Absolute assignment

A transfer of all ownership rights under an insurance or annuity certificate from one individual to another individual or entity. An absolute assignment is also known as a Transfer of Ownership.  

Accelerated death benefit
Provides for the payment of a portion of a terminally ill member’s life insurance proceed. To be eligible to receive the benefit, the member must be diagnosed as being terminally ill with a life expectancy of less than 12 months. The maximum benefit is 75 percent of the member’s existing life insurance. This does not apply to term insurance.  

Accidental death benefit
An optional benefit that pays an additional death benefit if the insured dies because of accidental bodily injury.  

Account value
The total cash value of either a life insurance or annuity certificate before any surrender charge is applied.

Accumulation period  
For deferred annuities, the period of time during which certificate values are growing on a tax-deferred basis.  

Aggressive growth fund
A mutual fund that typically buys shares in small or speculative growth companies to achieve maximum capital appreciation.

The reduction of debt by regular payments of interest and principal sufficient to pay off a loan by maturity.  

The person upon whose life an annuity is payable. The annuitant is generally – but not always – the owner of the annuity.  

A contract providing a tax-deferred accumulation of funds -- and tax-favored distribution of the funds. There are two phases:

  • Accumulation Phase is the period during which the annuity is growing in value through premium payments and/or interest earnings.

  • Distribution Phase is the period during which an annuitant receives the annuity funds as income, generally through monthly payments.  

Annuity certain
A supplemental contract providing income for a specified number of years. If the annuitant dies before the end of the certain period, benefits are paid to the beneficiary for the remainder of the period.


An increase in the value of an asset such as a stock, bond, commodity or parcel of real estate.  

Anything of value that is owned or is owed to it by a business, institution or individual.  Assets may include cash, investments, accounts receivable, product inventory and other current assets.  Patents and goodwill are called intangible assets.  

Asset Allocation Fund
These funds split investments between stocks, bonds, and money market instruments or cash.  The manager will switch the percentages of holdings in each asset category according to the performance of that group.  

Asset Class
An investment category: stocks, bonds or cash investments.

The legal transfer of an owner's interest in an insurance or annuity certificate to another person or entity.  

Automatic bank check
Making premium payments through automatic deductions from a checking account or savings account.  

Automatic premium loan (APL)
A type of certificate loan where the loan proceeds are used to pay a missed premium on the same certificate. The owner does not have to request an APL loan for each missed premium – the loan is made automatically as long as the owner has previously requested the APL provision.