Principal® innovates underwriting process to help break down barriers to insurance coverage

Calls for united action to close protection gap at the Global Insurance Symposium in Des Moines, IA

Principal Financial Group® leader Neal Halder highlighted new trends in the underwriting process to eliminate barriers to coverage today at the 2018 Global Insurance Symposium in Des Moines, Iowa. Principal® reimagined their underwriting process with the introduction of Principal Accelerated UnderwritingSM to help overcome some of the barriers that stand between people and the protection they need.

“Principal is excited to be a sponsor of the 2018 Global Insurance Symposium and gather with hundreds of industry leaders from around the country,” said Halder, assistant vice president and chief underwriter at Principal. “Millions of people stand at risk of not being protected in the wake of an unpredictable life event. This conference brings together hundreds of leaders and decision makers who can do something about it.”

Recent market trends show that life insurance coverage in the U.S. has continued to decline1.

Approximately 60 million American households are under-insured and many do not have any insurance at all—representing a $12 trillion insurance coverage gap.

Outside of government policy implications, Principal research identified 3 reasons that keep people from getting the coverage they need.

  • Understanding what insurance is and what it is not
  • Inconvenience of the insurance application and exam process
  • Cost of insurance

The Principal Accelerated UnderwritingSM process is one example of innovation designed with the customer in mind. The program is designed to expedite the underwriting process with no exam requirements and no lab testing for qualified clients2.

“We are passionate about helping people and businesses grow and protect what matters most to them,” said Halder. “We are investing in efforts around the business as a part of our commitment to narrowing the widening insurance coverage gap in the U.S.”

Key takeaways from Neal’s presentation at the Global Insurance Symposium:

  • There are many opportunities for advisors to help consumers close the gap.
  • The underwriting process can be part of that solution but it alone won’t solve the problem.
  • The importance of our long-term commitment to policy holders and their families can’t be over-stated.

News Release Contact

Insurance & Group Benefits

Paula McCarty, 515-248-0417

1 The U.S. Mortality Protection Gap – An Update. Economic Research & Consulting, 2015.

2 Applicants may qualify based on age, product, face amount and personal history.

About the Global Insurance Symposium

Established in 2014, the Global Insurance Symposium is the premier symposium for insurance professionals and regulatory authorities to hear from the world’s most renowned insurance experts and to interact with fellow insurance industry colleagues from around the world. The Global Insurance Symposium is presented by the Iowa Insurance Institute, the Federation of Iowa Insurers, Iowa Economic Development Authority, the Greater Des Moines Partnership, the Global Insurance Accelerator, Insurance Thought Leadership, and the Iowa Insurance Division. For more information, visit To register for this year’s event, visit

About Principal®

Principal (Nasdaq: PFG) helps people and companies around the world build, protect and advance their financial well-being through retirement, insurance and asset management solutions that fit their lives. Our employees are passionate about helping clients of all income and portfolio sizes achieve their goals—offering innovative ideas, investment expertise and real-life solutions to make financial progress possible. To find out more, visit us at

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