Getting Life Insurance with a History of Medical Problems

By Compuquotes Team on March 26th, 2008

Life insurance is an important policy to have but if you've had medical problems or are taking prescription drugs, you might find it much more difficult to find an insurance policy. When you do find one, you may be surprised to find the premium rates are much higher of 'healthy' life insurance policies. It doesn't have to be this way. Getting life insurance with a history of medical problems doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg, and doesn't have to be a hassle.

Mental and Emotional Issues
Tell a life insurer that you've taken Zoloft, Prozac or another anti-depressant or anti-anxiety medication and you might be short-listed for the 'Deny' stamp. To prevent eminent denial, ask your primary care physician to write a note that you have been completely released from care of depression and/or anxiety and that you are functioning well without medication.

If your depression and/or anxiety were brought on by a life event, like a death in the family or post-partum, it is important to note the significance, and briefness, of the illness and medication. It is not uncommon for insurers to ask for a copy of related medical records as proof. Don't be afraid of this, insurance agents must evaluate the risk of reoccurrence of potentially life-threatening or life-altering illnesses.

Some long-term or more serious mental illnesses, like bipolar disorders or manic depression, won't necessarily get your application denied, either. Again, documentation is key to being offered reasonable life insurance premium rates. Speak with your doctor and ask for assistance proving the effectiveness of your treatment and a statement that your disorder is well under control.

Major mental health disorders, especially those known to cause delusions and suicidal behaviors, may raise more red flags than minor mental or emotional disorders. It is not uncommon for life insurers to require at least two years after the last suicide attempt or lapse in treatment to approve the application. There may also be numerous clauses regarding suicide in the plan.

Physical Issues
If you've had heart or lung problems or have been diagnosed with a disease or disorder that can be terminal or contribute to a shortened life span, you might find it more difficult than 'healthy' applicant to find life insurance. A health history, including results of any medical tests from the past decade, should be provided to the insurance company when you apply.

Some insurers will require a physical examination, especially in the case of an abnormal medical history. If you'd like to prove your case even further, you may opt to subject yourself to genetic testing or even gene therapy. Be aware, however, that even after taking all of these steps, the insurer may require a clause negating any coverage if you die from the preexisting or known condition.

You may be tempted to just leave out the truth of your conditions. Before you do, you should know that doing so could result in your policy being canceled without a refund of premiums paid.

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