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By Trish Lettieri
Every year, APS members receive an email or letter regarding APSIT, the American Physical Society Insurance Trust, offering a range of insurance products. But what is it, and what does it offer?
APS established the Trust back in 1969 and it is offered to all member societies under the American Institute of Physics (AIP) umbrella. In fact, APS members who belong to more than one AIP member society likely receive multiple communications about APSIT. To help APS members understand more about this benefit of membership, I want to explain a bit about ASPIT and its insurance products.
APSIT was created to provide members with a convenient source for high-quality insurance coverage at an affordable cost. The trust has offered Group Term Life insurance to APSIT member society members since February of 1970. Since then, they have expanded their product range and the number of member societies participating. The insurance plans are underwritten by the New York Life Insurance Company, established in 1845, and still a market leader today. New York Life regularly earns the highest ratings for its financial strength from leading rating services and even through the recent economic crisis remained in excellent fiscal health.
The plan is now administered by a contracted company, Pearl Insurance, based in Illinois. They maintain a website about APSIT at apsitinsurance.com. The great staff at Pearl has worked to re-evaluate all the products offered and improve the customer service provided to participants in the Trust. All AIP member societies are APSIT participating organizations and any member of an AIP member society may purchase the insurance products provided by APSIT.
The APSIT offers six insurance products: term life, 10 year level term life, disability income, personal accident, hospital indemnity, and long term care. Of course, the particular products offered by APSIT may not meet your own personal needs, but their products are at least worth a look. The premiums are usually very affordable and the coverage provided is quite competitive with other providers. Additionally, because the members of AIP member societies, as a group, typically have a higher education, live conservative lifestyles and so on, the group rate provided can be far better than other group plans.
An additional benefit of APSIT is that the member societies themselves sit on the governing board and make decisions about the types of plans provided as well as other matters. In fact, I serve alongside a number of member representatives to ensure that this member benefit is the best it can be for APS. The APSIT Board has updated the tagline—“Insurance for Science Professionals”—to better explain the products and also expanded promotion to include frequent ads in Physics Today, so hopefully you’ve seen those. And if you ever receive a request to serve on the APSIT Board, I hope you will consider serving.
So, if you get a letter or informational pamphlet from the APSIT, you now know where it came from and why you received it. It remains your decision as to whether any of the insurance products provided suit your own financial needs. To learn more about other benefits of membership, please see our benefits of membership page, which is updated as new benefits are added.
The author is APS Director of Membership.
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Editor: David Voss
Staff Science Writer: Leah Poffenberger
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