How To Find High Risk Life Insurance

See Top Companies, Compare Rates, & Get Covered!

Updated: March 2024

Do you suffer from a chronic medical condition that puts your life in jeopardy? Or, perhaps you work in a dangerous occupation or engage in certain types of activities that increase your chances of being involved in a fatal accident.

If yes, then finding affordable high risk life insurance may be a great way to get extra protection in the form of family life insurance.

Below you’re going to learn everything you need to know about high risk life insurance, including top companies, coverage options, and rates.

How To Find High Risk Life Insurance Guide

Regardless of the cause, if you are someone who is at a greater risk of passing away than the average person, you might want to look into obtaining guaranteed life insurance for high risk individuals.

What is High Risk Life Insurance?

For many people searching for hard to place life insurance, like those suffering from a chronic disease or involved in high risk activities, the thought of getting life insurance may seem impossible. You may worry that life insurance will be so costly that you simply can’t afford it.

However, there are certain life insurance policies specifically designed for high risk individuals. These are called, of course, high risk life insurance policies. There are many different types of life insurance available, so make sure to shop around and compare quotes from different companies to find the lowest rates for your specific needs.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance for High Risk Individuals

Guaranteed life insurance is a type of policy that was created for people who are considered “high risk.”

In fact, with guaranteed life insurance, you are guaranteed to receive coverage regardless of your health and lifestyle. This is a type of life insurance with no medical exam. In fact, you don’t even have to provide medical information.

There is no underwriting and a short application with only basic facts is required. You will need to include on your guaranteed life insurance application details such as age, gender, height, social security number, and tobacco usage.

However, keep in mind that guaranteed life insurance is more expensive than other types of life insurance.

Types of Guaranteed Life Insurance

guaranteed issue life insurance for high risk individuals

Guaranteed issue life insurance isn’t really any different than other life policies. It can be purchased as either a term or a permanent life insurance plan. The main difference is that guaranteed issue life insurance does not involve customary underwriting practices and, as a result, the coverage amounts are usually lower than a standard life plan.

High Risk Term Life Insurance Policies

If you select term life insurance, you can expect the coverage to last a specified amount of time. Term plans usually last 10, 15, 20, or 30 years but no more. Once a term life insurance policy expires, you’ll need to buy a new plan in order to remain insured.

To do so, you will need to work with your agent on re-applying for a new insurance plan at your then-current age. This means the premium on a new guaranteed issue term life policy will likely cost more than the original plan.

High Risk Permanent Life Insurance

If the guaranteed issue life insurance coverage you select is a permanent policy, you will be gaining additional financial protection in the form of cash value.

Over time this tax-deferred cash value can then be accessed by withdrawing or borrowing funds. Some insureds borrow money from their whole life insurance policy to pay medical bills or educational expenses. Any cash balances that you do not pay back into the policy will be deducted from the overall death benefit.

The Waiting Period in High Risk Insurance

A guaranteed issue life policy normally has a two year waiting period. This clause is common. It will provide a graded death benefit which means only a portion of the death benefit is paid during the first two years.

Or it will state the death benefit shall not be paid if you die prior to the policy being in force for two years. Instead, the insurance company will refund to your beneficiary the total amount of paid premium.

However, for most guaranteed issue life policies, deaths caused by an accident unrelated to your lifestyle will guarantee payment of the full death benefit.

If you are a high-risk individual then it’s most important to secure a policy as soon as possible. The two-year waiting period clause should not deter you from applying.

Coverage Amounts for Life Insurance for High Risk Individuals

The face amount of your guaranteed issue life insurance policy will most likely be lower than more traditional plans. Coverage amounts between $5,000 and $25,000 are what insurance companies typically offer.

It will be a challenge to find an affordable high-risk life insurance plan that provides a higher coverage amount. This is because the insurance company knows very little about your health or lifestyle. It leads them to believe they will probably pay out on your policy earlier than normal which increases their financial risk.

Life insurance with low face amounts are frequently referred to as burial insurance or a final expense plan, as they usually are just enough money to cover funeral costs.

How Much Does High Risk Life Insurance Cost?

Premiums for guaranteed issue life insurance policies are higher than more traditional life policies of equal coverage. This is because of the limited information the life insurer receives at the time of application. Therefore, the insurance carrier is taking on a higher risk by insuring individuals that may work or live in precarious situations.

Rather than simply denying you, the insurance company is willing to provide the coverage but at a higher cost. Your insurance agent knows this so they will certainly shop around to several carriers looking for the most competitive premium.

