Annuities FAQs: MetLife Growth and IncomeSM
When I purchase a MetLife Growth and Income annuity (MGI), is there a period of time when I can cancel my contract without penalty?
Yes, the law of the state which governs your contract allows you to cancel your contract without penalty for a limited period of time, known as the Free Look Period. The length of the Free Look Period varies by state, but is never less than 10 days from the day your contract is issued.
How are my assets invested?
Your assets are invested in the Fidelity® VIP FundsManager® 50% Portfolio1—a fund that invests in other Fidelity funds and is designed to provide diversified exposure across several major financial asset classes. This fund targets a strategic allocation of 35% domestic equity, 15% international equity, 40% fixed income, and 10% money market funds. Please note that, depending on the type of contract and state law, your assets may initially be invested in the Fidelity VIP Government Money Market Portfolio for a short period of time.
How can my guaranteed annual income increase?
Your guaranteed2 annual income has the potential to increase until the oldest annuitant reaches age 85.3 On each contract anniversary4 (until the oldest annuitant reaches age 85), your contract value5 is compared with your benefit base. In the event the contract value exceeds the benefit base on that date, your benefit base is increased so it equals your contract value. As a result, your guaranteed annual income is recalculated by multiplying your new benefit base by the withdrawal percentage established at your first withdrawal. That increased benefit base is protected from future market declines.
Can I withdraw more than the guaranteed annual income payment?
Yes, however, doing so may reduce any future guaranteed2 annual income and/or death benefit payments.6 Please note that an excess withdrawal that reduces the contract value to zero terminates the rider and the contract. Also, if you withdraw more than the guaranteed amount during the first five years of the contract, you may be subject to a 2% surrender fee.7
If your contract was funded with pretax assets, such as those from a 401(k) rollover,8 you may have a minimum required distribution (MRD) requirement that exceeds your guaranteed annual income payment. If so, you may be able to withdraw your entire MRD amount without penalty. You must utilize the systematic withdrawal program, and any withdrawals outside the systematic withdrawal program may result in excess withdrawals. Other conditions apply. Please read the prospectus for important information and limitations.
How are my assets taxed on withdrawal?
This depends on how you fund your annuity. If you fund your annuity with pretax assets, such as those from a 401(k) rollover,8 all your distributions will be taxed at your ordinary income rate since the assets used to purchase the annuity have never been taxed.9 If you fund your annuity with after-tax assets, such as those from a non-retirement brokerage account,10 you are only taxed on any gains at your ordinary income rate. In this situation, gains are paid out first before cost-basis. Keep in mind that taxable amounts withdrawn from a tax-deferred account prior to age 59½ may be subject to a 10% IRS penalty.
What happens if I fully deplete the assets in my account in a given contract year?
If your assets are fully depleted—either through the withdrawal of annual guaranteed income payments, poor market performance, or a combination of these factors—you will continue to receive your guaranteed2 annual income payment for the remainder of your life (or for the longer of your or your spouse's life, if you own a joint contract).
Important note: If your final withdrawal exceeds your guaranteed annual income payment and reduces your contract value to zero, your contract will be terminated and you will not receive any additional annual income payments. It is your responsibility to manage withdrawals, and you will not be notified if you submit a withdrawal request that causes an excess withdrawal, including an excess withdrawal that terminates the contract.
Can I add to my annuity's account value once it has been issued?
No, you cannot add to your MetLife Growth and IncomeSM annuity once it has been issued.
What happens if there is money left in my annuity when I die?
If you listed your spouse as a joint annuitant of the annuity when you purchased it, he or she will continue the contract as the owner and have access to all benefits. If there is not a joint annuitant, your named beneficiaries have the opportunity to receive the contract value or return of the purchase payment,6 adjusted for any withdrawals. The latter is not available in a lump sum; please see the prospectus for details.