3 ways LTCI agents can insure their reputation
All it takes is one mistake, one misunderstanding, and your reputation and career can be tarnished forever.
Long term care insurance is something that people want to buy, and in most cases, should buy. Unfortunately, too often insurance carriers take advantage of the fine print or raise prices exponentially.
As an insurance agent, you want to sell a worthwhile, solid product/plan and therefore should protect yourself from receiving the blame and having your reputation tarnished by a decision that is out of your hands.
Here are some steps you can take to insure your reputation.
Editor’s pick: PPACA: 4 inconvenient truths
No matter what the Supreme Court decides, President Obama’s signature law may cost him the election for four reasons, according to a recent article by Politico’s health care editor, David Nather.
While the president has told Americans that if they like their current health care plan, they can keep it, a CBO report says otherwise. Three million to 5 million people could switch from employer-based health coverage to government coverage as PPACA takes effect. In a worst-case scenario, this could happen for as many as 20 million.
“For Republicans, the CBO report is a giant ‘I told you so’ moment — and they’re lining up to tell you so,” writes Nather.
Whether the Supreme Court upholds the law will have little impact on rising health costs, according to Nather.
“That’s because the main drivers of rising costs — including technology, expensive new drugs, an aging population, a surge in chronic diseases, and Americans’ propensity to use a lot more health care than many other countries, even if it doesn’t make them any healthier — have nothing to do with the law,” he says.
Paying for PPACA
The White House promises the health care reform law will reduce the deficit, and the CBO concurs. But Nather says these are just educated guesses and may not pan out — especially if Congress blocks the Medicare cuts, which they are likely to do.
“For example, the law is supposed to save $157 billion over 10 years by increasing Medicare payments more slowly for inpatient hospital, home health and skilled nursing facility services. The law expects those providers to become more productive and more efficient,” says Nather. “But watch for plenty of lobbying pressure on Congress to cancel those cuts.”
Democrats and the Obama administration were certain Americans would like health care reform once it was implemented, according to Nather. Yet, recent polls show that fewer than half of the population supports the law. In addition, polls show that Americans know less about the law now than they did in 2010.
Read the article: Health care reform: 4 inconvenient truths.
The latest in the Glenn Neasham annuity trial
Editor’s note: This page is dedicated to keeping you abreast of what’s happening in the Glenn Neasham case and its implications for the industry. A variety of industry experts have contributed articles and blogs to ProducersWEB, which I have compiled on this page. I have also included links to helpful outside sources. The page will be updated consistently.
A 12-person jury found former insurance agent Glenn Neasham, 52, guilty of felony theft on Oct. 23, 2011 for selling an annuity to an elderly woman.
Judge Richard Martin on Feb. 29, 2012 denied the motion for a new trial, refused to drop the felony charge to a misdemeanor and sentenced Neasham to probation and 300 days in jail. Martin stayed all but 90 days of the sentence. Neasham is due to turn himself in on April 18. He plans to appeal.
Agent facing jail time for selling an annuity: interview with Glenn Neasham
By Paul Wilson
An annuity nightmare continues in California: Glenn Neasham sentenced to jail, Pt. 1
By Richard Duff
An annuity nightmare continues in California: Glenn Neasham sentenced to jail, Pt. 2
By Richard Duff
The outrage over Glenn Neasham: a different perspective
By Sheryl Moore
Selling annuities to the elderly: appropriate or not?
The site heated up at the end of last week when contributor Roccy Defrancesco posted an op-ed about a case where an agent was found guilty of felony theft for selling an annuity to an 83-year-old woman. Roccy sympathized with the agent saying the case saddened him and that “the story simply speaks to the unprofessionalism of the attorney who decided to prosecute this case. It makes all attorneys look bad and shows us how abusive the legal process can be (and how helpless a defendant can be).”
But not all of our readers agreed with Roccy. For instance, one reader said, “[An] annuity is a long term saving vehicle and is not recommended for clients in their 80s and 90s who depend on dipping into their savings before dying. Furthermore, locking the client into a 10-year early withdrawal penalty is criminal.”
Another reader said selling an annuity to an 83-year-old is inappropriate, but that the agent should not be going to jail.
The comments on Roccy’s article brought up the following issues:
Is selling an annuity to an elderly person unethical? What if, like my grandfather, that elderly person is as sharp as a person of a much younger age?
In this case the woman was showing signs of dementia (the agent said he was unaware of this). What can agents who sell annuities to seniors do to protect themselves against facing similar criminal charges?
If you are of the opinion that selling an annuity to an elderly person is unethical, does the fact that the woman profited from the annuity make it less so?
Will this case negatively or positively affect the senior community? In other words, it could make it harder for seniors to access these products. But it could also help protect seniors against agents who are just concerned about getting a hefty commission. What do you think?
If you have an opinion, please use the comment section below to share, or you can even post your own blog.