Advisors Blog

What's HOT and What's NOT for 2019!

Published on January 23, 2019

What's Hot...

1. LTC: Creative uses of Asset-Based or Hybrid Plans

Asset-Based LTC plans or “hybrids’’ continue to be one of the biggest growth areas in our industry.  Hybrid refers to plans that mix LTC coverage with death benefit.  These tend to have more liberal underwriting and may offer stronger guarantees.

The other new development in Asset-Based LTC is a move to multi-pay/level pay plans.  Products that were traditionally sold with a single-premium now may have options for 5-10 pays and even 20 and life-time payment plans, making them more affordable.

2. Annuities with LTC and Tax Advantages

At least three carriers now offer annuities with true Long Term Care benefits – these could be a good fit for clients who may have trouble with LTC underwriting or for annuity producers looking for a very quick transaction.  They can also be used to shield the taxable gain of highly appreciated annuities per the provisions of the recent Pension Protection Act.

3. 40-Year Term Policies

Thirty-year term has been on the market for decades, but recently we saw the introduction of 35 and even 40-year level term plans. If the client cannot afford permanent insurance, the ultra-long 35-40 year plans might make sense for some clients with long-term needs.  Also, many GUL products can be run for a 30 to 40 year guarantee period and may offer more flexibility than a corresponding term product.

4. Life Settlements are back and easier than ever!

Our life settlement business increased in the last two years and more high-quality buyers seem to be coming to the marketplace with strong funding sources.  We now have ”simplified offer” programs that bypass the long process of medical-based underwriting.  Full underwriting is still an option for the more significant cases.  Contact us before surrendering any policy on insureds age 70 and up to discuss whether settlements are an option.

5. Lightning-Quick processing with Accelerated Underwriting

More and more of our policies are being issued via online processes that save producers time with tool such as online applications, accelerated underwriting, e-signatures and e-delivery of policies.  Now with some smaller term cases, carriers may be able to approve a policy at the end of a phone interview and issue coverage the very next day.

6. Coming Soon: the NEW Agent Portal

A brand new section of our website called the Agent Portal is coming soon.  Advisors and staff will be able to log-in and take advantage of new tools that will help you submit and track business and even check on commissions, licensing status and more.  The Agent Dashboard will give advisors a quick overview on all their cases and commissions on one easy-to-read screen. 

7. Disability Planning for businesses is a necessity

Your clients have a higher likelihood of being disabled during their working years than dying, and yet most business owners and executives have little or no disability income protection.  Buy/sell arrangements that are funded with life insurance often ignore disability coverage.  We can help arrange review of buy-sell documents to point out uncovered triggering events.  Also multi-life arrangements and simplified issued plans remain strong. We can help facilitate these sales even if you are not a DI expert.

What’s NOT Hot…

1. Paper Applications

The majority of our applications are still old-fashioned paper apps, but that is definitely trending downward.  Instead of spending an hour or more printing and filling out a 30-page paper application, many of our advisors are adopting online and electronic app processes.  Some carriers will let you avoid paper apps altogether by completing a phone interview with the client.  When downloading applications from our website, you will see online options and iGo processes are now available with almost all carriers.

2. No More Exams

More and more carriers are looking for ways to help your client avoid exams for life insurance altogether. Exams can be skipped for many lower risk cases -  especially smaller face amounts, (up to $500,000 or $1,000,000 and younger ages).  Keep in mind these programs are usually at the discretion of the underwriter and therefore designed for the very healthy clients only. Contact us to discuss which accelerated underwriting or simplified issue plans might be available for your next case.

3. Traditional LTC Plans

While traditional LTC product sales have fallen in recent years, they are down but not out. While traditional LTC products are still viable and an appropriate choice for many budget-conscious consumers, their sales continue to decrease year over year and fewer companies even offer the product.

According to NAIC stats, from 2001 to 2015 traditional LTC plans sales dropped from over $1 billion a year to just $257 million in 2015.  And in that period Hybrid plans grew from about $200 million a year to over $3 billion.  Now consumers have a myriad of plan designs and benefits to choose from.

4. Out-of-Date websites and poor social media

By now most of our advisors have transitioned over to our new website – but our old websites such as and – have been operational through this transition period.   Those websites will cease to be available once our new website is completely online.

Don’t underestimate the importance of social media by younger generation. The majority of Millennials are likely to ask their social media connections for recommendations on financial professionals, according to LIMRA latest data – then those advisors are likely to be “checked out” online , so make sure that your online presence is up to date and on-pointe.  67 percent of all consumers say they would not do business with someone who has an out-of-date website.




7 Valuable Tips and Sales Ideas

Introducing a new series of quick sales ideas to spark interest in your clients and centers of influence. Position yourself as a valued advisor and insurance professional by using these tips as conversation starters.


Have You Considered VUL?

If you haven’t considered VUL lately, many of today’s newest products include benefits and features that clients are looking for. With the increased pricing for GUL products coupled with many carriers totally withdrawing from that marketplace, VUL and SVUL have become an even more attractive alternative for you and your clients to consider.


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