As we move past the first quarter of 2022 and look ahead to the next several months, the world of technology in our industry continues to rapidly evolve and expand before our eyes. In early March 2022, my company InsurTech Express exhibited at the iPipeline Connections Conference in Las Vegas where insurance technologies took center stage. Companies like Bestow, Ethos, and Covr Financial have grown rapidly with investor funding to offer robust life insurance-focused solutions to their consumers.
Technology is being used more than ever to make it easier for advisors to complete insurance transactions with their clients without the cumbersome pain points present in a currently antiquated process. Gone are the days of 45-page applications, two-month underwriting timelines, and intrusive health examinations for coverage. The industry is full of thriving start-ups and established companies helping insurance consumers buy coverage in minutes, not weeks. Like many industries driven by technology, there continues to be development and investment from well know firms in the market.
Until now, much of our industry was focused on life insurance development, but Asteya has recently come onto the scene, moving InsurTech into Disability Insurance, which they like to call “Income Insurance.” Asteya has brought an Instant Issue Disability Solution to the market where general agency, IMO, and agents can make it easier for middle-market consumers to obtain coverage in 15 minutes by just clicking a link then answering a few questions. No financial underwriting, exams, medical records, or weighty paperwork required.
Joining the great evolution on the life insurance product side, the industry is now seeing solutions for Disability Insurance. As professionals in the industry, we know the need for our clients to have Disability coverage. The challenge has always been the difficulty to obtain it, not lack of product differentiation, and it can be price-prohibitive for certain clientele. However, with all those things in mind, one key factor remains true–most clients aren’t fully aware of what Income Insurance is and why it’s an important form of protection that they should be considering.
But let’s look at the facts. It’s stated that 90%, or 9 out of 10 individuals, underestimate their own chances of becoming disabled when in reality about 1 in 4 of today’s 20-year-olds will become disabled before they retire. Additionally, 1 in 8 workers will be disabled for 5 years or more during their lifetime with the average individual long-term disability claim lasting 31.6 months. The problem with that? Only about 40% of U.S. households have enough liquid savings to cover at least three months of their recurring expenses, with a little more than half of that 40% being able to cover at least six months. Disability Insurance, or Income Insurance, is an underserved area in our industry because of who it was originally meant to serve. However, Asteya is focused on using technology to make coverage accessible and easy to obtain while affordable enough that anyone from a gig worker to a CEO can be covered for the unexpected.
“Income Insurance coverage shouldn’t be considered a luxury in America,” said Hadi Radwan, Co-Founder at Asteya. “By using the technologies we have, we are building an approachable insurance ecosystem, not only for industry agents but for customers as well. Our goal is to make Income Insurance accessible for everyone so that we’re able to support people’s financial, physical, and even mental health for them to focus on living their lives without worry.”
We have seen how technology and apps have simplified many areas of our lives. From ordering a car or food to getting a quote on your home or car. While our industry does respect what has worked for years, we are also now at a crossroads of building our future–with technology. I know that I am curious to see how companies like Asteya continue to build out their offerings for a more technology-focused world, therefore allowing our world of insurance to expand and grow.
Ken Leibow is the Founder and CEO of InsurTech Express and a regular contributor to NAIFA's Advisor Today blog.