Please see attached the chart page from a Transamerica Financial Foundation Indexed Universal Life (FFIUL) policy. A California WFG agent sold this policy to a client earlier this year. Transamerica buries this very important chart deep down in its policy paperwork.
This chart's numbers are Cost of Insurance (COI) charges. Carriers also call them Mortality Charges. For Universal Life (UL) policies--like the FFIUL--COI charges are a constant--and constantly growing--part of your monthly premium.
At first these COIs look small and harmless. But when you add in their multipliers, they swell to enormous charges that threaten to destroy your policy. **If you live to your 80s and older, you can pay much more than your Death Benefit. How can that possibly make any sense for a policyholder to pay?!
Let’s do an example together. You are a healthy non-smoking 35 year old male who buys this policy. You choose a $500,000 death benefit.
Look in the second column on the left, titled “MALE MONTHLY COST OF INSURANCE PER $1,000.” Trace down that column to age 35. You see “0.09333.” This means that, at age 35, you pay $0.09333--a little over 9 pennies--per $1,000 of Death Benefit per month.
“Gee, only 9 cents. Sounds low right?” Not so fast! First you need to multiply $0.09333 by 500. Why? Because you pay 9 cents just for each $1,000 of death benefit. Remember, you bought $500,000 of total Death Benefit. Thus you have to multiply $0.09333 by 500. That gives you a COI charge of $0.09333 by 500 = $46.67 per month. Then you have to multiply that by 12 to get your yearly COI charge. In this case $46.67 x 12 = $559.98 per year.
See how it works? To calculate how much COI you have to pay each year, you have to multiply that year’s monthly COI charge by *6,000.* That’s 500 (for your total Death Benefit) x 12 (months in a year). 500 x 12 equals 6,000.
Now all you have to do is go down the column and multiplying each year’s COI by 6,000. That’s
Age 35: $0.09333 x 6000 = $559.98
Age 36: $0.09750 x 6000 = $585.00
Age 37: $0.10333 x 6000 = $619.98
Age 85: $9.98583 x 6000 = **$59,914.98**
WHOA! What just happened there?! At age 85, you pay almost $60,000/year? Almost *$5,000 per month?* Indeed that's -over- $5,000/month when you add in all premium fees.
I’m afraid it’s true! In your twilight years, your FFIUL becomes enormously expensive. So expensive, you are most likely forced to drop it and lose everything you put into it.
Let’s make the math super easy. Let’s say you’ll die at age 85. All you need do is add up the COI charges from ages 35 to 85. Then multiply that by 6,000. It comes to $1.023815 x 6,000 = $614,289. Over $100k more than your Death Benefit.
If you live to 90, it’s worse--MUCH worse. You pay $1,018,374. That’s over a -million dollars-. Twice as much as your Death Benefit.
Wait. You pay over a million dollars for a $500k policy?? Again, how can that possibly make any sense for a policyholder to pay?
Using this simple math I showed you here, please ask your WFG agent how the FFIUL can possibly make sense for anyone who expects to live even a reasonably long life. Please don’t let your WFG agent pass off your question with a vague claim that “your money will grow to cover this.” Please make your agent -prove- to you that your money's growth will cover these enormous late-life charges. Insist he use a hand-held calculator --NOT Transamerica’s Illustration software that can hide numbers and other data from you. Also very important: Ask your agent to do the math at 5% average annual Rate of Return which is close to the long-term stock index rates of Return. That’s very important. You don’t want your WFG agent to use the fantasy 8% and higher Rates of Return that less scrupulous agencies typically use.
It’s almost certain your WFG agent will be at a total loss to defend the FFIUL by the numbers. In his May 25th 2016 review, author William3 lays out a compelling argument for why you'll wish to avoid this policy. It’s titled “World Financial Group - Plan to live a long life? Will your FFIUL--WFG’s “top” product--FAIL and leave you with NOTHING? I show you the MATH." If you bought the FFIUL, I urge you to follow the procedure that William3 spells out for you there. Do this before you meet with your WFG agent so you are fully prepared. Knowledge is power.
WFG agents, if you see any problems with the reasoning and math I present here, please let us hear from you. Thank you.
Reason of review: Concerns about Transamerica FFIUL.
World Financial Group Cons: Concerns about transamerica ffiul policy.