I am still shaking my head over the news I got today from the last bastion of reasonable foreign national life insurance underwriting. Most US life insurance companies had gone south in this niche a few years ago, heading their life insurance guidelines for foreign nationals with “MUST OWN THE UNITED STATES OR HAVE ALL THE MONEY FROM YOUR HOME COUNTRY DEPOSITED IN U.S. INVESTMENTS”.
Prudential Financial had that restriction for some countries, actually that the insured had to own property here, have substantial investments or a business here, or have a spouse who is a US citizen. It was their way of protecting themselves from citizens of some of the countries they didn’t perceive to be “A” rated countries from snarfing up insurance that is far more affordable and a death benefit that is paid in US dollars. I had several CEO’s from Canada who purchased life insurance from Prudential through me and the only requirement that Pru had was that the application had to be signed while the proposed insured was in the US, the exam had to be completed in the US and the approved policy had to be delivered and signed for in the US. Cumbersome enough, right? Oh, and they had to open a bank account in the US so that all payments could be made through a US bank.
Prudential had that requirement for several friendly countries, but often the foreign national client found two visits to the US to be a bit much so, other than Canada, I didn’t use Pru a lot. But now I submitted a Canadian case to Pru and things have changed. I sent a quote request to the company to get a quote on some minor impairments and made it very clear that the proposed insured was a Canadian citizen, living and working in Canada. The Pru underwriting response was that the case would likely qualify for their best rate, so I quoted it with all good confidence. After all, Pru had never balked on life insurance for Canadian business people before.
Until now. After the client had traveled to the US to sign the application and take an exam, Pru announced that he needed to have a business or residence in the US, have a spouse who is a US citizen, or $500,000 on deposit in the US. When I questioned that apparent misquote from the original underwriter and a clear, huge change in their requirements for Canadian life insurance prospects I was told they had changed the requirements in November 2017. I was also told that, no, they didn’t notify agents of the change. So I had no way of knowing about this requirement before making arrangements for the CEO of a large company to travel south. At this juncture I am on my fourth appeal of the decision. I made Pru aware that they can underwrite any old way they want to, no matter how stupid the change is, but that since I didn’t get notice of the change and apparently the underwriter who quoted the impairment for didn’t get the notice either, they really need humble themselves and approve the case.
Because underwriting for foreign nationals has become so ridiculously cumbersome I recently added a company that will write citizens from about 160 approved countries.
Bottom line. With this new life insurance company foreign national business people can sign the application where they live, take an exam where they live and are not required to accept the policy in the US. Most importantly there is no requirement for US Nexus of any kind. If you have questions or would like to receive quotes please call or email me directly. My name is Ed Hinerman. Let’s talk.