Spiritual Business Practices: The Power of Saying “Thank You”

If you do a quick search online for “secrets to success,” you’ll end up with a massive list of tips with everything from having vision to taking risks. But in my previous article on spiritual business practices, we learned from success guru Steve Siebold that “Faith in God, a higher power, or an infinite intelligence is…a trait of many champions.” (89) (1)

That’s all well and good, but how exactly does one tap into that higher power or infinite intelligence? How does that spiritual connection play out practically in everyday business practice?

Live With Gratitude

Fortunately, Siebold’s answer is simple: it’s all about having an attitude of gratitude. Here’s what he says about this:

“Champions know the ultimate creative force is located somewhere beyond our everyday consciousness, and they must tap the source to generate their best ideas. The secular sometimes refer to this source as the unconscious mind. The spiritual often call it God. Whatever label their belief warrants, few deny the power of the source, whatever its point of origin. Champions know the fastest way to connect to the source is through gratitude. Thoughts and feelings of gratitude seem to elevate the performer’s consciousness to a higher plane than is accessible through any other means. Professional writers call it being connected. Athletes call it being in the zone. Psychologists refer to it as a state of flow. No matter what name you assign it, the experience is the same…Gratitude is their mindset of choice when they need to awaken the giant and tap their genius.” (37-38) (2)

In my religion, Judaism, we start our day by saying thank you to God for restoring our soul and entrusting us with it for another day. If said earnestly, this expression can be extremely enlightening. It makes you realize a number of important truths:

  • We need our soul/spiritual resources to do our day’s work
  • These resources are given to us by the Creator
  • They are “on loan” and should not be taken for granted

In light of this insight, I think any one of us would be led to feel appreciative and say thank you, either to God Himself or at least in general. Most certainly, we would say thank you to anybody and everybody who helps us accomplish what we do throughout our day. Just as we can’t take what God gives us for granted, we can’t take what anybody else gives us for granted either.

The Power Of Thankfulness

Robert Emmons, considered to be the world’s leading scientific expert on gratitude, found that living a life of gratitude improves mental, physical, and relational health to the point of having higher energy levels, less stress and depression, and heightened spirituality. (3) Finding ways to integrate gratitude throughout your business day can make a world of difference in your life and the lives of others.

I like to thank my employees for putting in a hard day’s work. I take the time to thank my prospects for giving me the opportunity to give them a life insurance quote. I say thank you to my vendors for excellent work in prequalification and underwriting. I like to thank my clients for giving me their business and for going out of their way to spread the word about my services.

And once you start saying thank you, your eyes are opened to everything around you that deserves your gratitude. It starts a chain reaction, and my day often involves one positive and productive interaction after another. Sure, there are ups and downs, but these expressions of gratitude keep me on track and connected. It’s a good way of “getting into the flow” in a business sense.

Thankfulness and Business

As you can imagine, there are also business benefits to saying thank you. Not only do I get a stronger work ethic out of my employees, but I also receive great service from my vendors and more opportunities to quote life insurance. Saying a simple thank you has led to more sales and referrals from my clients. It all boils down to this: if you take things for granted, they diminish pretty quickly, but if you’re grateful for them, then they multiply.

Do you live a life of gratitude? Have you reaped the rewards of this spiritual practice? Do you need some practical guidance on how to start living with thankfulness?  I’d love to hear your stories and answer your questions. Contact 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. Steven is a contributor to Investopedia, view his profile here.

_______

(1) Siebold, Steve. 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class. 3rd ed. London House Press, 2010.

(2) Siebold, Steve. 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class. 3rd ed. London House Press, 2010.

(3) https://www.huffingtonpost.com/randy-kamen-gredinger/the-transformative-power-_2_b_6982152.html

 

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.

Taking a Knee – for the Free Market

The hot controversy over NFL players taking a knee during the national anthem, has an angle that has been under- played, but which is nonetheless crucial. It deals with the corporate responsibility – or lack thereof – of the league. Consider the following:

The starting salary for an NFL player is almost $500,000 per year. Yet, a significant majority of them end up in bankruptcy once their career is over. Clearly, they are lacking a basic financial education.

