Cover - Life Insurance Questions To Ask Clients – My Top 21 Favorite

Life Insurance Questions To Ask Clients – My Top 21 Favorite

By David Duford - January 02, 2023 - 5 Mins Read

Wonder what life insurance questions to ask clients to sell more insurance?

Are you looking for ways to maximize your insurance sales presentation closing ratio, in addition to increasing your average insurance policy size?

Did you know that what fact-finding questions for life insurance you ask impact your ability to close more cases for larger premiums?

If you’re looking to sell more insurance and make more commissions, knowing what questions to ask about life insurance are VITAL to your success in selling insurance.

Today, we’re covering my top 21 favorite life insurance questions to ask clients to close more policies.

We’ll discuss which life insurance questions to ask clients in depth, one at a time.

And I’ll make sure to cover the reasons WHY you’d ask each question as we go along.

No matter if you sell final expensemortgage protectionMedicare Advantage or Medicare Supplements, or annuities, this training will go far in helping you close more insurance deals.

NOTE: Are you an aspiring or new insurance agent looking for more insight on how the insurance sales industry works? Check out my free New Insurance Agent Resource Guide to help answer many of your questions (as well as ones you didn’t know you had!).

Insurance Sales Interview Questions Drive The Sale!

Heads up!

Selling insurance consistently is NOT about being a hardcore closer.

Instead, if you want success, you must know the top probings questions for life insurance sales that gather facts and emotion.

I’m a big believer that if you master the craft of asking “disturbing questions,” as legendary life insurance agent Ben Feldman put it.

Disturbing insurance sales interview questions develop all sorts of life insurance opportunities.

Fact-Finding Questions For Life Insurance

Insurance Sales Question 1

“What were your thoughts and concerns when you X?”

This is one of my favorite life insurance questions to ask clients.

When I say “X,” fill in the blank with whatever activity the prospect did to request information on the product.

This question is commonly used when you’re using a life insurance lead like a final expense direct mail lead.

This powerful question encourages your client to share their feelings, thoughts, logic, and reasoning as to why they replied for information.

It’s a great primer when you sit down in a preset presentation or after you door knock an insurance lead.

Asking your prospects their thoughts and concerns lead to more understanding as to why they did what they did.

And that allows you to give a more effective insurance sales pitch!

Life Insurance Sales Question

“When you buy a life insurance policy, what do you want it to accomplish?”

This is a great question because it allows the client to describe their goals as to what they really want.

When you get that answer, you more easily can design a customized life insurance policy more suited to their needs.

It doesn’t matter if you’re selling final expense, mortgage protection, term life, or income replacement.

Whatever their answer, it’s the ammo you need to sell them a policy.

Let them answer fully and entirely. Don’t interrupt them.

They’ll tell you what they want to buy when you just ask this simple question.

Question To Ask Life Insurance Prospect

“What other life insurance you have in place to pay for X?”

This is a must-ask life insurance questions to ask clients.

The reason you ask this is twofold.

First, it allows you to see if the client has existing coverage.

Knowing if your client has coverage makes a difference in what angle you use to sell.

It’s good when you go into a sales presentation to find out whether or not there’s other coverage in place.

Why? Because it’s difficult to make recommendations without knowing all the facts.

For example, maybe you’re doing a life insurance fact finding questionnaire, and you’re figuring up what amount of coverage makes sense.

Good probing questions for life insurance should take into consideration the client’s employer-based life insurance and any other individual policies in force.

This way, you have these facts ahead of time, which provides you leverage when it comes to proposing a plan.

Insurance Sales Technique

“What assets do you have in place to pay for your X?”

This question is open-ended.

Asking open-ended questions allow you to craft a stronger case for the need of your product.

For example, asking this question allows you to see both the opportunity for life insurance in addition to asset-based life insurance opportunities.

If your client answers “no” to having assets, then there is a possibility to sell indexed universal life coverage as a supplemental retirement plan.

If the client answers “yes,” you may have an opportunity to uncover annuity sales opportunities.

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Question To Ask About Life Insurance

“Imagine your spouse passes away tonight. Describe what happens to your life tomorrow financially.”

This is a really good question to ask everybody you see.

This question is great because it forces your prospects to take an uncomfortable look at a question no one wants to think about.

And because the answer is always disturbing, it will naturally flesh out the need for life insurance coverage.

Allow your prospects to describe their thoughts.

While tough, the question sells the need without being pushy. It makes them understand why they need to own life insurance.

Question To Ask About Disability Insurance

“How long can you survive if you become hurt or cannot work? Or, how long can your family maintain their lifestyle if you got hurt or you couldn’t work anymore?”

This is a really good disability insurance question to ask.

It gets your prospect thinking, “What if I do become disabled? How’d my family survive if I can’t go to work for six or more months?”

Usually, with most people, as soon as work stops, income stops. Most people have to work to make money!

They consider what would happen to their mortgage payments, kids’ activities, and the things that they enjoy and love if the income was gone in a heartbeat.

