All Posts By James Shiver, MBA
James Shiver, MBA is the founder of, and a multi-state licensed independent life insurance and annuity agent serving the individual family and small-business markets. He also serves as a university business professor, is an accredited financial counselor, and volunteers as a financial literacy advocate through a number of non-profit organizations.
golden eggs in a basket - annuities article

Annuities | Principal Protection & Lifetime Income

In working with consumers related to insurance and financial services, conversations often turn to planning for retirement. Whether you are just starting to save for the future or transitioning into retirement this can be a complicated and confusing topic. This confusion around planning for retirement is completely understandable given the sheer amount of information available.Common…
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Cheap Life Insurance: 13 Tips for Getting the Best Rates

In considering life insurance to protect the ones you love it is important to get the best rates possible.   However, finding cheap life insurance can sometimes be easier said than done for consumers navigating the complicated and ever changing world of financial services.These challenges are completely understandable given the complexity of different policy options and…
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Life Insurance for Stay at Home Parents (Value of a SAHM)

In many instances, families make the decision for one parent to stay home to care for young children while the other works to provide financially for the household.  Given that the stay at home parent makes significant contributions to the family but may not have a source of income the need for life insurance can…
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Life Insurance for Marijuana Users (Including 420 Friendly Insurers)

The use of marijuana has become somewhat more mainstream in recent years with trends in medical marijuana prescriptions and an increasing number of states legalizing the drug’s recreational use.  As a result, our team occasionally receives questions related about life insurance for marijuana users. Common questions include…Can someone who smokes marijuana get life insurance? Do…
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Collateral Assignment of Life Insurance (Including Key Steps in the Process)

In the world of personal finance, bank loans of one type or another are a routine occurrence.  It is also common for business owners to borrow money in starting a new venture and/or funding the expansion of an existing enterprise.  In securing such loans, lenders often require a life insurance policy on the borrower. Many…
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woman on swing image - how much life insurance do i need

How much life insurance do I need? (Including “Rules of Thumb”)

Most Americans agree that life insurance is an important part of their overall financial plan.  However, determining an appropriate amount of coverage can be a challenge for many consumers. In working with clients, we are often asked questions such as: How much life insurance do I need?  What should be considered in selecting coverage? Or, should I…
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Banner Life Insurance Company Review (Recommended)

Banner Life Insurance Company has a well-earned reputation for financial strength and affordable life insurance products.  But, how competitive are the company’s products and services in today’s ever-changing marketplace? What types of life insurance does Banner Life offer? And, does the quality of customer service match the company’s ratings? Banner Life Insurance Company (800) 638-8428 Account Sign-in…
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ashtray cigarette image - life insurance for smokers

Life Insurance for Smokers and Tobacco Users (Including 3 Insider Tips)

The number of smokers has decreased in recent decades, but many Americans continue to use tobacco products in one form or another.  ​As a result, we frequently receive questions related to life insurance for smokers, or the use of other forms of tobacco. Common consumer questions include… Is life insurance for smokers more expensive?If I quit smoking…
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mutual of omaha insurance company review

Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company Review (Recommended)

Mutual of Omaha has a long history of providing quality insurance and financial products and services to consumers, as well as an organizational focus on community service. But, how do the company’s products and services compare to their competitors in an ever-evolving marketplace? What types of insurance products does Mutual of Omaha offer?  What is the…
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