The Inevitability of Impaired Risks

Impaired RiskWhen it comes to life, health and disability insurance, a “preferred” risk is always attractive to an insurance underwriter or actuary.  Insurance company executives favor lower-risk business from relatively young, healthy clients with clean backgrounds, as they employ table ratings, flat extras, higher premiums, postponements and even flat out declinations for those individuals viewed by traditional markets as non-preferred, impaired or sub-standard. 

Fearing underwriting struggles and disappointment of their clientele, of course agents and advisors would hope to have prospects that don’t fall into the sub-standard or the automatic-decline realm.  But that is not reality.  Most of you have a client or two that don’t fit the insurers’ ideal mold, and from time to time, you have to apologize to those prospects because, due to their medical history, criminal record, past drug use or some other unfortunate circumstance, you are unable to find them the insurance they so rightly desire.

That is expected because people aren’t perfect, and the human body is fragile.  It is susceptible to aging, illness and injury, and although we live in a world of advancing sciences and medicine, insurance underwriters and medical directors are seeing increasing cases of obesity, autoimmune diseases, diabetes, psychiatric disorders, heart disease and many other common maladies which affect the ability of millions of Americans to qualify for adequate levels of life, health and disability insurance.

Of the three, the disability market is understandably witness to the greatest and most frequent acts of underwriter and insurance company prejudice against those seeking some form of income protection insurance. Over the past half-century, disability carriers, non-profit organizations and the Department of Labor have completed exhaustive research and provided ongoing statistical information regarding the chances of disablement of the average American.  Strict underwriting guidelines are placed on disability insurance prospects because the numbers reveal a sobering truth.  An employed U.S. resident is three and a half times more likely to become totally disabled than die before reaching the age of 67.  That fact and the resulting public claims statistics frighten most financial officers; there are approximately 800 life insurance carriers in this country and of those, fewer than 50 offer some form of disability insurance.

But even those companies that have remained loyal to the American worker by marketing DI, have unfortunately left a vast population of traditionally uninsurable professionals with the dire need for more lenient, flexible and creative underwriting.  Petersen International Underwriters is the answer in helping that vast population.  Our underwriters employ a more liberal methodology to risk analysis, providing medically sub-standard clients with high-limit, comprehensive, own-occupation disability insurance benefits.  

Don’t allow your previously declined disability prospects to go uninsured or underinsured.  Petersen International can help save your cases while providing your impaired-risk clientele with valuable, long-term income protection.  Give us a call today.