Navigate Life Insurance With Health Conditions & Dangerous Activities- 2018



Navigate Life Insurance

   with Health Conditions 

Pro Tip: You can either use the condition search portal above  to be taken to an article about your specific condition or you can browse conditions below in alphabetic order. If your condition is not in the portal the Life Insurance Help Desk will be notified and will add your condition within 72 hours.  Additionally, you can use the quote tool to get an idea of pricing at any time.  

Let's face it, nobody thinks buying life insurance is a "fun" activity. But if you have an existing health condition it can be downright aggravating.

The major source of aggravation is that every major life insurer has different standards for what it considers a great, good, or average, or impaired risk.

Navigating this minefield alone can be a lengthy and often self defeating task.Luckily, it is not necessary to "go it alone".

Finding the Carrier Best Suited to Your Condition.

What ever your ailment, there is a good chance we have seen it and can recommend the carrier(s) who look most favorably on  your particular situation. 

Placement of your application with the right carrier for your situation is vital to obtaining the best deal possible.

Simply choosing the lowest monthly price on the quote tool only works for the folks who are in perfect health. If you are not so lucky as to be in perfect health, you may want to receive a custom quote. This will dramatically increase the odds of an accurate quote.  

Note that less than 10% of life insurance applicants receive  the preferred plus rating, so knowing which company to apply with matters in the end.

Use an Independent Agent to Get the Best Deal

Because as an independent agency we have access to 50+ carriers, we are able to place your application with the company that fits you best. Below is a list of some of the conditions we have placed in the past. 

Please feel free to call or contact us with any questions you may have.

A

Acid Reflux

Mild acid reflux is often referred to as heartburn, more severe reflux is referred to as GERD

Typically, acid reflux will not be a consideration with life insurance applications. However, this assumes the reflux is well-controlled.

 As such, the best rates such as preferred plus and preferred are available.  

More severe, and/or chronic reflux that threatens to damage the throat or esophagus are reasons for life insurance underwriting to offer higher rates. 

See more here: Life Insurance with Acid Reflux


Asthma

Asthma, a chronic constricted breathing condition, is one of the more common conditions to show up on life insurance applications.

However, the shortness of breath caused by asthma will not necessarily harm your prospects for a great life insurance policy. The key, as usual, will be how well condition is controlled.

Applications that do not contain a  history hospitalizations caused by asthma will likely be in good shape. Mild cases can qualify for preferred rates.

Read more about  Life insurance with Asthma


Addison’s Disease

Also know as adrenal insufficiency, Addison's is connected range of medical conditions. As a result, underwriting will be very interested in your history of control.

Applications submitted prior to 1 year of good control may be postponed or rated up. Beyond a year, well controlled applicants may receive offers of "standard".

 Conditions connected to Addison's or a history of hospitalization will make policy offers more expensive.

Read more about  Life Insurance with Addison's Disease


Aneurysm

Life insurance after an aneurysm possible. The more complicated (and honest) answer is "it depends on your particular circumstance". Based on your situation rates can range from standard to a table rating or even a decline

Best Case – If you had an aneurysm that was detected before rupture and successfully operated, have followed up diligently and are in excellent health, you may have a shot at a standard rate.

All applications for life insurance with aneurysm history that do not fit into the best case scenario will be a degree of substandard (or decline). The severity will depend on your history, time elapsed. and any symptoms. Also, any other health issues, particularly if the other conditions contribute to the aneurysm like high blood pressure.

Read more about Life Insurance after Brain Aneurysm


Angina Pectoris

Angina, the medical term for chest pain, is a complicated  condition as far as life insurance carriers are concerned. whether you are insurable with angina depends on your particular circumstance. Based on your situation rates can range from standard/preferred to a table rating or even a decline.

Best Case – If client is over 50 years old and stable angina  is under is under excellent control with a normal angiogram - some cases have a chance for a standard . Simply use the quote tool to see standard rates.

If you over 40 but under 50yrs. old or your angina has some complications like high blood pressure/cholesterol. You will be looking at a  substandard rate. The severity of the complications will dictate the range of table of offer.

Read more about  Life Insurance With Angina


Angioplasty

Life insurance underwriting can be a mixed bag after an angioplasty procedure. Your rates will be dictated by your particular circumstance, the triggering events, and the carrier chosen.

Best Case – If angioplasty was preventatively performed (no triggering cardiac event) more than 2 years ago with no complications and good test results (ejection fraction scores between 50-69 %) some cases have a chance for a standard  rating. Simply use the quote tool for a standard quote.

