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 Post subject: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 4:56 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:49 am
Posts: 3
TransAmerica's product TransCare is out on the market... From the looks of what i have seen so far the product is very competitive in pricing and more liberal than most in Underwriting!! Has anyone seen the same?


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 5:10 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 5:59 pm
Posts: 508
Location: Westchester County, NY
Just introduced in NY.
I'm not impressed with their U/W. Seems if you're taking an aspirin for a headache, you won't qualify for Preferred.

In NY, they offer a 40% spousal discount, which is unheard of. Sounds good, but do some apple-to-apple comparisons with them and other carriers at standard rates.

I was told that they would replace Allianz in product & price. Allianz was on another planet by themselves. Transamerica doesn't come close to Allianz in premium. I was a little disappointed.

Good company, good policy but not what I expected.
Arthur


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 8:45 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2007 8:15 pm
Posts: 179
Location: Atlanta,GA
Let me know if anyone can find a shared care feature on TA's product. Personally I do shared plans on 98% of all my married clients of a reasonably similar age.

I have their brochure.......but no shared care option to be found.

I recently met with a client who had just been talked into a TA plan from the prior agent. When I was through, they immediately cancelled the TA application and switched to Genworth (But they would have just as easily gone with Hancock)


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 9:01 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 5:59 pm
Posts: 508
Location: Westchester County, NY
No Shared Care option in NY.

The policy mimicks GE's older policies, where if you used their Care Coordinator, they added a bunch of benefits. Same thing with TA, use THEIR Care Coordinator and a number of benefits are enhanced.

We used to beat up on the GE policy for that reason and here comes TA with the same thing.

Yankee, you do 98% of your business with couples on a Shared Care Policy? I'd guess the majority of your business is with Hancock & Genworth. What benefit period do you mostly sell, 3 & 4 years?
Arthur


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 9:34 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2007 8:15 pm
Posts: 179
Location: Atlanta,GA
Arthur:

Depending on budgets, and other features, etc.....a 6-8 year shared plan (3+3/4+4) is pretty popular with my clients..... Makes sense to me too in general when you play the odds. Prudential is also in the mix of my shared plan options, mainly due to the cash alternative option.

Yankee (aka Herman)


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 10:26 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 5:59 pm
Posts: 508
Location: Westchester County, NY
So, Yankee does have another name.........

Too bad TA doesn't have a S/C policy. They have the same cash option as Pru, but @ 30% rather than 40%.

Not sure why, but I haven't done a whole lot of S/C policies in my career. I generally find that S/C runs about 10%-15% more than 2 individual policies. Is that about right?

One of the reasons is that I do about 55% of my business with the NYS Partnership Program, which does not offer S/C policies.
Arthur


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 10:36 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2007 8:15 pm
Posts: 179
Location: Atlanta,GA
for me.....a 6 year shared is a better value than a 3 and a 3. How do you tell the client that if one of them needs 4 years, they are stuck with paying the one year themselves since they saved a few dollars with a 3/3. A few dollars more gets them a lot more protection....and protection is what we are supposed to be selling. What if one person uses the whole 6 and there is nothing left for the other person? I say GOOD!!!! they got their monies' worth from the policy. Better than paying for three years yourself and then hoping you get alzheimers one day so you can use your half. :D

When I show the difference between shared and non-shared...NO ONE buys the 3/3...they buy the 6. I guess you sell what you believe in. My wife and I have a 10 year shared PC plan with Genworth, but I now think it is overkill. Guess time will tell.


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 11:19 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 5:15 pm
Posts: 137
Curious. How and why did Genworth, or John Hancock would have, been that much better than TA?

What were the TA weakneses?


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 8:42 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2007 8:15 pm
Posts: 179
Location: Atlanta,GA
well....although I have not done any exhaustive reviews, how about you tell your client that you would recommend a carrier that can't seem to make up their minds whether to be in the LTC marketplace or not. They used to sell it, then they discontinued selling it, and they decided to sell it again......hmmmmmmm....whats wrong with this picture?

For me, not offering a shared plan is a minus. Else, on paper, the features look fine, and you could certainly sell it without a problem if presented well. If you have a client real anxious to do a single pay, it is offered. Cash options compare to Mutual/United of Omaha if you like that feature. Else, it is just one more A rated company (last I checked) with some good A+ options out there along with companies that are simply "too big to fail". 8)

as far as underwriting, that I have no idea, but would like to know where they may be more lenient than the top tier players.

I'd say fine to sell their life insurance, but for me, no need to add their brochures to the pile I already have in my trunk.


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 11:16 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 5:59 pm
Posts: 508
Location: Westchester County, NY
Herman,
Fair points.
Nothing against TA as a company and/or a policy. It's a good policy, however, there are 10 other companies in NY that sell "good" policies. Not sure there's really a need for another one.

If their prices were more in line with Allianz, (as I was led to believe they would be) they would have taken a pretty good market share away from the other carriers. But, as I stated earlier, at Standard rates, even with a 40% spousal discount, they're nothing to write home about.

Bill, no glaring weaknesses in their policy. No Shared Care, and only Preferred & Standard ratings. Very difficult to qualify at Preferred. In reviewing their U/W guide, I would suggest that all apps be submitted at Standard.

They do have a cash-alternative of 30%, similar to Pru's @ 40%. They also have a built-in 0-day elimination period for home care. A provider must be licensed and affiliated with a home health care agency, unless one used their care-coordinator and then they can be licensed, but independent. Home modifications are also available, but again, only with their care coordinator.

