Diabetes and life insurance
Life insurance for diabetics is cheap and easily available if you provide correct information on everything, including what you have done to ensure your diabetes is well managed.
Life Insurance 101
People need insurance for a number of reasons. Its main goal is to ensure the rest of the family is financially capable of withstanding the blow of an unexpected death of the income earner. Money from insurance, in such a circumstance, can help the remaining family members to pay for whatever is necessary, which could be the expenses of the family’s dependent children. So, life insurance should be a part of your financial plan, although death is a subject no one looks forward to discussing.
Although life insurance products are plenty, it can be classed into two major kinds which are term insurance and permanent insurance or what can be called cash value. Term insurance gives you a coverage of 10 – 30 years. The insurance company pays the family if the insured dies before the insurance matures. Term insurance is cheap but it does not help your money to grow. You are allowed to renew it, replace or change it to permanent insurance. For the majority of the people, term insurance is the most suitable as it helps to make sure that by a certain time there will be money available for certain needs which could be money for further studies of the children.
When it comes to permanent coverage, the premiums have to be paid by you for as long as you are alive but the protection given is until death. It also makes use of a part of the premium to put aside some money which can be taken out by you as a loan or for any purpose you deem fit. However, such withdrawals can affect the monetary value of your policy. Then again, it depends upon the kind of policy you choose and there are so many kinds.
Below are some types of permanent coverage you may choose from:
- Variable and Indexed Universal Life : This policy gives its holder the right to have a say in the investment of the cash reserve. He may decide to invest in bonds instead of stocks. Of course, the death benefits as well as cash values can change, depending on the performance of the investments.
- Universal Life : This policy permits payment of premiums not on a fixed schedule and the amount paid each time can be different.
- Whole Life : The amount you have to pay as premiums are the same each year. The insurance company has the sole right on decisions to invest cash reserve. If you reach 100 years old, normally the age at which the policy is considered to have matured, you get the sum insured which is the same as the death benefit.
You choose the policy based on your needs. It is important to seek professional advice to pick the right policy. A good agent ought to take the time to know your requirements and help you choose the right policy for your financial future.
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Who do you go to for life insurance
When it comes to searching for information, the internet is a great place to go. However, you need an expert when it comes to choosing a suitable policy. You ought to search for an insurance agent who is experienced in cases where the risk has become even greater; someone who has handled cases like yours and knows which choice is favorable to you. You will find good insurance companies which would like to take on a case like yours even after evaluating the risk of insuring a person suffering from diabetes.
If you have yet to know of such an insurance agent, the best thing to do is to find out from the people you know. Even if these people only know agents who are not experienced to getting insurance for people with greater risk, you are one step nearer to your goal, for these agents may have known another agent who does. Besides people, you can search in a phone book, or on the internet. Since there is no cost involved in meeting insurance agents, you should seek the advice of at least a few agents before deciding on the one you think is an expert on your type of case.
You should know that insurance agents must be licensed in every state. Registration with the securities regulator of their states and getting states licenses are mandatory for agents who deal with variable life insurance products. You can do a search on investment professionals, which includes such agents, to know their background by going to ‘FINRA BrokerCheck’ section of the FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) web site, or search for www.finra.org. or phone its toll-free hotline, (800) 289-9999.
You have to be sure your chosen agent works for and does check with many insurance companies for you. It is normal for an agent who is a specialist on increased risk to work for many companies and so, can get a number of competitive offers for you.
Life insurance is lucrative and insurance companies must make the right decisions. However, they would very much want to give you coverage despite the increased risk. What they do is to know the risk you as well as they face in giving you coverage by doing research on health problems like diabetes.
An underwriter, the employee of the company, who assesses applications for life insurance imagines all applicants in a big pool. This underwriter starts by pulling out from the pool those who present the least risk to the company. This will be followed by others with a little more risk. All of them will be put into groups of possible policyholders. The most preferred group may be named Preferred Plus, Preferred Best, Elite or some other appropriate name. The young and healthy with health problems are the ones put into this group of most preferred clients. Diabetics obviously cannot join the group.
Super Preferred is followed by Preferred which may take in some diabetics. John Hancock Life Insurance Company informed that even type 2 diabetics above the age of 60 who are under good control can be accepted into Preferred, Their company’s manual on underwriting permits them to help their clients by considering small favorable differences of their client’s health problems. So, if complications have yet to be experienced, the long period of diabetes does not hurt the chances of being offered insurance.
