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JHA: Disability Insurers Need More Underwriting Data

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NU Online News Service, Aug. 23, 1:58 p.m. – Underwriters at group long-term disability insurers seem to be having a harder time getting the data they need from employers seeking coverage, according to Daren Hotham, a senior disability underwriter at JHA Inc., Portland, Maine, a disability insurance consulting and services company.

Hotham recommends in the firm’s latest disability newsletter that insurers resist competitive pressures and insist on getting the data they need to assess the group disability applications.

Any broker should be willing to give an employer’s full name and complete address, explain the nature of the employer’s business, and provide a detailed description of the current plan design and current employee census information, Hotham writes.

When a broker represents an LTD case with more than 250 lives, Hotham says it should be willing to give the insurer information about paid premiums, paid claims and covered lives for the past three years; the rate history; some information about closed claims; and complete details about open claims.

If insurers fail to get complete underwriting data, they could misprice the coverage and end up with disastrous results, Hotham concludes.


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