If your angioplasty procedure is less than 2 years old, had a triggering event, or has had any complications, the best you will do is a mid substandard rate. The severity of the table rating will depend on your complications.

Read more about  Life Insurance after Angioplasty


Anorexia

Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder characterized by extreme fear of weight gain and unhealthily low body weight. Much like bulinia, anorexia is often associated with self induced vomiting after meals

Although insurers may be willing to insure an applicant who has put some time (usually a minimum of 2 years) between themselves and their eating disorder, they will want to know as much as they can about your specific experience in order to make a decision. 

Best Case – If your history of an eating disorder is  more than 2 years old and you are in excellent health otherwise you have good  chance for a standard rating. Simply use the quotetool for a standard quote.

- If you are less than 2 years out from total control,  take anti-depressives,  or suffered complications from your eating disorder, you will likely be looking at a substandard or "table rated" offer. The rating will depend on the severity of the complications.

Read more about Life Insurance After Anorexia


Clinical Anxiety

Clinical anxiety disorder causes a persistent feeling of fear, out of proportion to any actual danger, that is difficult to control and  interferes with daily activities.

Best Case – If anxiety symptoms are under excellent control and there is good compliance, some cases have a chance for a preferred/preferred plus rate. Simply use the quote tool  for a preferred quote.

If your anxiety seems to be moderate, controlled by prescription and good compliance you may be looking at a standard to mild substandard rate (table 2/B). This may include panic disorder and even PTSD cases as long as there are no hospitalizations.

More severe cases that require chronic maintenance drugs and/or you have a history that includes hospitalizations or disability, the best you will likely do is a severe substandard rate. 

Read more about Life Insurance with Anxiety Disorder


Arrhythmia 

​Cardiac arrhythmia is a catch-all term for several types of irregular heartbeats.

When abnormal electrical activity causes the heart to beat too quickly, too slowly, or erratically, the condition is called an arrhythmia. Although most arrhythmia's are harmless, some can interfere with the heart's ability to pump blood.

The most common arrhythmia is atrial fibrillation or AFib. More than two million Americans suffer from an atrial fibrillation condition that causes the upper and lower heart chambers to beat "out of synch".

Less common arrhythmia's are tachycardia,where the heart beats too fast, bradycardia-when the heart beats too slow and ventricular fibrillation, which causes the ventricles to quiver rather than beat.

Because cardiac arrhythmia is a catch all phrase it is nearly impossible to provide underwriting scenarios for all the possibilities. That being said, be aware that  paroxysmal premature atrial contractions (PAC) or premature ventricular contractions may qualify for preferred  rates. Whereas, well controlled paroxysmal AFib will likely get no better than standard rates. For a more precise estimate please consult your type of arrhythmia in the search portal at the top of this page. Bear in mind, several types of arrhythmia cases may result in substandard  offers or even outright declinations.

Read more about  Life Insurance with Cardiac Arrhythmia


Atrial Fibrillation

Atrial fibrillation or AFIB is the most common heart arrhythmia condition. An arrhythmia is when the heart beats too slowly, too fast, or in an irregular way. When a person has AFIB, the normal beating in the upper chambers of the heart (the two atria) is irregular, and blood doesn’t flow as well as it should from the atria to the lower chambers of the heart (the two ventricles).​

Best cas- if paroxysmal AFIB  is detected early, symptoms are under excellent control and complications or further damage to the heart has been prevented, many cases have a chance for a standard rating. Simply use the quoter for a standard quote.

Table 2-4 is the most common rating for paroxysmal AFIB applications and the best possible for a chronic case. You calculate this rate by multiplying the standard rate by 1.5 (Table 2/B) or 2 (table 4/D). More severe ratings, or even declines, are likely with complications. 

Read more about Life Insurance with AFIB


Atrial Flutter

Atrial flutter is a cardiac arrhythmia that is closely related to atrial fibrillation. In fact, Atrial flutter often accompanies atrial fibrillation.

Both conditions are types of tachycardia, a condition where the heart beats rapidly causing the upper chambers of the heart (atria) to be out of sync with the lower chambers.   

While dangerous atrial flutter tends to be more benign than it's more serious kin AFib. The major concern with atrial flutter is that weakening of the heart muscle can lead to heart failure, heart attack and stroke.

Best Case – If paroxysmal atrial flutter is detected early, symptoms are under excellent control and complications or further damage to the heart has been prevented, many cases have a chance for a standard/ preferred rating. Simply use the quoter on the left for a standard quote.

