Affordable High Risk Life Insurance and Tips to Save on Coverage


Are you afraid to apply for life insurance because you have a serious health condition or because you participate in a hazardous hobby?

Have you applied for life insurance in the past and were unable to afford the premiums or were even denied coverage?

Worry no more, there is hope in finding the coverage that you need at a price that you can afford!

Finding an affordable life insurance policy is simple when working with an experienced agent who represents dozens of life insurance companies because they are able to shop the market for you.

The agents at JRC Insurance Group are experienced in helping “high risk” applicants find the life insurance coverage that they need. By having access to the underwriting guidelines for dozens of top-rated life insurance companies, JRC agents are able to match clients to the best company available.

Quick Article Guide:

  1. Am I Considered High Risk to Life Insurance Companies?
  2. Health Issues That Are Considered a High Risk
  3. Affordable Options for “High Risk” Lifestyles
  4. Occupations That May Be Considered a High Risk
  5. Hobbies That Are Considered a High Risk
  6. High Risk Travel Destinations
  7. What Type of Life Insurance is Available to High Risk Applicants?
  8. Tips from the Pros: How to Save on High Risk Insurance

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Am I Considered “High Risk” to Life Insurance Companies?

Many people assume that all life insurance companies have the same guidelines when approving an applicant; however this is not the case because every life insurance company evaluates applicants differently. Some life insurance companies specialize with applicants who have had heart issues while other companies may offer more competitive rates for cancer survivors.

This same logic applies to your lifestyle. As an example, a handful of life insurance companies are extremely lenient with applicants who smoke cigars or e-cigarettes, while others will you charge you an extra “tobacco” premium.

Most people hear the term “high risk life insurance” and tend to assume that this term only applies to “unhealthy” people, or people with ongoing health issues. While this may be true in some instances, there are many other factors that can cause an applicant to be considered a “high risk” to the life insurance companies.

When shopping for life insurance, your agent will ask you some questions about your overall health, hobbies, and occupation to make sure you are matched with the right life insurance company. For this reason, it’s important to be as upfront as possible with the agent you decide to work with because in the long run it will save you time and money.

In this article, we’ll explain some health issues, hobbies, and occupations that that cause you to be considered a high risk for life insurance. We’ll also provide an explanation of the coverage options that may be available to you and some tips to help save you money on your life insurance.

Health Issues That Are Considered a High Risk

We’ve created an exclusive guide to purchasing affordable high risk life insurance for each of the health issues below:

Every life insurance company has different guidelines when approving a life insurance applicant. This is why it’s so important to work with an agent that represents dozens of top-rated life insurance companies. JRC Insurance Group specializes in applicants who have been diagnosed with many forms of cancer, coronary artery disease, type II diabetes, atrial fibrillation, have had a heart attack/stroke, or are considered to be obese. We’ve been able to help lots clients find affordable term or whole life insurance options with these “high risk” health issues even when other life insurance companies have turned them down. If you don’t see your health issue listed above, check out our article on high risk health issues or call and speak with one of our experts, toll-free: 855-247-9555.

Affordable Options for “High Risk” Lifestyles

We all have a bad habit or two, but which ones can affect your ability to purchase life insurance? If you use tobacco, marijuana, or drink excessively, you may be classified as a high risk applicant when applying for life insurance. Moreover, every company views tobacco and marijuana use differently and some companies will charge you a fraction of what other companies will.

We’ve created a few guides for tobacco and marijuana users to help them get the best rates on their life insurance. Some life insurance companies are extremely lenient with occasional marijuana or tobacco smokers while other companies are more lenient with cigar smokers, tobacco chewers, or e-cigarette smokers.

Depending on your situation, we may be able to save you up to 73% on the cost of your term life insurance policy, but please see our guides below:

If you are an excessive drinker that has been to treatment for alcohol before, or if you’re in treatment now, it’s best to give us a call directly to see if we can help. Life insurance companies will consider how long it has been since you finished treatment and whether or not you still drink before approving your policy. They will also review your liver enzymes to see if there are any elevations of abnormalities.

Occupations That May Be Considered a “High Risk”

high risk jobIt’s no secret that some occupations are more hazardous than others, but the careers you might think are dangerous may not be considered risky to life insurance companies. People from all different occupations are in search of life insurance. We routinely work with pilots, police officers, fire-fighters, and a look of other seemingly high risk occupations.

When insuring clients that have high risk careers, carriers use their own death statistics of a specific occupation as well as information gathered in reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Most of the police officers, pilots, and firefighters we’ve worked with have qualified for preferred rates. If you’re a pilot, logger, commercial fisherman, or miner, applying with the right company will save you a considerable amount of money on your coverage.

We’ve composed an extensive guide for each of these high risk occupations:

If your occupation is not listed, we can still help you find your most affordable options. We’ve worked with offshore oil riggers, active military, roofers, garbage collectors, high-rise window cleaners, and structural iron erectors. If you don’t see your occupation listed and think it is hazardous, feel free to give us a call for accurate quotes, 855-247-9555, or read our article on high-risk occupations.

Hobbies That Are Considered a High Risk

Dangerous Hobby Do you enjoy rock climbing, scuba diving, or skydiving on a regular basis?  Having hobbies like these will definitely affect your life insurance rates. Rock climbers and tandem skydivers, although viewed as a high risk, still may be able to qualify for standard rates with a handful of companies. But, if you are a skydiver that does not perform tandem jumps, or if you are rock climbing above 13,000 feet, it’s best to call and speak with one of our experts.

Scuba divers may also be able to qualify for best rates depending on the depth of their dives and overall health. Below are just a few of the questions that your agent will ask during the application process. For more information, check out Life Insurance for Scuba Divers.