Your insurance agent will also know the steps you should take in order to increase your chances of finding low cost life insurance coverage. Keep in mind there are few factors that go into determining guaranteed issue insurance premiums.

So your agent will mainly focus on shopping around to different companies. Also, your insurance agent will probably tell you that being tobacco-free for one year will help lower your guaranteed life insurance premium by fifty percent.

Be sure to confirm with your insurance agent if the policy premium could increase at any time in the future. Each policy is unique and it’s best to review every aspect of the contract’s fine print. You want to be sure the high risk life insurance policy you have is the right fit.

The Best High Risk Life Insurance Companies

There are over a dozen life insurance carriers that carry guaranteed issue policies. Here are our top choices for high risk life insurance.

  • Prudential Life Insurance Company – Prudential is typically more lenient for overweight people, cigar smokers, people who use tobacco or marijuana, and people with heart issues.
  • Lincoln Financial Group – Cigar and marijuana users can often get good rates as well as some people with heart issues through Lincoln. Their underwriting can sometimes approve people who have been declined in the past.
  • AIG Life Insurance Company – AIG often has good policies for people with previous heart issues or digestive disorders. They offer competitive pricing when table rated for high risk, since they use “Standard Plus” instead of just “Standard” class for table rates.
  • Banner Life Insurance Company – Banner life insurance is great for type 2 diabetics. They have competitive pricing when table rated for high risks, since they also use “Standard Plus” instead of just standard rates.
  • Fortesters Financial – Foresters is great for high-risk life insurance with no medical exam.
  • Ethos Life Insurance Company – Ethos offers a fast and easy application process, also with no medical exam required.
  • Protection Plus Life 5 Year Renewable Term Plan – This is great for guaranteed acceptance life insurance for people with severe health complications.
  • Gerber Life Insurance Company – Gerber’s guaranteed acceptance whole life is another great guaranteed acceptance option.

Although those are generally our top life insurance choices for high risk individuals, we do recommend you give us a call to compare all your options. Every situation is unique and some other life insurance companies may be a better fit for you.

Applying for Affordable High Risk Life Insurance

The first step toward purchasing affordable high risk life insurance is to work with an experienced independent agent who will do their research into the best company for your personal situation.

There are over sixty different life insurers offering guaranteed issue life insurance for high-risk individuals. You should have no problem finding a suitable option.

Application Questions for High Risk Life Insurance

A few life insurers may include a short list of “knock-out” questions on the application. Depending on how you answer these “knock-out” questions, you may eliminate yourself from the application process immediately.

For example, some guaranteed issue life insurance companies include “knock-out” questions such as:

  • Do you currently reside in a hospital or long-term-care institution?
  • Have you been declared terminally ill?
  • Do you have AIDS or HIV?
Magic Johnson is a high risk life insurance candidate
Magic Johnson has HIV and would be considered a high risk candidate for life insurance.

Of course, your insurance agent will most likely know the companies that include these questions. If these are questions you wish to avoid, the insurance agent will know that too. He/she will then steer you towards a guaranteed life insurance policy for high-risk individuals that better suits your situation.

Since the standard underwriting process is eliminated, guaranteed issue life insurance for high-risk individuals can be issued very quickly. In fact, most insurance carriers issue policies within 48 hours but no later than 30 days from the time of submission. Typical life insurance takes six to eight weeks for approval.

A final note about all life insurance applications is to never include misleading or incorrect information. Many insureds find it tempting to deny being a smoker or down-playing their amount of tobacco usage.

This is a terrible idea!

Your high risk life insurance costs may be lower by saying you are a non-smoker but you are putting your policy at risk. It is best to be forthcoming with your insurance agent. Tell your agent whether you smoke cigarettes, cigars, pipes, e-cigs, or chew tobacco.

Life Insurance Company Conversions

Some life insurance providers allow for you to convert your current term policy to permanent coverage. This allows you the possibility of securing affordable life insurance without a new review of your medical history, high risk hobbies or high risk occupations.

An independent insurance agent can review your current active term policy in order to determine if you are still within this conversion window. If they find that you can convert your current policy there will be no new exam required.

The carrier will use your previous approval without reviewing any new applicant’s health history. You can also take just a reduced death benefit out of the total active coverage amount if the premium is outside your budget.

Most of the time the life insurance company will allow this option in the early years of a term life insurance policy. So if something has come up in your health history or you have started new high risk occupation or high risk hobby talk to an agent as soon as possible to learn about your options.

Compare High Risk Life Insurance

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