So what’s AICPA and what does it have to do with insurance?
I was wondering the same thing myself until I did a little research. It’s the American Institute of CPAs.
…and as an aside, I think CPAs get a bad rap. I mean there are hundreds of silly jokes about accountants…
But if you ask me they’re financially savvy, which is pretty cool in my book. I personally think this quality is highly undervalued!
So, back to my review. AICPA offers life insurance to its members. Yep!
Sometimes, insurance offered through a membership organization is a GREAT choice – but not always.
Let’s find out if AICPA delivers the goods right now!
…A word or two of advice…
BUT before I get into the meat and potatoes of this article – let me share a bit of advice.
Even if you think AICPA life insurance works for your insurance needs – use an independent agent to SHOP AROUND before you sign on the dotted line!
Yep. I don’t just say this because I’m an independent agent. I ALWAYS give this advice.
It’s the BEST way to find the BEST policy for your family – at the BEST possible prices.
Oh, and by the way, if you are looking for life insurance, we just happen to have the finest agents in the biz. After you speak to AIPCA give us a call!
Think saving money on life insurance is as easy as getting a quick online quote? Think again! You need an expert guide. We know the right companies for every age, health issue, and need.
It’s quick and easy! Get started with a free life insurance quote now!
A Little Bit About AIPCA
The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) has been around since 1887 and is the world’s largest member association!
If you’re in the accounting profession, you qualify for membership AND with more than 418,000 members in 143 countries, this is QUITE the organization!
AICPA is also a standard-setter for ethics, and develops and grades the Uniform CPA Examination. This organization also offers specialty credentials for CPAs.
Does AIPCA Sell Insurance?
They provide you with access to special deals they negotiate with partners such as Transamerica Life Insurance Company, New York Life, and AON Insurance to name a few.
What does this mean for you?
Well, not a whole lot – except that AICPA is NOT an insurance company. In other words, this is not their specialty, although they do go to very reputable companies to fulfill those needs.
Ok, Chris, I’m an accountant and would love to see what sort of discounts I qualify for – but I’m not an AIPCA member. What’s that gonna cost me?
Funny you should ask that question!
AIPCA Membership Fees
A key factor you need to be aware of is that you need to be an AIPCA member to obtain the insurance discounts this organization offers.
…AND if you purchase life insurance you need to be a member throughout your term of coverage to continue to enjoy the benefits. That could get dicey in your senior years if money is tight. Do you really want to have to consider this when it comes to your life insurance coverage?
So how much is a membership?
That’s a VERY good question, one I can’t answer, sadly. Annual membership dues are based on your role, industry and work status. Which doesn’t mean a whole heck of a lot to someone who is looking for the bottom line…
…The truth is, you aren’t going to know until you speak with an AICPA agent.
The thing is you need to subtract that cost from any savings you get from AICPA.
At the end of the day that great discount could cost you more than a policy from another competitive insurer…
Hmmm now, this is something to think about.
AICPA Life Insurance Products
Before we get started I wanted to draw your attention to a VERY important fact. Seniors BEWARE.
If you’re older than 74 and considering the AICPA Life Policy, you’re out of luck!
The maximum age to apply for the policy is 74 with a policy age cap of 80. This means once you turn 80 you’re no longer eligible for coverage.
So let’s dig into their Life insurance products now:
CPA Life & Spouse Life
This is a Term Life Insurance policy. One thing you should be aware of is the premiums rise according to a 5-year incremental schedule. As you pass through one age bracket into the next, your premiums will increase accordingly.
This policy provides:
- Coverage up to $2.5 Million. But buyer beware coverage can’t exceed the figure you qualify for, which is age dependent.
- Life insurance up to age 80
- Cash refunds, which aren’t guaranteed, which may lower the cost of your premiums. Policyholders have received refunds since the inception of this plan.
- Insurance for all your eligible dependents (up to $10,000 of term coverage).
- Accelerated death benefit feature at no additional cost.
- Portable benefits: You are covered no matter where you work
NOTE: All AIPCA policies require a medical exam.
Options you can choose are as follows:
- Accidental death & dismemberment coverage
- Disability waiver (this is not available for the spousal plan)
Level Premium Term & Spouse Level Premium Term
The Level Premium Term Policy is very similar to the CPA Life Policy with one key difference.
The policy offers fixed, stable premiums. Now that’s NICE.
This means that instead of your premiums increasing every 5 years, they stay fixed throughout the entire duration of your policy. Term durations are flexible, with options ranging from 10 – 20 years.