  • Are you certified? (This is usually a must)
  • How many dives do you perform each year?
  • What is the average depth of your dives?
  • Do you ever perform dives alone?
  • Do you engage in any cave, wreck, rescue, or salvage diving?

High Risk Travel Destinations

Do you enjoy exploring everything this world has to offer, or perhaps your occupation requires you to travel frequently?  There are many countries that are flagged as “unsafe” by life insurance companies based on current state department travel warnings.

Destinations that are considered to be unsafe by the insurance companies typically include countries like North Korea, Iraq, Iran, the Gaza Strip, West Bank, and Afghanistan. However, there are some states that have enacted laws that prevent life insurance companies from judging your past or future travels. These states include CA, CO, CT, FL, GA, IL, LA, MA, MD, MO, NJ, NY, OK, TN, and WA.

*For a complete list of current countries on this list, or to find out if your state is a travel exemption state, please feel free to give us a call at 855-247-9555.

What Type of Life Insurance is Available to High Risk Applicants?

Generally all forms of traditional life insurance are available to applicants that are considered to be a high risk, but you need to make sure you apply with the right company. Not all life insurance companies evaluate risk the same, and some life insurance companies are more lenient than others.

Below are some of the policies that are available for “high-risk” clients or clients that had previously been turned down by other less-lenient, life insurance companies.

Term Life Insurance – By working with the right agent who matches you with the best company, term life insurance is one of the most common and affordable life insurance policies for high risk individuals. Term life insurance is the least expensive form of traditional life insurance because it provides coverage for a set period of time, usually 10, 15, 20, 25 or 30 years. Because these policies provide coverage for a set period of time rather than your entire life, the insurance companies tend to be more lenient with approvals for applicants that are “high-risk.”

Second to Die or Survivorship Policies – These policies are designed for married couples and they do not pay out until both spouses pass away. The benefit of survivorship policies is that they consider the health of both people during the underwriting process which can mean big savings if one of the individuals is considered to be a high risk.

Whole or Permanent Life Policies – While these policies tend to be a little bit more expensive upfront, the agents at JRC can provide you with a policy with rates that are “fixed” for the rest of your life. These policies typically provide coverage to age 90 or later so they’re ideal for applicants with high risk health issues.

No Medical Exam – While applying for life insurance without a medical exam may be easy and convenient for those who have extremely busy schedules or are afraid of needles, due to their expensive premiums we normally do not recommend these policies for our high risk applicants. In addition, before approving your policy the insurance company will review all of your medical records and they tend to be less lenient with high-risk applicants.

Guaranteed Issue Policies – If you have a serious medical condition or are terminally ill, this may be your only option for purchasing life insurance. These policies ask few to no health questions and do not require a medical exam. The main drawback to guaranteed issue life insurance is that there is a very limited amount of coverage offered (up to $25,000), and the policies need to be in effect for two years before paying out the entire face value.

Tips from the Pros: How to Save on High Risk Insurance

  1. First and foremost, if you’re a high risk applicant, you will need to work with an agency or brokerage who works with multiple carriers, otherwise you will be ripping your hair out by bouncing from agent to agent. At JRC, we work with dozens of companies so that we can shop the market for you. Our agents are experienced in helping high risk applicants find the affordable life insurance coverage that they need.
  1. A great way to save money on your life insurance is by adopting a healthier lifestyle. Most of our overweight applicants can save on their premiums just by simply losing five to ten pounds. Additionally, if you currently have a life insurance policy and have quit smoking or using tobacco products more than 12 months ago, we highly urge you to re-apply. You may be surprised at how much you could save.
  1. Our agents also strongly urge our clients that are passionate about travel to avoid unstable countries, especially during times of turmoil. If traveling to a dangerous country is in your future, buy your life insurance now, before you start making travel arrangements.
  1. JRC agents rarely recommend no medical exam policies for high risk applicants. No-exam life insurance policies leave little to chance and they tend to be less lenient with approvals. In addition, the premiums for no-exam life insurance are significantly more expensive because if you do not complete an exam, the insurance company will review all of your records in detail to make sure that nothing is missed.
  1. A general rule of thumb with life insurance is that the older you get, the less coverage you need. If you’re considered to be a high-risk, you can save money by purchasing multiple term policies for smaller amounts and staggering out their maturity dates. To learn more about this strategy visit our life insurance layering calculator.

How to Apply for Life Insurance

If you would like to apply for life insurance, the process is simple and free. One of our agents will help you fill out your application over the phone in just a few minutes. Once your application is complete, we’ll schedule your free medical exam and email you your application to review and sign.

After you complete the exam, your work is done! When we receive your approval, we’ll send the policy to you to review before making your first payment. During this time you can accept coverage, decline coverage with no money due or fees, or adjust the amount of coverage you would like to accept.

JRC Can Help You Save Money on Your Life Insurance

we can helpPurchasing life insurance does not have to feel like the end of the world, even if you are considered to be “high risk.”  At JRC Insurance Group, our agents are experienced in the underwriting process and are passionate about finding our clients the most affordable life insurance coverage.

We work with multiple life insurance carriers to save you time and money. In just a few minutes we can shop more than 40 top-rated life insurance companies to provide you with your best options. Give us a call today at 855-247-9555 or request a free quote online below.

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Cliff Pendell

VP of Marketing at JRC Insurance Group
Cliff is a licensed life insurance agent and one of the owners of JRC Insurance Group. He has helped thousands of families of businesses with their life insurance needs since 2012 and specializes with applicants who are less than perfect health. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with family, traveling, and the great outdoors.
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