Life Insurance while receiving Dialysis.
In this article, we wanted to take a moment to answer some of the most common questions we hear from individuals looking to apply for life insurance while currently receiving Dialysis (whether it be Hemodialysis or Peritoneal Dialysis) to treat a variety of different conditions including:
- Kidney failure,
- Renal failure,
Questions that will be directly addressed will include:
- Can I qualify for life insurance while currently on Dialysis?
- Why do life insurance companies care if I’m on Dialysis?
- What kind of information will the insurance companies ask me about my Dialysis treatment?
- What options might be available to me?
- What can I do to help ensure that I get the “best life insurance” for me?
So, without further ado, let’ dive right in!
Can I qualify for life insurance while currently on Dialysis?
It is possible to qualify for life insurance while currently on dialysis, but the terms of the policy and the premiums you will be required to pay may be affected by your condition. The specific terms of a life insurance policy will depend on the insurer and the specific details of your situation, including the severity of your condition, your age, and any other underlying health conditions you may have.
When applying for life insurance with a pre-existing condition like being on dialysis, it is important to be honest and forthcoming about your medical history. Many insurers will ask for medical records and other information about your condition as part of the application process.
It is worth noting that life insurance policies for individuals with pre-existing conditions may have exclusions or limitations on coverage, and the premiums may be higher than those for individuals without pre-existing conditions. For this reason, it’s important to carefully review the terms of any policy before you agree to it, to ensure that you understand any exclusions or limitations and are comfortable with the premiums and other terms of the policy.
That said, it’s safe to say that for individuals who are currently receiving Dialysis or have been diagnosed with End-Stage Kidney Failure or End-Stage Renal Failure will not be able to qualify for a traditional life insurance policy or any type of no medical exam term life insurance policy either.
In cases like these where an individual might not be able to qualify for a traditional term or whold life insruance policy, seeking out an alternative product such as a guaranteed issue life insurance policy (AKA Final Expense Insurance) or an accidental death policy (which would not provide a death benefit if the insured died due to a medical issue stemming from their kidney failure) may be a good option.
Why do life insurance companies care if I’m on Dialysis?
Life insurance companies are in the business of assessing and managing risk. When they issue a life insurance policy, they are agreeing to pay out a benefit to the policy beneficiary in the event of the insured person’s death. The premiums that policyholders pay are used to cover the costs of administering the policy and to build a reserve to pay out claims when they are made.
When a life insurance company evaluates an applicant for a policy, it considers a variety of factors to determine the level of risk associated with insuring that person. This includes the applicant’s age, gender, and overall health, as well as any pre-existing medical conditions or risk factors. Being on dialysis may be considered a risk factor because it is a treatment for a serious medical condition, such as kidney failure. The severity of the condition, the stage of the disease, and the presence of any other underlying health conditions may also be taken into account.
Life insurance companies use this information to determine the likelihood that the insured person will die during the term of the policy, and to set the premiums accordingly. If an insurer believes that an applicant on dialysis is at an increased risk of death, it may charge higher premiums to compensate for that increased risk. In some cases, an insurer may decline to offer coverage altogether.
This is particularly true when the underlying cause could be do to a significant pre-existing medical condition such as:
- Heart attack or heart disease,
- Illicit drug use/abuse,
- Poor blood flow to the kidneys,
- Kidney infections,
- And/or trauma.
What kind of information will the insurance companies ask me or be interested in?
When you apply for life insurance and disclose that you are currently on dialysis, the insurer may ask for detailed information about your medical history and current condition. This may include:
- The specific type of dialysis you are receiving, such as hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis
- The frequency and duration of your dialysis treatments
- Any underlying medical conditions that are causing your need for dialysis, such as kidney failure
- The results of any medical exams or tests that you have undergone, such as blood work or imaging studies
- Information about your diet and lifestyle, including whether you smoke and your level of physical activity
- Any medications you are taking to manage your condition or treat any underlying medical conditions
The specific information that an insurer will request will depend on the policy and the specific requirements of the insurer. Some insurers may ask for additional information or may require you to undergo a medical exam as part of the application process. It is important to be honest and accurate when providing this information, as any false or misleading information could result in a denial of coverage or a dispute over a claim.
