With the recent release of the United States Government Accountability Office (”GAO”) and SEC reports/studies, the life settlement industry got its first reliable source of industry data.  It is about time!  After many years of guessing what the size of the industry is or how much value is created for consumers, the industry now has some hard figures from the GAO to hang its hat on.  And, I believe, these are really amazing figures.  From 2006-2009, $35.5 billion face value of life insurance was sold in the secondary market to investors.  In these transactions, the policy owners received approximately $6.2 billion in cash proceeds, compared to the cash surrender value of these policies of $558 million.  Thus, the life settlement industry put $5.6 billion of money into consumers’ pockets in excess of their only alternative, surrendering the policy back to the life insurance company.  In today’s challenging economic environment, there cannot be many industries out there that are putting more cash into consumers’ wallets.   Now is the time to take this hard data and introduce millions more to the consumer-friendly life settlement industry.