Avoid The Push Toward Annuities
Insurance Agents and Banks Earn Commissions on Sales
America has been in a low-interest-rate economy for years and returns on Certificates of Deposit, bonds and money market funds have been on the low side for some time. Now bank rates and bond interest are inching up. Keep that in mind when an insurance agent or banker suggests you sell off bonds or switch to an annuity when your CD matures. Our litigators recommend against annuities of any kind especially for seniors, because commissions, fees and surrender penalties reduce returns and make it expensive to get your money out if you need it. If you’re over 60 and live in California and have suffered a loss due to cancellation, replacement, full or partial surrender, or high fees on any type of annuity, call the California financial elder abuse and annuity attorneys at Evans Law Firm, Inc. today at 415-441-8669 for a free review of your policy. A list of major carriers in California appears below.
Insurers/insurance companies use teaser rates to pique your interest in annuities. In one recent example we saw, the initial interest rate on a fixed annuity was 1.5%. By the second year of the policy, the real return was -1.0% after fees. Annuities are not insured investments either. The chief benefit of a CD is protection of principal and interest earnings through federal deposit insurance, which protects holdings of up to $250,00 per category (like CDs), per deposit per bank. 12 U.S.C. § 1813 et seq.; 12 C.F.R. § 330.3 et seq.
If you switch to an annuity issued by an insurance company, your money is no longer with a bank and no longer covered by FDIC insurance. Surveys indicate that in many cases, older persons believe that money invested in an annuity is still with the bank or credit union. It isn’t. Not only is the deposit insurance protection gone, but older persons should expect surrender fees when they withdraw money from an annuity. If they need money for an emergency or increased long-term care costs they’ll pay a withdrawal penalty and a tax on the amount withdrawn, typically at ordinary rates. Annuities sold by banks and credit unions can be terribly misleading and expensive transactions. Always consult a professional with nothing to gain from a sale and always consult your tax advisor before any purchase or surrender of an annuity.
If you or a loved one has suffered loss on an annuity in Marin or elsewhere in California, contact Marin County and California annuity and financial elder abuse attorney Ingrid M. Evans and the other attorneys at Evans Law Firm at (415) 441-8669, or by email at <a href=”mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org”>email@example.com</a>. Our attorneys have experience with complex financial contracts and large insurance companies. We can help guide your case through a jury trial or toward an equitable settlement. We handle cases involving physical and financial elder abuse, qui tam and whistleblower law, nursing home abuse, whole life insurance and universal life insurance, and indexed, variable, and fixed annuities.
Annuities and life insurance produce large sales commissions for brokers but are often inappropriate products for consumers, especially seniors. Leading providers and distributors of life insurance and fixed, variable and fixed indexed deferred annuities in California are listed below. We are not in any way suggesting that any of these carriers or distributors has done anything wrong. Rather, the list is provided solely as a reference for our readers.
AIG/American General Life Insurance Company
Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America
American Equity Investment Life Insurance Company
American General Life Insurance Company/AIG
American International Group, Inc. (AIG)
American National Life Insurance Company
Athene Annuity & Life Assurance Company
Athene Annuity and Life Company
Aviva Life Insurance Company
AXA Equitable Financial Services, LLC
AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company/AXA US
AXA Advisors, LLC
Brighthouse Financial, Inc./MetLife
EquiTrust Life Insurance Company
Fidelity & Guaranty Life Insurance Company
Genworth Financial, Inc.
Genworth Life and Annuity Insurance Company
Genworth Life Insurance Company
Guggenheim Partners, LLC
Guggenheim Partners/Security Benefit Life Insurance Company
ING USA Annuity and Life Insurance Company
Jackson National Life Insurance Company
John Hancock Life Insurance Company
Lincoln Benefit Life Company
Lincoln Financial Group
Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company
Metlife/Metropolitan Life Insurance Company/Brighthouse Financial, Inc.
Minnesota Life Insurance Company
Nationwide Investor Services Corporation (NISC)
Nationwide Life and Annuity Insurance Company
Nationwide Life Insurance Company
New York Life Insurance Company
Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, LLC
Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company
Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company
Pacific Life & Annuity Company
Pacific Life Insurance Company
Security Benefit Corporation
Security Benefit Group, Inc.
Security Benefit Life Insurance Company/Guggenheim Partners
Security Investors, LLC
Security of Denver Life Insurance Company/Voya
Transamerica Life Insurance Company
Voya Financial Advisors
Voya/Reliastar Life Insurance Company
World Financial Group Insurance Agency, Inc.