Once the term has finished, AIPCA offers the option to continue your plan; but the catch is your premiums increase every year from that point.
The maximum age to sign up for coverage is 65, 9 years younger than the CPA Life Policy and the maximum age they’ll cover you to is 95. After that, you’re out of luck!
- Coverage up to $2.5 million. This figure decreases with age
- 10- or 20-year level premiums depending on you or your spouse’s age
- Fixed premiums throughout your term
Optional additions to your policy:
- Dependent child coverage
- Accelerated death benefit
- Accidental death & dismemberment coverage
- Waiver for premium contribution while disabled
Group Variable Universal Life
The last of the three policies offered by AIPCA is the Group Variable Universal Life policy.
It’s a typical Universal Life policy which means it’s a form of permanent coverage that has a cash accumulation feature that can be withdrawn at any time.
Think of the cash buildup feature like an investment fund that grows tax-free. The remainder of your premium payment goes towards general plan benefits such as death benefits and fees.
The differentiating aspect of this policy is the ability to withdraw money from your cash accumulation as a temporary tax-free loan. As with anything, there is a catch: you’ve got to pay back the money or penalties will be applied to your death benefits after you pass away.
- You can purchase this policy up to 74 years of age.
- AICPA will provide life insurance coverage to age 100 as long as you maintain your membership.
- Premiums increase every 5 years.
- Death benefits available up to $2.5 million.
- You get a choice of tax-deferred investment options that include a fixed account guaranteed not to go below 4.0%.
- Withdrawals and loans that can be used for anything you need.
- A potential cash refund
- Tax advantages
- Dependent child coverage
- Accelerated death benefit
- Accidental death & dismemberment coverage
- Waiver of payment of monthly premiums if you are disabled
AICPA: Additional Personal Insurance Options
Long Term Disability Insurance
Illness is an unfortunate part of life – but the world continues to turn and your bills don’t stop. This is where longterm disability insurance comes in.
AICPA coverage includes:
- Insurance to age 70 as long as you’re an AICPA member
- Benefits for life if you’re totally disabled before age 50; up to age 67 if you’re totally disabled at age 50-64; up to two years if you’re totally disabled at age 65-69
- Coverage up to 65% of your monthly earnings up to $12,000/month
- Benefits if you’re disabled and can’t perform the duties of your particular job. This means you won’t have to consider another line of work.
- These benefits are generally tax-free.
- You can choose between total and partial disability coverage.
- The policy is portable.
- No offsets to your benefits based on other benefits you may receive.
- You can pick a 13 week or 26 week waiting period
- Up to 5 years of mental illness coverage
- Opportunity for cash refunds
- Rehabilitation program
- Benefits if you lose 20% or more of your prior earnings due to a total or partial disability
Personal Liability Umbrella
There are gaps left by standard insurance coverage, this is where an umbrella plan comes in:
- $1 to $5 million in coverage with a rate per million dollars that is progressively lower.
- The plan covers all household family members (including the actions of your pet), your homes, including your residence, a vacation home or condominium, and unlimited residential housing properties provided each does not exceed a four-family dwelling, all owned vehicles, and a variety of recreational vehicles.
- Personal liability coverage for claims arising from libel, slander, and false arrest.
- Identity fraud coverage―providing payment up to $25,000 for each occurrence.
- Legal defense even if the suit is determined to be frivolous.
- 24/7 worldwide coverage
- Flexible enrollment schedule
Medical expenses can be overwhelming and some fall through the cracks. This is where supplemental Medicare insurance comes in.
If you’re Medicare eligible and belong to AICPA you can get the following coverage:
- The freedom to choose your own doctor
- Expedited claims (within 7 days)
- 30 day right to examine the policy
- Full options available for premium payments
Longterm Care Insurance
AICPA offers longterm care insurance through New York Life Insurance Company at discounted rates.
Major Medical Insurance
AICPA offers individual insurance and group medical insurance for Employers.
Individual Medical Insurance Includes:
- Access to 23,000 health plans from 200+ reputable carriers.
- Health plans ranked by preferences―including by physicians―not just by monthly premiums
- Advice when it comes to determining eligibility for federal tax credits
- Access to multiple health insurance plans to help you meet your needs and those of your employees.
- A support team that provides guidance through the set-up process.
The site provides little to no information about AICPA Auto Insurance. It appears that you have to be a member to get more details about their offering.
Once again there is little to no information about AICPA Homeowners Insurance. It appears that you have to be a member to get more details about their offering.
AICPA Business Insurance Solutions
This type of insurance protects you and your employees from professional liability lawsuits and offers insurance for associated defense costs. It’s a wonderful thing to have when you run a business.