Although they do offer a single-pay, that's not available in NY. Personally, I don't think a single-pay should be allowed anywhere. If someone cuts a single-pay check and then dies the following year, all that premium is lost. I don't believe that any state Insurance Dept. should allow that.

Also Herman, not sure about other states, but in NY, on a S/C policy, if the other spouse's benefits are tapped into, they must be left with a minimum of 1 years worth of benefits. So, on a S/C 3+3, the max that one spouse could use would be 5 years.
Arthur


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 12:13 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2007 8:15 pm
Posts: 179
Location: Atlanta,GA
As an example, on a Genworth policy...if you have a 6 years shared....it is a 6 year shared (at least here in Georgia)...so you can burn the entire 6 year benefit with one person on extended claim....leaving nothing for the spouse. JH will let you buy another year if you exhaust it all. I know nothing about NY rules. GA is a partnership state, but obviously has its own rules.

Herman


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2009 3:19 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:49 am
Posts: 3
To answer a few questions: TransCare doesn’t have a Shared Care option in any of the states unfortunately (one thing I dislike about the product), I kept seeing in all the post something about being issued more so at a standard then preferred... To be honest with you, I am a wholesaler for TransAmerica and I have seen more policies go in at a standard to underwriting and come back out at a preferred rating.. I have NEVER seen this many with any of our other carries that my company represent. I will not by any means put any carrier down but this will be the next hot LTC product in my opinion... I work with this product in all states and for the most part it beats the competition... Just a few things I personally like about the product (not all benefits are in all states): First off, the Cash Benefit (Alternative Payment Benefit) BUILT IN 1st day, 1st Day Home Health Care and Adult Day Care, 5 Year Rate Guarantee built in (you may say, well that doesn’t mean anything, which for the most part is true, BUT you can choose up to a 10 Year Rate Guarantee and a 10- Pay and your guaranteeing that your clients premium will never go up-what other carriers can say that!), and last but definitely not least is their U/W- 6 underwriting classes! From what I have seen so far they are going to be liberal in a lot of cases !!! Now think about this… You add all of those benefits into some of the other carriers plans don’t you think that it is going to raise the premiums a substantial amount? I compare prices all day with competitors and to be honest with you in most cases TransAmerica beats the competition and these are the basic plans for each carrier.. Now about the single pay comment- you can choose a return of premium and make sure your family gets your money back, I see it like this if your 40 years old and you have the cash to do it and save a substantial amount why not!?!?! I hate to ramble on and on about this but I truly believe they are back in to stay in to : As you know, the AEGON group, is comprised of several companies with Transamerica being one of them. During the 90"s all AEGON companies were selling LTCi separately with each being their own profit center. Selling LTCi through AEGON, Transamerica, PFL,Monumental and a couple of other companies proved to be pretty complicated with each having their own product, underwriting, rates and markets. About 5 years ago the AEGON group made a decision to stop selling all LTCi products to review just what they had to see if it was a business they wanted to commit to. After several years of review they decided to reenter the market using only the Transamerica company product (TransCare). Oh and one more thing the 40% spousal discount is nice, but listen to this- If you have a husband and wife applying in good faith and one gets declined, they will still give the accepted client the 40% discount… Nice right? I’m eager to see what I’m going to get back………?


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2009 4:10 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 5:59 pm
Posts: 508
Location: Westchester County, NY
Hi jesch,
I appreciate your input.

I can't comment on TransCare in every state. I'm in NY and here, TA only offers 2 rate classes. Preferred & Standard. I haven't spent a lot of time with their U/W guide yet, but after a quick review, I stand by my earlier comment that I wouldn't feel comfortable putting any app through with a Preferred rating.

Some examples of standard rate:
synthroid for a hypothyroid
history of gall stones
Glaucoma
osteopenia

All of the above are preferred with just about every company.

In NY we have a 3-year rate guarantee, not 5 years. Yes,
on the surface a 10-year rate guarantee with a 10-pay technically makes sense, but the premium for 55 yr. old single with $250/day for 5 years and a 5% cmp. inflation rider will cost almost $17,000/yr. Unless it's for a business, I'm not sure that many of these are sold.

The point about one spouse receiving the 40% discount if both apply in good faith and only one policy is issued makes sense only because if they took away the 40% for the insurable spouse, no one would take their policy. You would have to agree that rates for singles are off the chart. And over 50% of my business is done with singles.

I've been waiting for almost 3 weeks to get Appointed with TA. They must have a huge backlog, so I have not yet done my due diligence on their contract, which I will do shortly.

I was disappointed because I was led to believe that they would be competitive with premiums from Allianz. Not the case, not even close.

The 30% cash alternative is nice, but Pru also has a cash alternative and it's 40%. Ditto the 0-day EP for home care. But, you can purchase that as an option with most other carriers and it's standard with Genworth.

Maybe I'm missing something, but I just don't see any groundbreaking on the TA policy.

I'm not knocking the company or product. As I previously stated there are 11 other companies in NY and most offer a good policy, as does TA. At the end of the day, I'm not sure where they'll fit into the mix.
Arthur


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2009 8:36 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:49 am
Posts: 3
No i agreee... In NY they do not have a competitive product... But in other states they do... And yes they are a little backed up with contracting but i can get them put through pretty quick...


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 Post subject: Re: TransAmerica's NEW LTC
PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 12:30 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 12:21 am
Posts: 1
The following is from the Transcare Brochure regarding spousal discounts. This seems to disagree with statements made as to the discount if one is declined. Am I incorrect?

Spousal Discount
TransCareSM provides a premium discount for couples who apply for and maintain
the same coverage under the same policy series Couples may be eligible for a
discount of up to 40% compared to like benefits at standard individual rates.


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