If you’re looking forward to securing your family’s financial status in case you pass away, you might look into getting life insurance. Maybe you already did that.
At this point, you have chosen the ideal policy for you and you’ve contacted an agent. If that’s the case, you’re one step away from getting coverage. The only thing standing in the way between you and your life insurance coverage is the medical exam. And you may be wondering how that’s going to be like.
In this article, we’re going to help you solve your doubts and give you tips on how to pass life insurance drug test.
Summary of Life Insurance Medical Exams
We all know that insurance companies require that potential policyholders undergo medical exams. They do that because they want to be sure that the individual hiring their policy is healthy and won’t be passing away anytime soon.
Another thing that you may know is that, depending on the results of your medical exams, the price you’ll pay in premiums may increase or decrease. Healthier people tend to pay much less than people who have any type of medical condition.
However, there may be a chance that you don’t know what examinations you must undergo during this stage. If that’s the case, we’re going to briefly explain what types of exams are usually done.
First of all, you need to keep in mind that there’s no need to feel nervous about the medical examinations that are required. You won’t have to take any intrusive exams; it’s all pretty simple, in fact. Better yet, you don’t even have to worry about setting up an appointment with a doctor: upon request, some insurance companies will send a doctor or technician to your home.
As to the examinations that are usually done, they include — but aren’t limited to — blood and urine tests. Additionally, you also have to answer a questionnaire regarding your health and lifestyle.
What Is Tested to Detect Drug Usage?
One thing you need to know about life insurance is that companies will rarely offer coverage to drug users. Insurers pay a lot of attention to policyholders’ lifestyle. If one has a lifestyle that is considered risky, it is highly likely that they will have to pay higher rates. In some cases, insurers may even reject one’s application process.
If you’ve used drugs in the past — or if you still use drugs —, you’re probably wondering what exams you have to undergo in order to test drug usage. Usually, laboratories resort to blood and urine tests to detect if there’s any type of drug in your body. In some cases, technicians may collect a sample of saliva, sweat, or hair.
Blood tests are the most intrusive type of drug testing methods. Although not as common as other tests — especially because a blood test is more expensive than a urine test, for instance, this method is the most accurate. Whereas urine tests can only detect certain substances, blood tests can detect any type of substance.
Blood tests for drug usage can detect pretty much any type of substance, from common substances such as alcohol to more uncommon substances such as tramadol.
Urine drug testing is less intrusive than blood testing, but it’s also less accurate. The substances that are detected in a basic urine test include marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, opioids, benzodiazepines, among others.
The thing about urine is that substances usually stay present in urine for a longer period of time. For instance, drug tests can detect the presence of LSD in your urine for a period of, approximately, 3-6 days after you last used it. However, a blood test can only detect LSD in your system for a period of up to 12 hours.
Is Taking a Drug Test Mandatory?
If you’re a drug user, the first thing you need to keep in mind is that life insurance companies have the right to request drug tests. While some insurers may not request it, if there’s any sign that a prospective policyholder has used, or uses, drugs, they will certainly ask you to do a mandatory drug test.
Another thing you should be aware of is that you shouldn’t lie during the application process. During the contestability period, your insurer has the right to investigate your death. If they find that you withhold information, they may refuse to pay the death benefit to your beneficiaries.
Why Drug Test Is Important for Insurers?
You’re probably wondering why insurers are so concerned about drug usage. Marijuana is being legalized in different states, thus you may think that companies may be overreacting.
However, you probably know by now that insurers care a lot about lifestyle. If you work in a hazardous occupation, such as working as a police officer, firefighter, aircraft pilot, flight attendant, among others, you’ll pay higher premiums. If you have a pool in your backyard, some insurers may require higher payments from you!
As you can see, even the simplest things matter to life insurance companies. If you’re a drug user or if you’ve used drugs in the past, companies will be especially concerned.
Why is that? It’s simple, actually: insurers can’t afford to pay the death benefit for a policyholder who died early into the coverage, thus they have to be careful.
If insurers were to offer coverage that easily to everyone, life insurance companies would go broke! However, if you’re scared you won’t pass the drug test, you don’t have to worry. That doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be automatically rejected. You still have a chance to get coverage, though it’ll be more expensive.
How to Pass Life Insurance Drug Test?