Not only that: each year, dozens of players are arrested for crimes ranging from DUI, to domestic violence, to rape, to murder. Clearly, they need moral training and guidance.

In addition, many of these players are from black communities. The problems in these areas are well publicized: fatherless homes; drugs; gangs; families living in poverty. Clearly, the family structure in their communities needs to be rebuilt.

Unfortunately, none of this seems to be clear to these athletes. At least, these ills seem undeserving of public attention. Instead, the players have chosen to focus the national spotlight on racial issues. This is tragic, and a huge misuse of mass media. The fact of the matter is that you could cure every cop in the country of racial bigotry tomorrow, and none of the above problems would go away. Sure, racism should be protested, but in this case, it’s being protested by people who beat their wives, throw their money away, and live in cities with families that are falling apart. Bashing America is a convenient way to cover up their problems that have nothing to do with race, and which they have the responsibility to solve on their own.

But hey – we shouldn’t be surprised that they are blaming the other guy. They work for one of the most exploitative employers in the country. The NFL has a long practice of getting the other guy to do things for them, by whatever means possible. It gets tax breaks not offered to other companies; sweetheart deals with billions of taxpayer dollars to subsidize stadium construction; and a monopoly in the pro football marketplace, with the help of crooked politicians.

I don’t expect the NFL to take care of its players from cradle to grave; it is, after all, a business. But at the same time, it’s morally irresponsible to let so many of its employees crash and burn under its watch. The situation is strikingly similar to that old movie “Rollerball,” which portrayed athletes working for a big entertainment corporation as pure cannon fodder.

And so while the players are drawing national attention to allegations of racism in America, the plundering and abuse of the league avoids the spotlight. Fortunately, we have started to hear of congressional inquiries into NFL exploitation, and I hope fan boycotts of the games increase, so these hearings can pick up steam.

For me, the best outcome of this knee-taking would be the national realization that the corrupt NFL needs to be overhauled, so that more teams and leagues – and more socially-responsible teams and leagues – could enter the pro football marketplace. That way, players could have more options for employment, and choose a company that would take better care of them. They would then have less to complain about.

 

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.

Does Your Life Insurance Need Special Handling? Answers to the Most Commonly Asked Questions

If you have ever purchased a life insurance policy or even just researched the requirements to start the process, you probably had many questions along the way. Obtaining life insurance can be a difficult endeavor with numerous challenges that arise when going through prequalification and underwriting, which we discussed in Parts One and Two of this series. Let’s take a look at some of the most common questions asked by people who want to buy life insurance.

Life Insurance Q&A

These questions address the particular concerns of those who are considered high-risk or who have needs that require special handling.

1. Do You Represent A Company That Takes Higher-Risk People?

There is no one company that specializes in “higher-risk” candidates. Personally, I represent dozens of top-rated carriers, such as American General, John Hancock, MetLife, Prudential, and others.  Each one of these companies specializes in underwriting certain types of risk. My job is to know which companies like which risk and build strong connections with them so your application has the highest chance of success.

2. How Will You Know Which Company Is Right For Me?

I will take you through prequalification. This means I will obtain thorough and accurate quote information through personal interviews as well as any necessary medical record documents. Every underwriting risk you pose will be identified so we are aware of potential challenges at the outset of the process.

My prequalification team, headed by my general agent, will then identify the carrier or carriers that would be most competitive for you. We will then report back to you with a summary of rates the market has to offer, along with our recommendation of the carrier with whom you should apply.

3. Will I Then Be “Pre-Approved” For Coverage?

No. There is no such thing as pre-approval in life insurance underwriting. You receive official

approval only after you submit a formal application and go through underwriting. What prequalification does offer is a quoted rate of which I am confident you will be approved. You can submit a formal application confident of the outcome.

4. Can You Guarantee You Will Find A Company For Me?

There are few things in life that are guaranteed, and unfortunately, some people are simply not insurable. Whether it’s severe organ failure, a hard drug habit, or other extreme medical, lifestyle, legal or financial risk factors, there are certain risks insurance companies will not be willing to take. But these cases are few and far between. The vast majority of people are eligible for coverage immediately.

