When searching for life insurance on the open market, a key factor in your approval can be choosing the right life insurance professional. An insurance producer should be your advocate, representing you to the insurance company in the most favorable light. Factors that can impact your success include a professional’s role, qualification, experience, network, and advice. While a novice agent may provide incorrect guidance or become unresponsive, an experienced broker may make the difference in a favorable offer and a decline. Of course, multiple sclerosis presents a unique set of options for each person, but the right council should be consulted to determine the best option.
Types of advocates:
There are two main kinds of professionals who can help secure coverage for your family with multiple sclerosis. These producers should be an advocate for you to present your case to the insurance company in the best possible light.
The first professional as called an agent, and agents work on behalf of insurance companies. Many agents are required to sell only the products that their insurance companies sell. These agents are called captive agents. A captive agent should be an expert in choosing which product suits the client based on their financial needs. These professionals can be a great ally because they are extremely familiar with all of the products their company has to offer. They are well versed in the process of obtaining life insurance with their company, and they can help the process go smoothy with the right experience.
There are two major difficulties presented to life insurance agents when working with multiple sclerosis. The first is that they are motivated to represent the best interest of the insurance company, while they are required to act in the best interest of the client. They may offer the product that the company deems more profitable, and they are told repeatedly that options from that company are the best products on the market. This can make it difficult for the agent to explain the best course of action to a person searching for life insurance with multiple sclerosis.
The second challenge is the limitation of searching the right company. While each company has different guidelines for the rate scale at which to accept clients, a captive agent can only work within their company. While the agent’s company may make routine offers to clients with multiple sclerosis, this does not mean their company has the best rate scale available for the client’s scenario.
The second type of professional who can provide life insurance for multiple sclerosis is a broker. A broker works on behalf of the client, representing them as a liaison to an insurance company. While a broker serves the same role in securing insurance coverage, they have the liberty to recommend a wide variety of companies who compete in the open market. There are two major factors that can help a client secure the best coverage when working with a broker.
The first perk of working with a life insurance broker is that they are motivated as well as required to act in the best interest of the client. They want their clients to have the best coverage because they know clients will return to them to expect excellent service even after a policy is issued. A broker does not have one single contract with an insurance company, so they are more inclined to provide the best guidance regardless of one company’s particular standpoint.
The second advantage of working with a life insurance broker is the selection of options available to secure life insurance coverage for multiple sclerosis. Brokers can choose which insurance company to apply to based on factors including product features, customer service, and the guidelines that company uses to review and make an offer for insurance. Brokers can learn from experience which companies offer better rate scales for clients with multiple sclerosis. In cases where mild multiple sclerosis provides a wide range of options for coverage, a broker can choose the company with the best policy features to fit the client.
There are several qualifications which may result in a more professional experience while securing life insurance with multiple sclerosis. Some are required, and some are a good idea to insure better service in the future.
An insurance agent or broker must first be licensed to provide advice on life insurance products. Insurance is regulated at the state level, so each agent or broker has to obtain a license with each state where they conduct business. Each producer is required to take a course to prepare for the state license. The course covers basic information like ramifications of life insurance policies and the primary needs for life insurance. Producers can also earn additional professional designations by completing a course with an institution.
Many accredited institutions offer education for life insurance producers to hone their skills. Some of the most common designations include:
- CISR – The Certified Insurance Service Representative
- CIC – The Certified Insurance Councilor
- AAI – Accredited Advisor of Insurance
- CRM – Certified Risk Manager
- CLU – Chartered Life Underwriter
- CFP – Certified Financial Planner
- ChFC – Chartered Financial Consultant
The CISR educates advocates in areas such as customer service, risk assessment, and policy product details. The certification is awarded by the National Alliance for Insurance & Education Research. Advocates who take 3 additional courses beyond the 5 courses required for the designation are awarded the CISR Elite title. The CIC is another National Alliance designation that provides general education beyond the average insurance advocate. The Accredited Advisor of Insurance is a similar designation offered by the Institutes Risk & Insurance Knowledge Group. A CRM obtains a designation from the national Alliance that focuses on planning against unforeseen risks. This designation is used by many professionals including accountants and insurance advocates. The CLU is a designation offered by the American College of Financial Services that educates professionals on the practical aspects of the review process that insurance companies conduct. It is the most comprehensive and oldest designation in the life insurance industry.