Standard comes after Preferred and many diabetics are put into this grouping. Diabetics in this group have to pay a 10% higher rate than people in the preferred group.
After Standard is the group named Table Ratings. For diabetics who find themselves grouped into Table Ratings, besides the Standard premium, they have to pay an extra percentage, normally 25 percent for each table, of the Standard premium. Therefore, a diabetic receiving a ‘Table 2’ offer will have to pay the full Standard amount (100 percent) and 50 percent (Table 2 is 2 times 25 percent) extra premium which totals up to 150 percent of the Standard premium.
To find out which group a possible client should be placed, the underwriter tries to picture the client from information on the individual’s general health, weight and height, family history, hobbies and occupation. He then uses the created image to compare with others in the same community to foretell when that person would most probably die and the company has to settle his life insurance policy claim. Unpleasant this may be, but such knowledge from a systematic study is necessary for the success of the business.
Getting the underwriter to have the confidence of putting a diabetic in the best grouping possible ought to be the aim. The grouping, together with the kind as well as the amount insured determines the premium required. So, you have to provide all the possible positive information on your condition to get into the grouping requiring the least premium for a certain type and sum assured.
Move into a better grouping
In fact, by reading ADA Diabetes Management, you indicate to underwriters that you have made a positive step toward your condition. So, let this action towards better diabetes management be known to your underwriter as it demonstrates that you are positively acting on your health problem to remain as healthy as possible and this can put you into the Preferred group instead of Standard.
To an underwriter, ‘being in control’ and following medical practitioner’s orders’ are important. Your HbA1c test results as well as home blood sugar results, together with regular visits to your medical practitioner, assist your underwriter to picture how well your diabetes has been managed.
Apparently, many years ago, about 1960; an underwriter told this writer; that there was no way underwriters know whether somebody had diabetes except when they are told about it by that somebody. However, if the underwriter gets a urine specimen which contains glucose in it; this is known as glycosuria; the underwriter would get the person to go through an OGTT (oral glucose tolerance) test. That was also the method used by doctors to find out if someone has diabetes then.
To give a positive image of yourself, you must understand and accept your condition. It is very often for underwriters as well as insurance agents to encounter persons looking for life insurance not realizing that they already have diabetes. Since it is obvious in the lab results, the doctor knows it, the underwriter too but the person is on denial.
It is important to acknowledge the health condition’s existence, so that plans can be made to manage it. Concerning such a plan, your doctor is the best person to assist you. Underwriters are also here to help you.
According to the underwriter, the diabetic with the least risk is one who obviously is knowledgeable enough about diabetes to understand the condition well and so, can control himself responsibly with excellent eating habits, sufficient everyday exercise, enough medical examinations, good control of blood glucose levels, and conscientiously carry out the medical practitioner’s diabetes treatment plan.
Creating a meal plan and strictly following it, or ‘dietary compliance’ which is the term used by underwriters, is essential. So, let the underwriter know how good you are at ‘dietary compliance’ even though you do fail and get off the plan once in a while.
Exercise is important as it shows another positive step towards being a healthier diabetic. Tell your underwriter which gym you frequent, and let him know everything about your physical activities there. Give him the name of the gym, the days and time you exercise there, the physical activity class you attend as well as the name of the instructor. Tell him the effect such activities had on your body. After all, it certainly helps if you have gone from obese to the right weight for your height.
Insurance coverage is certainly more difficult to get drink alcohol too much or smoke.
Realize that applicants for insurance coverage will have their medical records checked by the life insurance carrier. It will look into your medical records and if the medical practitioner had taken note of your poor management of your own condition or there is a clear rise of HbA1c results, it will not be in your favor. Any record of diabetic complications like retinopathy, nephropathy or neuropathy can also be detrimental to your case although they may not be the result of lax control. Unfortunately, life insurance underwriters see them as warning signs. Even other sicknesses can be a minus sign to your case but there is no point in hiding any information as medical records will reveal everything to the underwriters.
According to statistics, diabetics’ life expectancy has improved tremendously and this is known to life insurance companies. They appreciate this fact and are willing to provide life insurance for diabetics. So, if you are able to present a positive image, YOU CAN GET AFFORDABLE LIFE INSURANCE .