A preexisting medical condition can make it difficult to acquire life insurance, but not impossible. Some life insurance companies do provide coverage to individuals with preexisting conditions, but at a higher cost because it is considered riskier than providing coverage to healthy individuals.
One way to obtain life insurance if you have a preexisting medical condition is to get it through your employer. Many companies have benefits packages that include group life insurance. Most group plans don't require a medical exam and ask no questions about your health. Contact your company's human resources department to sign up for the life insurance plan. Some companies require fulfillment of a minimum period of employment before employees become eligible for life insurance.
Another option is a guaranteed issue life insurance policy. This type of policy does not require a medical exam. However, the total value of a typical guaranteed issue policy is usually below $20,000. The value is low because these policies are created for a specific reason, such as to cover a specific debt. However, because guaranteed issue insurance does not require a medical exam, the premiums are usually high.
With a rated life insurance policy, the insurer uses your health information as one of the ways to calculate the risk of insuring you. If a company determines that the risk to insure you is higher than usual, it may offer you a rated policy. The premium for this type of policy is higher than that for other types of life insurance policies representing the same value. The rating is the additional price added to the premium. The higher premium is used by the life insurance company to cover the increased risk of insuring someone with a preexisting medical condition.
Other Group Plans
Check with any organizations of which you are a member to see if they offer group life insurance. Like group policies issued through your employer -- these plans may require no medical history. As with all group plans, the premiums are generally cheaper than those for individual life insurance policies of the same value. Depending on the regulations of the organization and/or the life insurance company, you may be able to keep the same coverage if you leave the organization.
- Investopedia: Preexisting Condition
- National Association of Insurance Commissioners: Tips For Buying Life Insurance
- Indiana University: Supplemental Group Life Insurance
- Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner: A Consumer's Guide to Life Insurance
- Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner: Frequently Asked Questions
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