Table 2-4 is the  most common rating for paroxysmal atrial flutter applications and the best possible for a chronic case. More severe cases  will likely result in a severe substandard rate or decline

Read more about Life Insurance with Atrial Flutter


AVRD

In the case of arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasiaa  there is no known cause so other than family history, the "usual risk factors" test does not apply.

Arrhythmogenic right ventricular dysplasiaa is considered a primary cardiomyopathy and is not linked to an underlying condition. 

Best Case - with stable cardiomyopathy a normal EKG, regular follow up and perfect health otherwise, it may be possible to get a Substandard "table 2/B)" rating. However, be aware that this is extremely rare and EVERYTHING would have to fall right in to place.

The more realistic rating for a well controlled and followed up AVRD case is substandard "table" 4/D-6/D  ​

Applications for life insurance with cardiomyopathy that do not fit into the best case scenario will be a more severe degree of substandard or outright declination. The severity will depend on your cardiomyopathy symptoms as well as any other health issues.

Read more about  Life Insurance with AVRD

B


Basal Skin Cancer 

Skin cancer is the abnormal growth of skin cells and states that the condition most often develops on skin exposed to the sun. However, this common form of cancer can also occur on areas of your skin not ordinarily exposed to sunlight.

There are three major types of skin cancer:

  • basal cell carcinoma
  • squamous cell carcinoma
  • melanoma.

Basal cell carcinoma might appear as a small, smooth, pearly or waxy bump on the face, ears, and neck; or as a flat, pink/red- or brown-colored lesion on the trunk or arms and legs.

Best Case- Most basal cell cases are rated standard or better. If, however, you have had multiple occurrences you could get bumped to mild substandard rate.

Read more about Life Insurance with Basil Skin Cancer

Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder, formerly known as manic depression, is believed to affect 2.6% of the U.S. population.

Best Case – If bipolar  symptoms are under excellent control with medication and regular follow up and no history of  hospitalizations or suicide attempts  and excellent health- many cases have a chance for a standard rating. Simply use the quoter on the right for a standard rating.

If your bipolar disorder is under control now but more than 2 years ago you lost considerable work time to the condition or were hospitalized,  or have other health issues, you may be looking at a table 2/B to table 8/H rate. Cases with more recent hospitalization may be declined.

Bulimia

Much like anorexia, bulimia is often associated with self induced vomiting after meals.

While insurers may be willing to insure an applicant who has put some time (usually a minimum of 2 years) between themselves and their eating disorder, they will want to know as much as they can about your specific experience in order to make a decision.

Best Case – If your history of an eating disorder is  more than 2 years old and you are in excellent health otherwise you have good  have a chance for a standard rating. Simply use the quoter on the right for a standard quote.

If you are less than 2 years out from total control,  take anti-depressives,  or suffered complications from your eating disorder, you will likely be looking at a substandard rate.

Read more about  Life Insurance after Bulimia
Bypass Surgery-

Life insurance after bypass surgery is possible. However, your chances (and rates) will depend on the underlying cause of your bypass surgery, the severity of symptoms and your overall health situation. Rates can range from standard (rare) to a table rating or even a decline.

Read more about Life Insurance After Bypass surgery


Cardiomyopathy

Cardiovascular conditions make life insurance underwriters nervous. Underwriting will also need to know if the cardiomyopathy is ischemic or not (related to CAD) and if not, is it  dilated, hypertrophic, restrictive or ventricular dyspalsia.

Best Case - with stable cardiomyopathy a normal EKG, regular follow up and perfect health otherwise, it may be possible to get a Standard rating. However, be aware that this is extremely rare and  EVERYTHING would have to fall right in to place. The more realistic rating for a well controlled and followed up cardiomyopathy case is substandard "table" 2-4.

Read more about Life Insurance with Cardiomyopathy


Cardiac Infarction

The medical term for a heart attack is myocardial infarction. This is a condition where the blood vessel to the heart becomes blocked.

Standard class- This is the best you will do after having a heart attack. Standard class will only be offered in cases where the attack was mild and several years ago (7-10+) and you are in nearly perfect health otherwise. As a result, this is a very rare circumstance.

 Applications that don't qualify for standard rates are often offered a table rated or sub-standard policy or declined outright. Each table represents a 25% increase in the cost of the policy over the standard price. 

Read more about Life Insurance with Cardiac Infarction


Cholesterol

While LDL or "bad" cholesterol can lead to heart disease, some cholesterol is essential.

Best Case – If High Cholesterol  is under excellent control- LDL/HDL ratio under 5 and total cholesterol under 250- some cases have a chance for a preferred plus  rating even if using a statin. Simply use the quote tool on the right for a quote.

