Pearl Life Assurance Company

Pearl Life Assurance Company, Limited, Branch Office, 4, Bath Street.—

    The principles, the practice, and the policy of Life Assurance are now so well and widely known, and the solvency of various offices is in most cases so thoroughly assured that, except on account of the particular advantages certain offices are enabled to offer, by reason of the nature or the extent of the business done, it is almost immaterial which is selected. For this reason, and to maintain due competition amongst themselves, nearly all make a feature of devoting themselves more especially to the wants of particular classes of life assurance in addition to the general business.

    The Pearl Life Assurance Company, Limited, whose chief office is picturesquely located in London, at the foot of far-famed London Bridge, makes an especial charge of what may be termed the ‘‘Industrial Department”, bringing home the immense benefits of life assurance to those whose limited means will not permit of their devoting more than a few halfpence weekly to so desirable an end. Mr. P. J. Foley, M.P. for Connemara, is the managing director and guiding spirit of the enterprise, which has been incorporated under the Act of Parliament 25 & 26 Viet. c. 89. The capital of the company is £100,000, and the annual income is nearly £219,000.

    Branch offices have been established in all large industrial centres throughout the kingdom, with agencies in almost every part, numbering some five thousand in all. The Glasgow branch is under the management of Mr. A. M. Mackay, as general superintendent of this division, and Mr. A. Sproul as superintendent of this district of the company’s work. It was established at 4, Bath Street, where it still is, in 1864, at the time of the incorporation of the company. The business done is very extensive, and commends itself to all.

    Three of the forms of insurance carried on by the company are especially of advantage to the working classes. The first or “Infantile” table enables a parent, by the payment of one halfpenny, or not more than one penny, a week, to assure a sum upon the life of any child Under ten years of age, a sum varying in amount in accordance with the length of time the policy has been in force, but not exceeding £5 or £10 respectively. The next, or “Industrial Whole Life” table, takes up the ages from eleven next birthday to eighty, and by payments which may range from a halfpenny a week up to sixpence, enables a certain sum to be assured at death. This amount of course varies with the amount paid weekly and the age of the person on whose life the assurance is made, the guiding principle being the weekly receipt of small sums as premiums with the minimum of trouble to the assured. Another table termed the “Middle Class Whole Life” table deals with the ages fifteen to sixty, and in accordance with the premium paid monthly, and varying from a few pence to a few shillings, according to the age and amount insured, enables sums of £20, £30, £40, £50, £75, or £100 to be assured at death.

    Should it be found undesirable to continue the payment of the premium the amount already paid is not lost, but a paid-up policy, equivalent to thirty per cent, of the premiums received, may be obtained after the premiums have been paid for three years. Monthly premiums may be paid weekly, or vice versa, and as the collectors call periodically the drawback of continual visits to an office, often interfering much with domestic or other arrangements, is avoided, to the great convenience of the insurer.

    Policyholders can also remove from one town to another, and continue their payments without difficulty or loss of benefit. Claims are liberally and, as is often even of great importance promptly settled. In cases of discontinued payments from any cause, ninety-one days (thirteen weeks) grace is allowed before being excluded from benefit, Another special feature of the Pearl Assurance Company is one of great interest to members of building societies. By a gradually decreasing scale of yearly payments, it enables a person who has borrowed a sum from a building society or some other channel, repayable proportionately for a certain number of years, to effect such an assurance upon his life as will in the event of his death provide the amount necessary to pay off the mortgage and so leave the property free of encumbrance to his heirs.

    The company also carries on a large insurance business of the ordinary class, and for which they have adopted the National English Life Table, constructed for the Government as the basis upon which premiums are calculated. The various classes of assurance are arranged so as to meet the forms most in request, and may be tabulated as follows: 1. Ordinary whole term assurances, securing a sum payable on the failure of a given life and effected by premiums payable at stated periods so long as the life exists, and participating in certain profits of the company.
For a second class the premiums are less than in that just referred to, and consequently receive no share of the profits, although in other respects the sum assured is payable at death in the same manner.
Class 3 effects an assurance payable on the failure of the first of two lives, and is very useful for partners in business or for husband and wife.
Class 4 secures a sum payable on the failure of the last of two lives, and is often very useful in the case of property depending in that manner.
Class 5 provides for a stun to be paid at death in the same manner as in class 2, but the assurance is effected by a limited number of payments only as a maximum, and which do not need to be completed if death occurs before the stipulated number have been made.
A sixth class provides for what may be termed “endowment” or investment assurances, that is, it insures the payment of a sum to the assured on the attainment of a certain age or to his representatives at his death if it should take place earlier. This kind of assurance is now very popular, and may participate in the profits of the ordinary work of the company, not in accordance with the scale upon which the premiums are based.
Class 7 deals with short term assurances of a few months or a few years, and are useful in legal transactions, or as collateral securities for temporary loans, &c.
Class 8, for deferred annuities, secures the payment of an annuity to commence at a certain period by payment of a small premium annually to the company until that period arrives. Such several premiums may be compounded for by the payment of a lump sum.
Class 9 provides “endowments for children”. By the payment of an annual premium until a child attains its majority a sum may be secured at that time which will provide the means of starting them in a business or professional career. Should death intervene, or the policy be discontinued for other reasons, four-fifths of the sums paid as premiums are returnable.
Table class 10, a “special reduced system”, is intended to meet the circumstances of those whose means are limited, by the adoption of smaller rates of premium in the earlier years of the insurance on a single life as in class 2.
Class 11 provides “immediate annuity” until death in return for certain amounts paid down.
Class 12 is the “building society” system, which 'has already been referred to at length. The general business of the company is conducted upon similar lines to that of other assurance companies with regard to division of profits, loans on policies, surrender values, foreign residence, settlement of claims, &c. The security offered by the company to either investors or insurers is ample and unexceptionable.

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