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BMO Insurance has enhanced its accelerated underwriting of life insurance in an effort to speed up processing times.

Specifically, the firm will use “targeted medical and lifestyle questions,” based on data analytics, as a way to potentially avoid additional testing during the underwriting process, a release said.

Those questions are based on an individual’s risk profile, said Katarina Nikolic, vice-president and chief corporate underwriter with BMO Insurance, in an emailed statement. “We also leverage our internal data and analytics capabilities to further reduce risk and only request evidence when it is needed,” she said.

Further, the electrocardiogram (ECG) requirement has been removed for all life products, and the motor vehicle report requirement will also no longer apply for most ages and for coverage amounts below $10 million, the release said.

BMO used to require either a resting or stress ECG for most life insurance policies over $1 million, as well as for older ages and higher insurance amounts, Nikolic said.

Regarding motor vehicle reports and life insurance, she said they’re difficult to obtain in some provinces. “We found we were able to gather enough information from client disclosures that allowed us to quantify the risk,” she said.

The underwriting changes apply to up to $750,000 of coverage for clients aged 51 to 60, up to $3 million for clients aged 41 to 50, and up to $5 million for clients aged 18 to 40. Eligible term, universal life and whole life insurance plans are listed in an online document.

“Investing in our data and analytics has been an important strategic driver for us over the past few years,” said Rohit Thomas, president and CEO of BMO Insurance, in the release. “These changes will help financial advisors save time and ensure consumers can get coverage in place faster and with less paperwork.”

In November, Manulife Insurance reduced its number of standard life underwriting questions to 13 from 31.