If your high cholesterol is under good control but not quite to the standards of preferred best rates will likely get you  standard  rates or better.  This assumes there are no other health concerns.

Read more about life insurance with high cholesterol


Colon Polyps

Colon polyps can be suffered by anybody but most frequently there is either a family connection, a personal history with a condition such as ulcerative colitis. Although colon polyps are not always cancerous, they certainly can be. 


If your polyps have recurred, or  have been found to be cancerous  (stage 0)  and you are in excellent health otherwise,  you will likely be standard or a mild substandard rate. You calculate this rate by multiplying the standard rate by 1.5 (Table 2/B).

Read more about Life Insurance After Colon Polyps


Crohn's Disease

A long term chronic illness, Crohn's disease inflames and ulcerates the intestine (bowel).

Along with ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease is part of a group of diseases known as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Most commonly affected by Crohn’s is the lower part of the small intestine, although it can occur in any part of the large or small intestine, stomach, esophagus, or even the mouth.

Best Case – If Crohn’s is detected early, symptoms are under excellent control with no complications, most cases have a possibility for a standard rating. Simply use the quoter on the left for a standard quote.

If your Crohn’s is more challenging despite good compliance or cases where heavier drugs are required you may be looking at a  sub-standard rate.

Read more about  Life Insurance with Crohn’s Disease

D


Depression

Depression is  a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest.  More than just a bout of the blues, depression may require long-term treatment.

Depression affects how you feel, think and behave and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems. It can cause trouble doing normal day-to-day activities.

Best Case – If Depression is mild, symptoms are under excellent control and there is good compliance, some cases have a chance for a standard rating. Simply use the quoter on the left for a standard quote.

If your Depression requires the use of  antidepressant pharmaceuticals you may be looking at a substandard rate. the severity of the rating will depend on the severity of the case. Cases with suicide attempts or previously requiring prolonged hospitalization may be declined.

Read more about  Life Insurance with Depression


Diabetes (type II)

Type ll diabetes represents 95% of all sufferers, and one in four people suffering from type ll diabetes are unaware of their condition.

 One in four adults over the age of 65 is a type ll diabetic.

Obesity, age,  physical inactivity and race all play a factor in the onset of diabetes. 

Best Case – If type ll diabetes is under  is under excellent control- A1C currently  under  6.5  some cases have a  strong chance for a standard rating  rating even if using oral medications. Simply use the quote tool on the right for a quote.

If your diabetes is under good control  A1C under 7 but not quite to the standards shown above you  will still likely get you standard rates as long as you are over age 50. This assumes there are no other health concerns.

A1C readings above 7 are likely to call for a substandard rate. The severity will correlate to the A1C reading and overall health of the applicant.

Read more about life insurance for Diabetes (Type 2 Diabetes)


Dilated Cardiomyopathy 

Cardiomyopathy is a disease of the heart muscle. It makes it harder for the heart to fill with blood and to pump blood. Cardiomyopathy is a major cause of heart failure. The condition can also cause abnormal heart rhythms. Cardiomyopathy can affect people of all ages and races.

Cardiomyopathy that is related to coronary artery disease (CAD) is referred to as ischemic. Whereas, cardiomyopathy that is not related to CAD is referred to as non-ischemic.

Best Case - with stable dilated cardiomyopathy a normal EKG, regular follow up and perfect health otherwise, it may be possible to get a Standard rating. However, be aware that this is extremely rare and EVERYTHING would have to fall right in to place.

The more realistic rating for a well controlled and followed up dilated cardiomyopathy case is substandard "table" 2-4 

All applications for life insurance with cardiomyopathy that do not fit into the best case scenario will be a degree of substandard. The severity will depend on your dilated cardiomyopathy symptoms as well as any other health issues particularly if the other conditions contribute to the cardiomyopathy like coronary artery disease.

Read more about Life Insurance with Dilated Cardiomyopathy


Diving History

Insurance underwriters generally will divide moving violations in major and minor categories. the majors are DUI, Reckless Driving, and license suspension.

Traffic violations, including speeding, blown lights/stop signs, no seat belt, improper lane change,and  distracted driving are viewed as less severe. However, having multiple moving violations can have the same net effect as a major violation.

If you have a major infraction in the last 2 years you will likely be looking at a substandard rate. After 2 years there is a sliding scale that is carrier specific that will give you an opportunity for preferred plus after five years. An independent agent with access to multiple carriers is the best way to make a decision on where to apply. 

Less severe, or minor, violations work the same way based on the number of violations over a period of time ...usually 3 years. For example, it is difficult to get a preferred plus rating with more than 2 moving violations in the last three years, whereas, you could be allowed as many as four or five over the same period and be rated standard.