The CFP designation is issued by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. It covers six areas of financial planning and is used by financial professionals and adds a level of expertise to an advocate’s understanding of personal finance. The ChFC is a designation offered by the American College. It also requires more hours of study than the insurance designations. The ChFC also covers the same six sectors of financial planning, but does not require the passing of a board exam. These financial planning designations can help when fitting the right life insurance with multiple sclerosis into your financial plan.
When searching for life insurance with multiple sclerosis the experience of your insurance advocate can directly impact your ability to obtain coverage. One of the most important steps to securing life insurance with multiple sclerosis is choosing the right insurance company.
The review process, called underwriting, involves a complicated set of criteria that is difficult for many new advocates to understand. Underwriters, the professionals at each insurance company who make the decisions whether or not to offer coverage and at what rate scale, use different methods to score a potential policy holder’s risk. For common factors such as build or blood pressure, they refer to one of three major guides that are published every year and used as reference by all insurance companies. For more complex ailments such as multiple sclerosis, underwriters reference detailed guidelines which differ from company to company.
Multiple sclerosis manifests itself uniquely from person to person. This can make it very difficult for an insurance company to offer clear, concise guidelines for their underwriters to follow. Another issue that makes it difficult to know what to expect from a medical review is the fact that underwriters are generally very reluctant to speak to insurance advocates. There are very few underwriters compared to agents and brokers, and they are often charged with reviewing too many cases to have time left over to speak to advocates directly. Often the knowledge that brokers try to gain from these companies about life insurance with multiple sclerosis is passed through the company’s sales team. Sales professionals are often not educated on the ins and outs of life insurance for multiple sclerosis.
While it may be difficult to learn a company’s outlook on a particular case of multiple sclerosis, an experienced broker may know more details about how several companies choose to view each case. From time to time, an underwriter will call an advocate to explain why he or she made the decision to accept or decline a potential policyholder, and it can take many of these cases to get a good grasp on what rating one will receive for life insurance with multiple sclerosis. Choosing the wrong company could be the difference in a favorable rate scale and a decline, depending on each insurance companies guidelines for multiple sclerosis.
Most people have more than one issue besides merely multiple sclerosis. Insurance companies may add additional risk for certain co-conditions, while other conditions will be swept under the rug. An experienced advocate can help you know what to expect with other conditions like diabetes or depression and life insurance with multiple sclerosis.
An important factor for an insurance advocate to secure the best option for coverage is their network. The people who work with an agent or broker can make the process smooth and uneventful or nearly impossible.
The first order of business is which companies the advocate has access too. An insurance agent may be required to sell only the products that their company offers, or they may be allowed to contract business out to other insurance companies when the client does not medically qualify for coverage from the primary company.
While brokers are able to work with most insurance companies on the open market, they must first negotiate a contract with each company they would like to represent. While a new broker may contract with only a few of the most common companies, an experienced broker takes years to determine the best insurance carriers for his or her clients.
Additionally, many insurance advocates have a staff to help clients through the extensive processing period where the insurance company is gathering information. On the otherhand, many advocates choose to handle all paperwork, correspondence, and updates themselves. Having a team of staff can alleviate some of the tension of waiting for updates from the insurance company and can allow the advocate to focus more on choosing the right carrier for each client.
Choosing the Right Plan
Once a potential policy holder has been approved for life insurance with multiple sclerosis, the time comes to choose the coverage to accept. At times, the official offer from the insurance company can come months from the date of the initial application, and it is important to choose the best plan that fits the family’s scenario.
Many agents simply issue policies after an approval without reviewing the client’s specific needs after approval. While the offer from the insurance company is usually for the amount of coverage and for the timeframe applied for, many companies will allow a client to take coverage for any timeframe and up to 1 million dollars without any additional underwriting! Working with an advisor who can recommend both the best type of life insurance and the amount can be an added benefit when planning for your family’s future.
Service in the Future
Most insurance advocates sell a policy and never speak to the policy holder again. Many new advocates leave the business to pursue other careers, and are unavailable years down the road when questions arise about how a policy will perform in later years. An advocate who offers yearly reviews can provide an added level of security that the best coverage is still in place. Some advocates will review with a client several times over the life of the policy to determine it is still the best option in place.
As clients move through different stages of life, different types of life insurance with multiple sclerosis can be the best solution. An experienced advocate will review with the client before major events like children’s graduations or weddings, electing a pension option, retirement, employer change, or conversion anniversaries. Picking a broker who will provide excellent service in the future will ensure the coverage in place is always the best option.