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 [...]
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 [...]
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 [...]
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 [...]
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 [...]
Less than a year ago we reported that AM Best published a special report in which the rating firm issued a negative outlook on the US life insurance and annuity market. They cited the continuing low interest rates, a flattening yield curve, regulations, potential for market corrections and the need for innovation as the major reasons for the outlook. The report highlighted one potentially harmful [...]
What is most important when determining the liability of a trustee’s actions? Over the years, we have noticed that the knowledge of TOLI trustees varies from trust company to trust company. After publishing the TOLI Handbook in 2018, we thought we would “chunk it down” in 2019 with the TOLI Challenge—a series of questions designed to test the knowledge of the typical TOLI trustee. We [...]
We have three office locations across the United States, and as I write this, none will see 40 degrees as their high-temperature today, so it is no wonder we are looking forward to heading south to the sunshine of Orlando, Florida, for this year's Heckerling Institute of Estate Planning session from January 14-18. However, it is much more than that. It has been about 15 [...]
First, we want to thank all ITM TwentyFirst clients for another remarkable year of growth. Without the support of our partners at banks, trust companies, family offices, and law firms across the country, we could not sustain the growth that has made us the largest manager of in-force life insurance in the country. So, thank you for that. One reason for our growth over the [...]
As a TOLI trustee, you have a fiduciary responsibility to ensure that every transaction - either a new policy sale or replacement is not only suitable for your client, but also in your client’s best interest.
In our last blog, we wrote about remediation and the challenges that TOLI trustees have when managing a policy. Remediation is not just developing the best options for an under performing policy, increasingly it means maximizing the value of a policy that a grantor believes is no longer needed, or one whose expected funding has stopped. These decisions must be well-thought-out and every data point [...]
A TOLI trustee we work with received a request from a grantor tired of gifting to pay premium on his portfolio of whole life policies. His agent suggested that the three policies be replaced with one policy with a reduced death benefit. The existing portfolio totaled $5.7 million of coverage. The agent proposed transferring the $2.1 million of cash value into a $3 million equity [...]
As the federal estate tax laws changed in the last year, the use of new irrevocable life insurance trusts (ILITs) diminished, but the work required to administer existing ILITs went up along with the potential liability attached to the asset class. There are several reasons for this. As a country, we are aging and the population of the average TOLI portfolio is aging too. For [...]
Equity index universal life (EIUL) is the hottest product in the permanent life insurance marketplace. The “star of the life insurance show” according to one published report (1) that is touted as providing the upside of the equities market without the risk of loss. The carriers accomplish this by crediting the EIUL policy with the positive returns of an index (often the S&P 500 – [...]