Read more about Life Insurance with Bad driving History


DUI

Applications with a DUI will generally be scrutinized for elevated for excessive alcohol use. This scrutiny will be applied to liver enzyme tests-noting that elevated enzymes can be a marker for over use.

Assuming that you are otherwise in great health,  your underwriting rating will come down to the carrier chosen. 

This is because some carriers will not make offers at Preferred/Preferred Best without 7 years between  DUI and application. Other carriers will allow for preferred rates after 5 years.

Because carriers all have different appetites for specific risks, and they price policies with underwriting classes,  the only way to guarantee the best offer is to shop with an agent who has access to lots of carriers.

 Read more about Life Insurance After DUI

E

Eating Disorder

Eating disorder is covered by anorexia and bulimia. Both disorders run the gamut as far as underwriting ratings. The rating will be dependent on the severity of the disorder and the time since successfully treated. 

Read more about  Life Insurance After With Eating Disorder History


F

Family History of Cancer

If your family has a history of cancer, particularly a death before age 60 or 65, you opportunity to obtain the best health class will be significantly limited.

Several carriers will not allow a a rate class better than standard if you have parents or siblings who succumbed to cancer prior to age 65. 

This means that if you would have been "preferred plus" (best class) you'd get knocked down 2 levels to "standard". However, if you were already "standard', you would stay there and not be further penalized.

Because the underwriting guidelines are significantly different across carriers, it is imperative that you use an independent agency like ours to get the best deal possible.

Read more about Family Cancer History


Family History of Heart Disease

If you understand that insurance companies charge more for people who have a family history of heart disease, but think it should matter more that you are in great shape, the news is mixed.

There are a few carriers that agree with you, however most do not.

In spite of the fact that you may be perfectly healthy, or that your parent who got heart disease smoked and lived a lifestyle that did not promote good health, insurance carries often just look at the actuarial charts.

Situations like this highlight the need to use an independent agent with access to the carriers who will look most favorably on your application.

 Read more about Family History of Heart Disease.

G


GERD

GERD is alternately referred to as acid indigestion, acid reflux, and the aforementioned heartburn.

It seems nearly everyone gets heartburn once in a while, but with GERD it's a more common occurrence. It's believed that nearly 20 percent of the population suffers from GERD.

Best Case – If  GERD symptoms are under excellent control and no complications-  and excellent health- many cases have a chance for a Preferred plus rating. Simply use the quote tool for a preferred plus quote.

If your GERD  seems to be mild with the use of OTC or prescription medications but have other health issues, you may be looking at a standard rate.

Read more about Life Insurance with GERD


Gastric bypass Surgery

Bariatric, lap-band, or gastric bypass surgery may not  stop you from obtaining life insurance offers, but it will cause underwriters to scrutinize you more carefully.

Best Case – If  mare than a year has passed and there are no complications and excellent follow up and compliance,  some cases have a chance for a standard. Simply use the quoter on the left for a standard quote.

If more than a year has passed and you have very mild complications such as bloating and diarrhea, you may be looking at a mid substandard rate (table 2-4). More serious complications will result in a move sever rating or a declination.

Read more about Life insurance after Gastric Bypass Surgery


Gout

Although now comfortably middle class, Gout has historically been referred to as the “disease of Kings”. This saying has it’s roots in the wealthy being able to afford rich foods including meat products.

Gout is classified as a complex form of inflammatory arthritis and chronic casis are referred to rheumatologists.

Best Case – If Gout symptoms are under excellent control and no complications some cases have a chance for a standard or even standard plus rating. Simply use the quote tool for a standard/standard plus quote.

If your gout seems to be mild with only the use of NSAID drugs and good compliance but less than 3 years since diagnosis or cases where heavier drugs are occasionally required you may be looking at a mid substandard rate.

Cases with more serious complications will be rated severely. However, cases are seldom declined for gout.

Read more about Life Insurance with Gout.


Grave's Disease​​

Graves disease is an autoimmune disease  in which the thyroid gland is attacked by the immune system and and it then overproduces thyroid hormones. Grave's is the most common cause of hyperthyroidism.

Graves disease is an autoimmune disease  in which the thyroid gland is attacked by the immune system and and it then overproduces thyroid hormones. grave's is the most common cause of hyperthyroidism. ​

Best Case – If grave's  is detected early, symptoms are under excellent control and complications have been prevented, many cases have a chance for preferred rating. Simply use the quote tool  for a preferred  quote.

