Life Insurance for Overweight People
In this article, we wanted to take a moment and try and answer some of the most common questions we get from folks applying for life insurance who are worried that their current weight may prevent them from getting the “best” rate possible.
Questions that will be addressed will include:
- Can I qualify for life insurance if I am considered overweight?
- Why do life insurance companies so much about one’s weight?
- What kind of information will the insurance companies ask me or be interested in?
- What rate (or price) can I qualify for?
- 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 if I am considered overweight?
Yes, individuals who consider themselves overweight or have been told by their doctor that they ARE overweight can and often will qualify for a traditional term or whole life insurance policy. In fact, they may even be able to qualify for a no medical exam term life insurance policy at a Preferred rate!
The only problem is…
That being considered overweight is probably one of the most difficult challenges to overcome when it comes to applying for a life insurance policy because just about all of the top-rated life insurance companies in the industry today is going to use one’s current height and weight ratio to make a wide range of assumptions about an applicant’s overall health!
That said however…
We should note that life insurance companies do tend to be a bit more lenient than you might think.
For example, a male standing 5’9” tall can still potentially qualify for a Preferred Plus rate class provided that he is 200 lbs or less, and still might qualify for a Standard plus at 223.
And while you might be thinking to yourself, I wish I only weighed 223 lbs, it’s important to understand that Standard Plus, is still considered better than “normal” which in our opinion is quite generous.
So the takeaway from all of this should be, to not automatically think that most life insurance companies are going to make it impossible for someone to qualify for life insurance if they are overweight because the fact is, insurance companies are “OK” with assuming risks, they just don’t want to assume too much risk!
Why do life insurance companies so much about one’s weight?
Let’s face it; Obesity is probably the leading health crisis that the United States faces today. Given the fact that just being a few pounds overweight can lead to a wide variety of health issues, including:
- Elevated blood pressure levels,
- Increased cholesterol levels,
- Increased risk of heart disease,
- Increased risk of developing diabetes,
This is why…
Most life insurance companies are going to look at someone’s current height and weight ratio as an indicator of what “other” kinds of health issues might have.
The good news is that…
Not all life insurance companies are going to use the same height and weight ratio charts during the underwriting process, and “some” life insurance companies will also take in account that some people may just not “fit” into a “one size fits all” type of underwriting guideline.
When it comes time to apply for life insurance, you might be surprised by what an insurance company considers “obese.”
For example, a 5′ 9″ male with most life insurance companies can weigh in at 222 lbs and still qualify for a standard or normal rate, so it’s not like insurance companies are expecting you to be a supermodel, they’re just looking for someone to fall within a healthy range.
That same 5’9 individual would even “potentially” be able to qualify for a Preferred rate if they only weighed 200 lbs with a lot of different life insurance companies!
What kind of information will the insurance companies ask me or be interested in regarding my weight?
Life insurance companies may ask you a variety of questions about your weight when you apply for a policy. These may include:
- Your height and weight: The insurance company will typically ask for your current height and weight so that it can calculate your body mass index (BMI). BMI is a measure of body fat based on height and weight. A BMI of 30 or higher is considered obese, while a BMI of 25 to 29.9 is considered overweight.
- Your weight history: The insurance company may ask about your weight history, including whether you have ever been significantly overweight or obese.
- Your diet and exercise habits: The insurance company may ask about your diet and exercise habits, including what you eat, how often you exercise, and whether you have any special dietary needs or restrictions.
- Your weight-related health conditions: The insurance company may ask about any weight-related health conditions that you have or have had in the past, such as obesity, heart disease, or diabetes.
Additional questions may also be asked including:
- The health of your immediate family members (monther, father, brother, sister).
- Existence of any other pre-existing medical conditions.
- Use of any prescription medications.
- Use of any tobacco or nicotine products.
- Driving record.
- Current work status.
- In the past 2 years have you applied for any disability benefits?
What rate class can I qualify for?
As you can see, there’s a wide variety of different factors that can come into play when trying to determine what kind of rate an individual might be able to qualify for.
This is why it’s pretty much impossible to know for sure what kind of “rate” you might be able to qualify for without first speaking with you directly.
That said however…
We can tell you for sure that different insurance companies will use different height and weight ratio charts to make their decisions about how they choose to underwrite their policies. This means that it’s quite possible that some insurance companies may not be as “beneficial” to you as others.
Depending on how much insurance you are looking to purchase, it may be possible to seek out coverage from an insurance company that won’t consider one’s current weight when determining who they will and won’t insure. Which brings us to the last topic that we wanted to discuss, which is…
What can I do to help ensure that I get the “best life insurance” for me?
In our experience here at IBUSA, we have found that usually, the folks who seem to find the “best” life insurance policy for them are those that:
- Take their time reviewing their options.
- Ask a lot of questions.
And seek out those life insurance agents who not only have experience working with individuals who have been diagnosed with a wide variety of pre-existing medical conditions but also have access to dozens of different life insurance companies so that when it comes time to helping a more “challenging” case, they don’t have to rely on a…
“One size fits all approach!”
The good news is that this is exactly what you’re going to find here at IBUSA
Now, will we be able to help out everyone who has been previously diagnosed as being overweight?
No, probably not. But what we can tell you is that in addition to offering a wide variety of different term and whole life insurance policies, IBUSA has also worked very hard to establish relationships with many of the Best Burial Life Insurance Companies as well so that if someone isn’t able to qualify for a traditional life insurance policy, chances are there may be some other “type” of product that you CAN qualify for.