There is nothing quite like being declined for life insurance or even being highly rated when you expected smooth sailing to great rates. Since I make a living turning declined life insurance applications into approved life insurance policies, I can tell you that the people I help felt gut punched when their previous agent called to tell them they were not going to get life insurance. It’s not just a personal affront to the proposed insured, but a door slamming shut on their desire to do something, something really important – to protect their family’s future.
Declined for Life Insurance? It May Not be Your Fault!
Let me first state emphatically that the problem almost always lies with the industry and the clear fact that very few agents are trained to field underwrite (research a case prior to an application). There are also very few agents who know the underwriting guidelines of even one company, let alone several. There are also very few life insurance agents who represent more than one company (called being a captive agent), and lastly there are almost no agents who actually shop your life insurance information prior to giving you a quote.
In fact, your chances of successfully navigating the life insurance application process is slim because the chances of picking the wrong agent who in turn has you apply to the wrong company is ridiculously high. This results in far too many people is a decline.
An Example of “Reversing” a Denial
I wrote about a classic case of “reversing a denial” some years ago when a couple came to me after getting highly rated when Zander Life Insurance tried to place their business with a company that, at that time, was called ING Reliastar. We were able to turn both of those highly rated offers into best rate class life insurance offers simply because we shopped it, something Zander could have done.
Rather than the wrong agent, this was the wrong agency using the wrong company for this couple. And in this case a well-staffed, highly touted agency who wouldn’t take the time to shop a case where they had obviously blown it, resulting in the couple looking for a second opinion.
What if You are Denied Life Insurance?
So how do we keep from blowing it and asking a customer to eat the mistake? There is no question that I occasionally biff it and end up with a client who is declined, or an approval was given that wasn’t expected and just doesn’t fit. I have no qualms, especially once we know what happened, to shop it again with any new facts that have come to light. Once we find the company that is going to make it right, we have no issue with running a second application, a process that goes rather quickly because we already have the exam and labs and medical records. We are very successful at turning declines into approvals and high approvals in to lower cost approvals.
Being wrongly declined for life insurance, or highly rated is not the exception, but an all to common occurrence. What is the exception is an agent or agency that will go the extra mile and make sure you don’t pay a dime more than you should. If you have questions or would like to discuss your situation please email or call me directly. My name is Ed Hinerman. Let’s talk.