NU Online News Service, Feb. 1, 1:57 p.m. – Lincoln Financial Corp., Fort Wayne, Ind., is making an open effort to take variable-annuity assets away from competitors.

The company is offering a new ABE death-benefit option solely to customers who shift cash into Lincoln ChoicePlus II and Multi-Fund 5 VA contracts, away from VA contracts at other companies.

For new, eligible customers, Lincoln will match the guaranteed minimum death benefits promised by the old VA contracts.

Lincoln is adding several conditions to the ABE death-benefit option.

To qualify, customers must buy enhanced guaranteed minimum death benefits or estate enhancement benefits along with their new Lincoln annuities.

The value of the ABE death benefit cannot exceed $400,000, or 140% of the cash value of the assets exchanged.

If a customer who buys the option dies within the first contract year, Lincoln will reduce the value of the death benefit 25%.