Here at IBUSA, we do offer a wide variety of these “types” of products which is why once we learn that an applicant is currently receiving Dialysis we like to ask 3 important questions:
#1. Are you a US Citizen?
#2. Are you between the ages of 40 and 85?
#3. What state do you live in?
This is because…
There is a chance that you might be able to qualify for a guaranteed issue life insurance policy or purchase an accidental death policy.
What options might be available to me?
Now before anyone gets too excited about the fact that there may be a few options available to you even though you’ve been diagnosed with end-stage kidney failure and are currently receiving Dialysis, we want to make it perfectly clear that there are some very real disadvantages to some of the products that we’re about to discuss.
Which is why…
After reading what we’re about to discuss we would invite you to then give us a call or visit one of our other articles that will go into greater detail about these “alternative products” so that you’ll know exactly what you are “getting” should you decide to ultimately purchase one of these “types” of products.
Accidental Death and Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance Policies Defined
Accidental Death Policies
First, we want to start by describing what an Accidental Death Policy is because of the two options that might be available to you; these are definitely the easier ones to understand and ironically the ones that people most often get confused about!
We’re going to attempt to describe what these “kinds” of products are in the worst and least flattering way so that that there shouldn’t be any kind of “misunderstanding” about what these types of policies will and won’t cover.
Accidental death policies are NOT TRUE LIFE INSURANCE POLICIES. This is why you don’t need to be a licensed life insurance agent to sell them and why they aren’t going to provide you with any coverage in the event that you die of a “natural” cause of death.
Natural cause of death we’re referring to an “illness-based” death like you would experience as a result of:
Or from some kind of complication that one might experience as a result of kidney failure!
These types of products…
Are only going to provide a death benefit to your family if you die from an accidental cause or any cause of death that isn’t “illness based”. Examples that would typically qualify would include:
- A motor vehicle accident,
- A slip and fall accident
- A natural disaster,
- Victim of crime,
Which is nice…
But typically, it isn’t what someone is looking for after they have been diagnosed with end-stage kidney failure. On the plus side, these “types” of products are generally pretty affordable. They will allow someone to purchase a large amount of ACCIDENT insurance for a relatively small amount of money.
Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance
Guaranteed issue life insurance policies, on the other hand, ARE TRUE LIFE INSURANCE PRODUCTS. This means that you do need to be a licensed life insurance agent to sell them, and “ultimately,” they will provide an individual true-life insurance coverage.
But there’s a catch…
And in our experience here at IBUSA we’ve found that the best way to discuss these types of life insurance policies is by analyzing the three major disadvantages that these “types” of life insurance policies have aside form the fact that you generally have to be over the age of 50 and live in a state where these “types” of life insurance policies are available.
So, let’s dive right in…
Guaranteed issue life insurance policies will only provide a limited amount of life insurance coverage and will usually “cap out” right around 25,000 dollars in coverage. This means that if you need more than 25,000 dollars in coverage, a guaranteed issue life insurance policy might not be right for you!
(Yes, individual’s can purchase several different guaranteed issue life insurance policies from several different companies, but as we will now discuss, this can get expensive).
Dollar for dollar, guaranteed issue life insurance policies tend to cost more than other “traditional” life insurance policy options.
Now we don’t want to imply that these “types” of life insurance policies are going to cost a fortune, its just that if you can qualify for another “kind” of life insurance policy, that coverage will usually cost less dollar for dollar than a guaranteed issue life insurance policy will.
Guaranteed issue life insurance policies contain a clause known as a Graded Death Benefit.
Graded Death Benefit Defined:
Graded Death Benefits are “clauses” written into most (if not all) guaranteed issue life insurance policies which state that a guaranteed issue life insurance policy won’t begin to cover an individual from “natural causes” of death until a certain waiting period has elapsed. This “waiting period” will usually last 2 to 3 years and is designed to make sure that someone who knows that they are very close to death from being able to purchase these “types” of life insurance policies.
