AALU Gearing Up For Release Of
New Treasury Rules On Split-Dollar
The Association for Advanced Life Underwriting is gearing up for the imminent release of new Treasury Department rules regarding split-dollar life insurance arrangements.
AALU President Bob Plybon says the rules will likely be released fairly soon, probably by the end of this month.
AALU, he notes, has made a strong case for requesting a one-year extension of the current safe harbor provisions.
The problem, Plybon says, is that many clients have been sitting on the fence waiting to see what the final rules say. Moreover, he adds, insurers have not established systems for illustrations.
Whatever the outcome, Plybon says, AALU will be doing a teleconference as soon as the final rules are issued where members will be able to get information on what options are available, what other practitioners are doing and new marketing opportunities.
Turning to the health front, a congressional leader on health care says that without a fundamental change in the structure of health care financing in the United States, there will be more and more demands for a government run system.
Speaking before a symposium sponsored by the Washington-based Health Insurance Association of America, Rep. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., says the only way to prevent the socialization of health care is to fight for consumer freedom and to protect the private market.
The current system, he says, which is based on a pre-payment paradigm, creates no vested interest among consumers to care about costs, and no incentives for physicians to control costs.
DeMint notes that he has sponsored legislation aimed at altering these incentives by establishing consumer-directed, or consumer choice, health plans that provide individuals with more control over health care decisions.
“If we dont reform health care, we will have a one-payer system,” he says.
DeMint dismisses concerns that consumers are not smart enough to make health care financing decisions. Currently, he says, information on health care financing is written with an eye on those who have the money–namely, insurers.
When consumers gain control over their own health care decisions, he says, information will be presented with individuals in mind.
DeMint, who is running for the open Senate seat in South Carolina, says visits to his constituents reveal how much dissatisfaction exists with the present system.
“Americas health care system truly hangs in the balance,” he says.
The HIAA symposium featured a presentation by Bill McInturff, a partner with the Alexandria, Va.-based polling firm Public Opinion Strategies, who says consumers react favorably to “consumer choice” health plans and many would consider changing from their current plan.