What is Waiting Period for Life Insurance?

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  • Post last modified:April 24, 2021

Life insurance policy is a determinant of one’s ensured money inflow in a future time period (in most of the cases after the death of the insured person).

The concept of life insurance is very well known all over the world. However, there are certain related terms that are still not clearly understood by the buyers.

We introduce one such term “waiting period” in this article that makes a significant impact on the policy terms and conditions at the time of buying.

What is Waiting Period for Life Insurance?

A waiting period is the time period that insurance companies keep in hand before allowing the benefits of “certain” conditions to their customers even after buying the policy. Most of the guaranteed policies come with a waiting period.

Mostly the waiting period is related to the health-based profile of the clients. There is a list of ailments that get covered under the insurance policy only after that given time period is completed.

In order to understand the concept in a better way we have mentioned these pre-levied conditions:

  • For a normal healthy person, the life insurance policies ask you to take up medical tests and provide the reports. If the reports assess the person in a good health then the waiting period for a life insurance policy is given for 1 month (in most cases). After 1 month the person will be eligible to access all sorts of medical and term benefits as per policy conditions.
  • In the case of pre-existing ailments, based on their nature and stage of the disease, there are predefined waiting periods. Most of the ailments are listed into categories to make it easier for the insurance companies to decide on the tenure of the “waiting period”. Such as: for diseases or conditions that are not life-threatening and can be cured under supervision such as a hernia, ENT disorders, etc- the waiting period is levied for 1 to 2 years.

At the same time for pre-existing diseases that have a larger impact on the recurring health of the person, the waiting period is generally defined to be 4 years.

It implies that all sorts of medical benefits for the treatment of these ailments can be availed only after the completion of this time period.

The companies decide on the basis of medical reports of the person whether they will accept the proposal of general insurance of the customer or not.

For infants and maternity basis there is a different waiting period. For infants generally, the waiting period is considered to be 90 days while for a pregnant woman the waiting period is anywhere between 9 months to 36 months depending on the policy terms and conditions.

What Can Be Done to Minimize the Waiting Period?

waiting period on life insuranceThe best way to minimize the waiting period is to take an insurance policy at an early age. Younger you start, the healthier you are! Most of the diseases start creeping into the human body only after a certain age.

So, it is better to take up a life insurance policy when you are young and healthy.

The other option for availing a life insurance policy with no waiting period is to buy a “no waiting period policy”. Such policies exist but they are comparatively much higher in cost. You will pay an extra premium for availing of this benefit.

People who are in a hurry of buying the life insurance policy due to any given circumstances and are suffering from some serious health ailments find such policies much beneficial.

Especially in the case of senior life insurance policies, the “no waiting period” policies are often preferred by those who want to cover their last expenses.

Diagnosed With An Ailment During Waiting Period

In a situation where the policy buyer is healthy and applies for some life insurance policy- he is given a waiting period.

However during this waiting period if he develops some ailments for the first time ever then the insurance company is bound to cover his or her medical expenses under the policy.

This is one of the main reasons that one should start investing in life insurance at the earliest stage.

Not only does it cover the life of the insured person but also helps in tackling their lifelong medical expenses- which is a premier advantage of life insurance.

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.