BSMG Blog: Protecting the Future of Families and Businesses

Advanced Sales: The Need for Life Insurance Other Than to Pay Estate Taxes

An experienced financial professional should keep their clients informed of the many different roles life insurance can play to meet financial, retirement, and protection needs.  The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA) permanently increased the federal estate tax exemption.  This increased and indexed exemption may reduce and possibly eliminate the need for life insurance to pay estate taxes on a case by case basis.

The 2016 federal exemption is now indexed to $5,450,000 for an individual and $10,900,000 for a married couple.  The federal estate tax rate is a flat 40% for taxable estates above the exemption amount.  Many clients who may have been exposed to federal estate taxes in the past may no longer need to worry about federal estate taxes in the future because of this very high exemption.  Very, very few individuals and couples have a net worth in excess of these federal exemption amounts.  Only the super-wealthy still face the daunting task of paying federal estate taxes.

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5 Reasons Clients Should Consider Fixed Annuities


Market Volatility, Bond Market Risk, Low Interest Rates, Portfolio Depletion and Unpredictability.

These are the main reasons clients are skeptical of Annuities. So how can you, the advisor or financial professional, turn the negative into a positive for your clients.


Since 2000, consumers have borne witness to the S&P 500® Index dropping approximately 50%, two times.1 The volatility in 2008 was unlike anything ever recorded with the Volatility Index (VIX), often referred to as the “investor fear gauge,” reaching 89.53 in October, a number representing a quadrupled expectation of market volatility.2

At the same time, interest rates, as measured by the 10-year Treasury bond yield, have continued their three-decade decline since a peak of almost 16% in 1981.3 As of May 1st 2015 the 10-year treasury was 2.12%.4 Additionally, the current average rate on a five-year jumbo certificate of deposit (CD) is 0.93%.5

The Power of Annuities in a Retirement Strategy: Download Your Copy

The timing of this mixture of volatility and low rates could not be worse. The 78 million-strong baby boomer population began hitting age 65 in 2011, and will continue to do so for the next 15 years, to the tune of almost 10,000 per day.6

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Top 10 Life Insurance Broker Questions- Answered 6-10

Top Ten Most Asked Life Insurance Broker Questions Answered

We had our life insurance specialists compile the top ten most commonly asked questions from their brokers and answer them below. We hope you liked #1-5 that we shared on Monday. Below is #6-10 with a bonus question!

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Top 10 Life Insurance Broker Questions- Answered

Top Ten Most Asked Life Insurance Broker Questions Answered

Wouldn't it be great to have the answers to your top questions all in one place? We thought so too! We had our life insurance specialists compile the top ten most commonly asked questions from their brokers and answer them below. Below are #1-5, stay tuned for #6-10 on Friday!

1. How do I renew my license? ... You can begin the renewal process within 180 days of the expiration date. Check the guidelines of the state in which you hold the license and submit all documents required prior to the expiration date. If your license has been expired for more than two years, you may need to pass an exam and submit a formal application. Some states may require a certain number of continued education courses or hours to be taken as well, so be sure to check your state license requirements. The National Insurance Producer Registry helps provide the information you'll need to know.

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Why Conduct a Policy Review in the First 5 Years


It is a common misconception by consumers that once a life insurance policy is purchased they can "set it and forget it."

Policy reviews offer you a unique opportunity. They allow you to reconnect with clients or connect with prospects about their protection needs. For clients, you can see what changes have occurred in their lives, and for referrals and prospects, it can be an eye-opening review. A life insurance policy review also offers you the chance to talk about whether or not the life insurance policies they purchased are still the right policy type and coverage amount to meet their current needs, and if it's not they can leverage their original underwriting and avoid a lengthy process. Ensuring clients’ coverage is still appropriate, is as—and in many ways more —important than the initial policy they purchased.

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Budget Friendly Marketing Tools for Financial Advisors

All too often when financial advisors or insurance professionals hear the word "marketing", their minds wander to dollar signs and expensive outsourcing. While some forms of marketing and advertising can be pricey, there are ways to market inexpensively and even at no cost! Check out these four ways to market your practice on a shoestring below.

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Earn New Referrals by Delivering Gold Medal Service

Did you know that 65% of new business for Financial Advisors comes from referrals? That means more than half of your new business may already be coming from previous customers. Are your clients referring you? Here are some tips that will help you boost your business and achieve a Gold Medal in generating sales through referrals.

At some point in your life you have likely reached out to someone who was referred to you by a family member or friend. These exchanges are usually spontaneous and natural, which is likely the reason they are so successful. What made you connect with that referral?

Naturally, people want to do business with someone they can trust and count on. A referral is essentially a personal reference and free testimonial advertisement. These transactions provide the prospective client with a sense of assurance in your services, and trust in your business. You've then already overcome the hurdle of the client finding your business without having to spend any money or seek them out on your own.

Read More: The Three Rs of Successful Practice Building

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5 Life Insurance Mistakes to Avoid part 2

As a follow-up to our other Top Life Insurance Mistakes to Avoid blog, we've compiled 5 additional common mistakes to make sure your clients avoid. Check out these mistakes below and share them with your clients!

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Top Life Insurance Mistakes to Avoid

Choosing a life insurance policy is a major decision for many clients. The decision that they make will ultimately affect their future and the future of their loved ones. As financial advisors it is important to keep your clients informed and always point them in a clear direction.

We've compiled a list of the top life insurance mistakes and how to avoid them. Share them with your clients to ensure they don't make these costly mistakes.

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Do financial advisors think all female clients are alike?

Women's financial concerns and goals vary depending on many factors in their life, as do men's. Their career, marital status, age, if they have children, etc... all have an impact on what they want to do with their money and how a financial advisor may impact them. 

Many advisors don't seem to be aware of their female clients financial situation as it pertains to their current unique life situation. What one client wants from a financial advisor is often very different from what another may want based on what's going on in their lives. Simply separating clients based on their gender difference is not enough.

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