Life Insurance with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
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 after being diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
Questions that will be addressed will include:
- Can I qualify for life insurance if I have been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
- Why do life insurance companies care if I have been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
- 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’s dive right in!
Can I qualify for life insurance if I have been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
Yes, individuals who have been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) can and often will be able to qualify for a traditional term or whole life insurance policy. In fact, many may even be able to qualify for a Preferred Plus rate.
This is mainly because…
At the end of the day, while it is true that IBS can cause someone to suffer from a lot of uncomfortable symptoms, there really aren’t all that many long-term complications associated with the disease that would make a life insurance company all that nervous.
The problem is…
That because Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) can commonly be mistaken for or “lumped together” with many other types of gastrointestinal diseases, most life insurance companies are going to want to make sure that you have only been diagnosed with IBS and that you don’t suffer from a more “serious” pre-existing medical condition.
Why do life insurance companies care if I have been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
When it comes to applying for a traditional term or whole life insurance policy after you’ve been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, what you’re usually going to find is that most (if not all) life insurance companies aren’t going to be all that worried about it provided that you haven’t been simultaneously diagnosed with some other “kind” of gastrointestinal disease.
This is why…
We wanted to take a moment and discuss exactly what Irritable Bowel Syndrome is so that we’ll have a better idea of exactly what a life insurance underwriter will be looking for when making his or her decision about your life insurance application.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome Defined:
Irritable Bowel Syndrome or IBS is a relatively common disorder that affects the large intestine. Unfortunately, researchers aren’t 100% certain what can cause someone to develop IBS, but there does seem to be some evidence pointing to several different potential causes including:
- Nervous system “miscues” where the brain and digestive system don’t seem to communicate properly causing one’s body to overreact to certain stimuli.
- Inflammation within the intestines possibly due to some kind of autoimmune response.
- Lingering affects of some type of “serious” gastrointestinal infection.
- Or changes in one’s “good gut” bacteria.
But, then again these are all just “theories” until a definitive cause is discovered.
Common symptoms may include:
- Abdominal pain,
- Diarrhea and sometimes constipation.
In more severe cases, individuals may develop more troublesome symptoms including:
- Unexplained weight loss,
- Rectal bleeding,
- Iron deficiency anemia,
Only a small number of people suffering from IBS will experience severe symptoms such as these which is why many folks will be able to “self-treat” their condition through lifestyle changes and a health diet. As for those who do end up developing more “severe” cases, not all hope is lost because there are several medications on the market now that do seem to help folks minimize their discomfort.
Now at this point…
We usually like to take a moment and remind folks that nobody here at IBUSA has any kind of “official” medical training and we’re certainly not doctors. All we are is a bunch of life insurance agents who just happen to be really good at helping folks with pre-existing medical conditions like this one, find and qualify for the life insurance coverage that they are looking for.
Not so great if you’re looking for answers to any specific medical questions. In cases like these, we would recommend that you contact a true medical professional who has the training to help. For everyone else, you’re in luck because now we’re going to get into some of the “nitty gritty” about what you may or may not be able to qualify for.
What kind of information will the insurance companies ask me or be interested in?
Common questions you’ll likely be asked may include:
- When were you first diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
- Who diagnosed your Irritable Bowel Syndrome? A general practitioner? A specialist? Or yourself?
- What symptoms (if any) led to your diagnosis?
- Have you been diagnosed with any other pre-existing medical conditions?
- Are you currently taking any prescription medications?
- In the past 2 years, have you been hospitalized for any reason?
- Are you currently working now?
- In the past 12 months, have you applied for or received any form of disability benefits?
What rate (or price) can I qualify for?
If Irritable Bowel Syndrome is the “only” pre-existing medical condition that you have been diagnosed with, what you’re usually going to find is that once a life insurance company is able to determine they’re going to want to move on from questions that might determine “if” you’ll be able to qualify for a traditional life insurance policy to “what” price you might qualify for.
This is why…
After it has been determined that you don’t suffer from any kind of “serious” gastrointestinal disease, most life insurance underwriters will shift gears and start asking questions which will be more designed to learn what “price” or “rate” you might be able to qualify for. These questions will typically look something like this:
- What is your current height and weight?
- In the past 12 months, have you used any tobacco or nicotine products?
- Have any of your immediate family members ever been diagnosed with cancer, heart disease, stroke or diabetes?
- Have any of your immediate family members ever suffered from a heart attack or stroke?
- Do you have any issue with your driving record? Issues such as multiple moving violations, a DUI or a suspended license?
- Do you have any set plans to travel outside the United States in the next year or so?
- Have you ever been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor?
- Do you actively participate or plan on participating in any dangerous hobbies or activities?
Knowing what kind of “rate” you might be able to qualify for without first speaking with you pretty much impossible. That said however, what we can say for sure is that if you have only been diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and you don’t seem to be suffering form symptom preventing you form living a “normal” life (whatever that is), it’s reasonable to assume that whatever rate you would have been able to qualify for PRIOR to being diagnose with IBS should be the same rate that you would be able to qualify for AFTER being diagnosed with IBS.
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 profession 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 prior to 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!