John Hancock Financial Services, in an effort to expand distribution of its long-term-care insurance line, has introduced a fixed annuity for the bank channel with a long-term-care benefit.
The GPA Care benefit annuity comes out just over a year after the Boston insurance carrier launched its successful Revolution Value Annuity, a variable annuity with a long-term-care rider for multiple channels.
Tim Waterworth, vice president of John Hancock Financial Institutions Group, said that GPA Care is based on the same concept as Revolution "but having it as a fixed annuity makes sense because not everyone is risk-tolerant enough to buy a variable."
GPA Care, a one-time deposit product, has a six-year surrender charge. It also has a six-year wait before the policy can be activated, as well as a 100-day elimination period before long-term-care benefits can be claimed. Revolution has a seven-year surrender charge and a seven-year wait in addition to a 100-day elimination period. Revolution lets investors opt into the long-term-care piece; with GPA this is automatic.
Mr. Waterworth said the GPA Care annuity offers banks an opportunity to talk to their customers about long-term care benefits.
"These products don't require underwriting, and I think that's a key," Mr. Waterworth said. "Since there is a six-year wait, there is no need to underwrite the product."
The GPA Care annuity lets investors 40 to 59 years old put as much as $70,000 toward the long-term-care benefit. Buyers between 60 and 69 may put in a maximum of $100,000 toward the benefit, and those 70 to 79 can invest up to $200,000.
"I think it has a promising future because people have been reluctant to buy long-term-care products in the past because they think they are wasting their money," said Ken Kehrer, president of the Princeton, N.J., consulting firm Kenneth Kehrer Associates. "Here, they are buying it through their investments."