If you have a pre-existing condition, you’re going to encounter some unique complications when you’re trying to get affordable life insurance.
Multiple sclerosis can be a devastating diagnosis to get, but it doesn’t mean you can’t get life insurance.
Many patients with MS are surprised to learn that they can get approved – the key is working with an agency (like ours) who specializes in high-risk life insurance, and knows which companies to apply with, and what type of policy you can get approved for.
Life Insurance With Multiple Sclerosis: Common Questions
There are a few basic questions you’ll want to be able to answer before you contact us. These are questions the carriers will ask, and will want as much detail as you can provide:
- How “bad” is it? Are your attacks frequent or intermittent?
- How long have you been living with MS? The older your diagnosis, and the better your prognosis, the more attractive you look to life insurance companies.
- Are you working? If so it’s a great sign to life insurance companies that you’re able to do many things, and so this is a plus.
- What exactly are your symptoms? It’s unfair, but insurance companies do have a tendency to rank them. Blindness, for example, is a warning sign of worsening MS, as is cognitive impairment and difficulty with speech. On the other hand, many companies aren’t overly concerned about simple balance or fatigue issues.
Basically, your chances of getting insured are in direct proportion with your current health.
If you’re still working, or if your MS is mild or non-aggressive, you have a good shot at getting life insurance – even if you’ve been rejected before, it could be that you didn’t apply with the right carrier.
It’s only when you’re struggling with recent flare-ups and a worsening prognosis that it becomes difficult to find an insurance company willing to cover you with a “regular policy.”
You might have to settle for simplified or guaranteed issue coverage – which may have an initial 2 or 3 year waiting period you have to outlive to have the full coverage in effect.
You don’t have to give up, however! If you’re struggling to find life insurance with MS, here are a few tips:
- Working with the right agent is key. We have gotten people approved when they have previously been declined. Some life insurance companies are simply more aggressive in their underwriting criteria than others.
- The more information we can provide to the insurance company the better chances we have of getting you approved. If you have responded well to a recent change in your treatment for example we want to let them know. As an independent agent, I always write a letter to the insurance company along with the application to include information that may be helpful – such as improvement in response to treatment, how active you are, etc..this can be the difference between getting approved vs getting denied.
- Regular follow ups, and following your doctor’s treatment plan is important as well. If your doctor’s notes indicate that, it will show the insurance company that you are responsible about managing the condition.
No Exam Life Insurance As An Alternative?
First, let’s look at some of the alternatives. One of the most popular is no exam.
One of the obvious advantages is that the medical underwriting is easier to get through, which allows more applicants to get insurance coverage.
It’s important that everyone has the insurance protection that they need. A no exam plan will give you life insurance without having to take a medical exam.
If you don’t like to wait, then a no exam policy is designed for you. You don’t have to wait a month. You can get your acceptance or rejection in days.
One of the disadvantages of these policies is their cost. They are nowhere near the cheapest life insurance.
No exam coverage is going to be noticeably more expensive. Even as an applicant with MS, you’ll probably get cheaper premiums with a traditional plan.
The biggest barrier of no exam policies is their ceiling on coverage. If you have a pre-existing condition, this may only be $25,000 to $50,000.
How Large of a Plan Should You Buy?
It’s vital that you have the right amount of coverage. To figure this number out, let’s do some math.
Let’s look at your mortgage, student loans, and all your other major bills. Make sure that your plan is largest enough to pay off your debts without draining your family’s saving account.
The next category that you’ll need to calculate is salary. Your policy needs to be sufficient enough to pay for your families monthly expenses.
If they rely on your income, then make sure your plan can replace your income for at least 3 years.
Add up both of those numbers and make sure your policy is at least large enough to cover this number.
Possible Rates You May Expect With MS
While you won’t get approved at the best rates if you have Multiple Sclerosis, you can get fairly close to Standard rates.
Most people who we help in getting approved for coverage get a Table Rating. Table rating is a scale of rating for those who don’t fit into the Preferred or Standard rates.
The scale goes from a #1 or sometimes letter A, to number 8 or letter H. I typically see those with mild MS get Standard up to table 2, and those with more moderate MS get Table 2 to Table 4 rating.
When we speak on the phone, or correspond through email I can assess your specific situation and give you an idea of where I expect rates to come in after a medical exam and your doctor’s records are reviewed.
Through the years, we have worked with dozens and dozens of clients with MS.
They were all high-risk applicants, but we were still able to find them a plan which not only met their needs, but it was able to fit in their budget.
Shopping for life insurance with MS isn’t easy, but you don’t have to do it alone.
For a customized quote fill out the form on this page, or call us at 800-712-8519.