Insurance News

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April 8, 2014

Missouri Department of Insurance offers annuity resources

Annuities can provide steady income after retirement

Jefferson City, Mo. - The Missouri Department of Insurance recommends that all Missourians review their retirement income strategies during National Retirement Planning Week, April 7-11. The department offers free, online resources that can help consumers better understand if annuities might be beneficial additions to their retirement plans.

Annuities are investment products sold by insurance companies. Consumers buy annuities to generate income or interest on their savings. A consumer pays a lump sum or makes periodic payments to the insurance company. In exchange, the annuity provides periodic payments to the consumer.

"As consumers plan for their retirement, they may want to consider annuities as a way to safeguard their financial future," said John M. Huff, director of the department. "While annuities can be beneficial, they also can be confusing, and not suitable for everyone. Consumers are encouraged to visit our website and work with a trusted insurance producer for more information." 

 ANNUITIES

There are several types of annuities available with varying levels of risk and guarantees. It is important to understand the different types and benefits offered before you select one.

Consumers should contact a licensed agent or broker to make sure an annuity is the right fit for their retirement package. As with other major purchases, consumers should shop several insurance companies. Don't get pressured into buying an annuity.

If you are dissatisfied with an annuity once you receive it, Missouri law allows a "free-look" period. Once you receive the policy or contract, you have 10 days to cancel it and get a full refund of premium payments. 

Consumers can get more information about annuities by calling 800-726-7390, or visiting the department's annuities FAQ page.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners' Insure U also has retirement resources for consumers, including baby boomers facing the challenges of caring for aging parents while paying college expenses for their children. Insure U also has insurance resources for seniors nearing retirement. The NAIC offers free consumer guides on annuities.

About the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions & Professional Registration

The Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration (DIFP) is responsible for consumer protection through the regulation of financial industries and professionals. The department's seven divisions work to enforce state regulations both efficiently and effectively while encouraging a competitive environment for industries and professions to ensure consumers have access to quality products.

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