How Depression and Anxiety Affect Life Insurance

Are you currently playing with the idea of buying life insurance as a person diagnosed with anxiety disorder or depression? There is a probability that you are having doubts and a lot of questions regarding the same.

People are generally intimidated by the idea of buying life insurance, so you can imagine what it is like for individuals with anxiety and depression conditions.

Anxiety and depression do affect life insurance in one way or another, but the bottom line remains that despite the severity of your condition, you can get a policy.

So, how exactly do depression and anxiety affect life insurance?

Life Insurance with Depression and Anxiety

people in depressionWell, persons with pre-existing conditions or any condition touching on mental health are generally less positive on applying life insurance. This is understandable because some insurers are not very accommodating to individuals with such conditions.

Long application processes are involved and this somehow discourages most people. This however most of the time depends on the severity of your condition.

Again, not everyone is comfortable dishing out details regarding their mental health.

With so many underwriters out there, it also becomes a bit challenging trying to find the right one, given that they all come with different quotes and application processes. Whichever the case, once you make your mind on buying life insurance, you should waste no time. This is for the reason that early life insurance is bought, the better.

This is because you are likely to get affordable or friendly rates and also for the fact that when you are younger, you are healthier. If you have been diagnosed with either depression or anxiety, don’t entertain second thoughts on not getting life insurance.

There are challenges in the process, yes, but getting life insurance is the best thing you can do for yourself or even love ones.

Understanding Anxiety

Anxiety is a general feeling that is likely to happen to anyone. You can feel anxiety when about to take a test or exam, attending an interview, etc. It is a mixture of fear and worry. However, anxiety can go beyond and worse.

It can get to a point where it affects your performance at the workplace, your relationships are ruined or schoolwork affected. If it gets to such a point, you are likely to be a positive candidate for anxiety disorder.

Anxiety disorder can be categorized further into classifications like anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and phobia disorder.

When applying for Insurance, you need to know the category or severity of your condition. It helps a lot when you are well informed about your condition because you will have an easy time detailing it to insurers.

Another thing to bear in mind is that insurers have their own terminologies that they use to refer to depression and anxiety disorders. You should make an effort to know them so that you don’t look or sound uninformed during the application process.

Understanding Depression

Depression is common in individuals between ages 18 and 25 and apparently, women are more likely to suffer from depression compared to men.

Got a medical history of depression? That shouldn’t hinder you from applying for life insurance.

Just like anxiety disorder, depression is yet another mental health condition affecting millions of adults across the US every year. This alone is an assurance that you are not battling the condition alone. The only challenge that comes in for individuals with depression diagnosis in relation to insurance is that they tend to pay higher rates.

This is because insurers perceive depression and other pre-existing conditions as high risk. However, it all comes down to the severity of the condition. The better you understand your condition well the easier it gets when finding the right insurer.

This is because there are different types of depression, and insurance companies know that all too well. Your type and severity of depression determine the premiums you get to pay.

Different Types of Depression

Depression exists on different levels and where life insurance is concerned, you are better off knowing where your condition stands.

The following are some of the most common ones:

Bipolar Disorder

This disorder on its own has its subcategories as well. It generally describes strong mood swings that go from depressive lows to uncontrollable highs and is categorized as a mental health condition. The episodes arising from this condition have symptoms like having sleepless nights, lack of motivation and interest in things, low energy drive, etc.

If you are suffering from bipolar disorder but need affordable life insurance, read this.

Persistent Depressive Disorder

This condition is not as severe in comparison to major depression. It, however, affects decision making, appetite, concentration, and a person’s energy levels. Talk therapy and medication are treatment options.

Postpartum Depression

This depression is common in women after childbirth. As much as it can be controlled, it has shown the capability of reoccurring later in life but as minor depression. The condition can be contained through antidepressant medication and counseling.

Psychotic Depression

This kind of depression calls for hospitalization because individuals with such a condition can barely manage anything on their own.