5. Will I Have To Pay A High Premium Because I Am Considered “Higher-Risk?”

Not necessarily. The key, as I mentioned above, is finding a carrier with a high degree of comfort in underwriting the particular risk you represent. Because of their level of expertise, they may not consider you a very high risk at all. Often, people get charged exorbitant rates because they apply with a company that does not specialize in their risk. Once you choose the right company for you, the underwriting becomes much more intuitive.

Knowledge Is Power

My hope is that you feel much more informed and at ease with what is involved when acquiring life insurance. In our next installment of “Does Your Life Insurance Need Special Handling?” we will continue examining questions about the life insurance marketplace. In the meantime, if you have a specific question about your situation or would like more insight about one of the topics mentioned above, please do not hesitate to contact me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com and download our free guide to educate yourself further.

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. Steven is a contributor to Investopedia, view his profile here.

 

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.

Spiritual Business Practices: The Connection to Faith

When you hear the word, “spiritual,” what comes to mind? The concept of spirituality has taken on a wide variety of meanings, ranging from new age and esoteric to traditional religion to Eastern philosophy. The common theme running through all these examples is that of the human soul, something beyond the material and physical world we live in, and certainly something above the realm of money and finance, right?

Can Business and Spirituality Work Together?

But money and finance do not need to run counter to spirituality. At the very least, they don’t in my life. I have always tried to take a higher approach to business, focusing not just on the big sales, commissions, or the huge roster of clients. I want to balance the practical with doing good. When you die, no one will remember all your awards and certifications. Their eulogies will attest to the kind of person you were, the deeds you performed, and how your life impacted others.

This new series of articles will examine how spiritual growth can take place while you conduct business. We will discuss the spiritual practices I employ and am still in the process of researching to make my business activity a way of adding value to others and the world.

The Goal Of Spiritual Living

Everyone has their own objectives when pursuing spiritual practices. Some want to achieve a certain state of mind, of experiencing enlightenment or euphoria. Others want to harness specific “powers” or “energies.” These may be well and good, but I see these pursuits as means to an end, not an end in and of themselves. What good is it to become more evolved if the world doesn’t become a better place as a result?

Spirituality has been closely linked to success in life and world-class performance. In his book, 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class, success guru Steve Siebold points out that champions have tremendous faith:

“Faith in God, a higher power, or an infinite intelligence is … a trait of many champions. There are atheists who are tremendous performers, yet as a rule, there seems to be a connection between professional performers and the spiritual side of life. Many pros draw a tremendous energy and power from a deep faith in a greater force. In recent years, many who were turned off by fear-based organized religions in their childhood have turned to new-thought churches and centers…Whatever the source of their spiritual faith, world-class performers do tend to hold strong spiritual convictions.” (1) (89)

I firmly believe that my spiritual convictions raise my work to a higher level of excellence. As we enter this series, I am very excited to explore the connection between the spiritual and the material, in the world of business and particularly in the selling of life insurance. Have you seen this philosophy in action in your life or in those around you? Share your thoughts with me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com. I hope you join me on this journey.

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. Steven is a contributor to Investopedia, view his profile here.

_____

(1) Siebold, Steve. 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class. 3rd ed. London House Press, 2010.

 

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.

How does borrowing against a persons life insurance policy work if you are the beneficiary?

Only the owner has the rights to the cash in the policy. If you are not the owner of her policy, then you will have no access. I am sure… Read More

 

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.

How do you claim an insurance policy if both beneficiaries are deceased?

It’s a good question. I think the insurance company is going to want to pay the money to her estate. This means that they will wait to hear from the… Read More

 

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.

How do I go about locating a lost life insurance policy?

The national Association of Insurance Commissioners provides a service to help people who think they are beneficiaries of an insurance policy locate the carrier. They ask that you follow the… Read More

 

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.

How do you add funds to your life insurance policy?

It is possible to add funds to a life insurance policy. The following factors have to be in place: It must be permanent insurance. Term insurance doesn’t accept cash deposits…. Read More

 

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.

