The California Department of Insurance has released a guide to selling annuities to seniors.

The report, “A Suitable Match: Best Practices for Annuity Sales,” seeks to reduce inappropriate sales of annuities to seniors, says state Insurance Commissioner John Garamandi.

Aimed at preventing financial exploitation of senior citizens, the report recommends practices for both insurers and producers to follow to assure customers are sold annuities that are in step with their financial goals.

Among other recommendations, the report encourages every insurer selling annuities to impose strict suitability standards for sales of the products, train producers to follow these standards and use a detailed customer questionnaire that will define the financial situation and goals of the customer.

It also stresses the need to educate each customer on the particulars of each annuity being offered, including fees and surrender costs, and to review each application to ensure the suitability of the product being sold.

The report can be found on the Web at Document Link