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Betty's Corner


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Betty White Endorses Life Settlement Providers

Not Born Yesterday

Many seniors have never heard of life insurance settlements, though these increasingly common financial tools may help them fund retirement. Created within the past 20 years, a life insurance settlement enables a senior to sell an unwanted or unneeded life insurance policy for immediate cash.

Life insurance settlements have become an even more viable financial option in recent years for several reasons. First, baby boomers are the best insured generation of Americans of all time. Many boomers have life insurance which was purchased primarily to protect their spouses and children. Others purchased it for estate tax reasons. There are billions of dollars worth of insurance policies held by baby boomers. A recent estimate by Conning suggested that the potential market for life settlements is more than $177 billion. Second, boomers need all the help they can get to help fund retirement. The baby boom generation, the 76 million Americans born between 1946 and 1964, have begun to reach retirement age. In fact, 10,000 boomers a day reach age 65, but many of them have no retirement savings. A recent Harris Poll confirmed that 25 percent of boomers have saved nothing.

However, the dire retirement picture for boomers is counter-balanced by this generation's unprecedented investment in insurance. We believe that life insurance, and specifically life insurance settlements, can come to the rescue.

As was mentioned earlier, life insurance settlements are a fairly new financial transaction. While some may think they are meant for the super rich or for individuals with large estates, the truth is that most seniors who have life insurance are likely to be eligible for a life settlement.

Most seniors learn about life settlements either through their insurance agent or directly from life settlement provider companies that advertise using direct mail and traditional advertising. There is also a tremendous amount of information regarding life settlements available online. The industry has become very mainstream in its marketing efforts: Our company even uses the country's most famous octogenarian Betty White as a spokesperson.

Wm. Scott Page is president and CEO of The Lifeline Program, a life settlement provider based in Atlanta, Ga. Page helped found the life settlement industry more than 20 years ago. Today, The Lifeline Program is leading the development of the U.S. life insurance secondary market by offering life settlements to seniors and fund services to a wide range of institutions including pension funds, endowments, hedge funds and insurance companies. For more information, call 770-724-7300 or visit www.thelifeline.com.

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