If your Grave's is under good  control with regular follow ups, but you  occasionally have mild symptoms, you may be looking at a standard rate. Cases with recent flares or serious complications may be postponed.

 Read more about Life Insurance with Grave's Disease

H


Heart Attack

Applications for life insurance after having a heart attack are evaluated on a case by case basis. As such, your story matters. That is to say two people with the same age and underlying condition may get  different offers from the same carrier based on the time elapsed since the event and patient compliance.

Because each case is different, the following pricing scenarios are the best estimates based on experience. Note that the preferred plus and preferred categories are not available after a heart attack is suffered.

Standard offer- This is the best you will do after having a heart attack. Standard class will only be offered in cases where the attack was mild and several years ago (7-10+) and you are in nearly perfect health otherwise. As a result, this is a very rare circumstance.

Table rated offer: Applications that don't qualify for standard rates are often offered a table rated or substandard policy. Each table represents a 25% increase in the cost of the policy over the standard price.

Read more about Life Insurance after a Heart Attack


High Blood Pressure

According to the Centers for Disease Control about 75 million American or one third af all adults, have high blood pressure.

Only slightly more than half of those diagnosed with high blood pressure have it effectively controlled. 

Another 75 million or one third of adults have pre-hypertension. That is, they have blood pressure elevated but not yet at hypertension levels.  

High blood pressure is positively linked to heart attack, stroke and kidney disease.

Best Case – If  blood pressure is under excellent control 125/90 or good control 135/90 with or without the help of a blood pressure medication good chance exist for a preferred plus/preferred rating. Simply use the quote tool for a quote.

If your blood pressure is under control, but not quite to the standards of preferred rates, you will likely get you standard rate. This assumes there are no other major health concerns.

Read more about Life Insurance with high Blood Pressure


High Cholesterol

While LDL or "bad" cholesterol can lead to heart disease, some cholesterol is essential.

Best Case – If High Cholesterol  is under excellent control- LDL/HDL ratio under 5 and total cholesterol under 250- some cases have a chance for a preferred plus  rating even if using a statin. Simply use the quote tool on the right for a quote.

If your high cholesterol is under good control but not quite to the standards of preferred best rates will likely get you  standard  rates or better.  This assumes there are no other health concerns.

Read more about life insurance with high cholesterol

 

Hyperthyroidism

Hyperthyroidism, also known as Grave's disease, is an autoimmune disease  in which the thyroid gland is attacked by the immune system and and it then overproduces thyroid hormones. grave's is the most common cause of hyperthyroidism.

Best Case – If hyperthyroidism is detected early, symptoms are under excellent control and complications have been prevented, many cases have a chance for preferred rating. 

If your Grave's is under good  control with regular follow ups, but you  occasionally have mild symptoms, you may be looking at a standard rate. Hyperthyroidism, also known as Grave's disease, is an autoimmune disease  in which the thyroid gland is attacked by the immune system and and it then overproduces thyroid hormones. grave's is the most common cause of hyperthyroidism. 

Read more about Life Insurance with Hyperthyroidism


Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy

The case of a hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a little different in that it is a primary , rather than secondary, cardiomyopathy and the only known risk factor is genetic family history

Whereas, secondary  cardiomyopathy is tied to other conditions often brought on by lifestyle choices such as poor diet/obesitysmokingexcessive alcohol use, use of narcotics, and lack of physical activity.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is non-ischemic  meaning it is not tied directly to coronary artery disease.

​Best Case - with stable hypertrophic cardiomyopathy a normal EKG, regular follow up and perfect health otherwise, it may be possible to get a Standard rating. However, be aware that this is extremely rare and EVERYTHING would have to fall right in to place.

The more realistic rating for a well controlled and followed up hypertrophic  cardiomyopathy case is substandard "table" 2-4.

Read more about Life insurance with Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy


I


Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Irregular Heartbeat

K


Keratinocyte Cancer

L

Lupus

Lupus is known as the “great Imitator” because it can be really hard to diagnose. Mis-diagnosis are common as no single test can confirm the diagnosis.

The misdiagnosis problem is often compounded by false positives when testing for afflictions with similar symptoms.

Best Case – If lupus is detected early, symptoms are under excellent control and complications or further damage to affected organs (particularly Liver & Kidney) has been prevented, many cases have a chance for a standard rating. Simply use the quote tool for a standard quote.

If your lupus seems to be mild with only the use of NSAID drugs and good compliance but less than 3 years since diagnosis or cases where heavier drugs are required you may be looking at a mid substandard rate.

Read more about Life Insurance with Lupus.

