How to Bounce Back After Being Denied Life Insurance
If you were denied health insurance, it's not the end of the world. Insurance expert Liran Hirschkorn has 4 tips to help you bounce back.
Nobody likes to think about death. We all hope to live a long and happy life. But even if you live to be 100, planning for the future is important—especially when you have a family counting on you. You need to make sure your loved ones will be cared for in the event of your death, and that means acquiring life insurance.
See also: Who Needs Life Insurance? You Do!
While most people think obtaining coverage is as simple as filling out a few forms, it isn’t always so easy. There are 3 reasons why you could be denied coverage:
Health issues: Perhaps you’ve had a heart attack or battled cancer. Even if you’ve made a complete recovery, you might have a 1-5-year waiting period to see whether your health problems return.
Lifestyle risks: Do you have a lot of DUIs lurking in your past, or a particularly violent criminal record? If you’re known for making dangerous decisions, it could hurt your chances of obtaining coverage.
Bankruptcy: If you have a bankruptcy that hasn’t been discharged, you could be denied coverage.
Even if you are denied life insurance, it’s not the end of the world. There are 4 things you can do to fix the situation and get covered:
Don’t freak out. Remember that you still have options. Just because one insurance company denied you doesn’t mean they all will.
Learn why you were denied. Knowledge is power. Find out why you were denied, and determine whether it’s something that can be fixed. Many health issues can be improved or managed, allowing you to obtain coverage.
Make some changes. Review the results of your exam with your doctor, and find out what you can do to improve them. For example, if you were denied coverage because of high cholesterol, you can lower it through medication, diet, and exercise, then reapply once it’s gone down. If the doctor recommended a sleep study but you never got one, have the study performed and reapply. If you applied for a no-exam policy, it’s sometimes easier to get approved with an exam. The more information your insurance company has, the better it can assess your health and make a decision.
Consider your options. Talk to your agent about your coverage options. He may have suggestions for other companies that would approve you or for different coverage that you might quality for.
In some cases, you may not be able to obtain a regular policy. You may have to get a high-risk policy, which could restrict the maximum payout you can get or stipulate that you must live for another two years for the death benefit to go into effect.
In the end, qualifying for life insurance after a denial comes down to three things: understanding why you were denied in the first place, understanding the types of policies that are available to you, and understanding your current health. Once you have all of this information, you can work with your doctor and agent to draw up some options.
Remember: A denial isn’t necessarily final. You may have to change a few things to obtain coverage, but those changes could help you enjoy a longer, healthier life.
Liran Hirschkorn is an independent life insurance agent and founder of BestLifeQuote.com, a national life insurance agency. His mission is to help individuals across the U.S. find the best rates on life insurance, especially those who have previously been declined coverage. Liran’s expertise is in high-risk life insurance and understanding the unique underwriting guidelines of more than 30 life insurance companies.