There are many ways to pass a life insurance drug test. While the most obvious thing to do is, you know, not do drugs, there are other things you can do to help improve the results of your medical exam. However, you should keep in mind that you shouldn’t withhold information from your insurer under any circumstance.
For instance, people who smoke may think that, if they quit smoking for some time before getting drug tested, they’ll get regular rates. This plan may work, but if your insurer later finds out that you lied, they may cancel your policy. So, it’s better, to be honest at all times,
Below, we’re going to give you a few tips on things you should and shouldn’t do before a life insurance drug test.
3 Things to Do Before Life Insurance Drug Test
The best thing you can do to improve the results of any type of medical exam is to exercise. Exercising improves the overall quality of your life, and with life insurance exams it’s no different. In your physical examination, it might be required that you run on a treadmill so that the technician can check your heart rate.
If you start jogging regularly while preparing for the exams, your results will improve, thus you’ll have higher chances of paying lower rates. Do be aware that this is not a way to “outsmart” your insurer, though.
Most individuals would have an ideal health condition if only they exercised regularly. Prospective policyholders may end up paying more money in premiums due to their health, when they could be paying the same as a person in a Preferred or Preferred Plus category.
However, because these individuals don’t exercise, they’ll pay much more simply because they’re sedentary. If you decide to change your habits and lifestyle permanently, you won’t be lying to your insurer in this case.
2. Eat Healthy
It is a scientifically proven fact that there are foods that improve your health. Thus, if you change your diet and start eating specific food that is good for you, the results of your exams will be positive.
For instance, if you know that your “bad” cholesterol levels are pretty high, you can include nuts and avocado in your diet. These foods help raise the “good” cholesterol levels in your organism. Oatmeal is also a good source of the so-called good cholesterol, so you may want to add it to your morning meal.
If you start eating healthy, then you’ll probably want to exclude unhealthy food from your usual menu. Oily food – as in, any type of fried food ever – or food with high levels of sugar are prejudicial to your health, thus they’ll most likely cause negative consequences when your exam results come out.
Green food, such as avocado, kale, and other leafy greens, and salmon are more than ideal to help improve your health, not to mention that they taste delicious!
3. Drink Water
Maybe you’re tired of hearing that you have to drink water. It’s not a meaningless plea, though. Water is probably the healthiest thing we can consume and we need to make the most of it. Especially because, technically, it is the most abundant substance on our planet.
On top of that, water is not expensive, so why not drink it as much as we possibly can?
Water helps our body stay hydrated, prevents us from having kidney issues, helps us have better skin and better hair, and improves our general health condition.
If you’re taking a drug test, water should be even more important for you. Perhaps you’re not aware of this, but water is the best cleanser we can consume. For drug users or ex-drug users, drinking water is a helpful way of getting your system rid of substances and toxins.
Specialists recommend drinking, at least, 2 liters of water every day. In other words, drink somewhere between 8-10 full glasses of water and you’re good. If you have trouble remembering that you have to drink water – which is something that happens to most of us, who have busy lives – you can always set up a reminder on your phone.
Also, there are plenty of free apps that send you notifications to remind you of drinking water!
3 Things NOT to do Before Life Insurance Drug Test
1. Don’t Do Drugs
Yes, we know that this is probably the most obvious tip ever. However, it shouldn’t come as a surprise. If you want to pass a drug test, the one thing you should avoid is drugs.
We could probably list a couple of hundred reasons why one shouldn’t do drugs, but that is not the point of this article. What we can tell you, however, is that, if you do use drugs, you can expect to either pay a large amount of money in life insurance premiums. If you use hard drugs, be ready to have your coverage request denied.
Substances present in drugs stay in your system for a while. If your insurer asks you to do a blood or urine test, the results will be positive for drugs. If you used marijuana, some insurers may let it go, while other insurers may place you in a ‘Smoker’ category. A tip for marijuana users is not to smoke for at least 30 days prior to the exam.
Now, if you test positive for drugs such as cocaine or heroin, you should know that you’re probably not getting a policy that easily.
Read This: Life Insurance Nicotine Test
2. Avoid Certain Foods
Now, if you don’t use drugs and you want to pass your life insurance drug test, you shouldn’t have to worry about this. Except that you should worry a little.
