If you are looking for life insurance with type 2 diabetes, you have come to the right place.
As a life insurance professional and someone who has to be cautious with sugar levels, I decided that this latest post for the Life Insurance Help Desk site would be about obtaining life insurance with type 2 diabetes.
With the epidemic of type 2 diabetes in full swing, life insurance carriers are trying to adapt to demand. The result is rapidly changing underwriting standards for a disease that was once insurable only by final expense carriers.
Carriers for life insurance with type 2 diabetes, will want to know as much as they can about the risk they are being asked to insure. This is no different than how the carriers deal with any other pre-existing condition like high blood pressure and depression, or lifestyle choices like smoking or scuba diving.
The purpose of this article is to provide all the information needed to get the best possible deal on life insurance with type 2 diabetes.
If you already know more than you care to think about when it comes to type ll diabetes, you can use the quick navigation tool to skip around f this article.
According to the National Institutes of Health, about 29 million people or 9 % of the U.S population is diabetic.
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.
Some of the more famous people who have suffered from type ll diabetes are: actor Tom Hanks, celebrity chef Paula Dean, basketball great Earl Monroe, actress Halle Berry, and presidential candidate Mike Huckabee.
Underwriters for life insurance with type 2 diabetes will generally be concerned with a few basicl questions
While the outline above is general in form , the questions will require specific answers. These answers will be gathered from your application, a telephone interview, the Medical Information Bureau, a Script Check, and an Attending Physicians Statement (APS).
Lets look at the general areas of inquiry one at a time.
The reason it matters with most conditions is that underwriters are more comfortable with making offers when an applicant fits into a common pattern. If the condition doesn't fit, there as a real possibility that something else is at play. When this is the case, underwriters will try to allay their fears by taking a harder look at the file.
Underwriting for life insurance with type 2 diabetes will want to know the symptoms you had (if any) and how long you had them before the diagnosis.
Excessive weight is the most common predicate for insulin resistance and ultimately type 2 diabetes.
The common symptoms of type II diabetes are
source: Mayo Clinic
Key Take Aways
Life insurance underwriters for type 2 diabetes will want to know the date of first diagnosis and of any subsequent major flare-ups. Underwriting will also want to know what medications you have been prescribed for type II diabetes.
The Cleveland Clinic has posted thee following numbers as being indicative of type ll diabetes.
Fasting Glucose Test
Less than 100
126 or higher
random Glucose test
Less than 140
200 or higher
less than 5.6%
6.5% or higher
The common treatments for type ll diabetes can be broken into two,distinct but often complimentary, methods.
The most common oral medications are:
While information that is "foggy" will be taken from your medical records, knowing the dates of diagnosis and treatments is necessary to get an accurate quote for life insurance with type 2 diabetes..
Life insurance underwriters will want to see that you have been compliant with prescription medication and any follow up requirements including doctors appointments.
Lifestyle changes are almost uniformally recommended for type ll diabetes patients. Not surprisingly, the most common recommendations center around diet and exercise.
The Mayo Clinic suggest that eat better, move more, and lose weight.
Sounds simple eh?
Specifically, the advice is to avoid fatty foods and eat more vegetables and whole grains.
Get at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity a day.
While any application for life insurance will take into consideration your overall health including conditions like high cholesterol and gout, underwriters for life insurance with type 2 diabetes will specifically look for certain related conditions.
Among the related conditions of special concern to underwriters are:
Key Take Aways
With a couple of tweaks, the process of obtaining life insurance with type 2 diabetes is the same as any other condition regardless of health.
The primary caveats with type 2 diabetes are that no exam or so called “non-med” policies may not be available at the best prices and an attending physician's statement (APS) will likely be requested.
The APS will slow the process as doctors are seldom in a hurry to respond to requests from life insurance companies.