M


Marijuana Use

Because marijuana legislation is subject to the changing political landscape, it is unclear how the Federal government will interpret and enforce the legislation currently on the books.

Getting a good rate on life insurance with marijuana use is company specific, as different carriers have different risk appetites.

Some carriers will still reject a applicant for acknowledging use, others will simply label you a smoker depending on the frequency of use.

If use is infrequent enough, some carriers will see you as a non-smoker and have preferred rates available.

Read more about life insurance with Marijuana Use.


Melanoma

The most serious of the common skin cancers, Melanoma tumors have  be removed surgically. Ideally,  before they spread beyond the skin to  other organs. The surgeon removes the tumor , along with a safe area of surrounding tissue. There is dispute  whether removing nearby lymph nodes is valuable in certain cases.

A table 2-4 substandard underwriting grade is common for melanoma cases where the cancer was detected early and some time has passed.

Read more about Melanoma

Multiple Sclerosis

Myocardial Infarction

Myocardial infarction is yet another medical term for a heart attack. 

Standard rate class- This is the best you will do after having a heart attack. Standard class will only be offered in cases where the attack was mild and several years ago (7-10+) and you are in nearly perfect health otherwise. As a result, this is a very rare circumstance. It is far more likely that you will be offered a substandard rate. the severity of the rating will mirror your overall health and the amount of time elapsed since the heart attack. 

More about Life insurance after Myocardial Infarction

O


Osteoporosis

Obesity

Obesity is defined by the the American Heart Association as having a BMI or Body Mass Index of over 30. Put simply it means that you weigh more than 20% above your ideal weight.

According to the Centers for Disease Control over one third of the population   (36.5 %) has a BMI over 30.

Best Case – If obesity  is mild (BMI under 31), any connected conditions are  under excellent control and there is good compliance, some cases have a chance for a standard rating. Simply use the quoter on the left for a standard quote.

If your obesity  is  moderate (BMI 31-35) and good compliance with any connected issue you may be looking at a mid substandard rate. BMI rates beyond 35/40 will face severe ratings or even declines 

More about life insurance when you are overweight Overweight.

P


Prostate Cancer

R

Restrictive Cardiomyopathy

The case of a restrictive  cardiomyopathy is a little different in that, like hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, it is a primary , rather than secondary, cardiomyopathy.Thus, the only known risk factor is genetic family history.

Underwriting will want to know the symptoms you had (if any) and how long you had them before the diagnosis.

Best Case - with stable restrictive cardiomyopathy a normal EKG, regular ECG follow up and perfect health otherwise, it may be possible to get a Standard rating. However, be aware that this is extremely rare and EVERYTHING would have to fall right in to place.

The more realistic rating for a well controlled and followed up restrictive cardiomyopathy case is substandard "table" 2-4.

Read more about Life Insurance with Restrictive Cardiomyopathy

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Unlike osteoarthritis , which is a degenerative disease, Rheumatoid arthritis or RA is an autoimmune disease. 

Approximately 2.1 people suffer from RA in the united States, with women being 3 times more likely to suffer the disease.

Best case – If RA is detected early, symptoms are under excellent control and complications or further damage to affected organs has been prevented, some cases have a chance for a standard rating. Simply use the quote tool for a standard quote.

If your RA seems to be mild with only the use of NSAID drugs and good compliance but less than 3 years since diagnosis or cases where heavier drugs are occasionally required you may be looking at a mid substandard rate. 

Cases where complications are more serious will dictate a more severe table rating or even a decline. 

Read more about Life Insurance with Rheumatoid Arthritis

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S.A.D.

Seasonal affective disorder is a relatively mild form of depression. The disorder may require occasional OTC or prescription drugs. However, assuming good health otherwise, S.A.D.  should not effect your life insurance application in a negative way. Applicants who would otherwise being considered preferred or preferred best will remain so with most carriers.

More about ​ Life insurance with Seasonal Affective Disorder


Sleep Apnea

Obstructive sleep apnea is the most common form of sleep apnea and is suffered by 4 percent of the middle aged male population. Middle aged women suffer sleep apnea at about half the rate as men. most sleep apnea conditions are never treated. 

Sleep apnea is a condition that causes the stopping of breathing repeatedly during sleep. This happens because the airway collapses, causing a disruption in sleep patterns and daytime sleepiness.

Best case- If OSA is  under excellent control demonstrated by a follow-up sleep study, some cases have a chance for a preferred rating. 

If your OSA is under control via CPAP compliance and lifestyle changes, but no follow up sleep study, you may qualify for a standard rate. Simply use the "standard" selection on the quote tool.

