How Does my History of Illness Impact my Life Insurance?

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Whenever an insurance provider is offering you a quotation for joint or single life coverage, it wants to be sure about what it will be protecting. They would want the answer to certain questions such as-
  • Are you a smoker?
  • Are you suffering from a critical illness?
  • Are you overweight?
  • What is your age?

For instance, if you are a chain smoker or have high blood pressure, the provider would make an assumption that there is a greater probability for you to die during the duration of your life insurance. Hence, it will have to make payment to your nominee(s).

In this case, the provider will charge a higher amount of premium for reflecting your low life expectancy. Yes, insurance can be a little evil in this manner.

Therefore, you will have to make payment for more coverage if you are overweight, smoke a lot, or suffer from conditions like cancer, high blood pressure, bowel problems, diabetes, or anxiety, stress, and depression.

Details Your Insurer would be Looking for

The insurance company would not just want to have a piece of knowledge about your personal health status. They would further want to know regarding the medical history of your family too. In case your parents and any of the siblings have been suffering or have suffered a critical medical condition, unfortunately there are high chances of you falling victim to the condition too.

However, this does not involve physical injuries such as a broken bone in your family member. Your insurer would be looking at your inherited conditions like stroke, coronary heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Your life insurance premiums will bump up if someone from your family has suffered from serious conditions.


The insurance providers must seem to be pretty cold-hearted, checking the expectancy of your life, charging you high amounts if there are higher risks of your early death. But, this is how life cover works.

The other option is to charge equally from everyone, but, this wouldn’t be fair for the healthy ones who have a longer life expectancy. Further, this will increase the insurance cost for everyone because the people with poor health conditions would have the advantage of taking out huge cover amounts. This way, the insurance provider will charge more for making payment of their claims.

Be Absolutely Honest with the Insurer

While applying for life insurance, you will have to answer a few questions. If your answers hint on any health issues, the insurer will dig in for the details of your medical history, especially when you purchase a huge amount of cover. Some insurers may even ask you to go for a medical test before giving you the insurance.

Not informing the insurance provider about any medical condition for availing a low amount of premium is the last thing you should do. In case this surfaces after your death, which will happen, the provider will consider this as a breach of the conditions of the policy, therefore, denying the payout.

Impact of your Disease on Your Life Insurance Premium

The effect of a medical problem on your insurance premium is dependent upon the illness. For instance, if you have suffered from cancer, you must be clear of the symptoms for a few years, only then will the insurers provide you protection. If you are suffering from Type 1 diabetes, you may have to pay twice or thrice the cover.

In the case of family history, the attitude of the insurance provider will be dependent upon the condition, the number of affected family members, and their age at that time. If just one of your close family members was affected by the disease, it may have negligible effect on your premiums, rest depending upon the insurer.

The provider is only concerned with the illness that was diagnosed before the age of 60 or 65 years. If the disease was diagnosed after reaching this age, they will not be taken into consideration.

If your family has a history of illness, your insurer will either exclude that condition from the coverage while including all the other conditions in the normal way or charge you more for the policy.

The Bottom Line!

Every life insurer has different rules when it comes to critical illness.  Some of the insurers may make decisions on the basis of your family’s history of illness, while some may choose to ignore it altogether. Hence, it is important that you compare different life insurance quotes available in the market for finding the best offer for your situation.

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