How to Get Appointed as a Life Insurance Agent

Getting appointed by life insurance companies as an agent requires proper licensing before applying. Some companies may also require applicants to have an active book of business.

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Chris Tepedino is a feature writer that has written extensively about home, life, and car insurance for numerous websites. He has a college degree in communication from the University of Tennessee and has experience reporting, researching investigative pieces, and crafting detailed, data-driven features. His works have been featured on CB Blog Nation, Flow Words, Healing Law, WIBW Kansas, and C...

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Laura Walker graduated college with a BS in Criminal Justice with a minor in Political Science. She married her husband and began working in the family insurance business in 2005. She became a licensed agent and wrote P&C business focusing on personal lines insurance for 10 years. Laura serviced existing business and wrote new business. She now uses her insurance background to help educate...

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Reviewed by Laura Walker
Former Licensed Agent Laura Walker

UPDATED: May 20, 2022

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The Rundown

  • Before applying for appointments, you need to be licensed as a life insurance agent 
  • Some companies will require a background check and an active book of business 
  • Make sure to look into a company before applying to determine if it is the right fit for you

If you are looking to sell life insurance as a career, you’ll need to earn a life insurance appointment. Life insurance appointments are simply the insurance company giving an agent legal permission to sell on its behalf, but it can be a competitive market to get an appointment in. 

Before applying for an appointment, you’ll need a license to sell insurance, as well as a strong resume. 

Learning tips and tricks on how to get appointed with life insurance companies can help you find a placement sooner. Read on to learn about life insurance appointments. 

Requirements to Become a Life Insurance Agent

Getting appointed as a life insurance agent can take a bit of planning. We’ve outlined what you need to know about getting a life insurance appointment to help you. 

If you are looking for how to be appointed as a life insurance agent, we are assuming you have already passed your state licensing requirements to sell insurance. If not, that is the first step to getting appointed as a life insurance agent. 

Different states have different requirements for getting a license, so make sure to read up on the requirements in your area and get your license before you start applying for life insurance appointments. 

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License Options for Insurance Agents

Some states require you to have a Property and Casualty (PC) license before you can sell life insurance. In that case, you will need to pass an exam after completing a certain number of education hours, and you will also need to pass a background check that includes fingerprinting. 

There are multiple pre-licensing courses that can help you prepare for an insurance agent test. A PC license will also require you to continue your education with ongoing classes periodically. 

If you need a limited lines license to sell insurance, the process is simpler than for a PC license. You will often just need to take a required course, which may or may not include taking an exam. You will also need to pass a background check and fingerprinting. With a limited lines license, there is often no need to take mandatory continuing education courses. 

It is vital to have your license before you start applying for life insurance appointments, so make sure that everything is squared away before applying. 

Prepare Necessary Documents for Life Insurance Agent Appointments

When it comes to getting appointed, one of the best things you can do to start with is polishing your resume and, if applicable, cover letter. Anything you’ve done that shows your sales skills or business initiative should be included in your application.

For example, if you worked for a start-up before or had a small business, this is vital to include. Some companies may also require agents to already have a book of business before applying, so if you don’t have one, make sure to only apply to companies who don’t require this. 

You should also highlight any experience working remotely or proof that you are self-driven. Life insurance agents work mostly independently, so anything you can add that will show this is a plus.

In addition to your resume, you will need to have your insurance license paperwork ready to submit. Read on to see what the applications are like for appointments with life insurance companies. 

How to Apply for Life Insurance Appointments  

Once your resume is up to date, you’ll want to complete multiple applications for different insurance companies. 

Most companies will have a place on the website where you can submit an application if the company is hiring, or you can research jobs on a job-hunting site. You may even be able to stop in person to drop off a resume if an insurance company has an onsite location near you.   

While every company will have its own unique application process, you can expect the following basic format: 

  • Fill out an application. There can sometimes be just a preliminary application, and you’ll fill out a formal application after a phone interview. The application will ask for basic information and may ask for a background check as well. 
  • Phone interview. If the company is interested in your application, a representative will likely call to set up a phone interview. At that time you may be asked for additional information. 
  • Onsite interview. If the insurance company decides to continue, the company will likely then set up an onsite interview with you. 
  • Sign contract. If you are approved and offered an appointment at an insurance company and choose to sign up with that company, the last step is to sign a contract accepting the position.. 

Having experience on your resume can go a long way towards helping you get an appointment as a life insurance agent, as college degrees usually aren’t required by most insurance companies. A high school diploma is often required, however.

The ability to adapt and sell insurance is what is valued most, as well as experience in the insurance field. 

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Things to Consider When Applying for Life Insurance Appointments 

It’s important to not just jump into signing with the first insurance company to offer you an appointment unless you’ve done your research.  

Research Different Insurance Companies

Researching the best insurance companies will allow you to get a better idea of what the product is that you’ll be selling and the company’s environment. For example, a well-established company may be easier to sell insurance from than a start-up insurance company, but the work environment may be worse. 

Make a list of what you are looking for in a life insurance company. Check the company’s employee reviews, customer reviews, financial ratings, and so on to see if an insurance contract with a certain company is something you want and if it will be a good fit for you. 

Decide What Type of Insurance Agent You Want to Be

You also need to decide what kind of life insurance agent you want to be and what type of life insurance you want to sell before you start applying. 

If you want to become a broker or an independent insurance agent, then you’ll work with multiple insurance companies to sell for them. Often, you won’t have the authority to sell the customers insurance but redirect the customer to finish the application process with the insurer once you’ve chosen the right product for them. 

On the other hand, you can choose to become a captive insurance agent, where you will only work and sell for one insurance company.

Consider What Kind of Life Insurance You Want to Sell

As for different types of life insurance, you should consider what type of focus you want to have. For example, do you want to sell term life insurance, whole life insurance, universal life insurance, or all of them? 

In addition, what market are you looking to sell to? Do you want to market to seniors or young families? Finding your niche can help you decide who to apply to and what relevant experience you want to build. 

While it is up to you which insurance niche is a better fit for you, you should always do your research before you start applying for life insurance appointments.

The Bottom Line: Getting Appointed as a Life Insurance Agent 

Part of getting appointed to a life insurance agent position is persistence. You may not get the first appointment you apply for, but strengthening your resume and being diligent can help you land a life insurance appointment. 

Most of the hard work is earning your license and building experience that you can bring to the company. After that, it’s just a matter of submitting resumes and being patient. 

If you want to familiarize yourself with life insurance companies in your area, it can be helpful to use a rate comparison tool to see what life insurance companies are out there that you can apply for.

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