Are You Affected by the Equifax Data Breach? Here’s What to Do

If you have a credit report (and most of us do), there’s a good chance that you were one of the estimated 143 million Americans affected by the recent Equifax Data Breach. If you have been affected, it’s important to be proactive to protect your credit now.

What Happened?

According to the Federal Trade Commission, the breach lasted from mid-May through July. Criminals were able to access people’s names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, credit card numbers, and even driver’s license numbers. This means that hackers may be able to open up new credit card accounts with your information or make purchases on your existing credit accounts without your knowledge.

Were You Affected?

To see if you were affected by the Equifax breach, you can find out here. Enter your last name and the last six digits of your Social Security number. Even the last digits of your Social Security number are sensitive information, so make sure you’re on a secure computer. The site will tell you if you’ve been affected by this breach.

If You Were Not Affected

Whether or not your information was exposed, U.S. consumers can get a year of free credit monitoring and other services from Equifax. You can enroll to take advantage of the free services here.

If You Were Affected

If your data was included in the breach, you will need to take steps now to protect your credit. Here’s what I recommend:

  • Check your credit reports from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion for free by visiting com. Accounts or activity that you don’t recognize could indicate identity theft. Visit IdentityTheft.gov to find out what to do.
  • Consider placing a credit freeze on your information for one year. A credit freeze makes it harder for someone to open a new account in your name. While a credit freeze won’t prevent a thief from making charges to your existing accounts, it will help prevent new accounts from being opened.
  • Monitor your existing credit card and bank accounts closely for charges you don’t recognize.
  • Consider placing a fraud alert on your files. A fraud alert warns creditors that you may be an identity theft victim and that they should verify that anyone seeking credit in your name really is you.
  • File your taxes early. As soon as you have the tax information you need, file your taxes before a scammer can. Tax identity theft happens when someone uses your Social Security number to get a tax refund. Be sure to review and respond right away to letters from the IRS.

Moving Forward

It’s always a good idea to monitor your credit and use identity theft insurance, which will pay to repair your credit if your identity is stolen. To monitor your credit on an ongoing basis, consider using a service like Credit Karma, where you can set up proactive alerts to warn you if there’s a big change on one of your credit reports.

Identity theft insurance provides resources if your identity is stolen. One provider, Zander Insurance Group charges $75 per year and includes:

  • $1 Million Stolen Funds Protection
  • $1 Million in Reimbursement Protection
  • Certified ID Theft Specialists 24/7/365
  • Data Breach Notifications & Credit Report Reminders

As always, be mindful of the charges on your credit card and bank accounts. I recommend reviewing all of your charges at least once a month and disputing any charges you do not recognize. Unfortunately, data breaches are becoming more and more common, so it pays to be proactive about protecting your credit score.

 

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.

Does Your Life Insurance Application Need Special Handling? Challenges Beyond Mortality Assessment

In Part One of our Special Handling series, we focused on the key roles prequalification and underwriting play in helping people buy the policy that best meets their needs. Now we turn our attention to additional eligibility requirements and the challenges beyond the mortality assessment that could affect your eligibility for life insurance coverage.

Hurdles On The Path Of Underwriting

While mortality risk is a key factor in determining your insurability, it’s not the only obstacle that can prevent you from purchasing a life insurance policy or obtaining an affordable price for your coverage.

What Does Underwriting Involve?

Underwriting is the process by which insurance companies figure out how risky you are to insure and how likely your beneficiaries will collect the death benefit. Underwriting is probably the most comprehensive vetting process required for the purchase of any financial product. In order to make this decision properly, companies use various methods of investigating the risks you pose, such as:

  • Written life insurance application
  • Phone interview
  • Medical record review
  • Medical exam
  • Financial credit survey
  • Motor vehicle report
  • Insurance application history
  • Prescription medication history

Underwriting Complications

With that much information on the table, it’s easy to see how complications can arise. Here are some examples of things that can cause problems in underwriting:

  • If English is your second language, can the phone interview be conducted in your primary language?
  • What happens if your medical records are missing or misleading?
  • How can you be effectively underwritten if you haven’t seen a doctor in years?
  • How will you undergo the medical exam if you have a fear of needles?
  • Perhaps your history of insurance applications shows a number of declinations and ratings. What has to be done to prevent these from being held against you?
  • Maybe you’ll be in the state or country of the sale for a short amount of time. How can your itinerary be accommodated?