This may seem extremely unfair. It’s important to remember that a guaranteed issue life insurance policy isn’t going to require you to take a medical exam or answer any health-related questions. So, at the end of the day, it’s only this “clause” that’s going to allow the insurance companies to protect themselves from unnecessary risk.
The good news is…
That while you may have to wait 2 to 3 years for one a Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance policy to provide you true life insurance protection, these “types” of life insurance policies will provide immediate coverage for any “accidental causes” of death and may also provide some kind of “return of premium” to the beneficiaries of the insured who do end up dying from natural causes before their Graded Death Benefit expiring.
So, have we confused you yet?
If so, don’t fret we the purpose of this article wasn’t to try to make you an insurance expert, it was just to give you an idea of what questions you’ll want to pursue before making any decisions.
Which brings us to the last topic that we wanted to discuss here in this article, which is…
What can I do to help ensure that I get the “best life insurance” for me?
In our experience here at IBUSA, what we have found that works best for folks who have been diagnosed with a pre-existing medical condition where the “severity” of the condition is often “subjective” is for the applicant to make sure that they first find a true-life insurance professional who will work as an advocate for you.
Such an agent…
Will not only help guide you through the application process but also be perfectly “frank” with you about what options may or may not be possible for you.
You’ll also want to make sure that the very same agent you have chosen has access to dozens of different life insurance companies because after all, it really doesn’t matter how “great” of a life insurance agent you might have if they don’t have access to the “best” life insurance policy for you! Now, does it?
You’ll want to make sure that you’re completely honest with your life insurance agent before applying for coverage. By doing so, you will be helping him or her narrow down what options might be the “best.”
So, what are you waiting for? Give us a call today and see what we can do for you!
My son is dyaliis patient. 30 yrs old.
We’re sorry to hear about your son, but we are happy to let you know that he may still be able to qualify for a guaranteed issue life insurance policy provided he lives in a state where one is offered at his age. Please call us at your earliest convenience so that we can go over what options may be available to him.
So if I read this right, my wife that is getting kidney dialysis for end stage kidney disease can get a guaranteed issue life insurance policy. If she should die because of the kidney failure the beneficiary would NOT get paid, only for accidental death like traffic accident. My wife lives in New Mexico with me and my oldest son. She has had a total of 6 heart stents, TTP(remission) and is on oxygen. That is the tip of the iceberg though. Currently she had been the best health since 2014 when she had TTP among other serious medical conditions. She is 63 years old. All I would like is a policy that would pay for the funeral. Seems futile though… Jim S. I suppose this inquiry just means more spam emails…
You are correct with your assessment of how guaranteed issue life insurance policies work. However, if the insured lives beyond what is commonly referred to as the graded death benefit which usually lasts 2-3 years (depending on the carrier) the policy would then provide complete coverage for natural causes of death including kidney failure.
Additionally, many guaranteed issue life insurance policies offer a full refund the the insureds beneficiary for all premiums paid to the insurance company if an insured dies from natural causes before the graded death benefit is over (plus interest in some cases). Which in our opinion, significantly reduces any risks to the insured even if they don’t believe will live beyond the graded death benefit period.
Helping my son 43 yrs old kidney dialysis patient obtain life insurance.
It sounds like your son may be able to qualify for a guaranteed issue life insurance policy provided he lives in a state where they are available. Our suggest would be to give us a call so that we can discuss what options may be available to you.
I’ve had life insurance long before I was diagnosed with kidney failure. I am now retired. If I decided to stop dialysis treatments and die would my insurance pay?
Without being able to review your policy we wouldn’t be able to advise you on your policy, however choosing to discontinue your dialysis treatments doesn’t sound like a good idea. We wish you the best and recommend that you speak with your doctor about any changes you may be considering making with regard to your current treatment.
I am end stage kidney patient requiring hemo dialysis 3 times a week
Also I am Type 2 diabetic requiring insulin
I am 57 years old and live in Ohio
It sounds like you may be able to qualify for a guaranteed issue life insurance policy which would provide up to $25,000 in coverage. If you believe this is something you would like to learn more about, please call us at your earliest convenience.