Unbeknownst to many, September is Life Insurance Awareness month, as well as National Yoga Month, National Bourbon Heritage Month, National Papaya Month, and National Prostate Health Month. While the last four are all nationally recognized, the first is a marketing event put on by Life Happens, a non-profit funded by most of the major insurers in the United States and abroad, including Allianz, Allstate, and Transamerica. Their goal is “helping Americans take personal financial responsibility through the ownership of life insurance and related products, including disability and long-term care insurance.” Their noble cause is carried out by life insurance salespeople who pay for the promotional materials that include heartfelt testimonials by celebrities and tales of those saved by heroic insurance salespeople. But it can pay to take a look under the hood and see what life insurance, and particularly Indexed Universal Life Insurance, really offers.
Life insurance can indeed be a valuable resource for elders and retirees. It has historically provided reliable funds and a generous death benefit. However, Life Insurance companies have been making more and more strides towards destabilizing the traditional model of life insurance in an attempt to utilize their vast reserves in the stormy seas of stock markets. The “problem” of redundant reserves is partially being addressed by dodgy maneuvers to circumvent legislation designed to keep insurers honest. However, insurers are also hoping to get consumers to buy in to new, more complicated insurance schemes that allow them to use their premiums more freely. The most prominent of these, with sales in the billions, are Indexed Universal Life Insurance policies. These policies essentially give free reign to insurers to play with the capital for their own enrichment, and frequently return dramatically lower rates than traditional insurance.
So if you’re thinking about life insurance, as Life Happens and their partners like Allstate, Transamerica, and Allianz would like you to, you should also think about what products are in your best interest and which are in theirs. If you feel that you have been the victim of an improperly administered Life Insurance Policy, contact the Evans Law Firm at (415) 441-8669. The Evans Law Firm handles consumer fraud class actions involving insurance and banking fraud claims, elder abuse (physical and financial), annuity and long term care fraud cases committed against senior citizens, and elder law and estate planning (including living trust and will packages, powers of attorney, probate matters.)