Business Concerns

As if all of the above obstacles were not enough, still other challenges relate to the administrative or business end of your purchase. Both your ability to pay and the financial justification of the face amount of the policy based on your income and assets are valid business concerns.

Additionally, you may want atypical designations for your owner and beneficiary that challenge the premise of insurable interest. Maybe you want to insure somebody without their knowledge, in a case of exceptional hardship. Or, you intend to sell your policy to a third-party

once it is in effect.

All of these factors require special handling. This is why being “high risk” is only part of the challenge. Someone may pose a comparatively low mortality risk but still have trouble getting a policy due to special needs in underwriting or business qualification.

Special Needs In Insurance Purchases

This is why I prefer the term “special needs” for folks that might have trouble buying a policy.

Here is a summary of the types of cases that would require special handling:

  • Addictions: Recreational drugs, prescription drugs, gambling, alcohol, sex
  • Application history: Declined or rated on prior applications
  • Citizenship/residency: Non-U.S. citizen, temporary U.S. resident, foreign resident with business or financial ties in the U.S., U.S. citizen living or traveling abroad
  • Criminal record: Charges, convictions, time served, probation
  • Face amount: Extraordinarily high face amount, multiple policies, multiple carriers
  • Financial record: Bankruptcies, liens.
  • Health issues: Everything from the neurological to the psychological, from immune system deficiencies to build and weight
  • Hobbies: Mountain climbing, scuba diving, parachuting, extreme sports, and other adventurous pursuits
  • Medical exam issues: Aversion to needles, difficulty drawing blood
  • Medical records issues: No current records available, inconsistencies and inaccuracies in medical records
  • Motor vehicle record: Excessive points, license suspensions, DWI history
  • Occupation: Higher-risk job duties, environment, workplace.
  • Owner/beneficiary designations: Charitable giving, corporate-owned, trust-owned, third-party involvement
  • Travel: Job-related, leisure, missionary work

Find Your Advocate

If you find yourself discouraged after reading through all the potential challenges that could arise in your pursuit of purchasing life insurance, don’t be. The “special needs” that might be present require special handling by a life insurance expert who will go to bat for you, walking you through the process and finding ways to deal with the hurdles as they arise. If you want to discuss your unique situation, contact me at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com and we will work together to find solutions.

Do you want more information on this topic? In the next four installments of this series, we will present the twenty most frequently asked questions about the purchase of life insurance, including the concerns of those who are considered higher-risk or who have other needs that require special handling.

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. Steven is a contributor to Investopedia, view his profile here.

 

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.

How should we list beneficiaries for IRA and life insurance given 4 people listed in our trust?

The key question for me regarding your life insurance is this: what is the amount of the death benefit? Is it merely $20,000 or so – the amount you would… Read More

 

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.

Can an insurance company deny a life insurance payout?

I can think of three things going on here. With all three, the best way to find out is to get a claims representative from the carrier on the phone… Read More

 

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.

Do Trump’s words/speeches affect the markets?

It’s important to recognize that you are referring to media forecasts about what the markets will do – not what the markets are actually doing. Those “reporters” who are warning… Read More

 

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.

Should an 18 year old with their first job get a debit or credit card?

Get yourself a debit card so that you spend only money that you have. If you get a credit card, you might be tempted to spend money that you don’t… Read More

 

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.

Can the proceeds from a 1035 exchange be used to pay or reduce the premium on a new universal life policy?

I don’t see why the 1035 money can’t be used to pay back-premiums. I mean, you could conceivably use cash from a prior policy to completely fund a new one,… Read More

 

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 should I do with a whole life insurance policy given to me by my parents?

Here are a few things I think you need to know about this situation: Term riders are used in whole life policies to keep the premium down. But, using them… Read More

 

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 books should an aspiring financial advisor read?

