Now that AEP is over, we enter into the MAPD world of reduced commission advances for the next 11 months. What is a good way to keep up the cash flow? What about the business you left on the table with your turning-65 new-to-Medicare clients? Hospital Indemnity plans offer good commissions for agents year-around, and a unique opportunity for all those T-65’s you enrolled going back for the last 5 or so months.
Drop the excuses and sell Hospital Indemnity
Agents often tell me that Hospital Indemnity plans are too hard to sell, their clients are broke, underwriting is difficult, the clients enrolled in a supplement and so have no need for Hospital Indemnity, yada, yada. GTL (Guarantee Trust Life) has the cure. They offer guaranteed issue status to all applicants ages 64 ½ to 65 ½. How do you beat that? GTL may be a perfect fit for your MAPD clients who can afford a $40 or $50 premium. If you sold a supplement to a client who is still working, GTL can provide some loss of income protection for days spent in the hospital as well.
Have a new client in the age range 64 ½ to 65 ½ who anticipates a hospital stay later in the year? This plan is a slam dunk. Yes, there is a 6-month pre-existing condition clause. Accidents covered at issue, of course.
In my state, Arizona, GTL’s Hospital Indemnity plan pays around 50% commission for the first year, with a 9-month advance. Let’s do the math. My last guaranteed issue GTL application with a $39 monthly premium was submitted online on a Monday, and the approximately $200 advance was in my bank account on Thursday.
Start with Existing Clients
Okay, so where do I get the $2K teaser in the blog title? I am guessing that any busy agent that goes over the last 5 months of enrollments will be able to find at least 10 clients that fall into the guaranteed issue age range. Reach out to these clients about the benefits of having Hospital Indemnity coverage. Don’t stop there. The fully underwritten GTL can also be a gold mine. They have an easy “yes” or “no” online app, as well as a paper app. One of our top agents estimated that about 70% of his clients pass underwriting easily.
One of the best Hospital Indemnity training videos I have seen was produced by Bill Ellsworth, VP of Equitable. It is available on Equitable’s broker page as well as on YouTube. Check it out to get started on training.
For those agents working in areas where GTL is not available, of course, we also offer contracts for Equitable, Medico and other Hospital Indemnity plans with more traditional underwriting. If you do not have a Hospital Indemnity contract in your portfolio, or to request a specific market analysis for your area, give RBI a call at 800-997-3107 and talk to Charlie about these great products and how to present them.
Join Charlie Ferrell for a introduction to Hospital Indemnity with RBI’s Webinar Wednesday topic for January 18: “Mastering Hospital Indemnity!” Register now!
As the National Sales Manager, I have spent countless hours on the road, teaching agents, conducting training sessions, and hosting recruiting events. I have realized that, no matter how diverse my audiences may be, certain things are universal- such as the unmistakable way my audience’s eyes glaze over as soon as I mention Hospital Indemnity plans. Most agents understand Indemnity plans in theory. They also agree that it is important to include a variety of ancillary products in their portfolio. But when it comes down to it, the majority of agents do not bother to pitch Indemnity plans to their clients. Whether they don’t fully recognize the value, or the flat out don’t know how to sell it- RBI is here to help!
“Never leave money sitting on the table.” The old sales adage rings true. If you are not selling your clients an indemnity policy to complement their low-premium Medicare Advantage plan, that is EXACTLY what you are doing! Indemnity plans are extremely affordable, and you will quickly become your client’s hero once he or she experiences the benefits after that first hospital visit.
The primary concern of my Medicare Advantage clients is often, “How on earth will I pay for a hospital stay?!” I have also had several clients who grew frustrated with the high cost of Medicare Supplements, yet were afraid to switch to Medicare Advantage with their higher Hospital co-pays.. In either case, my solution was to enroll them into a low-premium (or no-premium) Medicare Advantage plan, along with a hospital indemnity plan for added coverage.
I never sign up a client for the “bare minimum.” It is better to have more coverage and not need it – than to not have it when you need it! Hospital costs continue to rise, and insurance plans evolve, but the health of my clients is generally not improving. I make sure to cover them for a hospital stay a little above and beyond the current hospital copay amounts. I do this because if a higher amount of coverage is needed at a later time, chances are they probably will not be healthy enough to pass the underwriting necessary to increase coverage. So far, not one of my clients has turned down the extra money they received from filing a claim.
RBI offers agents a variety of ancillary product carriers- GTL, Equitable, American Continental and Medico. GTL’s Advantage Plus plan is the only plan with a guaranteed issue period for ages 64 ½ to 65 ½. Bill Ellsworth, Vice President of Equitable, recorded an excellent presentation last year on how to sell hospital indemnity during a Medicare Advantage appointment. Frankly, it is probably the best training example I have ever seen, and I strongly recommend all Equitable agents seek it out on the Equiline broker site. Following Bill’s outline, I am confident you will be able to increase your commissions throughout the year.
Health products are the only products you can discuss during a Medicare appointment. You must make sure your client understands the need as you make your presentation. Show them the holes in their current plan, then fill it with an indemnity policy. All of the indemnity products can be cross-sold during an MA appointment. There is even a “Hospital Indemnity Plan” checkbox on the generic CMS-approved Scope of Appointment form most of us already use.
An Indemnity Webinar Invitation
Join us on Thursday, April 7th at 10:00 am (MST) for a webinar about how to cross sell indemnity products year round to protect your clients and increase your commissions. This is particularly important since carriers are now prorating all MA commissions other than a person that is new to Medicare.
