A felon serves a length prison term; he may have an unstable career history.
This makes it challenging for a felon to start a professional career all over again.
The question however arises here with regards to how does a felon become a Life Insurance Agent? Can a felon become a Life Insurance Agent even with an outstanding felony charge?
This article covers the following aspects:
- Role of a life insurance agent
- Eligibility criteria to become a life insurance agent
- Does a life insurance agent require a license?
- Process of background verification check
- What types of felonies disqualify a felon to become a life insurance agent?
- How does a felon earn a required qualification?
- Process of Self Background Verification check
Role Of A Life Insurance Agent
Life Insurance agents are specialists in selling policies for insurance that pay a substantial amount to beneficiaries when a policyholder dies.
Life insurance agents also sell retirement plans that guarantee a regular income post-retirement.
A life insurance agent is responsible to meet potential clients and gather their personal information such as marital status, occupation, and sources of income. He focuses on analyzing parameters such as expenses, savings and income earned to provide a suitable quotation on a life insurance policy. A life insurance agent also earns a percentage based on the premium of the insurance policy purchased by the client.
Eligibility Criteria To Become A Life Insurance Agent
A felon can become a life insurance agent if he meets the following eligibility criteria
1 The age of the felon should be 18 years or above.
2 A felon must be a US citizen.
3 He must be a high school graduate.
4 A felon must reside in a particular state where he would like to become an agent
5 Becoming a life insurance agent does not require a specific degree.
6 Some companies in the insurance sector give preference to a college degree.
7 A professional degree in areas of business, management, marketing, finance is recommended.
8 A felon must appear for a pre-licensing life insurance exam as this is different from one state to another.
9 The total number of study hours is 20 to 50 depending on the state requirement.
10 The life insurance program must be completed from a recognized institute or university, or through distance learning.
11 All new insurance agents receive adequate on-the-job training from an organization before being hired.
Does A Life Insurance Agent Require A License?
A felon who becomes a life insurance agent must pass a licensing exam which equips him with insurance laws of the state and insurance concepts for each category.
Every state has distinct licensing requirements for insurance agents.
Licensing requirements are based on the kinds of insurance you sell.
Life and health insurance agents should pass the licensing exam that covers primary aspects of life insurance, health insurance, and annuities.
All felons who become life insurance or health insurance agents must continue their education after passing the licensing exam.
Process of background verification check
Background verification check differs between states.
Every state would like to know whether a felon has a good character or not.
A felon must demonstrate honesty, integrity, and trustworthiness to survive in the life insurance industry.
It is an agent’s responsibility to safeguard the interests of clients along with their financial status.
These clients work with those agents who they can trust openly.
Background verification checks are completed with or without fingerprint analysis.
Fingerprint analysis plays a critical role to identify records of felony or conviction against felons who want to become life insurance agents.
Some states do not conduct a fingerprint analysis; these states rely on the history of a felony conviction for the last 7 years.
This can be revealed in the background verification check.
What Types Of Felonies Disqualify A Felon To Become A Life Insurance Agent?
1 Felons who have committed serious felonies are permanently barred and cannot apply for an insurance license.
2 A felony involving money laundering, fraud, or felony related to causing damage to financial services. These create a permanent barrier for felons to apply for a license.
3 Due to the permanent bar, felon’s civil rights will not be restored.
4 Other felonies generally wait to complete their education before applying for a license.
5 The bar that involves educational qualification can also terminate an insurance license based on convictions or a guilty plea.
6 If moral duties and values were harmed, this leads to a permanent bar.
7 A felon is disqualified for 7 years if a felony is related to financial services.
8 Dishonest, felons who breach trust or violate any state laws are given a sentence of 5 years and they are liable to pay a fine of 5000 dollars.
How Does A Felon Earn A Required Qualification?
Felon must re-establish himself in the insurance sector.
A felon must demonstrate traits like integrity, honesty, and trust.
If a felon continues to breach trust from a financial relationship, he remains barred from the issuance of an insurance license.
A felon needs to get a waiver (1033) along with a career offer.
The state insurance commission conducts a waiver review to assess whether a felon is suitable for a license. The waiver review consists of the following activities
- Documentation related to felony
- Nature and adversity of felony
- Time period since felony occurred
- Total number of felonies or other events of similar nature
The commission would gather circumstantial evidence for the crime and its relationship with the practice of insurance sales.
The insurance commission also conducts an assessment of the following parameters which include employment, education, active participation and treatment, payment involved in restoration for clients, other activities for rehabilitation.
Process of Self Background Verification Check
A self-background verification check assists a felon to identify threat areas that can lead to rejection of insurance license applications by state insurance commissions during a background verification.
Felons can also raise their queries or concerns with an attorney.
It is not advisable to risk possible results of a background verification check which can clear a felon’s record.
A felon must run a complete background verification check for themselves.
There are multiple resources available to do so.
A felon must honestly and truthfully disclose all relevant information related to his involvement in a felony.
If however, the information disclosed by a felon and details revealed in a background verification check do not match, the chances of obtaining a license become difficult.
Mismatch details can also send a felon back to prison.
Felons can lead an honest life when they become insurance agents. This can help them gain a clear record during background verification checks.
How Does A Felon Become An Effective Life Insurance Agent?
A felon evaluates the following parameters for selling a suitable insurance policy
- Assesses a client’s need
- Explores suitable options
- Provides policies to meet client needs
- Ensures a policy offered is current.
- An insurance agency can hire a felon to sell products offered by them.
- Some felons can also work as independent insurance agents and offer a wide range of insurance products and services.
It is however the responsibility of the felon to make efforts to obtain an insurance license. It also allows him a fair chance to succeed by obtaining a clear record of a felony.
Accurate documentation, education, and training play a critical role in developing the skillset of an insurance agent.
A supportive network of family and friends along with employers who can create a potential difference in the lives of felons are required to create more career opportunities and learning platforms to succeed in this industry.