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Insurance Companies Sharpen Survivorship Portfolios.

Several insurers have improved or added to their survivorship life insurance products to adjust to the changes in estate-tax laws.

John Hancock Life Insurance Co. unveiled a product in September, Variable Estate Protection Edge, its second new product since estate-tax reform. The Edge product is intended to maximize cash accumulation through large premiums. Variable Estate Protection Plus, introduced earlier, may be more effective when business clients want high early-year cash values to minimize the charge to earnings or address other accounting matters, the company said.

The Phoenix Cos., Hartford, Conn., introduced Estate Legacy II, a survivorship universal life product, and Estate Edge, a survivorship variable universal life product. The latter guarantees the option of converting to a fixed universal life policy after the 15th policy year, and it offers adjusted cost-of-insurance rates that are lower in later years than in the previous VUL product. It also offers higher commission target premiums for producers.

New York Life Insurance Co. launched its Pinnacle Series for the estate- and business-succession planning market. The series includes two VUL products and a survivorship VUL. Among riders is one that provides a term insurance death benefit that allows policyholders to adjust the amount of coverage they need for each year. The rider can thus be used to change coverage as needed after 2010, when estate taxes are scheduled to return to levels before this summer. The rider can also be used to customize coverage to fit employer-sponsored plans, the company said.

Boston-based Manulife Financial has introduced two life products, Venture Variable Universal Life Protector and Venture Survivorship Variable Universal Life. Both products offer access to 60 investment options and a 20-year no-lapse guarantee, provided certain minimum premiums are paid.
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Publication:Best's Review
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 1, 2001
Previous Article:Zurich Life's Variable-Annuity Sales Up Despite Industrywide Downturn.
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