I know what drives the reaction, the knee jerk response of applying to every insurance company who will accept an application. It’s a desperation that grows out of a declined life insurance application and the idea that the more people you get your information in front of, the better the chance that you will find someone who sees it through your eyes. Multiple application syndrome. I’ve talked often about how I shop cases to find the underwriter who will give my client the fairest hearing. When a proposed insured goes rogue and starts shotgunning applications all over the place, the intent is the same but the out come is almost always a lot different.
The most critical difference between me shopping a declined case and applications flying everywhere is the waste of time and money. I can get the underwriting opinion of 30 companies in 3 days and rule quotes in and out by several criteria. Price is certainly a big part, but sometimes I get great quotes that are not consistent with what that company has actually done in the past and I may email the underwriter to make sure they are solid with the quote. With some customers conversion options is a big deal and I need to make sure that I go with the best quote from a company with strong conversion. So I can narrow it down to 1 or 2 companies that are your best bet for your situation. Sometimes there is a clear front runner, but sometimes there isn’t and that’s when two applications can create competition and push the outcome in your direction.
I’m currently working with a client who came to me after he had been declined and went a little overboard, applying with 8 other companies. The poor guy never had anyone even tell him that one exam will generally work for all the companies, so before I got him to put the brakes on he had actually done 5 exams. The application process really isn’t cumbersome but when you talk to 9 agents and go over all the information for applications, check the applications and sign them and then do 5 exams, well, you’ve wasted some serious time, yours and most of the agents.
And the amount of money between exams and acquisition of medical records that the companies spend is significant with one application, not something that should be duplicated 9 times for anyone. And then there is the MIB bomb you create with applying with large numbers of companies. Each time you apply it shows on MIB and each time a company notes an issue it is put with MIB and pretty soon the next company you start with takes one look at the MIB report and wishes they could back out just based on the amount of activity they’re seeing. They know anyone with that much going on means the likelihood of them finding the golden egg is pretty slim. They know they are more likely to lose the money they invest in the case than recoup it through paid premiums.
And with each application comes questions from home offices and agents. It really made me wonder if this guy would have to quit his job just to administer all of his applications. Before you consider a shotgun wedding with the life insurance industry, call or email me and let’s consider a little less strenuous and ultimately more successful approach. My name is Ed Hinerman. Let’s talk.