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Edwards wants to cross the t’s for tele standards

Bright Grey product director Roger Edwards is calling for common definitions of tele-underwriting methods to remove confusion.

Most protection providers offer some sort of tele-underwriting, whether in-house or outsourced.

But Edwards says that some product providers offer “big T” tele-underwriting, which involves filling out the entire application form with the client over the phone, while others use “little t” tele-underwriting, which involves calling clients to clarify answers given on a paper or online application.

Some providers only ask clients the health questions over the phone. In some cases. qualified nurses ask clients questions while in other situations it is underwriters or trained interviewers.

Edwards considers that some benchmarks are nee- ded. He says: “We need a common understanding of what each level is. It is all very confusing. Perhaps we should call it a tele-application if it is the whole application form or tele-health questions if they are only asking the health questions.

“We need to make it clear what companies are talking about because advisers are getting confused.”

Master Adviser senior partner Roy McLoughlin says: “Conceptually tele-underwriting is a good idea but different companies have diff- erent definitions, which is causing confusion. I would welcome benchmarks for each type.”

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