Getting life insurance for cancer patients is complicated, but not necessarily impossible. Your chances of getting an insurance policy depend mostly on the type, stage, and grade of cancer.
The simplest way to learn whether you may be eligible to get a life insurance policy is to know the approach an insurer will take in reviewing your application. There are many cases where a cancer patient will be able to buy life insurance, but the rates and the policy benefits may vary. One of the best ways of finding life insurance for cancer patients is to look for an independent broker who represents all insurance companies.
What is Cancer
According to the National Cancer Institute, cancer refers to a group of related diseases. In all types of cancer, some of the body’s cells begin to divide without stopping and spread into surrounding tissues. Cancer can start almost anywhere in the human body, which is made up of trillions of cells. Normally, human cells grow and divide to form new cells as the body needs them.
When cells grow old or become damaged, they die, and new cells take their place. When cancer develops, however, this orderly process breaks down. As cells become more and more abnormal, old or damaged cells survive when they should die, and new cells form when they are not needed. These extra cells can divide without stopping and may form growths called tumors.
Cancer-Specific Rating Classes
If you are a breast cancer survivor, the main thing the life insurance carrier will want to know is whether or not you’re in complete remission. The life insurance carrier will ask you questions, such as the date that you were first diagnosed, any treatments you have received, how frequently you’ve been evaluated, and how long you’ve been cancer-free.
There are two main things a life insurance company will want to look at if you have been diagnosed with prostate cancer. The first is your Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) levels and your Gleason score, which determines how likely it is for cancer your to spread. The second is how long you’ve been cancer-free since your surgical procedure or other medical treatment, and that you’ve completed regular screening. If you are cancer-free and have waited a year before applying, you may get a standard rating.
Skin Cancer (Basal Cell Carcinoma and Squamous Cell Carcinoma)
Basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma are the most common kinds of skin cancer. These skin cancers grow quite slowly and are easily taken out. If cancer does not spread over the next two years, and you are in relatively good health, you will probably be eligible for a life insurance policy at standard rates.
What the Underwriter Will Ask
- When were you first diagnosed?
- What type of cancer was it?
- What treatment did you undergo?
- How long have you been cancer-free?
- What were the cancer grade and stage?
- When was the last day of treatment?
- Have you had any relapses?
- What type of medications are you taking?
- Did cancer metastasize?
Type of Cancer Waiting Period Guidelines
|1 Year||2 Years||3 Years||5 Years||10 Years|
Life Insurance for Cancer Patients Best Tips
- Collect all medical documents before you apply. This gives underwriters the complete picture of yourself, your well-being, and your cancer history. Having all these documents before you apply will reduce the time your application spends in the underwriting process.
- Be sure you follow your doctor’s treatment plan. Your life insurance company will not want to offer you a policy without looking at the outcome of your follow-up appointments.
- Get life insurance rates from various carriers. No two insurance carriers are the same. If you are looking for life insurance for cancer patients, consider working with a broker who has the skills and experience to help you get approved at the lower rate.
- Just Wait- Give it some time before you submit your application. The longer you’ve been in remission, the greater your chance to get cheaper rates.