Answers to your questions about life insurance:
1. I use tobacco products regularly. Can I still find an affordable life insurance policy?
We understand that the decision to use tobacco or abstain from it is a personal one. If you use tobacco products, you probably know that they put you at an increased risk for health conditions like cancer, respiratory conditions, and cardiovascular disease. Because of this, tobacco use may adversely affect your rate class, a classification given to you by insurers that generally indicate what you will pay for life insurance. In many cases, smoking alone doesn't prevent people from finding a life insurance option that works with their budget. Your rate class may not be determined based solely on your use of tobacco, but an overall picture of your health. However, if you're looking for life insurance rates for smokers, it is important to understand you may not receive the lowest available rates because of the health risks associated with tobacco use.
Learn more about term life insurance for smokers available from AIG Direct
2. Can I find affordable life insurance if I'm overweight?
Your weight is only one individual health risk factor considered by life insurance companies. Insurers typically take a person's Body Mass Index (BMI) into consideration when determining their rate class and insurability. Although BMI alone is may not disqualify a person from purchasing a life insurance policy, high BMI typically means higher life insurance premiums. If you elect to purchase a life insurance policy, for overweight people, it should be noted that decreased BMI may lead to a lower premium payment when it is time to renew your policy. That said, it may not be beneficial to wait to protect your loved ones until you've reached a weight loss goal.
Learn more about how BMI affects life insurance rates
3. I use marijuana for medical or recreational use. Will this disqualify me from purchasing life insurance?
Short answer: Probably not. Marijuana is still a schedule I substance in the United States. Schedule 1 (Class 1) are illegal because they have high abuse potential, no medical use, and severe safety concerns. But, recent changes to medical and recreational marijuana laws at the state level have generated a lot of questions about its use. In spite of medical use and legal changes, like with tobacco use, marijuana use can affect the rate class you are placed into by insurers. The amount of marijuana you consume and the frequency with which you do so will be considered by insurers when determining how much you'll pay for coverage. It is best to be honest up front with the insurers providing you with quotes for life insurance. Marijuana use is difficult to conceal due to its long detection period and lying to an insurer could cause your quoted premium to change or disqualify you from coverage entirely.
4. Can I still find a life insurance policy if I'm honest about a pre-existing medical condition?
If you have a pre-existing health condition it doesn't necessarily mean an affordable life insurance policy out of reach. A history of serious chronic conditions, especially life threatening ones, is likely to affect the amount you pay for life insurance. However, simply having been diagnosed with a condition doesn't mean that you're uninsurable or that you can't find a policy that works within your budget. With customizable policies and different life insurance products to choose from, life insurance with preexisting conditions may remain well within your reach even with pre-existing conditions. Insurers typically gather their own information, so being forthcoming about pre-existing conditions can save you time in the insurance application process.
Learn more about life insurance with pre-existing conditions
5. Can I find affordable life insurance if I've been diagnosed with a chronic mental health condition?
Mental health is part of a complete picture of a person's health and well-being. As such, insurers do consider the level of risk associated with any chronic mental health condition. But having a mental health condition doesn't usually preclude an individual from qualifying for an affordable life insurance policy. A life insurance agent can typically still work with someone with a mental health condition to find a policy that works within their budget. Like with other medical issues, it is in your best interest to be upfront about any mental health diagnosis to ensure you receive an accurate life insurance quote.