Last Updated: March 2021
If you have a heart condition or have had a heart attack in the past, finding a life insurance policy can seem daunting. But, even with this medical history, securing a life insurance policy with a heart condition is possible.
A heart condition or heart attack used to result in an automatic decline in life insurance coverage, but not anymore!
In this article, we will review what a heart condition consists of and what you need to know to find coverage. We have an archive of heart-related articles to provide more specific information depending on your current situation.
- Can You Get Life Insurance with a Heart Condition?
- Finding Life Insurance with Different Heart Conditions
- Underwriting: What Life Insurance Companies Will Ask About Your Heart Condition
- How to Apply for Life Insurance with a Heart Condition
Can You Get Life Insurance with a Heart Condition?
Yes! Thanks to breakthroughs in how we detect and treat heart disease, a person with a heart condition can live a long and healthy life.
Life insurance companies are starting to realize this, and are offering policy options to those suffering from heart conditions.
What Counts as a Heart Condition?
In order to take the first steps toward getting insured, you need to know that “heart condition” can describe many diseases and problems. Some are more severe than others.
Just as insurance companies evaluate risk differently, so too they may evaluate your heart condition differently. Heart disease is, according to the Center for Disease Control, the leading cause of death in America.
It comes in many shapes and forms, from coronary artery disease caused by plaque buildup, to heart attacks, and congenital heart defects. The latter refers to defects in the heart’s function and structure, which are detected at birth and qualify as a pre-existing medical condition.
Finding Life Insurance with Different Heart Conditions
Here is a list of articles we have written for the most common, more specific heart conditions. We have helped dozens of people with heart conditions find a life insurance policy that works for their family and their specific needs.
In order to find affordable high risk life insurance, you need to know how to find the right carriers for your unique situation. Please click through for more detailed information.
- Life Insurance After a Heart Attack – Many individuals think that because they have had a heart attack, they can’t qualify for life insurance. The good news is, this is false. We secure coverage on individuals that have had a heart attack on a regular basis.
- Life Insurance with a Pacemaker – Read about what to expect when applying for life insurance with a pacemaker.
- Life Insurance with Stent Surgery History – This is the second most common heart issue we see and we have a lot of experience securing the best rates on the market. Here’s what you need to know.
- Life Insurance with Congestive Heart Failure – If you’re having trouble securing coverage with Congestive Heart Failure, read this article. We can help.
- Life Insurance with Cardiomyopathy – We’ve helped dozens of our clients secure the best life insurance rates with Cardiomyopathy. Read more about how we’re doing this.
- Life Insurance with Bundle Branch Block – Getting affordable coverage with BBB is all about using the right carrier and asking the right questions. We discuss these in this article.
- Life Insurance with Atrial Fibrillation – This is the most common heart risk we’re seeing and most people are overpaying for their life insurance. Learn how to save in this article.
- Mitral Valve Prolapse and Life Insurance – Secure the best life insurance rates available with Mitral Valve Prolapse with these tips.
Many individuals are afraid to apply for these policies, daunted by their history of being declined or being stuck with high premiums. It’s important to know that you can get life insurance, even with a heart condition, and that it is not always a difficult process. It all depends on the type of condition and the company.
Underwriting: What Life Insurance Companies Will Ask About Your Heart Condition
Your overall risk and current health can affect your approval and monthly premiums. Understanding what underwriters are looking for can help you prepare for the application process.
How Insurance Companies Define Risk
Before applying for life insurance with a heart condition, it’s important to know how insurance companies define risk.
Certain heart conditions may be deemed as lower risk than others. For example, an individual born with an irregular heartbeat may be viewed as lower risk than an individual with coronary artery disease.
Heart problems most likely won’t earn you a preferred rating, but, depending on how the insurance company views your risk, you could be classified as a standard or average risk. This is preferable to a substandard categorization, or a decline, and may mean your premium rates will be lower.
Have You Experienced Other Health Problems?
Additionally, you can take measures to improve your risk assessment.
Other health problems are all risk factors taken into consideration when underwriting your insurance policy. These risk factors can improve or worsen your heart condition:
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
- Stress levels
- Poor diet
The good news is that you can lower your risk by taking measures to improve your lifestyle. Incorporating a healthier diet, light exercise, or quitting smoking could save you hundreds of dollars in premiums.
If you struggle with a mental health condition along with heart issues, this could also increase your life insurance rates.
Talk to your doctor about lowering your risk for heart disease, and tell your agent if you’ve taken any of these steps to lower your risk.
Your Overall Health Can Affect Your Rates
While it is possible to find affordable life insurance if you’ve recently suffered from a heart attack or another heart condition, it’s important to know that your initial quotes may be lower or higher than what you expect.
If you smoke and have just suffered from a heart attack, you should expect to pay almost two to three times more for your life insurance than non-smokers. This is because smoking greatly increases the likelihood that you will experience complications from heart disease or the return of heart disease down the road.
If you have had a heart condition and are taking measures to improve your health, you should request a re-evaluation of your premiums. Certain health measures such as diet and exercise are instrumental in changing your heart health. An agent can help determine which factors will impact your premium.
Waiting Period After a Heart Episode
It may take time to find the proper coverage for you. Be patient and try your best to not get discouraged with the insurance-shopping process.
If you’ve had a heart problem recently and would like to extend your life insurance policy, your best bet might be to wait.
It will be easier to extend or re-apply once underwriters are able to fully assess how your treatments are working, if you’re complying with your physician’s recommendations, and whether or not your condition is stable, improving, or worsening.
If you are applying after undergoing surgery or treatment for a heart condition, you should provide documentation from your doctor, detailing your treatments, medications, and the outlook of your condition.
Conditions such as a heart attack, angioplasty, or surgery with stents or a heart valve do not necessarily result in declines, if at least six months to one year have passed and no complications were experienced during surgery.
The preferred waiting period for those who have suffered from a stroke or undergone a bypass is twelve months.
How to Apply for Life Insurance with a Heart Condition
If you have a heart condition, it is easier than you may think to obtain life insurance. The first step is to talk to an independent agent who specializes in high-risk clients.
Talking to an independent agent takes a lot of the guesswork and stress out of applying for life insurance with a heart condition. They work for you, taking into account your current health status in order to get you the best policy rates possible.
A computer-generated quote won’t take into account your personal health history, but an independent agent will. The numbers they present to you are those tailored specifically toward you and the policy you need.
If you’ve been told that you can’t get coverage due to your heart condition, you aren’t working with the right agent. You can still get life insurance coverage if you have a knowledgeable and reputable agent working for you.