People who are psychotic experience a range of persistent hallucinations and feel hopeless most of the time. It has symptoms like fatigue, sleeplessness, suicidal thoughts, guilt feelings, poor or lack of concentration, etc.

Back to applying for life insurance, it is important to note that despite the severity of your condition, there is always an insurer who can take you in.

For a successful and easy application process, you need to be straightforward with underwriters about your condition.

Getting Ready for the Insurance Application Process

planning for life insuranceFirst things first, you should understand that insurers differ in a lot of ways. You should for that reason not perceive all of them as the same.

This also means that there will always be underwriters with favorable policies than the rest.

You should, therefore, get ready to explore a lot of options in the insurance market.

To make sure that you are ready for the application process, do the following;

Find Out If You Will Be Subjected for a Medical Exam

Not all insurance companies subject their clients to-be to medical exams. Some do not even offer policies to persons with anxiety or depression.

According to some companies, however, not only will you be required to answer questions about your medical history, but there will also be an exam waiting for you.

If the insurer of your choice carries out medical exams, you should know so that you can prepare in advance.

Get Ready for the Exam

One thing you should note is that the results of your medical exam determine whether your insurer will cover you or not. For this reason, you should do whatever it takes to get you in the perfect shape and mood for an exam.

The exam seeks to find out a number of things regarding your health such as blood pressure, weight, heartbeat rate, cholesterol readings among other things.

There are a number of ways through which you can prepare for a medical exam such as hydrating, avoiding drinks that may accelerate blood pressure or heart rate, avoiding food for at least 6 hours prior to the exam, etc.

Keep Medical Records Up-to-Date

There are a number of things or details that you should have ready and complete before a medical exam is carried out. They are as follows; your doctor’s contact data for verification purposes, a record/list of every medication you are currently on as evidence that your condition is under treatment.

If you don’t want all these procedures of medical exams, you can skip it by securing life insurance with no medical exam.

Few Questions to You Can Expect

The application process calls for your utmost honesty. The answers you are supposed to give should be straightforward.  As much as you may not be very good or comfortable at discussing your health history, there is not much of a choice here.

The answers you give also determine the amount in premiums you will be paying monthly. Most insurers are interested in details of the last five years while others may want information covering more years than five.

Take a look at some of the questions that insurers ask applicants for familiarization.

  • When were you diagnosed with anxiety or depression?
  • Is the medication you are currently on effective?
  • How severe are the symptoms of your condition?
  • Have you ever been hospitalized for your anxiety or depression condition?
  • Is your work affected by your condition?
  • Any history of suicidal thoughts or attempts?

Again, even the most severe cases have a remedy. You should for that reason not feel any pressure to sugarcoat your medical history as this may end up disqualifying you from getting a policy.

The Consequences of Lying

Life insurance costs money. It is no joke. This is why you will find cases of applicants who tried to forge or fake their medical history details so that they could pay less or affordable premiums.

Such cases do not always end well. Lying, forging papers, or giving misleading information is not a good move.

Some of the issues most people lie about include drug use, income level, depression or other pre-existing conditions, lifestyle choices, etc.

What most lying applicants fail to understand and that you should know is that insurance companies can always turn to MIB (keeps health records for Americans) a corporation belonging to several insurance companies across the US and Canada.

This means that insurers can easily seek clarification of your records from the corporation if they find them suspicious. Even if you are not caught at the start, suspicions may arise along the way and you will not like the ending.

So, what really happens if you are found cheating your way to getting an affordable policy?

Your Policy Could be Revoked

This could be the case long or shortly after you were offered a policy. If you are found to have lied or omitted or given misleading details when you applied for insurance, your policy could be annulled or canceled.

This not only inconveniences you but may also deny you any chances of ever getting a policy in the near future.

You Could be Denied a Policy

During the application process, any suspicious health history details that are confirmed by the insurer to be false or misleading may end up denying you a policy.

You should opt for honesty and you could end surprised when your insurer offers you an affordable package thus exceeding your expectations.

