The overwhelming majority of carriers surveyed in Eastbridge’s 2015 Underwriting Practices of Voluntary Carriers Spotlight™ Report indicated that the guidelines for the voluntary/worksite industry as a whole have become somewhat or significantly more liberal. This includes liberalization of participation requirements, increased guaranteed issue amounts and decreased case size eligibility. Just 17 percent indicated that underwriting guidelines have stayed about the same, with none stating that the guidelines have become more conservative.
Carriers also indicated that, regardless of product or platform, guaranteed issue underwriting is the norm for most carriers. With the exception of a few of the individual products, all of the carriers surveyed offer guaranteed issue. If the amounts applied for exceed the guaranteed issue limits, most use a simplified underwriting approach.
The study also found that rate increases upon renewal are generally rare for voluntary cases. For those carriers that have implemented rate increases, however, the most frequent consequences are the case moving to another carrier or a drop in employee participation.
The 2015 Underwriting Practices of Voluntary Carriers Spotlight™ Report includes data from 22 carrier participants on such topics as group-level underwriting practices, advance approval process, minimum requirements (case size, eligibility, participation), medical underwriting guidelines, renewal underwriting guidelines, rate increases, and nderwriting time frames and standards. The report also examines several underwriting trends, including changes to participation, guaranteed issue and case size requirements. [Note: Product specific underwriting guidelines are not the focus of this study.]
The cost of the report is $3,000. To purchase, call
Eastbridge Consulting Group, Inc. is a marketing advisory firm serving insurance and financial services organizations in the United States and Canada.