Last Updated: May 2020
Are you a smoker looking for life insurance quotes? We can help! Fill out the instant quote form on the right to get an estimated quote, or call talk to an agent today!
In this article, we review information regarding life insurance policies, premiums, and classifications for each type of smoking/chewing.
We have an archive of articles that we have written with more specific information for each category of smoking. We have helped dozens of people who smoke or chew to find a life insurance policy that fits their needs. Please read the articles below to find more information specific to your smoking use.
- Best Life Insurance For Smokers – We cover how to secure the best life insurance if you smoke. It all depends on the type of smoker you are.
- E-Cigarettes and Life Insurance – This article illustrates how insurance companies view electronic cigarette users, and the answer may not be what you expect.
- Life Insurance for Cigar Smokers – This article will tell you how you can earn a preferred nonsmoker rating, even if you enjoy the occasional cigar.
- Life Insurance and Chewing Tobacco – Using dip, snuff, or chewing tobacco doesn’t have to send your insurance prices through the roof. Find out how you can save on your insurance premiums.
- Smokeless Tobacco and Life Insurance – Don’t let smokeless tobacco products prevent you from obtaining affordable coverage. In this article, we explain how to get better policy rates, even with a nicotine patch or smokeless tobacco use.
- Life Insurance for Marijuana Smokers – Marijuana is a type of substance that can affect your rates for life insurance. It comes down to your specific use and fitting that into a life insurance company’s underwriting.
Smoking can take more than a toll on your health, and it could be draining your wallet. Smokers looking for life insurance may be in for a shock when they see the astronomical prices that coverage will cost them.
That pack of cigarettes costs anywhere between $5 and $15 dollars but could end up costing you hundreds of dollars when you go to apply for life insurance. Studies show that smokers pay premiums that can be 2-4x more expensive than the premiums of non-smokers.
Why Am I Paying More for Life Insurance as a Smoker?
The reasons smokers pay more for life insurance aren’t surprising. Smokers are considered high-risk, meaning their lifestyle choices are deemed by underwriters to lower their life expectancy.
When you think of all of the secondary diseases caused by smoking, such as cancer, heart disease, lung disease, and strokes; it makes sense to classify a smoker’s life insurance as high risk and to charge higher premiums based on this classification.
Just because rates may seem high, it doesn’t mean that a smoker will have to do without coverage.
Smokers happen to be a part of a large market, and many insurance companies have options for cheap smoker’s life insurance. For example, some companies will charge less for moderate or social smokers who are in good health. It’s simply a matter of shopping around and finding which company will most favorably view your risk.
All companies view risk differently, and the risk of covering a smoker depends on a variety of factors, including age, health, type of life insurance needed, or the amount of coverage needed. If you smoke and you have poor health, a no exam life insurance policy for smokers may be your best chance at getting coverage.
Occasional Smoker’s Insurance
It seems scary to think that you may be charged more money, even if you only enjoy the occasional cigarette or celebratory cigar. Occasional, or “social”, smokers are defined as smokers who do not smoke every day, or who smoke on average less than one cigarette per day.
For many life insurance companies, this differentiation does not exist. You’re considered a smoker if you answer “yes” to the question pertaining to smoking on your insurance application.
These questions often ask, “Have you used a tobacco product in the last 12 months?” A tobacco product can be cigarettes, nicotine patches, nicotine gum, chewing tobacco, cigars, or electronic cigarettes.
Cigar smoker’s life insurance may be looked at differently by certain companies. Chances are, if you’re a cigar smoker, you can get an insurance policy with lower premiums than cigarette smokers.
Some companies will make concessions for those who infrequently puff. Sometimes their guidelines for these concessions are given to applicants who smoke one or fewer cigars a week, or one or fewer cigars a month. It all depends on the company.
If you’re reading this and thinking that it would be easier to just omit your smoking history from your insurance application, think again.
Insurance companies will test either blood or urine for the presence of cotinine, a chemical that gets left behind even after nicotine fades from your system. These tests allow insurance companies to verify your tobacco use and to rate you accordingly.
I Quit Smoking, Why are My Premiums Still High?
If you have quit smoking and your life insurance premiums are too high, we can help. Many smokers don’t realize that they can declare their new status as a non-smoker to their insurance company.
Ex-smoker life insurance policies often come with better rates; however, there are a few caveats.
With some companies, you will get your non-smokers premium from the date you quit. So, if you quit twelve months ago, you will have lower premiums in an additional 12 months. One year is generally the amount of time you need to be tobacco-free before being considered eligible for lower premiums. This includes free from the use of nicotine patches and gums.
Many insurance companies will test your urine or blood again before verifying your status as a non-smoker.
Some companies may guarantee you a non-smoker rating if you follow their guidelines, and others may underwrite you again. It is also a good idea to obtain a doctor’s statement verifying the fact that you quit smoking and are taking measures to improve your overall health.
If this seems like a complicated process, that’s because it is. A lot of people try to cheat the system by quitting smoking during their application process and taking it up again after they’re insured as a non-smoker. While most companies do not penalize you for this, it can come with severe consequences.
If you happen to pass away with nicotine in your system, the insurance company can deny your benefits, leaving your family financially unprotected. If an accident happens and you try to collect your claim with nicotine in your system, the insurance company can take legal action against you for fraud.
We Help Smokers Get Life Insurance
Obtaining smoker’s life insurance is not that difficult if you have the right tools at your disposal.
By working with an independent agent, who knows which companies view your risk favorably, you will be able to see quotes from a variety of insurance companies. This allows you to get better ratings, lower premiums, and a policy that suits you and your needs.
It is important to be honest when applying for smoker’s life insurance. It is rare that you will be completely denied coverage or unable to find something in your price range simply because you are a smoker.
Independent agents will help take the fear and uncertainty out of shopping for life insurance and can help you take measures to get the best coverage possible for your needs.