Best Life Insurance with COPD – Expert Advice & Free Quotes

Quick Tip:  Complete the form on the side to get a free quote on the next screen.  Make sure you choose “regular” (standard) health class.

Trying to find the best rated life insurance companies for applicants with COPD? You’re in the right place.  Give us 4 minutes and you’ll have a much better grasp on finding the most affordable rates, even if you’ve been declined in the past.

We’ll explain what information is needed to give you an accurate life insurance rate and what kind of rates to expect.

Life Insurance with COPD

Life Insurance with COPDTo obtain an accurate rate, we would have to know detailed information about your COPD.

One of the main indicators the life insurance company is looking for is your “Forced Expired Volume in 1 Second” or FEV1 which is included in your Pulmonary Function Tests.  The higher the percentage, the better your life insurance rates will be.  Normal values are around 80%.  Those with COPD have a ratio less than 70%.

If you know this value or can get this from your doctor, it will be much easier to find the most affordable life insurance rates.   If you don’t know these, we can assess your COPD by gathering other details.

COPD is often classified into 4 categories: Mild, Moderate, Severe and Extreme COPD.

Mild COPD: Mild chronic cough is okay as well as shortness of breath after moderate exertion.  Your pulmonary function tests should be near normal with no x-ray abnormalities.   Your FEV1 value should be between 60%-80%.   You must be a non-smoker and not be receiving any treatment.  Mild COPD will receive a Standard Table 2 rating with the most competitive companies.

Moderate COPD: Increased coughing and shortness of breath at moderate exertion levels.  Pulmonary function tests show moderately decreased levels of lung functioning.  X-ray studies can show abnormalities.  Inhaler used on occasion.  Your FEV1 will typically be between 50%-59%.  Moderate COPD will receive Standard Table 4 life insurance rates with certain companies, others will rate you higher or even decline.

Severe COPD:  Shortness of breath occurs with every day activities.  Pulmonary functions show decreases.  Treatment includes inhaler, steroids or other medications.  Your FEV1 will be 40%-49%.  You are looking at a Table 6 – Table 8 rating with some companies and most companies will decline to offer you coverage.

Extreme COPD:  If you’re unable to complete normal activities and shortness of breath happens either at rest or with minimal exertion, you’re considered extreme.  Treatment usually requires an oxygen tank or treatment at home.  Anything below a FEV1 or 40% is considered severe.  You will only be able to qualify for a graded death benefit policy.  A traditionally underwritten company won’t accept this risk.

The key is to know your FEV1 percentage from your Pulmonary Function Tests, but if those aren’t available we can assess your risk by asking you these questions:

Date of Diagnosis?
Type of Lung Disease associated with COPD? (Asthma? Chronic Bronchitis? Emphysema?)
Have you ever been hospitalized for COPD? (dates, details)
Are you taking medications? (details)
Has a chest x-ray been done? (date, results)
Has an ECG been completed? (date, results)
Any other medical conditions?

After gathering this information we would do what’s called a “trial application”.  In other words we would submit an anonymous application detailing your risk to all of our life insurance carriers.  They would respond with a tentative offer in writing.  This will be the rate as long as you your labs or medical records don’t show anything different from what you described.  From there you can decide if you want to formally apply.

No Medical Exam Life Insurance with COPD

If you’re looking for no medical exam TERM life insurance with COPD, it doesn’t exist.

However if you’re looking for no medical exam WHOLE life insurance with COPD, we can help you out.

Depending on your treatment and severity of COPD, we can get you coverage up to $25,000.  We know of 1 company actively taking people with COPD and it’s “first day coverage”.  Meaning coverage starts immediately.

There are a lot of choices for “Graded Death Benefit”.  In this case, there’s a 2 year waiting period until life insurance benefits are paid out.  We know very well you’re not going anywhere in the next 2 years, so this is a great option for many who can’t get approved for traditional coverage.  In this situation, we would shop the best graded death benefit rates for you.

We’ve had a lot of people get declined from the big agencies like SelectQuote, AIG Direct and Zander and we were able to find affordable rates.  Experience and knowledge matters – not who has the biggest advertising budget.

If your agent doesn’t ask you what your Pulmonary Function Tests were or the questions above, then they are just taking guesses.  We have turned COPD life insurance declines into affordable offers and continue to do this on a regular basis.

Instead of going with one of those second-rate companies, give us a shot. We’re independent and experienced agents. How does this help you? Independent means we won’t sell you one plan versus another because it benefits us.

The worst thing you can do is not get any coverage.  I know it may be more expensive than you’d like, but something is better than nothing.  You’re here to protect someone you care greatly about – don’t let price deter you from doing just that – we can secure anyone life insurance with COPD – even if it’s a small amount of coverage.

Let us know if you have any questions.

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About Jeff Root

is the owner of He's an independent life insurance agent who has helped 1,000's of consumers purchase life insurance online and over the phone.

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april turner

Trying to find life insurance for my mother, she does have , I would say moderate copd , and recently been put on oxygen ONLY, for at night, if you could please contact me thanks april

May 9, 2016 at 10:42 pm
    Jeff Root

    HI April, we’ve sent you an email.

    May 23, 2016 at 10:14 am
Amanda E McCoy

Hey there!

My dad has severe COPD and let his insurance lapse. We are looking for a replacement policy but can’t find anything that seems to be available in WA. Can you help?



August 6, 2016 at 6:26 pm
    Jeff Root

    Hi Amanda: That’s unfortunate. We do have options and we’ll shoot you an email as we need some more details to provide those options. Call us if you want some immediate help.

    August 8, 2016 at 8:45 am
Chuck Sheppard

How is it possible for companies to advertise that you can not be turned down and no medical questions and then turn you down because of your medical condition (COPD)?

July 23, 2017 at 11:18 pm
    Jeff Root

    Chuck, You’re likely referring to a guaranteed issue company. They will not turn you down. It’s likely you just used a different company. Most companies will take COPD depending on the severity. Consider calling us and we’ll get you some options based on your unique situation. Good luck.

    July 28, 2017 at 5:11 pm


February 8, 2018 at 12:22 pm
    Jeff Root

    Hi Shawn. We’ve emailed you. Thanks for reaching out.

    February 21, 2018 at 4:44 pm
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