What Licenses Are Required to Sell Variable Annuities?

Shawn Plummer, CRPC

Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor

License to Sell Variable Annuities

Regarding selling variable annuities, two licenses are generally required: Life insurance license and a series 6 or 7 license.

Life Insurance License

The first step towards selling variable annuities is acquiring a life insurance license. This license is necessary because, technically speaking, an annuity is a type of insurance product.

Acquiring a Life Insurance License

To obtain a life insurance license, you must complete a pre-licensing course, which varies from state to state. The course typically covers essential topics like insurance regulations, life insurance policies, and ethics. Upon completion, you’ll need to pass the state life insurance exam.

License To Sell Variable Annuities

Series 6 or Series 7 License

Due to their investment component, variable annuities fall under the jurisdiction of securities regulations. Therefore, you also need a securities license—either a Series 6 or Series 7.

Acquiring a Series 6 License

The Series 6 license allows you to sell packaged investment products, including variable annuities. You must pass the Investment Company and Variable Contracts Products Representative Examination to obtain this license, commonly known as the Series 6 exam.

Acquiring a Series 7 License

On the other hand, the Series 7 license permits selling a broader range of securities, including variable annuities. To acquire this license, you must pass the General Securities Representative Examination, known as the Series 7 exam.

License To Sell Variable Annuity

The Role of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)

While talking about securities licensing, it’s essential to mention FINRA. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is a non-governmental organization that regulates member brokerage firms and exchange markets. They administer the Series 6 and Series 7 exams and require that all securities professionals be associated with a member firm to take these exams.

License To Sell Variable A Annuity

Next Steps

In conclusion, selling variable annuities requires both a life insurance license and a securities license (either Series 6 or Series 7), reflecting the unique nature of these products as both insurance and investment vehicles. Acquiring these licenses involves education, examination, and association with a FINRA member firm. It might seem daunting, but remember, the investment of time and effort now could lead to a fulfilling career helping others secure their financial future.

Licenses To Sell Variable Annuities

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the first step for getting a license to sell annuities?

The first step for getting a license to sell annuities is to complete the appropriate licensing and registration process with your state’s insurance department or regulatory agency. Depending on the state, this usually involves passing an approved pre-licensing education course and a state examination.

Can I sell annuities without a license?

No, you cannot sell annuities without a license. Selling annuities typically requires a license in the state or jurisdiction where you wish to sell the annuity. Depending on the annuity you are selling, you may need additional licensing or other qualifications.

Shawn Plummer, CRPC

Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor

Shawn Plummer is a Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor, insurance agent, and annuity broker with over 14 years of first-hand experience with annuities and insurance. Since beginning his journey in 2009, he has been pivotal in selling and educating about annuities and insurance products. Still, he has also played an instrumental role in training financial advisors for a prestigious Fortune Global 500 insurance company, Allianz. His insights and expertise have made him a sought-after voice in the industry, leading to features in renowned publications such as Time Magazine, Bloomberg, Entrepreneur, Yahoo! Finance, MSN, SmartAsset, The Simple Dollar, U.S. News and World Report, Women’s Health Magazine, and many more. Shawn’s driving ambition? To simplify retirement planning, he ensures his clients understand their choices and secure the best insurance coverage at unbeatable rates.

The Annuity Expert is an independent online insurance agency servicing consumers across the United States. The goal is to help you take the guesswork out of retirement planning and find the best insurance coverage at the cheapest rates

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