"When clients decide that they need life insurance, their financial professionals no longer have to complete a lengthy application," said Rick Maholchic, director of marketing, national accounts, for Hartford Life's individual life division.
"Financial professionals simply complete a request for application, which can be sent through the mail or by computer on the Internet.Clients are now being asked if they want paper or plastic to start the underwriting of their policies."
With the new process, called "Intent to Buy," the request for application is simultaneously sent to Hartford Life
and the bank or broker-dealer firm represented by the financial professional, Maholchic
said.The notification process enables both companies to better track the life insurance policy from application to issue, he
Once the life insurer receives the request for application, a tele- interviewer contacts the applicant to gather all underwriting information and complete a full application.The financial professional no longer has to ask his
client uncomfortable medical questions and can turn the entire underwriting process over to the life insurer. Maholchic
said the Intent to Buy system was successfully piloted by a national brokerage firm in the first quarter.The new system enabled Hartford Life
to triple the number of life insurance policies sold and paid for by clients of the firm in the first quarter of 2002 as compared to the same period in 2001, according to Maholchic
In addition, "Simplified Issue" is being introduced on Stag Accumulator Variable Universal Life insurance policies to eliminate the need for many clients to take medical examinations.Stag Accumulator is ideal for clients who need both life insurance protection as well as cash value accumulation for financial needs such as supplemental retirement income. Maholchic
said 85 percent of applicants qualify for the Simplified Issue program.He
said policies underwritten without a medical exam are typically issued within eight working days, speeding the delivery of the policy by the broker to the client.Simplified Issue is available to clients ages 30 to 50, with certain premium restrictions.
The Intent to Buy and Simplified Issue programs are part of an ongoing effort to sell more life insurance to consumers in the "emerging affluent" market.The emerging affluent is typically defined as households with annual incomes of $100,000 or more and younger children.