The Insurance Could Deny a Claim

Why put your loved ones through shame and unstable financial times through dishonesty. Your insurer may not catch up with you while you are alive, but your beneficiaries will feel the consequences of your actions.

If the company can justify or prove even before the court that there is information from your side that is not adding up, their decision to not pay even a penny for a claim will be justified. If you ever feel the temptation to lie your way through a life insurance cover, remember that your beneficiaries could greatly be disadvantaged by your actions should you pass away?

Your Family Benefits Could be Lowered

Your beneficiaries may not necessarily be denied a claim because of your dishonesty, but the number of their benefits could be lowered. The percentage in which it may be lowered with depends on the gravity of your dishonesty.

You can clearly see from the above consequences that it is not worth lying in the application process. You should embrace honesty in everything that your insurer may be interested in. The bottom line is that if you do your research well, there will always be an insurer with quotes you can easily manage.

If you are worried about getting affordable cover because of your tainted health history, you are welcome to try out the help of an independent agent.

Working with a Broker/Agent

If you have depression or anxiety condition, it is advisable to work with an independent agent or broker like us ( This is because we are conversant with how insurers look or handle people with such conditions and the application processes involved.

Also, there are so many insurance companies out there, that you never knew existed. We are aware of all these companies, their policies, and quotes, and any other information about them. They are therefore better placed to advise you on the best companies and what to expect during the application process.

They also help you to get your papers or any documents that may be required ready and organized, which makes the application simpler. Another benefit of involving independent agents is that they are unbiased in the sense that they do not pay allegiance to any particular company. Their only motive is to help you find the right insurance company without taking sides.

You should understand the difference between insurance brokers and independent agents. Brokers are paid commissions by insurance companies to get them, clients. A broker will therefore only direct you towards a company they are associated with, even if they deep down know that you deserve better.

Life Insurance Health Categories

After assessing your level of risk, insurers proceed to categorize you in either preferred plus, standard, or table rated. So, what does it mean to be in any of those categories?

Preferred Plus

If you are categorized in this plan, it means that your anxiety and or depression condition is easily manageable. It also means that your condition does not affect your work in any way and that your medication is working just fine.

This plan has the best coverage because you are not deemed as a high risk. AIG, for example, is one of the most reliable insurers for persons with Depression and Anxiety diagnosis and their preferred best is affordable.

However, you are free to explore what other companies are offering in their preferred best plan so that you can end up with the best rate.


This plan is for persons whose general health has been affected to a certain level by their condition. Additionally, they seek therapy regularly, have been hospitalized to some point, and are taking several medications.

This plan is, therefore, a bit costly compared to the preferred plus. Again, rates in this plan may differ across various insurance companies.

Table Rated

The most feared rating by a majority of people, the table rated category is for persons whose condition is quite severe. The plan also comes with the possibility of being denied coverage. The premiums to be paid in this plan are very high because you are considered high risk.

You can see very well that the main difference between the plans is the amount to be paid in premiums. If your condition is mild, you might as well pay like ordinary people with no mental health issues at all. But if your condition is severe, prepare to pay more, but again, different insurers charge differently.

For a clearer picture of how people are rated, a Woman (whose condition severity is mild) at 35 years old is likely to pay $40/per month for a standard risk class after applying for 20 years old term life insurance worth $500,000. The same woman can pay $20 less per month if she can make it to preferred plus.

Read Also: Life Insurance Health Class

Considerations When Choosing Life Insurance a Policy

There are a number of things that you should bear in mind before you proceed with the application. It gives you a clearer picture of what the process is like and what to expect.

The following are things to consider before making any move:

Why Do You Want Life Insurance?

People take insurance covers for various reasons. Some need it to protect and provide for their families or beneficiaries when they are gone. Others apply for insurance so that it builds them cash value. If you want to buy insurance for family financial protection in later years when you are gone, you should opt for the term life policy.

If you want a cover that builds your cash value in years to come, go permanent. This is money you can use for investments or set up a business. If you can’t figure out what you want life insurance for, consult with an independent agent. They will get you a policy that best suits you.

