I’ve gone and fooled myself again. I’ve been so adamant about the pathetic underwriting from 99.5% of life insurance companies that I sometimes forget that in that one half of once percent of companies that do great things, there are still humans underwriting, humans with biases. They might keep them in check most of the time, but when they are set off they can do serious damage to clients, their families and their futures.

It’s easy enough to overcome a decline that comes from State Farm or the West Pocono Life Insurance Cooperative. They don’t want any risk and they make sure they don’t take any on by declining anything that isn’t squeaky clean and offering high rates for things that good companies allow their best rate for. But when you run into a brick wall bias with an underwriter with one of the best impaired risk underwriting companies in the business, it can be tricky maneuvering.

I’m currently working on a complicated case. On the surface it appeared to be just a case of chronic, but controlled, depression and anxiety with a minor medical issue. And if you dig past all of the junk that went along with that a clear thinking underwriter would find no more than that at the bottom of the heap also. But this case got into the hands of an underwriter who had a bias about that heap and wasn’t willing to look at the whole story or the rest of the story so she declined it. She didn’t want to look at that heap because of her own wounds in the same area of her life, so easier to decline than to admit she couldn’t give it fair hearing and pass it off to someone who could.

Fortunately I was able to get this off the decline list and up to an underwriting director who has promised to give it a fresh look from top to bottom, with a promise to get it to a medical director that understands mood disorders.

This case has really hit close to home for me because the depression started with an absolute out of nowhere left hook to the jaw kind of divorce. I was emotionally torn to pieces. I was heart broken. I had to leave my children with this woman who was cheating on me. And when it was all said and done I figured out that she had managed to end up owning everything. I was crushed and I sought help. I didn’t do nearly as well as this client who is a successful physician trying to get life insurance. He kept his professional life together and has managed to raise his own children. He is respected in his field and is newly married.

So why did he get declined? The underwriter has been through a couple of ugly divorces herself and while all of the facts point to an approval consummate with a basic chronic depression case, or better, I really believe she allowed his ability to rebuild and keep going to rub her the wrong way.

Bottom line. So my point in all of this is that even when a case is well presented it can occasionally end of up with the wrong underwriter at the wrong time and an agent has to be able to react before the decline solidifies. If you have been declined or had your pants rated off and it just doesn’t hold any logical water, more than like you had the wrong agent who use the wrong company, but you could also have run into an otherwise good underwriter with baggage. My name is Ed Hinerman. Call or me directly. Let’s talk.

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