Life Insurance for Chronic Illness
Learn what you need to know about getting covered with life insurance while dealing with an ongoing medical condition.
Can You Get Life Insurance If You Have a Pre-Existing Condition?
Yes, you still have options for life insurance coverage even if you have a chronic illness or pre-existing medical condition.
With a pre-existing medical condition, taking care of yourself – and your family – becomes even more important. Life insurance can help you fulfill that commitment by protecting your family financially if something happens to you. After your death, the policy can help your loved ones cover day-to-day expenses, leftover debts, and funeral costs.
Here’s how it works.
How to Get Life Insurance with a Pre-Existing Condition
Most insurers define chronic illness as any disease that lasts three months or longer. This can include a wide range of illnesses, from asthma to arthritis to depression. If you’ve had cancer or heart disease, you may also fall into this category.
There are several factors to consider while you shop for life insurance:
- The type of illness: Is it life-threatening or not? For example, someone with arthritis is likely to have more options than someone with heart disease.
- When you were diagnosed and your current health status: If your condition is under control and you’re in good health otherwise, you can often still qualify for traditional life insurance. How long you’ve been diagnosed makes a difference, too. In general, the longer the illness, the greater risk there is for complications, which can mean higher rates.
- Age and overall health: If you’re younger and in generally good health, you’re more likely to qualify for lower rates. Lifestyle habits, like smoking and drinking, also factor in.
Each insurance company has its own guidelines, so you’ll want to consult a life insurance agent about which one is the best fit for you, based on your health history.
Types of Life Insurance for People with Chronic Illnesses
- Traditional life insurance: You may still qualify for traditional insurance if your disease is well-controlled and not life-threatening. You can choose from term life, which offers flexible coverage options for anywhere from 10 to 30 years, or permanent insurance, a lifelong form of coverage that builds cash value over time. You’ll likely need to take a medical exam to help determine your rates for a term life insurance or permanent life insurance policy.
- Simplified issue: This insurance type can work well if you have a medical issue but are relatively healthy overall. While you won’t need to take an exam, you may have to fill out a health survey and submit your medical history. Simplified issue is relatively affordable as well; it doesn’t cost much more to purchase a $250,000 simplified issue policy than a traditional plan with a medical exam.
- Guaranteed issue: For people with serious medical issues, guaranteed issue is the way to go. You can’t be turned down based on your health and don’t have to share medical history or deal with exams. The premiums tend to be higher and coverage amounts lower than other policies, but it can be a great fit for people who don’t qualify for other insurance. One other thing to keep in mind: Guaranteed issue also typically has a graded period at the beginning of the policy. If you die of a health-related issue during that period, your family won’t receive the full cash payout, although carriers typically will refund your premiums. If your death is accidental, your beneficiaries can still receive payment. After the graded period, you become eligible for the full amount of coverage.
- Final expense: This policy is designed for people over 50 who are looking to pay for end-of-life costs, medical bills, or debts. With no medical exam involved, it’s a good fit for people with chronic illness. The coverage levels are also lower, usually $5,000 to $35,000, which means more affordable premiums.
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Life Insurance Quotes Through eFinancial
At eFinancial, we’re committed to making the life insurance buying process simple, affordable, and convenient. With us, you have access to a range of life insurance products from over 20 top-rated providers. Our team of agents provide personalized guidance and will help you navigate your options, monthly costs, and other policy features.
Let eFinancial give you peace of mind about your loved ones’ financial future. We’re here to help.
To learn more, start your free, no-obligation online quote or call 866-388-3996800-957-9525 to talk with one of our agents.