and kickbacks on those who agreed to write extra prescriptions, including trips to resorts in Bermuda, Jamaica and California.

Nobody forces sales people to mis-sell anything. If your company trains you to be unethical, you should find another job. Sales people don’t have to be dishonest to be successful.

Physician consultants

GSK also paid for articles on its drugs to appear in medical journals and “independent” doctors were hired by the company to promote the treatments, according to court documents.

Nobody forces doctors to relinquish their independence and become paid promoters for companies. If they want to become known as independent advisers, they can conduct independent studies.

Medical publishers

GSK also published an article in a medical journal that mis-stated the drug’s safety for children, despite the journal asking several times to change the wording.

Nobody forces medical publishers to publish misleading material. If they want to avoid endangering their readership, they can find another author.

Public relations personnel

Despite knowing that three trials had failed to prove its effectiveness on children, Glaxo published a report entitled “Positioning Paxil in the adolescent depression market – getting a headstart”.

Nobody forced the PR personnel for this company to promote lies. For sure, it is tough to be a whistleblower, but you have to take a stand when the health of consumers – especially children – is at stake.

Media personalities

The prosecution said the company paid $275,000 to Dr Drew Pinsky, who hosted a popular radio show, to promote the drug on his programme, in particular for unapproved uses – GSK claimed it could treat weight gain, sexual dysfunction, ADHD and bulimia. Pinsky, who had not declared his GSK income to listeners, said Wellbutrin could give women 60 orgasms a night. A study of 25 people using the drug for eight weeks was pushed by a PR firm hired by GSK, generating headlines including “Bigger than Viagra? It sounds too good to be true: a drug to help you stop smoking, stay happy and lose weight” and “Now That is a Wonder Drug”.

Nobody forced this guy to abuse his credibility. He certainly could have refused to promote any advertiser he chose.

And the physicians

The investigation also found that sales representatives set up “Operation Hustle” to promote the drug to doctors, including trips to Jamaica, Bermuda and one talk coinciding with the annual Boston Tall Ships flotilla. Speakers were paid up to $2,500 for a one-hour presentation – up to three times a day – earning far more than they did working in their surgeries.

Nobody forced these doctors to jump on the drug bandwagon. They let themselves be bought.

A lot of blame to go around

So, this sad tale is about more than corporate greed. It is also about how people both inside and outside the company let that greed run their lives. And, tragically for many, ruin their lives.

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