I recommend “177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class” by Steven Siebold. I am sure that you are now asking why I didn’t recommend a book that deals in… Read More

 

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 some tips to pay less for long-term care coverage?

I’m going to give you an out-of-the-box alternative: don’t buy any insurance for long-term care expenses. Since you say you are in good health, do everything you can to stay… Read More

 

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.

Does Your Life Insurance Application Need Special Handling? The Key Role Played by Prequalification and Underwriting

Life insurance is a product that almost all of us need. Regardless of whether we purchase policies for the benefit of our family, business, or favorite charity, life insurance can be difficult to acquire. Even those of us in perfect health can run into roadblocks during this process due to the complexity of the mortality assessment. Other factors that affect eligibility for coverage include complications in the underwriting process itself, as well as business standards that must be met.

In this new series, I will identify the various trouble spots that you may encounter in your quest to purchase life insurance and walk you through ways to avoid them. This information will help those with special considerations or people who are considered “high risk” navigate the process successfully. In Part One, we will explain how the processes of prequalification and underwriting are the key to helping people buy the policy that best meets their needs and goals.

What Is Your Objective When Buying Life Insurance?

In my experience, consumers typically have one of three objectives when they buy life insurance. They want to:

1. Spend As Little Money As Possible

To meet this objective, many people buy cheap term insurance. They also will buy smaller whole life, universal life, indexed universal life policies, or variable policies “just to have some permanent coverage without spending a lot of money.”

2. Target A Specific Living Or Death Benefit

Here, the product is used to accumulate a specified amount of cash for retirement or some other purpose. It could also be used to maintain a specified survivor benefit for estate or business planning.

3. Get An Offer, Period

People who pose a high underwriting risk due to a medical or lifestyle issue just want to get

an offer. But even if it’s difficult to obtain coverage, they want to make sure the premium or cash potential is still the best the market has to offer.

Prequalification And Underwriting As The Solution

When you think about it, life insurance underwriting is what makes it possible to meet each one of these objectives. To qualify for the lowest premium, you have to get the best rate class. To accumulate a lot of cash inside your policy, or to maintain a certain death benefit over a long period of time, the cost of insuring you has to be relatively low. Otherwise, the premium would not be worth it.

To get a policy when you have diabetes or when you climb mountains, you have to get underwriting that will favorably assess that condition. Once you consider the multitude of factors that are weighed in life insurance underwriting, you can see why it is possible for many people to be considered higher risk. These factors include current health, medical history, family medical history, vocation, hobbies, lifestyle, travel habits, and legal/financial/motor vehicle record.

Prequalification Tells You What Underwriting Is Available

Most people want to confirm the buying price before they make a major purchase, and this is true with life insurance as well. This is where prequalification comes in. Through this process, your underwriting challenges are identified before you go through formal underwriting. Carrier assessments of your risk are obtained so that tentative pricing can be determined. At that point, you can apply for coverage reasonably confident that your application will be approved at the rate quoted and your overall strategy for the product can be realized.

Prequalification is especially important for applicants who pose a higher risk. In this case, underwriting can be more complicated because atypical or abnormal health or lifestyle factors must be considered. It is critical that preliminary rates are solicited from the carriers who specialize in underwriting these types of risks and that the solicitation is made with thorough, accurate, and favorable information. This way your mortality risk can be assessed fairly and the rate quoted can be considered fair and reliable.

How I Can Help

Have you ever felt completely overwhelmed by the thought of purchasing life insurance? Maybe you’ve started the process but gave up when things got complicated. Many people don’t even pursue life insurance because they think their application will be denied. This is where I come in. I am here to help you overcome the obstacles and find a policy that is right for you. Ask me anything at skobrin@stevenkobrin.com.

Stay tuned for our next installment, where we will identify the other challenges you will face when purchasing a policy.

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. Steven is a contributor to Investopedia, view his profile here.

 

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 is a tax-free 1035 Exchange?

Let’s suppose you have a life insurance policy, but find a better deal with another carrier. You want to replace the current policy with a new one. The thing is,… Read More

 

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.