Top Five Ways to Get Annuity Apps Processed Faster

Sentinel is a great company to work for because they provide their employees with many chances to develop their careers internally. I can attest to this because I was just promoted from a new business annuity processor to a graphic designer in marketing! It’s an exciting time for me and Sentinel and I can’t wait to see what comes next.

Part of my new job in marketing is to assist agents with annuity questions I receive through e-mail or over the phone. I get a lot of questions from agents and marketers about our products and services. Fortunately, because I worked in new business as a processor, I have a special perspective on the entire client annuity application process, from start to finish.

So, I’m here to share with you some tips and tricks on making sure your application gets approved quickly! Here are the top five things you can do to ensure a faster processing time.

1. Double check all signature pages. One of the most common errors we receive is when an application has an incomplete signature page. Some signature pages even require additional information such as the city, state, and zip code of where the signature was taken. Double checking the application to make sure all signatures are complete will ensure much quicker processing.

2. Make sure you send us all the paperwork that will be required in order to approve the annuity. If the person approving an application does not have all the necessary paperwork, they have to send it back to processing so that they can track down what is missing. This could take days or even weeks if they can’t get a hold of the agent and/or client in a timely manner. If you applications are complete with all required forms including state-specific forms, we can approve the annuity much faster.

3. If the funds are arriving via transfer or a 1035 exchange, make sure to provide us with all of the transfer company’s information, including their overnight mailing address, fax numbers, telephone number, contract number, maturity date, etc. Many transfer companies require original paperwork, so double check that requirement before sending us a faxed copy of an application. Also, make sure the client’s information is filled out completely on the form, and that they sign and check all appropriate boxes. It also helps speed up the process if you can provide a copy of their statement, and any additional information that the company would require in specific cases (surrender paperwork, certificates, etc.).

4. Follow up with the processors. Our new business processors can be responsible for over 100 applications at any given time. That’s a lot of paperwork! Our processors have a standard follow-up time for each application that is scheduled in their calendar. However, if you have additional information, forms, or corrected paperwork make to submit, be sure to follow up with the processors. If you don’t know what is going on with your application, please call us at 1-800-247-1423, option 4. Our processors and representatives will be happy to work with you on application statuses.

5. Last but not least, don’t be afraid to contact us during our normal business hours (open earlier now at 7 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday, Mountain Time) if you have any questions or concerns. We are happy to assist you with any questions you may have.
We have a fantastic customer and agent support team that can answer your questions and get you the help that you need in order to process your apps quicker. We love working with our agents and want our agents and clients to have a positive experience with us! As always, we look forward to our continued partnership. Thank you for choosing Sentinel Life.

Blog written by: LeiLoni Tilley, Graphic Designer for

A.M. Best Rating and Why It’s Important

If you are new to the insurance world or have just become an agent, you may hear a lot about what a company’s A.M. Best rating is. Nowadays, most clients looking to purchase insurance or an investment product will conduct their own due diligence concerning how well the insurance company is rated—looking especially at how A.M. Best rated the company. An A.M. Best rating is what most customers and agents will inquire about since A.M. Best is one of the oldest (113 years and counting) and most trusted third-party rating experts in the insurance industry.

Many of you probably already know what an A.M. Best rating stands for and why it’s so important in insurance sales. For a new agent, understanding the importance of a positive A.M. Best rating is very important in the insurance world.

Founded in 1899, A.M. Best is a credit rating organization dedicated specifically to rating the insurance industry. A.M. Best issues financial strength ratings measuring insurance companies’ ability to pay claims and measure risk. It also rates financial instruments issued by insurance companies, such as bonds, notes, and securitization products. Anyone who is anyone in the insurance world refers to Best’s ratings and analysis as a means of assessing the financial strength and creditworthiness of risk-bearing entities and investment vehicles offered by insurance companies.

It’s important to understand as well that A.M. Best ratings are given out like the grades you received in school—A++, A+, A-, B++, B+, B and so forth. On the A.M. Best chart, anything B+ or above is considered a “good” rating or in their “secure” category. When the economic crisis hit in 2008, many well established “A” companies dropped to low B’s or even C’s. Sadly, some of these companies ended up dropping to an F grade. F’s were bad in school and they are bad in the financial world as well.

Sentinel’s grade has remained a B++ even during the roller coaster ride of 2008 and we were recently just affirmed again as a B++ (good), secure company in a June 6, 2012 A.M. Best press release. If you are new to Sentinel, you can feel good about making the choice to partner with us. We’ve been in this business since 1948 and have continually offered a diverse and growing array of insurance products along with the security and peace-of-mind our valued policyholders and partners are accustomed to.

In elementary school, a child would often justify their argument with a: “…well, Teacher said so!” In this case, “…A.M. Best said so.”

Blog written by: Amy Mullen, Marketing Communications Manager for

Why Sentinel?

As President of Sentinel Security Life Insurance Company, I’m often asked, why I stand behind this company? Why Sentinel?

We have our business answers of course. We have been serving the needs of the senior community for over 60 years by offering affordable final expense whole life policies to ease the stress of losing a loved one. We’ve expanded our product line to include Medicare Supplement and Select Options and just last year, we released our fixed annuity product that offers our customers some of the highest crediting ratings around. Those are all great reasons to choose Sentinel but I like to focus on one of our greatest company assets: our people.

Visit our corporate office in Salt Lake City, Utah and on every floor, at least three to four of our home office employees have been with our company for 20+ years—some of them for over 30 years. Why do our people stay so long? Because they love what they do—they work hard to provide the absolute best customer service in the industry and they help our senior clients find the peace-of-mind and security that they are looking for. Our people are what make Sentinel stand out from the crowd.

If you aren’t familiar with Sentinel Security Life Insurance, I encourage you to check out our website at http://www.sslco.com where you will find a common list of Frequently Asked Questions about our products and services. Even better, give us a call at the corporate office (855-478-4037). Our wonderful people will be here to answer.

Blog written by: Earl Tate, President of