Small Firms: This offering is created to cover small firms with up to three accountants with annual revenues up to $400,000.
Mid-Sized Firms: This offering is created to cover medium firms with four or more accountants with annual revenues greater than $400,000.
Large Firms: This offering is created to cover large firms that bill at least $10 million annually with special needs.
Employment Practices Liability
Yes, you may need protection from the employees you hire. This type of coverage protects you from claims against management. Legal costs can be expensive and may even destroy your business – even if they are false.
Even if you are careful you may face a claim related to:
- Age, race or gender discrimination
- Sexual harassment
- Wrongful termination
- Failure to accommodate the needs of disabled
- Denial of promotion
- Religious discrimination
- Invasion of privacy
- Sexual orientation discrimination
- Failure to make partner
- Third-party allegations
CPA EmployerGard offers coverage from $100,000 – $5 million for your defense, settlement, and judgment.
Commercial Property & Liability Insurance
If you have a small or medium size firm, Aon Professional Liability Plan offers commercial property and liability insurance coverage.
Business Owner’s Insurance (BOP)
This is coverage for small to medium-sized firms and protects:
- Business Property
- Computer Equipment
- Valuable Papers and Records
- Fine Art
- Accounts Receivable
- Other specialized coverages
It also provides coverage options for the following:
- A “billable hours” option to simplify the claims process
- Coverage for new ventures
- Extra time to restore your practice to a pre-loss level
- Extra expense coverage after a covered property loss
- Business income losses resulting from the interruption of utility service
Workers’ Compensation Insurance
This is mandatory coverage that includes the following additional protection:
- Direct billing
- Coverage for new ventures
- Fast turn around and quality service
Business Overhead Insurance
This type of insurance is meant to help you out if you get sick or become disabled. It covers:
- day-to-day fixed operating expenses.
- employee wages
- your personal finances.
Prudential Insurance Company of America (Prudential) issues this insurance. NOTE: This plan differs from AICPA Long Term Disability Income Plan.
There are also a number of other insurances that you can select for your business that include:
- Personal Directors’ & Officers’ Liability
- Directors’ and Officers’ Liability
- Fiduciary Bonds – Employee Dishonesty Coverage
- Investment Advisors ERISA Bonds
- Registered Investment Advisors Errors and Omissions Policy
- Registered Investment Advisors Fidelity Bonds
- State Surety Bonds
Group Insurance for Firms
If you’re looking to get GREAT employees you need a GREAT package. AICPA offers Group Business Coverage through Prudential Insurance Company of America. This protection provides Long Term Disability solutions.
There are two options:
Group Life: If you have fewer than 25 employees you can choose from a choice of six insurance schedules from $50,000 – $500,000
Group Elite Life and Ltd: If you employ 25 or more eligible employees you may customize a plan to meet your firm’s needs.
Group Personal Excess Liability
AICPA works with Aon to offer a Group Personal Excess Liability Plan. This offering protects mid and large sized accounting firms. This policy gives you extra coverage for an individual’s auto and homeowner’s insurance policies and legal defense for covered claims.
Eligibility: Key people and partners are automatically covered.
High Limits: $1 million – $5 million available for each partner.
Uninsured Motorists Protection: Optional uninsured/underinsured motorist’s coverage (UMC) providing a $1 million in coverage per person.
New Firm Personnel: You can add a new key person or partner at any time by notification and without meeting any individual underwriting requirements.
Single Premium: A single premium rate for each individual covers all of their qualifying risks.
- No premium surcharge or coverage limitation for young operators residing in an insured’s household.
- A minimum annual premium of $10,000 per firm.
- A variety of coverage options providing an attractive comprehensive policy.
Is An AICPA Membership Worth the Insurance Benefits?
So now that we know what an AIPCA membership offers…
…but how does their offering compare to other insurance options available?
Is it worth the money? Let’s find out!
AICPA is a VERY interesting organization. As with any insurance review, it has its strong points:
AICPA Has a LONG and Illustrious History
This organization has been around since 1887! Through thick and thin they have managed to survive and thrive. They are a world class place to connect with other people in the accounting industry.
Word on the street is that CPAs hold AICPA in high regard and feel that the insurance options offered are a great perk of belonging.
AICPA Offers a Vast Array of Insurance Products
Chances are if you are looking to cover it – they have a product for you. Especially when it comes to business coverage. In fact I bet this is what a lot of CPAs like about AICPA. It’s a one-stop shop which means you can hold all of your insurance in one place.
