Advisors need not fear APEXA

by Will Ashworth06 Nov 2015
This week’s been a busy one over at For Advisors Only, the insurance industry forum where advisors exchange ideas, ask questions and generally try to keep informed about the issues that affect their businesses.

The biggest advisor concern at the moment if you go purely by the number of posts on the FAO forum is APEXA, the for-profit organization working with insurance carriers and MGAs to deliver better communication between all the stakeholders participating in the insurance industry.

“APEXA appears to be a very straightforward initiative,” Toronto advisor Lawrence Geller told LHP. “In fact it results from a conversation I had with several people from Logiq3, who are actuaries, starting about four years ago where they asked what some of the biggest future problems that agents might have.”

Increasingly, compliance was consuming more of people’s time, possibly unnecessarily.

“There are multiple MGAs that many people deal with and within those MGAs there are multiple carriers they might deal with,” said Geller. “We discovered recently that even if we’re dealing with MGA ‘A’, they might not forward our license renewal to all of the insurance companies and so our commissions get held up and they won’t take new applications from us.”

That’s not good for anyone so APEXA’s come up with a way to ensure these oversights don’t fall through the cracks. Best of all they’ve managed to get the MGAs and insurance carriers to contribute to the costs rather than the advisors.

Not perfect by any means – there’s very little in the way of governance in place – APEXA recognizes that more work remains.

Here at LHP we’ve been having a hard time understanding why advisors are leary about the APEXA initiative.

Ken MacCoy has 39 years in the business; he’s seen a lot of initiatives come and go in his time.
As a result he’s learned not to worry too much about the small stuff. That doesn’t mean advisors shouldn’t take an active interest in what APEXA’s doing, merely that the insurance carriers and MGAs wouldn’t be involved if this didn’t make sense for advisors.

“I think that perhaps a lot of it has to do with the fear of the unknown,” certified health specialist Ken MacCoy told LHP. “Fear of change and what they’re [APEXA] trying to do.”

COMMENTS

  • by David A Gray 2015-11-06 2:09:17 PM

    In my 40 years in the business this may be the first time we actual achieve an objective to make it easier for advisors, distribution and Insurers. This is an all in effort that needs to be implemented by all parties to achieve the overall objective. We need to take advantage of integrated technology and this is one example that will have on going benefit in the years to come

  • by Roger Rhodes 2015-11-08 11:29:30 AM

    This sounds like an excellent initiative. After being in the captive agent field for 16 years I moved to the broker / MGA situation and having to "qualify" over and over again whenever I write a policy with a new insurer it get quite frustrating and time consuming. Now if we could just get all the insurance companies to agree on one application, and move to direct delivery of policies to the client, eliminating the unfair practice of having the client prove that they are still healthy at policy delivery, we would be getting somewhere.

  • by Life Insurance Canada.com 2015-11-16 7:15:34 PM

    I don't recall being asked to participate in this 'industry initiative' where a third party for-profit company is going to manage and control my data - without my input. That's not fear, that's an objection. This is simply the monolothic, MGA business model forcing their best interests on to advisors.

    Yes, advisors I speak to are objecting. Do MGA's care? No. Turns out independent advisors DO have a boss - and an unregulated one at that.