Large Age Gap Study

by Sydney Presley, LifeTrends Sr. Analyst

In today’s market, not all couples are similar in age. Many pairs of clients with larger age differences are also interested in purchasing life insurance. When looking at survivorship policies, can we advise these couples in the same way we advise clients closer in age? Does what we know about competitive positioning within the survivorship market hold up as clients’ age difference grows?

Our study revealed some unexpected answers. First, a general rule can be applied: outside of a few exceptions, products’ competitiveness with large age spreads (5 to 40 years) tends to reflect the same-age competitive positioning of the older client. Thus, it is best to first consider the competitive positioning of the product at the age of the older insured.

Favorable exceptions do exist, however, such as Principal’s SUL Protector II and Minnesota Life’s Eclipse Survivor Pro Indexed UL. As a couple’s age gap widens, these products improve from being average or worse to competing in the very top tier, especially when the age gap is 20 years or more. Because of this improvement, these carriers should always be considered for clients with notable age gaps, regardless of their initial competitive positioning.

Not all products look kindly upon these age differences. Previously competitive products that may falter with significant age differences include American General’s Secure Survivor GUL II and Penn Mutual’s Survivorship Plus IUL. In full-pay scenarios, these offerings are not as competitive when the age gap is 20 years or greater, no matter how the products show at the same older age.

So, the next time a couple walks in your door looking to buy a survivorship policy, you can feel safe knowing that the competitive landscape generally doesn’t shift just because of the age gap. As the age difference increases to a larger gap, make sure to illustrate Principal and Minnesota Life as well. With this in mind, you can take part in bridging the age gaps of love.

Age Limitations:

25-Year Age Gap Maximum:

  • Prudential

30-Year Age Gap Maximum:

  • American General
  • Penn Mutual