Your Current Health Condition

In this case, if you are diagnosed with anxiety or depression, you will need to explore several companies so that you can settle on the best policy you can get your hands on. Besides answering questions regarding your health history, you will also be subjected to a physical exam.

Again, don’t forget that the more severe your condition is, the higher the premiums you get to pay. Your age will also be considered because to insurers, you are healthier when you are younger.

Level of Income

Speaking of budgeting for life insurance, it all comes down to the type of insurance policy you are interested in. There is permanent, term, accidental, guarantee issue, etc. Premium payments differ in each policy, and each policy has its upsides and downsides.

If you want short-term insurance, term life insurance will come through for you. If you want life insurance that will build you cash value over time, choose a permanent or whole life policy.

An independent agent can advise you further on various policy options, and help you choose the most suitable cover depending on your budget.

Exploring Different Options

If you are used to purchasing services on the internet, doing the same with life insurance may not come as a surprise for you. However, not everyone is likely to entertain the idea of buying life insurance online.

If you are open to it, you will find that it is a very simple process, and all you need is a reliable site or platform. Online applications are almost similar to personal or physical applications in terms of procedures. If you do not welcome the idea of online applications, you can comfortably opt for the other means.

Understanding Various Life Insurance Policies

In your quest to find an insurance company that accommodates persons with anxiety or depression disorders, you will come across some with a variety of policies to choose from. The most common ones that are known by most people are term life and whole life.

Within these life insurance policies comes risk classes as highlighted somewhere above, where insurers classify their clients depending on their condition.

Term Life insurance

This has to be the simplest form of insurance anyone can apply. It also has to be the most affordable, because it covers a specific period of time, let’s say 10, 20, 30, years.  You, however, stand a chance to renew it once it ends.

Term-life insurance can be taken by people who; want debts to be paid when they are gone, want to pay for expenses like rent and mortgage, want to fund college fees, want to provide to their kids, want to take care of unpaid taxes or medical bills, etc.

Permanent Life Insurance

This life insurance lasts your entire life. With this form of life insurance, there is money that is kept for your financial protection and another amount is set to build cash value. With time, your cash value grows and you can access it for emergency situations. It can also act as an income supplement.

Premiums Revision After Purchasing One

Anxiety and depression are conditions that can be controlled or managed through proper medication and therapy. For that reason, if your condition improves within the period of your life insurance policy, you can request your insurer for a review so that they can lower your premiums.

There is no need for paying the same premiums throughout when clearly your mental condition has improved for the better. A consultation with your agent will help you figure out things from a clearer perspective.

Companies Offering Life Insurance for Depression Patients

The following companies are known to offer clients who are of high risk a variety of policies and plans. There are companies who have been into existence for many years and through the years they have been able to establish a solid performance and lasting client relationships.

They hold a good reputation in the insurance industry and therefore you can trust them with your money. As much as they may differ in some areas especially on quotes and guidelines, they do share some similarities such as charging individuals who smoke tobacco higher rates.

  • Lincoln Financial
  • Protective
  • Hancock
  • AIG
  • Prudential

It is important to note that most companies are keen to find if you are consistent with your medication and therapy. Any signs that you are not taking your therapy sessions or prescriptions seriously can result in high premiums or worse policy disqualification.


It is safe to conclude by saying that all is not lost for persons living with anxiety and or depression in terms of acquiring life insurance. It is worth noting that you can make use of various online life insurance calculators in order to get personalized recommendations.

You are only required to key in details like age, income, and gender and then you are given a quote.

Besides that, do not forget to involve independent agents for professional assistance.

Linda Chavez

I'm a burial & senior life insurance expert, independent agent, Founder & CEO of Seniors Life Insurance Finder. I have been working in this sector since 2004 and established my own company in 2014. I have a team of seven members, and we are trying hard to share the knowledge we've gathered. We know how difficult often it is to find an affordable policy. Hence, we are doing our best to help you.