The information that you will be required to provide in order to get the most accurate quote is as follows:
Date of Diagnosis
Treatments Undergone (w/ evidence of follow up)
Key Take Aways
Because Life insurance applications are evaluated on a case by case basis, your story (and cover letter) matters.
That is to say two people with the same age and condition may get vastly different offers from the same carrier based on age of diagnosis and patient compliance.
Because each case is different, the following pricing scenarios are the best estimates based on experience.
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.
Mid Case –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 45. This assumes there are no other health concerns.
To learn about how table ratings work click here.
Tough case – If your diabetes is not under good (A1C over 8) but is being actively treated you may receive a substandard offer in the range table 2/B to table 4/D depending on the severity of the case.
* while expensive this is still a very good outcome for the circumstances
Decline– For a severe case where type ll diabetes is not under control and there has been no effort exhibited to do so, to you may be declined for traditional coverage. If this is the case you may be eligible for a smaller face amount policy. These policies are referred to as Guaranteed issue or simplified issue. If you have been declined please contact us.
Now you already understand that your story matters, and that two people in similar situations can get very different offers from the same carrier.
What you might not know is that different insurance companies will also treat each case differently.
For example SBLI may have more of an appetite for the risk that type 2 diabetes presents than say Assurity. In this case the underwriting grade will reflect this increased appetite.
So, if your Agent only represented one carrier and you found out later that that you could have gotten a rate 35% or 45% better, how would you feel?
You’d probably be angry either at the agent or likely both. So it’s important that your Agent represent multiple carriers.
Most good independent agents will have access to over 50 carriers. This ensures the best chance at the best rate.
Note that if he doesn’t have access to alternatives , he may not be interested in telling you.
Key Take Aways
So, I have been spilling digital ink about the importance of using an independent Agent and you're probably thinking that I sound a bit self serving.
You are right, I am. However, what I am saying is also the (provable) truth.
Please see the case study below . it will show why it is in your interest to have as many options as possible available when shopping for life insurance with type ll Diabetes or any other impairment.
Gender: Male Age: 50
$250000 20 Year Term
Fairly well controlled Diabetes (type ll)
A1C of 7.3
Oral medication Metformin 500mg
This looks like a standard case that might get a better rating with one or two carriers. depending on the insurers appetite for a diabetes risk. Let’s take a look at the rates.
Standard Rates - Table 2 Rates - Table 4 Rates
|CARRIER||MO. PYMT||CARRIER||MO. PYMT||CARRIER||MO. PYMT|
This table which shows only a few of the major life insurance companies available illustrates the difference in rates. For standard rates Prudential is 20% more expensive than Lincoln.
On it’s face this seems like a pretty straight forward choice and if underwriting grades between carriers is the same, it really can be that simple.
This kind of easy price shopping is particularly useful for younger folks in good health and demonstrates why you want to use an independent Agent.
For people who suffer from type 2 diabetes or any other serious diagnosis, it gets much more complicated.
Because life insurers manage their appetite for specific risks by being more lenient or more stringent with underwriting grades, you need to know which company will grade you a preferred plus risk and which ones will grade you as standard.
In the case above Prudential (the most expensive standard rate) is likely to be the best deal because the more competitively priced carriers will likely rate the risk Table 2 while Pru might well go Standard
This is something you can’t know by simply looking at the lowest price. In this hypothetical using an independent agent could save you 50% (the difference between Prudential @ Standard and Lincoln @ Table 2 ($170.29)
Now that you know the information you will need to receive the most accurate quote possible, it’s time to gather the information and speak to an independent Agent (raising my hand).
Simply give us a call or shoot an email over and we can get you started.
We are committed to totally transparent pricing (we’ll even share our computer screen with you if you’d like), and making the application process as painless as possible.
Thank you for reading about life insurance with type 2 diabetes, if you have any questions, we’d like to hear them.
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Jim Tobin is the owner of Life Insurance Help Desk, a Fairfield County, CT. life insurance agency. You can find him on LinkedIn 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..
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