Life Insurance with Pre-Existing Conditions

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  • Post last modified:March 17, 2020

There is no need to emphasize that having any pre-existing medical condition could be a significant factor when applying for life insurance. Logically, being in such a situation can significantly decrease one’s chances of getting qualified for a policy. However, it’s feasible to get life insurance for seniors with pre-existing conditions.

In general, an insurance company typically looks at the survival and death rate of certain medical conditions as well as the life span of those who have been diagnosed with a particular disease.

Moreover, the mode and duration of treatment also weigh in on any decision to approve and provide a life insurance policy to a patient.

While any pre-existing health condition does not lead to automatic denial or disapproval, it would surely serve as an obstacle or could slow the entire application process.

Possible Options for You

options you haveWith pre-existing health risks, you can expect a limited number of options available if you are looking for a life insurance policy to buy.

Term Life Insurance

Before going into the process, you have to understand that a traditional term life insurance product would more likely be ruled out as such a policy is a fully underwritten one.

It requires a medical examination, filling up of medical questionnaires, and submission of a doctor’s assessment.

However, if the health condition is not too bad and you have a chance to recover. You can apply for this one as it is the cheapest option available.

Graded Benefit Policy

One of the most likely options to consider for people with a pre-existing medical condition would be a graded benefit life insurance product. That is because this policy requires fewer health disclosures and there is no medical exam.

Thus, an individual who may be having medical issues can still get this life insurance though premiums could be higher and payout structure may vary.

Guaranteed Acceptance Policy

Another sure-fire option would be a guaranteed acceptance life insurance. No one is usually turned down for this policy as it does not require any medical exam or filling out any medical question. Though it may seem instantly attractive, a policyholder should understand that it often comes with limited coverage and more expensive premiums.

With its typical payout structure, full benefits may not be initially offered until the policy reaches its third year.

Go for Medical Exam First

As most agents would assert, life insurance policies that require medical exams are still among the best products, even for people with pre-existing medical conditions. There could be two practical advantages to opting for such.

First, such policies could be the best option if you opt for products that would provide enough death benefits at cheaper premium rates (compared to policies that require no medical exam).

Second, if the results of the medical exam disqualify a person to apply for a policy, he/she could default back to the no-exam insurance policy. Doing so could cost more in terms of premiums, but it surely is much better than getting declines.


You should also be reminded that in case you get an approval for whatever type of life insurance, opting to take other benefits or riders may not be possible anymore. Specific impaired risks disqualify a person from such options.

Moreover, this is the time to work more closely with your insurance agent, who could very well help you shop around and decide which life insurance policy to choose at this stage of your life.