Always ask this question to gauge if your prospect is a strong disability insurance candidate.

Insurance Sales Interview Question

“What is your philosophy regarding life insurance?”

This life insurance question to ask clients gets to the core of what people think is important about life insurance.

You might have somebody say,

“I think life insurance should really just be straight insurance. I just want it in case I don’t live long enough to acquire my retirement goals.”

You may get somebody who says,

“I think life insurance is a rip off because so much of it cancels. All I see are these plans that canceled at a later date, and to me, that’s just crazy.”

In the first case, you have someone more inclined for a term insurance policy.

In the second case, term would not make sense.

Maybe a permanent life insurance plan would make more sense.

The important thing is not to impose your opinions on your clients’ philosophy on life insurance.

Instead, match the person’s goals with the insurance product that most closely aligns.

Insurance Sales Question To Ask

“How do you feel about life insurance on your spouse or children?”

You may have somebody who in response to asking about spousal or children coverage says,

“You know, I’ve never thought about that.”

Well, what happens if your child passes away?

Would you have the money to cover your kids’ funerals?

What happens if your spouse passes away? Do they work? If not, you’ll still suffer an economic loss.

These are great questions to ask because they may not have considered these things before.

Insurance Sales Technique

“What would happen to your family if the income you were taking in stops today?”

This is a perfect life insurance question to ask clients who are working people and business owners.

It allows for the mind to travel to an uncomfortable area to figure out the answer and work through it.

They may tell you,

“Well, we’ve got savings. But, if I make $100,000/year, and I’ve only got $50,000 saved, then that is only six months of living. That’s not good. Hmm.”

It is disturbing! But the question provides perspective.

What happens if you’re disabled for two or three years? How are you going to make it?

Is your partner going to go back to work? And if they do, they probably won’t make as much money as you.

Now, are they going to take over the business from you? Would that be practical? Will the business run on its own?

These are questions few people deeply consider. As you can see, they just lead to so much opportunity.

Insurance Sales Pitch Question

“How much life insurance do you have? Why did you purchase that amount?”

Of all the fact finding questions for life insurance, I ask this question a lot.

For example, when selling final expense, I ask,

“Well, why did you purchase $5,000 instead of $10,000 or $15,000?” 

And I’m genuinely interested because I want to know what the rationale is.

They might say,

“I purchased $5,000 because that’s all that was offered to me.” 


“I purchased $5,000 because at the time that was all I could afford.” 

If you sell a working person, they might tell you,

“I felt that reaching my financial goals, a half-million-dollar policy was sufficient to fund the kind of retirement that I wanted to live.”

Maybe, their lifestyle has changed. They could be making more money now, and they need more coverage.

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Either way, it’s good to know why they did what they did.

And then, of course, knowing how much they have fills the gap on what is needed in closing an extra policy.

Insurance Sales Interview Question

“What steps have you taken to enact a retirement plan?”

This is one of the best life insurance questions to ask clients.

You can ask this of your term insurance cases, working people, or business owners.

Asking this question may lead to larger sales opportunities like annuities and IUL cases.

This is because you get people thinking, especially a lot of business owners.

Business owners are so dialed into business that they don’t think of a succession or retirement plan.

They don’t think of what happens when they reach retirement. It is the last thing a lot of them think about.

Insurance Concept Selling Question

“What happens to your business if a key employee becomes hurt, disabled, or passes away?”

If you sell to business owners, you know business owners may have an employee in a key position whose death would adversely change the course of regular business.

This is a great lead into discussing key person life insurance or disability insurance.

These products protect the business against the loss of that person through death or disability.

What if he walks out forever? What happens to the business?

Asking more of these disturbing questions lead to sales opportunities.

Insurance Sales Pitch Question

“When was the last time you met with your insurance agent?”

As you enter the business, you learn the failure rate in insurance sales is high.

It’s common that policyholders that haven’t seen their agents in years don’t have an active agent anymore.

In fact, the agent has probably quit the business.

And without a long-term relationship with his life insurance agent, the client does not receive annual policy reviews.

This means he may lose out on discovering opportunities to add more insurance coverage.

Asking your prospects about the last conversation they’ve had with their insurance agent helps get them thinking,

“Yeah, you’re right. I haven’t looked at this in a while. I think it would be a good idea to do a review.”

Best Sales Pitch For Life Insurance Question

“What are your thoughts on getting a second opinion?”

Think of this questions as if you are diagnosed with a need for a back surgery.

Perhaps you’re not convinced of surgery.

You think physical therapy is all that’s needed. So you consider a second opinion to get a measured perspective.

The same concept applies to insurance.

It’s good to get second opinions. Most people agree!

Plus, it’s free for our prospects.

It’s good to get a different perspective.

Prospects can cross-check against the original proposal and have their mind opened.

Insurance Question To Ask

“Do you plan on dying before 80 or after 80?”

This is a strong question that I ask when selling final expense prospects.