Caveat: Their life insurance offering is limited so I won’t include that as part of this pro section. Read more in the cons!
AICPA Membership Discounts
Yes, by nature of your membership you qualify for discounts from some VERY highly rated insurance companies such as TransAmerica, Prudential, AON, and New York Life.
The thing is – because a company is highly rated doesn’t mean it’s a perfect fit for you. So I say this with some hesitation.
…but alas there are cons too. No insurance company on the planet is without ’em!
AICPA Cash Refund
You know I REALLY wanted to put this is the pros…
…but it’s more complicated than that.
A key advertising point by AIPCA is their cash refund opportunity. YES, that would be GREAT. But the thing is – if you pay more throughout the year than you should have, a cash back refund means a little less.
Also, this refund isn’t 100% guaranteed.
AICPA Membership Fees
Let’s face it, whatever you pay for your membership will have to be added to your premiums.
That is UNLESS your membership provides a heck of a lot more than access to preferential insurance premiums – which may or may not be so preferential.
The benefits associated with an AICPA membership weren’t 100% clear and I would leave this to the people who receive them to decide if it’s worth it.
AICPA is secretive about their membership fees and they appear to be correlated to your standing in the profession. I personally prefer clarity.
PS: If you drop your membership – your coverage goes down the tubes. Remember this will have to be a LONG term relationship!
AICPA Doesn’t Specialize in Insurance
I happen to be a fan of purchasing life insurance from companies that SPECIALIZE in insurance.
If you’re working with AICPA know they do NOT provide their own insurance. They deal with a number of companies such as Transamerica, AON, and New York Life.
You’ll save money, time and hassle if you develop a relationship with an agent who knows the ins and outs of the companies they are working with. Which brings me to…
AICPA May Not Offer the Best Prices
Shop around and it’s likely you’ll do better!
Find an independent agent. They can look for the best possible insurance companies for your particular circumstances.
Disability Waiver of Premium Isn’t Provided with Spousal Coverage
You can most likely find better spousal coverage somewhere else.
AICPA Life Insurance is Very Limited
There is SOOOO much more you can so with life insurance!
First of all their terms aren’t as long as they could be and coverage caps at $2.5 million.
Also, SENIORS BEWARE: As you age your coverage declines.
Not only that, the selection of products is limited AND they are tied to the companies they work with.
Give the independent agents at Huntley Wealth a call today and we can find the best product for your circumstances from a company that is lenient when it comes to your particular medical circumstances.
Remember not all life insurance companies are created equal and savings can be in the thousands of dollars.
I’m not here to “dis” AICPA.
The thing is, I don’t know what sort of fees they are charging or a LOT about being a member. There could be some amazing perks that I’m missing altogether that make a membership something that pays for itself.
They also have a number of business solutions that may be VERY appealing to CPAs.
From the information, I DO have. My inclination is to tell you to keep shopping around.
Their life insurance products certainly aren’t the best in the market – which sort of negates their so-called cash refunds in this area…
…AND you should also be aware that your coverage stops if you stop paying AICPA dues.
Independent Agents Work Wonders
I’d also advise those looking for ANY insurance product to work with an independent agent. The key to getting the best deals is to shop around for the RIGHT insurer for you.
….and when it comes to life insurance well, there are TONS of options out there. You can get longer terms, higher face values and different types of insurance – which AICPA doesn’t have.
A word of warning to seniors considering AICPA life insurance – tread with care!
- They don’t provide no exam coverage
- Life Insurance ceases after age 80
- Whole life isn’t offered
- Coverage limits change with age and can drop by as much as half
- Some premiums increase every 5 years
So frankly, what looks good now may become unaffordable and wrong for your personal circumstances down the road.
AIPCA certainly does have a lot of issues that have to be considered before signing up for one of their policies. So my advice is to get some rates, factor in your membership fees and see if their products fit your needs. The best way to compare is to consider other options and THEN make your decision.
CPAs Are Superheroes
If you read this blog at all you know how I feel about those who plan for the financial well-being of their family BEFORE tragedy strikes.
They are the true superheroes.
CPAs do this for a living. Working through numbers to get to the bottom line. Why stop when it comes to bulletproofing your family’s future.
If you are looking for life insurance, call Huntley Wealth today. We have access to dozens of insurers and will find the BEST fit for you.*While we make every effort to keep our site updated, please be aware that "timely" information on this page, such as quote estimates, or pertinent details about companies, may only be accurate as of its last edit day. Huntley Wealth & Insurance Services and its representatives do not give legal or tax advice. Please consult your own legal or tax adviser.