Two Current Life Insurance Sales Trends Highlight Reasons TOLI Trustees Must Be Extra Vigilant Now

According to information gathered on life insurance sales, two distinct trends are clear.  Overall, life insurance sales are mostly flat – up less than 0.5%. (1) However, sales are up with two product lines: variable universal life and equity index universal life. In 2018, sales of VUL policies were up 9%, while sales of EIUL policies set a record. (2). Total universal life insurance sales [...]

Join ITM TwentyFirst for a Week-Long Education Course on Unique and Hard to Value Assets

We at ITM TwentyFirst have always been very proactive about continuing education. Just like many other industries, the unique and hard to value asset industry is always changing and filled with complexity. Our team members, and the company as a whole, participate in several continuing education efforts every year. This July, we will be taking part in a week-long course focused on administering Hard to [...]

TOLI Trustee Alert: Oops, the Policy Lapsed…Now What?

The most common fear for a life insurance trustee is that somehow the ball is dropped and the policy in their care lapses. After all, a trust-owned life insurance (TOLI) trustee, even if they are not sophisticated in all the nuances of life insurance policy management, should at least be able to keep the policy in force. But unintended lapses do happen, and when they [...]

TOLI Trustee Alert: Update on Transamerica COI Settlement

In October of last year, we reported on a settlement in the case against Transamerica for a cost of insurance (COI) increase, which raised the carrying costs on a group of universal life policies by 200% or more.  In one example, we reported the cost to maturity on one policy in our portfolio jumped from $36,400 to $81,595, after the policy got hit with a [...]

Take the TOLI Challenge: In a Permanent Life Insurance Policy, the Cost of the Policy is Equal to the Premium – Yes or No?

The answer is an emphatic NO. Some permanent life insurance policies, specifically guaranteed universal life (GUL) and Whole Life (WL), have required premiums, though WL out of pocket premiums can be reduced by dividends, paid-up addition cash values or policy loans. But the premium paid is not the actual cost of the policy and finding the underlying costs on the policies is a challenge. For [...]

Court Case Shows the Potential Liability for an Advisor, Attorney or CPA Acting as Administrator (or Trustee) of a Life Insurance Trust

Twenty-one years ago, Charles Hunter Montgomery set up a life insurance trust naming his daughter, Kimberly, as trustee. He was guided on the purchase by his longtime advisors at a major wirehouse firm in his hometown, who also agreed “to administer the investment account to maintain that life insurance policy .” (1) The policy, a $2M survivorship life policy on Charles and his wife, was [...]

Take the TOLI Challenge: Can You Answer This?

What steps should you take if a grantor says they want to surrender their policy? In the decade-plus that we have been managing life insurance for TOLI trustees, we have noticed that the weak link in their services usually is remediation. The inability to analyze policy options in changing situations is an area of future liability. Some trustees we have spoken with have surrendered policies [...]

Professional Designations: Training Your Staff Helps Your Team and Your Firm

Over the years, we at ITM TwentyFirst have been leaders in peer education. The TOLI Handbook, a free download available here as a PDF, provides industry peers with a single source guide for managing trust-owned life insurance (TOLI) trusts and policies. We have, over the years, provided hundreds of hours of professional CE for several professional designations. Our staff is encouraged and incentivized to seek [...]

Cryptocurrency Is Now a Life Insurance Investment – In France

Recently, the French government passed a law designed to provide the French economy with a more effective means of finance and to promote retirement savings, as well as employee stock ownership. The act - The Plan d'Action pour la Croissance et la Transformation des Entreprises (PACTE; Action Plan for Business Growth and Transformation) - “will facilitate access to diversified funding” and “provide companies with the [...]

TOLI Trustees Should Heed NY State Regulator Warnings on Universal Life Policies

The acting Superintendent of the New York State Department of Financial Services, reacting to almost "1,400" complaints from in-state consumers, recently issued an alert about universal life policies that provided insight for any trustee managing universal life policies. The alert focused on flexible premium universal life policies without secondary death benefit guarantees. As pointed out in the publication, universal life is meant to be a [...]

Life Settlement Market Is Healthy and TOLI Trustees Should Take Notice

Over the years, the life settlement industry has had its ups and downs. During its heyday in 2007 and 2008, consumers sold $12 billion in life insurance death benefits to investors in the secondary market. But the economic downturn dried up investor money, and as late as 2015, just $1.7 billion in death benefits changed hands. (1) For many years, life insurance provided just two [...]

Take the TOLI Challenge: Only Permanent Life Insurance Policies Can Be Sold, True or False?

Earlier this year we started the TOLI Challenge with the question: What is most important when determining the liability of a trustee’s actions? Click here for that answer.  Today, we have a follow up true or false question. Only permanent life insurance policies can be sold in the life settlement market, True or False? It may surprise you that the answer is false – some term [...]

Canadian Court Rules on Life Insurance Investment Scheme

Back in November, we wrote about the possible “squashing” of “investors’ hopes for unlimited returns using life insurance.” At that time, the government of the Canadian province of Saskatchewan altered the regulations for a specific universal life insurance policy that some investors had hoped would be their pot of gold. However, the regulation change did not affect a court case that has since settled in [...]

Trustee Alert: Managing Guaranteed Universal Life Policies

Universal life policies came into the market offering premium flexibility and transparency that was unknown in whole life policies. However, universal life policies lacked one thing those whole life policies had - death benefit guarantees. If you paid your premium on a whole life policy, the policy death benefit was guaranteed to be paid. The earliest universal life policies (current assumption) were fixed investment products [...]

Prudently Managing ILITs – It Is More Than Just Tracking a Policy

When we first ventured into the trust-owned life insurance (TOLI) servicing business, our lead product was a policy tracking and trust administration system - what is known today as InsuranceIQ, and it was light years ahead of anything TOLI trustees had at their disposal. At the time, most trustees simply got an in-force ledger every couple of years, along with a rating update for the [...]