Frequently Asked Questions
Fighting a serious illness presents more than enough complications in your life.
That’s why we’re committed to keeping every aspect of the FLAG Program
as simple and up-front as possible.
We want you to clearly see that there are no hidden costs, requirements, or stipulations attached to receiving your financial assistance. The more you know about how FLAG works, the better you and your family can make a timely and informed financial decision. Attached are some of the most frequently asked questions we receive…but if you have any of your own, don’t hesitate to call us toll-free at 866-459-1271, or you can email your question to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to helping you!
or call us toll-free at (866) 459-1271
- How does the FLAG (Funds for Living And Giving) program work?
Fifth Season has pioneered an innovative financial solution for individuals with advanced stage illnesses, utilizing an asset that many own but don’t realize they can access for cash: their life insurance policy.
Fifth Season will review your existing life insurance policy and determine if it can be used as collateral for an advance. Concurrently, our consulting oncologists and physicians will confidentially review your medical records to assess your medical status. If you qualify, Fifth Season will offer you immediate funds, and will take over premium payments for your policy. We’ll forward a detailed breakdown on how the advance is ultimately repaid, which does not need to occur in your lifetime.
- How is the amount of the FLAG advance determined?
The amount of the advance is based on several factors, including:
- The projected life expectancy of the insured
- The net death benefit of the life insurance policy
- The projected amount of remaining life insurance policy premium payments
- The type of policy and specific life insurance company. Once Fifth Season considers all factors, the advance you may receive is generally between 35 and 70 percent of the policy’s death benefit.
- Are there any restrictions on how I use the proceeds of my advance?
No – there are no restrictions on how you use the funds advanced to you. The money is yours to use as you wish.
- How will I repay the FLAG advance?
All advances, interest, origination fees and premium payments are repaid to Fifth Season out of the life insurance policy’s death benefit. After that, all surplus funds are paid to your designated beneficiaries.
- How long does the FLAG process take?
There are several stages to the process. Generally, Fifth Season can provide you with a formal offer letter within three days of receiving a complete set of medical records and a verification of the eligibility of your life insurance policy (note: our internal team will help assemble these for you with your approval). Once you accept the offer, we will need to change the life insurance policy’s ownership and beneficiary status to Fifth Season (or, in some cases, collaterally assign the policy to Fifth Season). This part of the process can take up to four weeks. Once confirmation is received from the life insurance carrier, we can generally advance funds within 48 hours.
- How will I receive my FLAG advance?
Once approved and processed, you will receive your advance in one lump sum either by check or direct wire transfer to your bank account.
- Who pays the premiums on my life insurance policy?
Fifth Season is responsible for paying all remaining premiums on the life insurance policy. The premiums paid by Fifth Season will be added to the principal balance of the advance. In some cases, the terms of the insurance policy do not allow Fifth Season to pay premiums directly, in which case Fifth Season will reimburse the premium amount paid by the insured.
- Are there fees associated with the FLAG advance?
There are no application fees or out of pocket expenses with the FLAG program. If you accept the FLAG proposal, a management fee and interest will be added to your balance as specified in your FLAG proposal documents. Fees and interest will vary by state, so please contact Fifth Season for the specific rates that will apply to your case. Along with premium payments, all fees and interest are repaid entirely out of the life insurance death benefit, so there are no out-of-pocket costs to the insured, and no future costs to pass on to family or other beneficiaries (even if the interest exceeds the balance of policy account).
- Will I have to pay taxes on the advance?
The funds advanced under the FLAG program are generally not taxable. However, since each individual situation is unique, and Fifth Season does not provide tax, legal or financial advice, we recommend you speak with your legal, tax or estate planning advisor.
- What happens to my life insurance policy proceeds?
In order for Fifth Season to simplify the payment of your policy premiums and maintenance of your life insurance policy, the policy is transferred or collaterally assigned to Fifth Season. When the life insurance policy matures, the insurance carrier will pay the policy death benefit to Fifth Season (in most cases). Fifth Season will then use those proceeds to repay the outstanding balance and will return any surplus proceeds to your designated beneficiary. Should the amount owed ever exceed the outstanding balance, neither you nor your family are responsible to repay any shortfall on the advance.
- Can I choose to pay back my advance early?
Yes. If your financial situation changes, you can choose to pay back your advance (and costs incurred during the period, like premiums and management fees) at any time without any prepayment penalties to retain your full death benefit.
- Do I qualify for the FLAG program?
Once an application is submitted, we consider a number of different factors to determine if you qualify, but there are three key requirements:
- You have been diagnosed with a life-threatening or advanced stage illness, such as a late-stage (Stage III or IV) cancer (generally with distant metastasis).
- You own a life insurance policy with a total death benefit of at least $50,000, issued by a U.S.- based life insurance company. *$100,000 minimum for group policies.
- You are a permanent resident of the United States. If you are a Canadian resident, click here.
- What types of life insurance policies will Fifth Season accept?
We can accept individual, group and employer-provided term or whole life insurance policies, and no cash surrender value is required. There are several requirements for eligibility, including:
- Your life insurance policy must be issued by a U.S.-based life insurance company.
- Your policy must be transferable or collaterally assignable to Fifth Season.
- Your policy must have been issues at least two years age.
- You must have one or more life insurance policies with a total death benefit of at least $50,000. *$100,000 minimum for group policies.
- If I’m unemployed or don’t have a good credit rating, can I still qualify?
Your credit rating, repayment ability and employment status are not factors we consider. Your medical history and the details of your life insurance policy are the primary factors for consideration.
- What if my medical status changes?
If you encounter a more rapid disease progression, it may be possible to increase the advance amount upon re-evaluation. Should your medical condition unexpectedly improve or stabilize, your obligations and Fifth Season’s obligations do not change.
- Who will have access to my medical information?
All information concerning your medical condition will remain strictly confidential. Access to your medical information is strictly controlled and limited to Fifth Season employees, consulting oncologists and physicians, other Fifth Season advisors who are subject to confidentiality obligations, and those other persons specified in the Confidentiality Agreement. Fifth Season is fully compliant with HIPPA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) regulations and standards, and is committed to protecting your privacy.
THE FLAG PROGRAM