Will life insurance agents soon need to redefine their jobs?

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If Trump repeals the federal estate tax, higher-end agents may find themselves in wealth management.

High-end life insurance agents may have a career shift headed their way if President Elect Donald Trump follows through on the elimination of the federal estate tax. It is still unknown as to whether or not Trump will indeed proceed with that proposal. That said, if he does, it could force agents selling life insurance to high end clients to need to recreate their business models.

As of yet, it is unknown as to whether Trump plans to modify or eliminate the federal estate tax.

Moreover, when all is said and done, it could be that the federal estate tax will be left as it is. However, if Trump were to eliminate it as he has previously stated, life insurance agents may be playing new roles for their customers. This is particularly true if the gift tax is taken down at the same time as the estate tax.

This potential situation could leave insurance agents selling to wealthy customers in a position where their services are no longer needed. They would be redundant. Therefore, those agents could start to recreate their business plans in order to maintain their relevance to their clients.

There are still certain ways in which life insurance agents will be able to hold onto their current roles.

life insurance agents business planningFor one thing, the removal of the federal estate tax won’t mean that state estate taxes will be eliminated. Those will likely remain in place. Moreover, it is quite likely that the next time the Democrats take power, the federal estate taxes will be set back into place. Moreover, those wealthy customers will have the opportunity to purchase policies at lower rates due to improved health.

That said, those issues are not high level concerns for very wealthy Americans. Their financial strategies and challenges don’t align with those of the middle class. They purchase life insurance for different reasons.

Therefore, while federal estate taxes may be eliminated, there may still be a reason for the wealthy to continue to purchase life insurance policies for paying estate taxes in their states or to remain prepared for a return of the federal tax in the future. That said, they may purchase this coverage at a lower rate than is the current situation.

This being the case, life insurance agents selling to the ultra-wealthy will still likely have the opportunity to do so, but they may need to broaden their wealth management business model in order to keep up with changes to the tax ecosystem.

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