Multi-life LTCI sales are not right for all agents, but...Article added by Richard Rusoff on May 27, 2009
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Richard Rusoff

Deerfield Beach, FL

Joined: February 05, 2009

The good news is that, even in this poor economic climate, there are still viable opportunities out there that lend themselves to those who still maintain a positive attitude and have faith in the American economy. This article is for those producers who believe our financial environment may never recover. It's also for those who feel that all businesses are about to fold, or that they need to lay off employees in an effort to cut costs. For those agents who believe that every LTCI client should only be sold full benefits or nothing at all -- even if they can't afford it -- this article is for you, too. Also, if you believe that your future in LTCI could not use a strong foundation, then please keep reading.

I am sure that during this "down economy" many of you are avoiding thoughts of approaching businesses to inquire as to whether they might consider LTCI as an add-on benefit for employees or as a discounted policy for the owners. My advice is... don't. To clarify, I don't mean "don't approach," but "don't avoid approaching." We are still receiving multi-life inquiries and requests from agents for quotes, even during these times. Not every business is cutting staff and costs. Many agents are hesitating. Instead, you should be moving forward. Put your ideas for multi-life sales into play now by creating a relationship with a contact person at as many businesses as you can. When the tide turns, you will be the one they turn to. Keep them up-to-date with letters and mailings regarding the benefits that multi-life LTCI offers both the employer and their personnel. Multi-life sales offer you a tremendous lead source, once you do get approval on a case. Remember that discounts are extended not only to employees, but to family members, as well. Lay your foundation now for the future.

Many of you may have heard negative press about multi-life LTCI. In fact, I recently read an article that said selling multi-life LTCI in the worksite environment was detrimental to the employees. It claimed that many employees were sold benefits that were insufficient to cover the actual costs of care. It claimed that doing this gave a false sense of security to the client, who would say to themselves "I've got my LTCI, so now I don't have to think about it," even though the client did not have "full" coverage. In other words: "Unless I can drive to work in my Cadillac I should stay home." From my personal experience, in my mother's home, a benefit of $50 per day would have been welcome. It would have paid for the two to three hours it took my mother every morning to drag my father from his bed, bathe him, wash him and dress him. Long term care would have made the three years that she did this for my dad a little less stressful, especially considering that she desperately tried to keep him at home as long as possible. (He now resides comfortably in a wonderful VA nursing home). So, don't tell me even a minimum benefit offered to the average "rank and file" worker would not be appreciated. In addition, it would help the business to retain employees and not lose valuable and productive work time. One of the most important aspects of the multi-life sale is the education process, which includes why the need for LTCI exists, along with what the benefit and the potential costs of care might be now and in the future. Relating this to the employees will give them the understanding of what their coverage offers, so we are not leading them down the wrong path. Multi-life can be offered at different benefit levels for different classes within the business, as well. Plans can be carved out to cover those existing classes based on longevity, pay scale or position. The key is that everyone can participate at a benefit level they can afford. Yes something is better than nothing, especially if it is sold at discount with simplified underwriting and for the right reason. Are you curious?

Has this happened to you? One of my agents recently came to me with the details of a wonderful sale she made. Husband and wife a total of $14,000 ten pay. In her description, she told me all about the client's home, cars, boat and his business. You all remember the commercial "I could've had a V8?" Well, when I asked her if she offered the client coverage for his business (C-corporation with 250 employees) her response was exactly that, a slap to the forehead and "I could've had a multi-life sale!" My point is that there are potential multi-life sales everywhere. Everyone frequents businesses on a daily basis. Everyone knows someone who works for or owns a business. It's up to you to recognize that there are opportunities everywhere. You must remember to ask everyone.

Remember: Don't fall victim to the rhetoric of the financial environment. Start building the foundation of your LTCI future now -- ahead of the curve. Multi-life LTCI is a great place to begin.

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