ask_me_about_underwritingA day in the life of a Brokerage General Agency is anything but boring. We work with many types of cases from a large cross section of producers. Some look to us for product while others look for concepts to bring to their clients.

Regardless of the approach, in the end, it all comes down to underwriting. Underwriting makes the difference between closing a piece of business or not. Granted, underwriting starts at the field level and there’s something to be said for the old adage of “Under Promise & Over Deliver.” That is probably a more profound statement when it comes to life insurance sales. If you are with a client that has issues such as Diabetes, Build, High Blood Pressure or a Motor Vehicle Report as tall as the Empire State Building, why would you quote Preferred Best??? But that happens more often than not and we encourage our producers to ask the right questions and give them special tools to be used at point-of-sale to allow them to set the expectation level of the client to real life premium levels at the point of sale.

In today’s marketplace, it’s all about knowing where to go when you have a case that falls below the normal radar screen. Carriers today have changed their underwriting methodologies and have liberalized their guidelines for many impairments that a few short years ago would have been viewed negatively in terms of underwriting. This is due to many factors, but primarily to the great deal of data that is available in the world of medicine today. With modern advances and treatments that are increasing individual mortality, it is only fair that the underlying guideline for these impairments be adjusted.
We are seeing a number of changes being made across the industry that are positively affecting underwriting decisions. Something as simple as Cholesterol Limits, Blood Pressure Control or Family History liberalizations have had significant impact. On a larger scale, there have been great strides in underwriting cases with more complex issues such as Diabetes, Coronary Disease and even Cancer. It is not uncommon today to see Standard to Preferred Offers with some of these types of cases.

We work closely with Dedicated Underwriting Teams at our carriers and know how to leverage those relationships on your behalf. Although they each have their own internal underwriting guidelines, we know where to go to get you the best offers for your clients.

Let’s be realistic. There are just some cases that no matter what you do, they’re just not going to work. But what I will say is that when you have a case that you have had poor underwriting experience with or a new case with some questionable health issues, it is worth a phone call to see if we can help you navigate through a case and possibly be able to make something happen. Most new brokers we work with mention clients that they have that “are not insurable.” When we put it through our litmus test, often times, those same cases are insurable. As a matter of fact, those cases are the ones with the Diabetes, Cardiac or Cancer histories that can get those Standard – Preferred offers. It all comes down to underwriting…

After all, Underwriting is the Real Case Maker!

Mark Milbrod

About Mark Milbrod

Mark’s Barks Blog is authored by Mark Milbrod, the Principal of our New Jersey Sales Office. Mark brings over 30 years of experience to his insightful commentary on the insurance industry. Through his Blog posts, you will learn about new sales trends, be educated on selling techniques and overall, think differently about your role as an insurance professional.

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