In this article, I’m going to improve your understanding of Life Insurance for diabetics and how it affects your diabetes.
How does having diabetes impact your Life Insurance policy?
What types of diabetes can be covered by Insurance?
How are your premiums going to be affected?
And don’t forget the big one – how easy is it to get Life Insurance cover in the first place!
An estimated 3.5 million adults are living with diagnosed diabetes, a condition associated with having higher blood sugar levels than normal.
The condition is so prevalent that experts predict that number will rise to 5 million by 2025.
So, is it possible to get Life Insurance if you suffer from diabetes?
The short answer is, yes.
However, an insurer will need to know a little more about your condition.
What Questions Might An Insurer Ask Me About My Diabetes?
What type of diabetes do you have?
When were you diagnosed with diabetes?
Have you ever been hospitalised due to your condition?
Are there any additional factors related to your diabetes such as eye or kidney problems?
Have you had any hypoglycaemic attacks, and if so, when?
How well is your diabetes controlled?
What was your latest HBA1c reading?
It’s important that you give your insurance company the correct information about your condition and be as thorough as possible when you answer their questions.
If you don’t give all the correct information, then it’s possible that in the event of your death your Life Insurance policy won’t pay out to your loved ones.
With all that being said, if you have either type of diabetes, but are honest on your forms and answer all the questions that are put to you when you apply for your policy, getting Life Insurance is very probable.
Of course your premiums will be higher than someone who doesn’t have the condition.
But, if you have type 2 diabetes that is well controlled and you have no other risk factors, your insurance company may accept your application without having to write to your GP.
Sweet! (Sorry, bad choice of words).
In very rare circumstances you may not have to pay more.
A comprehensive market search will be needed and your diabetes would have to be under perfect control, among other factors.
If you have type 1 diabetes there’s a little more involved.
Because it’s not a condition that can be lessened, or even reversed enough that you no longer need medication by improving your health or lifestyle, an insurance company will most likely want to speak to your GP.
If you have been hospitalised, have additional risks or are undergoing any tests relating to the condition it could cause you to have higher premiums.
It might even result in your application for Life Insurance being declined.
What Additional Factors Relating To My Diabetes Could Mean Higher Life Insurance Premiums?
If you have suffered multiple hypoglycaemic attacks
If you have been recently hospitalised because of your diabetes
If your diabetes has been poorly monitored or controlled
If you have eye or kidney problems relating to your diabetes
How much will my Life Insurance Cost If I Have Diabetes ?
The cost of your policy will depend largely on the control of your diabetes.
It will also depend on other factors such as but not limited to your BMI, smoking status, blood pressure, cholesterol, and medication.
Depending on the above, you may get a ‘rating’.
This is a price increase on top of the standard premium to cover any increased risk of your claiming on the policy compared to someone who does not have diabetes.
Below I have created a table which will give you some example costs of how the ratings can affect your premium:
Prices based on a quote for £200,000 of Level Life cover over a 20-year term*
|Standard Rates||50% Rating||75% Rating||100% Rating|
|30 years old||£8.11 per month||£12.16 per month||£14.19 per month||£16.22 per month|
|40 years old||£14.47 per month||£21.70 per month||£25.32 per month||£28.94 per month|
|50 years old||£33.90 per month||£50.85 per month||£59.32 per month||£67.80 per month|
|60 years old||£97.87 per month||£146.80 per month||£171.27 per month||£195.74 per month|
Please note ratings can be higher depending on the control of your diabetes and other health factors.
Therefore, it’s important you speak with an expert who can recommend the right insurance plan for you with the lowest possible rating.
If My Application For Life Insurance Is Declined Due To One Of Those Factors, Does That Mean I Can’t Get Insured At All?
Not necessarily, no.
Being declined by one insurer doesn’t mean you will be declined by all insurers.
Life Insurance is a competitive market and each insurer will make their decision on their own merit.
Employing the services of a broker would be a good idea; they can search the market for you and find a company that will insure someone with your condition.
What If My Application For Life Insurance Is Postponed Because Of My Diabetes?
It could be that an insurer thinks you are too high risk to insure right now, but that doesn’t mean you can’t apply again in the future.
If your condition improves due to you losing weight and reducing your BMI and blood pressure, or you start controlling your condition better and your medical records reflect this, you may be reconsidered.
Admittedly this mostly applies to type 2 diabetes that can be affected by lifestyle changes.
What If I Already Have Life Insurance And Am Diagnosed As Diabetic
If that’s the case you will be able to remain on that policy on the same terms that you began with.
If you have a Life Term Insurance policy you would have to apply for a new policy once your original policy expires.
You would then have to pay higher premiums because of your diagnosis and the fact that you are older.
Does Prediabetes Affect Life Insurance?
Slightly elevated blood sugar levels could be a red flag to your health – and therefore a red flag to insurance companies.
The truth is that the healthier you are, the easier it is to get Life Insurance, and the cheaper your premiums are going to be.
Which makes sense.
If your day-to-day glucose readings are higher than a non-diabetic, and your 3-month average (known as your A1C) is between 5.7 and 6.0, you would be considered pre-diabetic, and at more risk of heart disease and stroke.
This doesn’t mean you’re not insurable, but it does mean that you won’t qualify for the lowest rates.
If you think that your glucose readings are going to be higher than they should be, it makes sense to visit your GP to determine if you are prediabetic.
That way you can make some lifestyle changes to get it in check before you take out Life Insurance.
The trick is to get yourself in as tip-top condition as possible before you have to have a medical exam that can be typical for many Life Insurance policies in order to get the lowest premiums.
Of course it is possible to get Life Insurance without a medical, but typically you will end up paying more for less coverage.
Life Insurance And Gestational Diabetes
Gestational diabetes is different from type 1 or 2 diabetes in that it is a short-term condition that sometimes happens during pregnancy.
The reason I mention it is because it can increase a woman’s likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes in the future, and so insurers will approach with caution!
Most insurance companies won’t approve Life Insurance for a woman who is pregnant and has been diagnosed with gestational diabetes, or if they are pregnant with a history of gestational diabetes.
This is still the case even if they aren’t affected by the condition during their current pregnancy.
Your best course of action is to wait until 6 weeks post-delivery and then apply again; this will likely lead to you being considered lower risk than when you applied before.
And so there you have it.
It might take some shopping around and some expert help and advice, but Insurance for Diabetics isn’t impossible, chances are you will find a Life Insurance policy to suit your needs and protect your family in the event of your passing.
If you would like a quote, or if you have any insurance-related questions please do get in touch. Our advice is free, and one of our qualified advisors would be more than happy to help.