The Medicare Marketing Guidelines that were proposed in late January 2017 under the Obama Administration had a little bomb waiting for distribution. It took months for a consensus to emerge that this bomb would blow up the hierarchy we have used to compensate General Agents, MGAs, SGAs, FMOs and NMA, NMO, DPs. Here is the section in the Medicare Marketing Guidelines. This change would have prevented insurance carriers from paying the uplines at all levels on a per case basis and instead limiting per case compensation to Fair Marketing Value. Translation using a GA as an example: GA can’t get paid on his down line’s apps and must be compensated in an alternative manner not tied to how many cases were sold. So how would an alternate style of payment look? Hourly makes sense in that it can be separated from a per application formula, but it is hard to pay a GA hourly –which is why the current system evolved!

This smacks of “If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it.”

Uplines only get paid if they produce. If they can’t deliver the sales by training, motivating, assisting with leads, riding along, providing admin support and all the other services an upline offers, they don’t get paid.  It’s simple.  It works.  Many FMOs mobilized to have this proposal removed from the MMGs and every agent owes them a debt of gratitude.  Dwane McFerrin, Craig Ritter, JoAnn Wray and others were at the forefront of this battle and none more so than the national chapter of NAHU.

If you are not a member, please join now and help us all protect our industy. Click here.

The battle was won but the war is not over.  Until Washington learns what service we provide, we will remain under attack. We are not “useless middlemen” as we have been called by prior administrations.  Insurance agents have a very well established industry that works for the consumer. If we don’t have value, we don’t get paid.