You’re probably wondering why. Well, we’ll break it down for you: there are some foods that may test positive for drugs if you consume them prior to your exams.
Seems crazy, right? Yeah, but this is actually true.
For instance, it is well known that poppy seeds may test positive for opiates. Some protein bars may test positive for this marijuana.
Other foods you may want to avoid include:
- Supplements containing vitamin B12: they may test false positive for marijuana;
- Medicine for colds, such as ibuprofen: may test as false positive for marijuana;
- Tonic water: it may test false positive for cocaine;
- Tea leaves that may contain hemp or
If you’re taking a drug test for your policy, avoid consuming any of the aforementioned foods at least for 20-30 days before your exams. But don’t worry too much. If your exams test false positive for drugs due to the consumption of these foods, your technician/doctor will know.
3. Don’t Hide Anything
We’ve said this before, but this reminder will always be important. Don’t lie to your insurer. While these tips may help you pass the drug test, you shouldn’t withhold information in your application process.
If you used to be a drug user, disclose this information to your insurer. Even if you use drugs for recreational purposes, tell them. If you use prescription drugs, let your insurer know. All of this information is important because it’ll determine not only if you’ll pay higher rates but also if you’re eligible to get a policy.
Always keep in mind that, if you lie about your personal information, your insurer is legally allowed to cancel your policy, in which case you’re not getting your money back. Doesn’t sound so good, does it?
Consequences of Positive Test Result
Now, if you’ve used drugs recently and you’re afraid of the drug test results, you’re probably curious about the consequences of testing positive.
We’re going to start with the most severe consequence, which is getting automatically rejected. It’s a harsh truth, but it makes sense when you look at it from the insurer’s point of view. If you use hard drugs, such as methamphetamine, cocaine, or opiates, you’re most likely getting rejected before you even undergo any drug tests.
People who use these types of drugs have a higher probability of dying due to drug abuse. Thus, it is very risky for the insurer to offer coverage in this case.
Now, if you use drugs such as marijuana or nicotine, you’ll still have a chance at getting a policy. But you’ll have to pay higher rates since you’ll be placed into a Smoker category. Still, it’s better than not getting coverage at all, right?
Additionally, there are insurance companies, such as MetLife, that allow policyholders to smoke recreational marijuana up to 3 times a week. If you’re purchasing a policy from a company that allows policyholders to smoke marijuana, then you shouldn’t be too worried about the consequences of a positive result.
However, if you tested false positive for drugs and had your coverage request denied, you can always talk to your insurer and schedule another test. Also, if you do use heavier drugs and still want to get coverage, don’t feel hopeless just yet!
There are different types of life insurance policies, mostly because insurers want to offer coverage to people with the most diverse personal conditions. Therefore, there’s still an option for drug users!
Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance As An Option
Guaranteed issue life insurance is the go-to policy for people who can’t fit into any other insurance policy. Whether your health condition is not ideal or you work in a risky job, you can still get coverage. Drug users or smokers can also get this policy.
As the name suggests, this policy is the one policy that people are guaranteed to get accepted. Usually, seniors or individuals with severe illnesses are the ones who hire this type of policy. However, it may be an option for you as well.
The process of getting a guaranteed issue policy is basically the same as getting other policies. The difference, however, is that this policy doesn’t require any type of medical exams, drug tests, or anything health-related. Thus, if you used any type of drug recently, you can still contact an independent agent or insurance company and get this policy.
However, there are some things you should be aware of before rushing to the phone to call an insurer.
A guaranteed issue policy is probably the most expensive policy you can get. That is a direct consequence of the lack of medical exams. Given the uncertainty of offering coverage to risky policyholders, insurers have to charge higher rates. Because of that, there are cases in which individuals have to pay up to $200 in premiums each month.
Additionally, the sum of money — death benefit — that is paid to your beneficiaries is significantly lower in this policy. While there are policies that offer death benefits of $1 million or more, guaranteed issue life insurance offers a maximum amount of $25,000, in some cases.
In a nutshell, doing drugs is not ideal if you want to get life insurance coverage. In fact, if you use heavy drugs like cocaine, you may be automatically ineligible to get life insurance. Marijuana users, on the other hand, still have chances of getting accepted — in some cases they may even pay Still, there are some things you can do to pass life insurance drug tests.