Heart Bypass Surgery and Over 50 Life Insurance

Coronary artery bypass graft surgery, aka CABG (pronounced “cabbage”), is the fancy, technical name for heart bypass surgery.

It is a common technique where cardiologists essentially reroute blood flow around a blocked artery so the heart may continue to pump properly and avoid a possible heart attack.  

Surgeons use the patient’s own arteries or veins to facilitate the diversion of blood around the blocked artery.

It has been reported that nearly half a million heart surgeries are performed each year in the United States. Heart bypass surgery is one of the most common of these procedures.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) has estimated more than 300,000 CABGs are completed each year.  

For individuals looking to buy 50+ life insurance after having heart bypass surgery, the reality is you most likely CAN find affordable coverage.

Know The Right Company to Apply With

This is the key.  It’s important to identify a receptive life insurer with a positive track record when it comes to issuing over 50 life insurance after heart bypass surgery.

In our many years of experience, we’ve worked with hundreds of people in need of life coverage and know the insurance companies that are best for specific medical conditions.

Understand that there are some companies that won’t offer you life insurance coverage if you have had a bypass surgery.  However, others may offer coverage to you for rates that are pretty affordable.

We can help so give us a call today!

Most life insurance applicants in your situation receive a Substandard (aka Table) Rating and pay a bit more than their healthy peers.

Of course, the insurance carrier is not only going to take into consideration your heart bypass surgery but also other aspects of your medical history and lifestyle.

Let’s go over the critical components of a life insurance application for people, like yourself, who have gone through a coronary artery bypass.

Life Insurance Ratings for Heart Bypass Surgery

Like most of the people we talk to you are probably wondering what does a table rating mean and how does it work.

Look, here’s the deal…

The rating category assigned to you by the life insurer will ultimately determine what you have to pay for coverage. So the better your rating, the lower your premiums.

Now, this should go ahead without saying, but when you are applying for coverage it is critical to always be honest when applying for life coverage.

Do not try to qualify for a better rate class (and lower premiums) by leaving out important details or withholding facts altogether.

Be forthcoming and be cooperative. It will make your life insurance buying experience so much better.

Remember, the insurance company is going to do their due diligence when reviewing your application.

They will review your medical records, doctor’s notes, diagnostic test results. your prescription drug report and more.

Common Rate Classes You’ll Qualify For After Heart Bypass Surgery

Every insurance company has different underwriting guidelines.  Having said that, the information below will give you a general idea of the rate class you are most likely to qualify for.

These are typical outcomes we’ve seen when it comes to people over 50 after coronary bypass surgery.  

Preferred & Preferred Plus Ratings: Unfortunately, there is almost no chance of getting this rating after heart bypass surgery.

It does not matter if you are otherwise healthy and the procedure was completed without any problems.

Life insurers are cautious and, therefore, view those that had heart bypass surgery as being a much higher risk than their peers.  

Standard Rating: This is generally the BEST rating possible for life applicants with a history of CABG.

Keep in mind, the insurer will be more likely to assign a Standard Rating if your coronary bypass surgery was an elective procedure rather than an emergency technique stemming from a heart attack.

It’s also important that a minimum of 1 year has passed since the coronary bypass was completed.

Realize that although a Standard Rating is possible it is not likely.

Substandard (Table) Rating: This is the rating category most bypass patients receive when applying for over 50 life insurance.

What exactly does that mean?

Well, Substandard (Table) Ratings normally cover 16 different levels below the Standard rate class. Each of those Substandard Rating levels equates to about a 25% increase in premium above the average rate.

Percentages can certainly differ from insurance carrier to insurance carrier.

Below is a quick snapshot of how life insurers may grade a Substandard application.

  • Table Rating Scenario #1:  This rating normally applies to applicants if they did not have a heart attack, cardiac follow up and lifestyle is good, and their coronary bypass surgery was performed because of abnormal test results (such as stress tests or treadmill EKGs).

In this scenario,, insurance premiums are usually 25% to 100% above the standard rate.

  • Table Rating Scenario #2:  This rating normally applies to applicants if they had a heart attack prior to their bypass surgery but their cardiac follow up and test results have all been positive.

In this scenario, insurance premiums are usually 75% to 200% above the standard rate.

The exact percentage charged will usually be influenced quite a bit by the functionality of your heart muscle, as well as the type of complications (if any) experienced after your CABG.

Decline: Obviously, each life insurance company has different guidelines. However, in our experience, most insurers will decline an application submitted less than 6 months since the CABG.

The life insurance carrier will be more inclined to offer coverage if time has passed without any complications, with consistent follow ups, and positive test results.

You may also be declined for life insurance coverage if you meet any (or all) of the below criteria:

Bottom linelife insurers want to see that you are committed to a healthy lifestyle after experiencing a heart bypass surgery.

If you don’t commit to losing weight, stopping smoking, or reducing cholesterol then the insurance carrier will consider your risk of recurrence too high. This could lead to a denial. 

To get more specifics about what rate class you’d likely qualify for, please give us a call as soon as possible.

Why drive yourself crazy trying to figure all this out alone?

Call our experts to discuss your unique situation.

Application Questions for Heart Bypass Surgery Patients

It is not unusual for applicants to be concerned about the types of application questions that will be asked. Maybe you feel the same way!

We encourage you to read through the list of applications questions below.

This list should give you peace of mind when it comes to what insurers will want to know about your heart bypass surgery.

Standard Questions About Heart Bypass Surgery

  1. How old were you when you had your heart bypass surgery?
  2. When did you have your CABG?
  3. What was the reason for your heart bypass surgery?
  4. Was your coronary bypass procedure an emergency or elective?
  5. Did you have any complications after your heart bypass surgery (i.e. internal bleeding, stroke, or cardiac tamponade)?
  6. What medications were you prescribed as a result of the heart bypass surgery?
  7. Do you have a history of heart disease?
  8. What, if any, other heart surgeries have you experienced?
  9. Do you have any other heart disease risk factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, sleep apnea, or tobacco use?

Of course, in addition to the above questions, the carrier will want to know other information such as:

  • What is your current height and weight?
  • Are you married or single?
  • What is your occupation?
  • Do you enjoy any dangerous activities (i.e. mountain climbing or skiing)?
  • What is your family’s health history?
  • Do you participate in foreign travel? If so, where?
  • How frequently do you drink alcohol?
  • What is your driving history?
  • Do you have any criminal history?
  • Do you use illegal drugs?
  • Do you use tobacco?

Bottom line: Tobacco use is almost always frowned upon by life insurers and regularly results in much higher premiums. Generally premiums are at least DOUBLED or even TRIPLED.

In your case, life insurers will be very concerned about tobacco use since heart bypass surgery often makes patients more susceptible to blood clots.

Getting Started on Your Life Insurance Application                

Being over 50 with heart bypass surgery isn’t the end of the world. You’ve survived the coronary bypass and now it’s time to plan for the future.

More than 300,000 Americans go through the CABG procedure each year. A large portion go on to live healthy, long lives.

Life insurers know these statistics and are open to reviewing your application, as well as possibly insuring your life for years to come.

You simply need to work with the right carrier when applying for coverage.

We can help with that! We have the expertise needed to help you find the best over 50 life insurance quotes available to you.

Our licensed agents will help you determine the right amount of life coverage and the best insurance company, as well as walk you through the entire application process.

We won’t stop until your life insurance policy is issued.

Please give us a call today or fill out the free online quoting form. Why wait risk waiting even one more day?