Last Updated: 09/07/2017
If you have a pre-existing medical condition, finding affordable life insurance can be a challenge. Not all life insurance companies treat pre-existing health conditions the same. In this article, we will show you how and where to find the most affordable free life insurance quotes for your particular health concern.
Quick Article Guide:
1. How Life Insurance Companies View Pre-Existing Health Conditions
2. Life Insurance Rate Classes
3. Take the Medical Exam
4. Where to Find a Quote for a Pre-Existing Condition
5. Free Quotes for High-Risk Pre-Existing Conditions
A pre-existing health condition can take many forms and degrees. Your condition can be very treatable and managed medically, or it could be one that will continue to deteriorate. Your condition could have been with you since birth, or you may have just been recently diagnosed. Health conditions that affect life insurance range from obesity, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure to Crohn’s disease, cancer, or anything in between.
Insurance companies assess your health condition according to the seriousness of the pre-existing condition and the probability of a successful prognosis. It also depends on whether your condition is well-managed with medication/treatment, or in some cases, when you had your last episode. Your rating is also based on your medical examination and the reports supplied by your doctors, lab results, and hospital reports.
These and many other factors come into play in determining how an insurance company will rate you. There may even a waiting period of anywhere from 6 months to 2 years before they might even consider you for a policy.
A rating for someone who has a pre-existing condition generally breaks down into the following categories:
Preferred is the second best rate class, behind Preferred Best. Preferred applicants are generally healthy, perhaps with some minor issues, such as being slightly overweight. A family history of cancer or heart disease could also bump a healthy applicant from Preferred Best to Preferred.
Most insurers will look past medications for blood pressure, thyroid, and cholesterol, assuming you are controlling the issue adequately. If you have been diagnosed with anxiety or depression but appear to be treating the issue effectively, it is possible for you to secure a Preferred rate.
Applicants in the Standard Plus category have notable health issues, but the problems aren’t putting them in imminent danger and are being controlled with medication. This includes diabetics, cancer survivors, and people who are up to 50 pounds overweight.
Standard Plus is the lowest rate category available to someone with well-controlled diabetes. With a few companies, Standard Plus is also available to daily cigar smokers, users of e-cigarettes, and users of chewing tobacco. In addition, cancer survivors can often qualify for Standard Plus rates five years after their final treatment.
Standard rates reflect an average mortality risk compared to your age and health group. These rates are typically available to those more than 60 pounds overweight, with no serious health issues. This is the lowest rate category available to cancer survivors who are 2 or more years past the end of their last treatment. Standard rates are also common for someone with well-controlled diabetes (under 7.0 A1C).
Substandard (Mild, Medium, or Severe)
The substandard ratings are typically referred to as Table 2 or Table B, Table 4 or Table D, and so on. For those who might end up being declined by every company for a traditional life insurance policy, there are also two other life insurance options which include:
- Graded Death Benefit Life Insurance
- Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance
Don’t get too caught up in understanding the rate classes. The main point here is to understand that a pre-existing condition for every individual is unique and has to be treated as such. Also, not every life insurance company is going to rate you the same or charge you the same. Being turned down by one insurer does not mean there is no one who will insure you. Even with an extreme condition, there are still options. The tables below illustrate how rates can vary for the same condition from one insurer to the next.
If you have a pre-existing medical condition, you might be inclined to go straight for no medical exam life insurance. However, we recommend taking a medical exam, because doing so helps us get a better download on where exactly you stand, and you might be surprised at how lenient some insurers can be with certain conditions.
Non-medical term policies typically have shorter terms and lower face amounts than medical policies. A standard, non-painful checkup unlocks more products, better coverage, and more carriers. For example, you’d have a hard time getting a non-medical policy offering much higher than a $400,000 death benefit. Meanwhile, exceeding a $1 million death benefit is quite common in medical-backed policies.
The medical exam is also a free health check-up.
You’ll get all of your lab tests and vitals free of charge, as the exam is billed directly to your insurance company upfront, regardless of your application’s outcome.
The first approach to get a free quote is to choose the right kind of life insurance agent. You should speak to an independent agent like JRC who specializes in helping clients with pre-existing conditions. We have access to dozens of companies, and we know which ones are more lenient than others when it comes to different kinds of pre-existing health conditions.
Online quotes and “captive agents” with big-box insurers can be frustrating to work with. Also, you won’t understand where you stand and which way to turn, because you are not comparing rates from different companies. An independent agent not only understands how life insurance companies view specific health conditions, but can also aggregate a large number of quotes in a short amount of time.
At JRC, we are experts in dealing with health conditions and pre-existing conditions. However, getting a life insurance quote online with a serious medical condition can be difficult, as our quote form only allows you to see quotes for preferred to standard rates, while many pre-existing conditions will be rated at substandard.
If you’re not sure where to begin, you can always give us a call, toll-free at 855-247-9555, or click on one of the links below to get a more accurate idea of what you can expect during the underwriting or approval process. You can also see our previous article, “13 Serious Health Problems That Don’t Rule Out Life Insurance.”
- Benign Growths and Tumors
- Crohn’s Disease
- Drug and Alcohol
- Head or Brain Injury
- Heart Surgery
- High Cholesterol
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Mental Health
- Muscular Bone and Joint
- Skin Conditions
- Ulcerative Colitis
While we have many great articles and resources on our site about diabetes, low-cost high-risk insurance, blood pressure and more, again, your best bet is to contact us by phone toll-free at 855-247-9555 so that we can better assess your situation and provide you with more information. Don’t let a health issue dissuade you from protecting your family’s future. JRC will work to find the best policy at the most affordable rate.
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