By getting a prospect’s adult children involved in the long term care insurance sales process, you can help clarify some of the lingering objections to coverage–and possibly even score a double-header by floating the benefits of shared-care policies to cover both generations.
The dynamic changes when prospects’ children get involved in the long term care insurance sales process. Each case will have its own circumstances, but if you sell LTCI, at some point you’re likely to encounter cases involving multiple generations of the prospect’s family. Handle the situation correctly and it can help grow your business.
Loren Boyens, ChFC, CLU, LUTCF, is with the Stonebridge Group (part of Thrivent Financial for Lutherans), in Sioux Falls, S.D. He doesn’t encounter multi-generation cases frequently, but when it has occurred, there’s usually one of two responses. “One is, ‘Mom or Dad, do what you want. It’s your money. You take care of it,’” Boyens says. “The other response might be, ‘Mom or Dad, don’t worry about buying long term care. We’ll take care of you,’ which is, well, it’s a rather ridiculous response. In most cases, the parents see the futility in that, because they have lived enough life to know that after six months of changing their parents’ diapers, their adult children might sing a different tune.”
Boyens responds to those objections by sharing experiences from his 23 years of selling LTCI. “I tell them stories of other adult children who have gone before them. They’ve been seated in our conference room chairs in tears, regretting that they have just written the last check out of Mom and Dad’s estate or they have had to sell the farm. Or they have had to sell the business or some action that had to be taken in order to pay for the parents’ care,” he says. “And the tears are not out of disappointment that they are spending their inheritance. Rather, they are tears of frustration because they were witnesses of how hard Mom and Dad worked to accumulate those assets. That’s why the tears are there.”
During his initial conversations with the prospects, Ken Schulman, CLTC, with DBS Financial Group in South Florida, asks if any adult children are involved in the decision process. If so, he prefers to get them involved sooner rather than later. It makes sense for the offspring to be involved, he says: “In long term care, the victim is not the person who gets sick or the insured–it’s the family members that have to take care of the person. The other part of it is that very often, it’s the kids’ responsibility in the end to pay for everything because parents have limited funds. The parents are saying, ‘I’ll just live off of what money we have in the bank and I won’t leave anything to the kids.’ The kids say, ‘Wait a second … I’d rather insure against it and let you keep your money and then pass it on to us or the grandkids.’ So there are real reasons for the children to be involved.”