Here at Rootfin, we have lots of experience assisting people who have a history of alcohol abuse obtain life insurance. People may have told you in the past that because of your alcohol history, you simply don’t qualify for life insurance, which is completely untrue - you just have to use the right life insurance company (tip #1).
People who have had issues with alcohol are certainly higher risk to life insurance underwriters, it doesn’t mean they aren’t eligible for coverage. Life insurance and alcohol use is a very sensitive risk for companies and it's all about how your life insurance agent presents it to the life insurance company.
Now, if you have a drink every now and then, you aren’t going to be seen as a huge risk by the underwriters. It is when your drinking turns from “socially acceptable drinking” to “problem drinking” that things start to get a little hairy.
Even if you don’t show any outward symptoms of having alcohol problems, something like a DUI on your record could say to your underwriter that you have a problem with alcohol and need to be assessed accordingly.
If your underwriter does discover you have an issue with alcohol, they are going to launch into a series of questions to figure out the severity of your relationship with alcohol.
- What was the date of initial treatment or diagnosis? (if applicable)
- Were there any relapses from sobriety?
- Any legal problems? (DUI etc)
- What's your current consumption of alcohol?
- Do you currently smoke cigarettes?
- Any other major health problems?
Beyond these questions, an underwriter will look for the following in your medical exam and medical records:
• Elevated liver enzymes
• Positive alcohol markers
• Driving under the influence charges
• Medical complications related to alcohol
• Use of other substances such as marijuana or cocaine
It's in your best interest to be as open as you can with providing information to your agent (tip #2). It's really easy to withhold information if you're not asked for it or if if it's asked in a non-direct way. The more detailed information we have, the better rates we can secure for you!
It’s also important to note that every insurance company has a different way of looking at past alcohol use. While some don’t really give any lenience to people who have alcohol problems, others are sympathetic with people who have made an attempt to get control over their drinking.
For example, while a DUI might be enough to have you labeled as a high risk with one insurance company, a different company will look at the fact that after your DUI took place, you cleaned up your "binge" drinking habits and will give you a "Standard" rate. If you've had a DUI, please reference our very informative post here.
If you've been treated for alcohol abuse and can prove that you have been sober for several years, and that alcohol no longer poses a problem in your life, you might just be able to get very close to normal rates on your life insurance. It’s all a matter of time that has passed and knowing which companies are right for your situation. We have that information for you.
Since we are in touch with so many different life insurance companies, we have come to figure out how many of them work and how they assess risk, including passed alcohol abuse. If you've had troubles with alcohol in the past and want to take out a life insurance policy, we can help.
We'll ask you in depth questions about your past alcohol consumption and shop it around to the companies (anonymously) who are known to be recommended for dealing with people who have similar past alcohol issues. The goal is to get you matched up with a company who is going to look at your condition most favorably.
If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.