My first insurance sales trainer loved to tell me, “Don’t leave money on the table.” When it comes to coupling hospital indemnity plans with Medicare Advantage, his advice resonates a little louder. Hospital indemnity plans are very affordable for your clients and pay excellent first-year commissions, often in the 50 percent range (Of course, commission varies by states).
Most hospital indemnity plans offer inpatient confinement benefits ranging from $100 to $600 as well as an ER benefit. Depending on the carrier, optional features include benefits for skilled nursing facility days, follow-up appointments, outpatient surgery and even payment for the dreaded observation status. A cancer rider is an important option you can review with clients when discussing hospital indemnity.
Guarantee Trust Life, Equitable and Medico are carriers we are proud to affiliate with and offer to our agents. Just click on our Carriers page for more information or contact us at the number below. For those of you who concentrate on the T-65 market, note that GTL’s Advantage Plus plan is guaranteed issue for ages 64 ½ to 65 ½.
Bill Ellsworth, VP of Equitable, recorded an excellent presentation last year on how to give a good explanation of hospital indemnity during a Medicare Advantage appointment. Frankly, it’s the best training example I’ve seen, and I refer all of our Equitable agents to Bill’s training located on the password-protected Equiline.com broker site. My contact information is below if you’re an Equitable agent and are interested in learning more about Bill’s winning presentation.
In fact, Bill came out to our Arizona office last year to give us additional pointers on presenting Equitable’s EquiCash product. He definitely made me a believer. If you follow Bill’s outline, you should be able to double your MA commission for a surprisingly large number of your AEP and Lock-In appointments.
Cross selling you say! Presenting a hospital indemnity plan with a Medicare Advantage plan is totally compliant with the Medicare Marketing Guidelines.
Hospital indemnity plans are right there on the Scope of Appointment form. If the CMS-approved Scope form you are using does not list hospital indemnity, Medicare Supplements and DVH products, I’ll be glad to email you a copy.
Finally, don’t forget the younger members of the household. Many of these hospital plans are offered from 40-80 years of age. They’re particularly reasonable for the younger folks and can really help fill in those hefty ACA deductibles. Just remember that hospital indemnity coverage is not minimum essential coverage.
For contracting opportunities with GTL, Medico and Equitable, and to receive more useful training content, call RB Insurance at (800) 997 3107 or email me.
Hospital indemnity plans, often referred to as HI, have become a valuable add-on for many Medicare beneficiaries. With Medicare Advantage plans’ increasing copays and coshares, these HI options can be a relatively inexpensive solution for your senior clients. Yet seniors are not the only ones who can benefit from HI — you have the opportunity to sell these plans to younger prospects who are not eligible for Medicare.
Make sure your non-Medicare client is enrolled in a health plan that meets the minimum essential coverage guidelines as defined in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) before you write. All Medicare clients enrolled in Medicare Part A or who have a Medicare Advantage (Part C) plan are deemed to have minimum essential coverage. The on-exchange and off-exchange ACA plans also meet the guidelines, as do most of today’s employee group plans and a limited number of other health plan types.
If your non-Medicare client does not have a plan that complies with the minimum essential coverage guidelines, you should not write him or her a hospital indemnity plan. The carrier will most likely not issue the policy, which would result in a declined application and a disappointed client. An explanation of CMS’ regulation and guidance on the matter is available — start at page 54 after clicking on the link.
RB Insurance works with numerous carriers offering Hospital Indemnity coverage, including GTL, Equitable, Medico and others. Visit our Carriers page to find immediate contracting opportunities.
RB Insurance-affiliated agents can explore the excellent commissions HI can generate with our available online training and one-on-one training. Call (800) 997 3107 or email me for more information.
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Find out how to sell Guarantee Trust Life hospital indemnity plans. Click here to contract with GTL today!
We all know our Medicare Advantage commission advance shrinks as the year progresses, so what can we do to maintain our income stream?
Guarantee Trust Life has your answer. Commissions for its Advantage Plus hospital indemnity plan are paid weekly, directly to you from the carrier, and simple yes-or-no underwriting makes for jet-speed submission. Advantage Plus helps fill the gaps in popular Medicare Advantage and ACA individual plans at a superbly reasonable premium, something your clients will undoubtedly appreciate.
What you and your clients can expect from this plan is impressive to say the least. For them, daily hospital confinement benefits range from $100 to $600 daily and are paid directly to the policyholder. Observation stays that last 24 hours or longer are also covered at 100 percent of the daily benefit, giving your clients peace of mind. Reach aging-in clients (guaranteed issue for 64 ½ to 65 ½ years old) with this plan and offer it to your younger, ACA-covered clients whose deductibles may still present a financial risk — Advantage Plus is issued starting at age 40.
Some of GTL’s Advantage Plus Hospital Indemnity’s other great features:
- Great first year and renewal commissions (50-55% First Year in most states!)
- Emergency room coverage is included in base plan and, there are four optional riders, including Lump Sum Cancer
- Presenting a hospital indemnity plan is totally compliant with Medicare Marketing Guidelines! Hospital indemnity plans are right there on the Scope of Appointment form.
Agents interested in contracting now with GTL and RB Insurance can click here. Call me, Tom O’Neil, at (800) 997 3107 if you’ve got any questions.
*This is not a GTL-approved advertisement for prospects and clients.