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LTCI Sellers: We're Still Here

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Unum Group Corp. (NYSE:UNM) recently dropped out of the group long-term care insurance (LTCI) market, and Prudential Financial Inc. (NYSE:PRU) dropped out of the individual LTCI market.

LTC Financial Partners L.L.C. and EM-Power Services Inc. are fighting the gloom with marketing campaigns.

LTCI Financial, Kirkland, Wash., says it will be offering a beefed-up array of LTCI choices for individuals and employee groups. The company has put out a press release listing eight carriers that are still in the LTCI market and still on its insurer menu.

EM-Power Services, Boston, is promoting its “Bridging the Gap” program, which makes multi-life LTCI programs available at the worksite by using program rules that let carriers screen out employees with serious pre-existing conditions.

Unum, Chattanooga, Tenn., was issuing LTCI policies on a guaranteed-issue basis to companies with as few as 15 employees, according to EM-Power President Doug Ross.

That approach “was not sustainable,” Ross says in a statement.

A guaranteed-issue LTCI program might work for employer groups with several thousand employees, but not for small companies, Ross says.

By allowing for some medical underwriting, the EM-Power program makes managing LTCI benefits program risk easier for employers with fewer than 1,000 employees, Ross says.

Ross says his company is marketing coverage from at least four LTCI carriers.

LTC Financial Partners Chief Executive Cameron Truesdell says his company recently added MedAmerica Insurance Company as a carrier for employee groups.

MedAmerica will offer reduced underwriting and multi-life discounts, Truesdell says.

LTC Financial Partners will market the MedAmerica LTCI program together with employee benefits brokers that sell health and retirement packages.

LTC Financial Partners also plans to sell life insurance policies that include LTCI riders, Truesdell says.

Public relations experts give the following tips for producers dealing with headline problems:

  • Lay the groundwork for an effective response to problems by establishing relationships with experienced public relations professionals, the traditional media and Web media when times are good.
  • Have one well-prepared spokesperson handle questions from the media.
  • Be honest and realistic about whatever problems do exist.
  • When possible, offer several of the most realistic, down-to-earth solutions you have to the problems.
  • Work to move the media cycle past the problems in the headlines by announcing a credible, interesting new program, product or strategy that can give everyone something else to think about.
  • Eat right, exercise, get rest and remember that whatever is giving you grief today will likely pass. Try not to let it get you down.


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