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Accelerated underwriting:
the new paradigm for risk selection


The individual life underwriting landscape is rapidly evolving. The wave of the Baby Boomers at or nearing retirement has created a market shift toward a new generation of prospective life insurance buyers. The growing Millennial target market is challenging carriers to explore new ways of selling and underwriting life insurance. The traditional method of applying for life insurance is quickly becoming the exception rather than the rule, as more and more companies strive to improve the customer experience and expand their applicant pool by offering a faster and less invasive approach to buying life insurance.

Munich Re Life US conducted an accelerated underwriting (AUW) survey at the end of 2018 with the goal of capturing new and emerging trends in the U.S. individual life accelerated underwriting market. Responses were received from 28 participating companies. While the term “accelerated underwriting” may have once resembled a simplified issue program, today’s AUW programs are looking more and more like fully underwritten programs without the medical exam and fluid collection process. Each company’s AUW program is unique in that it reflects their current stage of adoption and the maturity of their individual program. This article highlights emerging accelerated underwriting trends and shares some key survey findings.

Contact the authors
Lisa Seeman
2nd Vice President & Actuary
Underwriting Risk Assessment & Research
Ron Schaber
Ron Schaber
Second Vice President, Underwriter
Biometric Research and Accelerated Underwriting Services