More about Life Insurance with Sleep Apnea

Squamous Cell Skin Cancer

Squamous cell skin cancer, is generally thought to be more dangerous than basal cell, but less dangerous than melanoma. 

Squamous cell cases can qualify for standard or better rates under the best circumstances.  If your case of Squamous cell was more involved and had spread before removal you may be looking at a mid substandard rate.

More about Life insurance with Squamous Cell Skin Cancer

Stroke 

While a stroke is a very serious medical event, it is evaluated by insurance carrier the same way as all preexisting conditions are evaluated. That is, insurers must decide 'how much risk to the company does this condition represent?".

Insurance underwriters will want to know:

  • What was the date of your stroke?
  • Was the stroke a TIA (transient ischemic attack) or a full CVA (cerebrovascular accident) stroke?
  • What studies or test were conducted after the stroke? This would include MRI,CT Scan, ultrasound.
  • Symptoms at time of stroke.
  • Do you have any residual effects from the stroke?
  • What Medications are you taking as a result of the stroke?

The best possible underwriting classes for stroke victims generally start at standard rate class. TIA events, while extremely serious,  are viewed far more favorably than CVA events.

If the stroke was more than six years ago and was  a TIA , and ALL other underwriting criteria are good , you will likely qualify for standard rates. If the event was a CVA and there are no lasting effects standard is possible but not as likely.

Applications for life insurance after a stroke that take place less than 6 years from the incident (but more than  6 months)  are offered substandard , or so called table rates (see description below). The severity of the table rating is dependent on the amount of time elapsed and any residual symptoms. Here again TIA events are viewed far more favorably than CVA events.

 More about Life Insurance After Stroke

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Thyroid Disease

Tobacco Use 

The list of items that can get you classified as a smoker are

  • ​Cigarettes
  • Cigars ​
  • e-cigaretts
  • Vaping
  • Chewing Tobacco
  • Dip (smokeless tobacco)
  • Marijuana use

Generally, the answers are carrier specific and revolve around frequency of use. Frequency is determined by your answers to application/interview questions and  telltale  traces detected in your blood or urine. 

Believe it or not, all categories are available from preferred plus to decline depending on the substance being used and the frequency of use.

More about Life insurance for a smoker

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Underweight

V


Ventricular Arrhythmia

Cardiac arrhythmia is a catch-all term for several types of irregular heartbeats and irregular heart rates.

When abnormal electrical activity causes the heart to beat too quickly, too slowly, or erratically, the condition is called an arrhythmia. Although most arrhythmia's are harmless, some can interfere with the heart's ability to pump blood.

Less common arrhythmia's are atrial tachycardia & ventricular tachycardia, where the heart beats too fast, bradycardia-when the heart beats too slow and ventricular fibrillation, which causes the ventricles to quiver rather than beat.

Because ventricular arrhythmia can be so dangerous, it is difficult to provide underwriting scenarios for all the possibilities. 

More about Life Insurance with Ventricular Arrhythmia

Ventricular Tachycardia

Because heart arrhythmia can be so dangerous, it is difficult  to provide underwriting scenarios for all the possibilities. That being said, be aware that if your paroxysmal ventricular tachycardia is well controlled and monitored, and you are in excellent physical condition, you may qualify for standard rates.

However, even well controlled paroxysmal ventricular tachycardia, if within the last 2 years, will likely get no better than a table 2 rating. 

Several types of arrhythmia cases may result in severe substandard or "table rated" offers. This simply reflects the the risk the carrier attaches to arrhythmia.

Read more about Life Insurance with Ventricular Tachycardia

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Weight Loss Surgery 

weight loss surgery, also known as bariatric, lap-band, or gastric bypass, may not  stop you from obtaining life insurance offers, but it will​make carriers leery.

Best Case – If  mare than a year has passed and there are no complications and excellent follow up and compliance,  some cases have a chance for a standard. Simply use the quoter on the left for a standard quote.

If more than a year has passed and you have very mild complications such as bloating and diarrhea, you may be looking at a mid substandard rate (table 2-4). More serious complications will result in a move sever rating or a declination.

More about Life Insurance After Weight Loss Surgery

James Tobin, CFP
 

Jim Tobin is the owner of Life Insurance Help Desk, a Fairfield County, CT. life insurance agency. You can find him on Google + and Facebook. Over the past 10 years, Jim has used his CFP-financial planning designation to help individuals with their life insurance needs. In addition to working with life insurance clients, Jim teaches ESL classes in his spare time. He resides with his beautiful wife Nicole and the 3 cats that rule their lives..