Many final expense prospects unknowingly have term insurance plans that cancel at 80.

I ask this question because it’s a bit silly. It gets the mind thinking about the product that my competition offers.

When I ask,

“Mr. Jones, are you planning on dying before or after 80?”

They look at me, and they’re going to say either one of two things.

“I don’t know” or “I hope not.”

Most DO NOT say, “I hope I die before 80.”

In those cases, I don’t really have much to say!

Instead, most say,

“I hope I live past 80” or “I just don’t know.”

And, the response to that is,

“That’s exactly right. So, why get a plan where the policy may go away before you actually pass away?”

It gets the client thinking about value over price. They consider what really matters within the policy.

Often, these term insurance plans are less expensive, but who cares about the price if their goal is to have something no matter when they pass, right?

It’s a very powerful question that reinforces the value of a permanent plan on protecting for final expenses.

It shows them how much better this is anyway because if you live past 80, you’ve spent all that money for nothing, and you have nothing to show for it.

Insurance Sales Question

“What is the most important asset in your business?”

This is a fantastic question to ask small business owners because most small business owners insure their business.

They insure their factory, land, equipment, and people.

Business owners insure every aspect of their business… EXCEPT themselves!

It’s a great reminder that they spend all this money on all sorts of assets that produce the products they sell on the market.

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It’s a practical idea to insure their components to produce whatever goods they’re selling.

But, in reality, the biggest asset in the business is the person in charge.

Think about it.

Why would you not insure yourself – the key factor in your business – above and beyond all else?

The most important component of a business is the BUSINESS OWNER! He is the epicenter of his business.

This drives home the importance of self-insurance. It shows them why they should have life and disability insurance.

Insurance Question To Ask

“Have you ever stopped to think that your business lasts only as long as you do?”

And, that’s a good one, too.

This if from Ben Feldman in The Feldman Method.

What happens when the business goes away?

You are the business. You have this name, you have this company, and you drive this business forward, but what happens if it is gone?

Insurance Sales Question Technique

“It isn’t a question of if you’ll pay the estate tax. The only question is, with whose money? Yours or mine?”

Another great Ben Feldman “disturbing question,” where Ben is proposing the idea of paying for estate taxes with life insurance for pennies on the dollar, versus a fire sale to come up with money to pay the estate tax upon passing.

The proposition is that you can’t get around what the IRS requires.

The question makes prospects consider if they are going to have to convert capital into cash to pay Uncle Sam, or to utilize “discounted dollars” from a life insurance policy.

This is a great setup for the business owner who understands that.

It’s much better to get things at wholesale and at discount, instead of paying retail price out of principal.

Insurance Concept Selling Technique Question

“What arrangements have you made when your insurance runs out?”

This proposes a potential need for life insurance on a permanent basis.

Maybe your prospect has term insurance, and they think of how it’s important to have term.

But now they’re getting older, and realize they need coverage that lasts forever.

Now they start to think,

“Well, what arrangements have I made when I outlive my coverage?”

When prospects ask this, it gets them thinking about the utility of having some kind of permanent protection in their life insurance portfolio.

Fact-Finding Question For Life Insurance

“How would you like doing all the work and having to share all the profits?”

I really like this question.

This is for a partnership deal where you are in business with a partner and the partner dies or becomes disabled.

While there is still a joint interest in the company, you are now responsible for all the work.

Your disabled partner or his bereaved family still own half the operation, so you must continue splitting the profits.

Using disability or life insurance to fund a buyout is the angle we are working at with this question.

Insurance Interview Question

“Does it sound like I’m hearing what you’re saying?”

This is a question that I ask at the very end of my sales call. I call it “the summarization.”

I think it’s important to make sure everybody’s on the same page BEFORE you present or persuade.

I say,

“Okay, to make sure I understand, here’s what I’m hearing. You don’t have life insurance.

“You WANT to cover the mortgage if you pass away. You WANT to have coverage to replace your income.

“You’re worried that, if you don’t get this stuff that, God forbid, something happens, it will negatively affect your loved ones. And you DON’T want that to happen.

“Does that sound like I’m hearing what you’re saying?”

If they say, “Yes,” that’s, in a sense, like a trial close, meaning you have a good chance of closing the deal.

Also, prospects really appreciate it when you restate what they said using similar verbiage.

Why? It shows you’ve listened carefully.

It shows you’re concerned with their goals, and you understand what they want.

Suggested Books

Here’s two books that contributed much to this article regarding questions. Consider buying both:

Marv Feldman’s Man On A Mission. Marv’s book is an excellent primer for agents starting in the traditional process of selling life insurance.

You’ll learn many great disturbing questions. This book is good for agents focusing on selling business owners.


The Feldman Method by Andrew Thomson.

We can thank Ben Feldman (Marv Feldman’s father) for the concept of selling using disturbing question.

He was a master at it, and it allowed him to sell really big life insurnace cpolicies back in the 60s to the 80s.

NOTE: Both of links above are affiliate links.

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