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New Technology, Rule Changes Headline 2019 Underwriting Improvements

You spoke. We listened. In response to your feedback, we’re making some changes to underwriting rules and processes that will speed up things and make us easier to do business with in 2019.

Non-Occupational LTD Rating

One immediate change is the removal of the occupation requirement for most Long Term Disability quotes and renewals for all states except California, District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, North Dakota, New York, and South Dakota. Employers will no longer need to submit occupational information on their employees to receive a quote for USAble Life Long Term Disability insurance.

“We understand this information can be hard to collect and can create a lot of extra work,” said Stephen Bankson, Vice President, Life & Disability Underwriting & Claims.

Occupational/job titles will be required only for the following types of organizations:

  • holding companies
  • non-classifiable general business services
  • employment agencies
  • employee leasing/temporary services
  • public groups (city or county police, fire departments)


Another exciting change is the implementation of Group Underwriting Rating Utility (GURU), our new custom-designed online rating system. GURU is an in-house system developed in close collaboration with our underwriting professionals to address some specific needs: 1) to speed up the underwriting process with more automation and 2) to more closely match each of our Blue partner distribution models.

“We will be able to quote much more efficiently and competitively with the improved reporting available with GURU,” said Bankson. “The information we need will come to us much faster, and partners will notice it.” The system is expected to go live in early 2019.

For questions or more information, please contact stephen.bankson@usablelife.com.

Jerald Martin Brings Fortune 500 Expertise to USAble Life Underwriting


Fifteen years ago, a friend told Jerald Martin he would be a good fit for an open role at an insurance company. He got that job as an underwriting manual rater. That was 2003, and he hasn’t looked back since. Jerald’s steady rise in the underwriting profession includes formidable experience as Director of Underwriting for Unum, a Fortune 500 life and disability insurer, and Cigna, a global health insurer.

Learn more about Jerald and all he brings to USAble Life and its clients.

He’s smart: Jerald holds a bachelor’s degree in business management from Belhaven University in Jackson, MS. He is currently pursuing an MBA at the University of Arkansas.

He’s talented: “People are usually surprised to know I play the saxophone. I’ve been playing since the sixth grade. I usually play in church and have played solos for several weddings.”

He’s interesting: “I love to travel, especially to New York City. So far, I’ve been to Europe, Asia, Mexico, and Jamaica.”

His first impressions: “It felt like a family community. I came to USAble from a competitor that employed about 10,000 people. I was surprised and pleased that USAble is small enough to know most people by name. I was also impressed that our senior leaders are accessible and easy to connect with.”

What he wishes others knew: “I wish people knew more about the great community of people who work here. I worked for two large insurers, and it’s impossible to feel connected to a lot of the employees. Here, we can connect easily. Being a smaller insurer allows us to move quicker and more efficiently than some of our larger competitors.”