In 2017 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report stating 23 Million American adults are diabetic. The majority of those diabetic adults (about 86% or 20 Million) are over 45 years of age.
All this data really means is that it’s very common for those 50 years or older to have diabetes as you already know. It also means there are millions of people like yourself shopping for life insurance.
Fortunately, there are dozens of different life insurance companies that offer affordable life insurance coverage to people with diabetes.
The wide variety of life insurance options for diabetics means you are certain to find the right life insurance policy for your needs and to help secure your family’s financial future.
Affordable life insurance for diabetics is best purchased sooner rather than later. If you are 50 years old today or over 50 years old you may be thinking that it’s probably going to be pretty expensive. Chances are that it’s probably not going to cost as much as you think.
And of course, you are the youngest you’ll ever be again so if you need coverage it’s best to get it now. The younger you are when you buy a policy the less it will cost all things being equal.
What Rates Will Diabetics over Age 50 Have to Pay For Life Insurance
Life insurance companies have several different rate classes. Upon reviewing your application, the medical underwriter will determine your overall risk and assign your application a rate class. The rate class assigned to you will impact how much you pay for life insurance.
Each insurance company views diabetics over age 50 differently. Some life insurers will look more favorably upon your case than others.
The information below will give you a basic idea of rate classes for diabetics. When you run quotes this will help you know what rate class you should select when running your quote.
For instance, don’t select preferred plus or super preferred. That would not be realistic if you have diabetes. Below are general guidelines:
- Most well-controlled Type 2 diabetics with no complications or other high-risk factors will come back at a Standard rate class.
- Type 2 diabetics age 50 and over with excellent documentation, no additional medical complications, well-controlled diabetes via diet plus exercise, and who have low A1C (below 6.0), may get a Standard Plus rate class with certain carriers.
- Type 2 diabetics age 60 and over with excellent documentation, no additional medical complications, well-controlled diabetes via diet plus exercise, and who have low A1C (below 6.0), may get a Preferred rate class with certain carriers.
- If your A1C is elevated (7.5 and above) or you are a Type 1 (insulin) diabetic or you have other health complications, then you may receive a rate class Below Standard. This means the medical underwriter will consider you part of a special risk category, resulting higher premiums.
Over 50 Life Insure will be able to help you find a life insurer that will look most favorably upon your application.
Applications for Diabetics over Age 50
It’s always best to be as forthcoming and honest when completing your life insurance application. This will make the application process much smoother.
First, you’ll be asked basic information about yourself such as:
- Height and weight
- Smoking status / tobacco usage
- Marital status
- Occupation and income
- Overall health and medical history
- Family health and medical history
- Name, address, and phone number for all your doctors
- Current medications and the dosage for each one
Be careful not to skip any doctor’s appointments before submitting your application. You want the medical underwriter to know you are a good patient and compliant in your treatment plan.
Second, you’ll be asked questions specific to your diabetes. The questions will be similar to those listed below:
- Do you have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes?
- At what age were you originally diagnosed?
- What are your most recent A1C blood sugar readings?
- What, if any, medications have you been prescribed for your condition?
For a traditional term or permanent life insurance policy, you will be required to have a medical exam. A “para-medical exam” is performed at your home by a nurse. The para-med nurse will collect specimens such as blood and urine. He/she will also review with you information about your medical history.
The blood and urine specimen will be tested. The results will be looked over by the underwriter. At that point, a final decision can be made regarding coverage and rate.
Keep in mind that there are no medical exam options as well. We can let you know if you’d qualify and if you do what your options are.
Blood Sugar Control
Certainly, whether you are insulin dependent (Type 1) or if you take oral medications (Type 2) is important. However, the underwriter will instead be more focused on whether you are making every effort possible to control your diabetes.
One of the most important factors in securing affordable life insurance is whether your diabetes has been under control for at least 6 to 12 months.
Life insurers will review your most recent A1C blood sugar numbers. This will help the medical underwriter to determine if you maintain good control of your diabetes.
- A1C of 7.0 or less shows exceptional blood sugar control
- A1C above 10.0 is considered uncontrolled
Secondary Conditions and Complications
An insurance company will also want to know if you have any additional health conditions. A person with secondary medical conditions usually has uncontrolled diabetes.
Plus, the American Heart Association reports that adults with diabetes are two to four times more likely to die from heart disease than their peers without diabetes. This is critical information to a life insurance company.
The underwriter will also want to know if you have any complications from diabetes such as:
- Renal (Kidney) disease
- Coronary heart disease
- Kidney failure
- High cholesterol levels
- Metabolic syndrome
- Vision damage
The underwriter will expect you to provide information as to the severity of your diabetic complications. He/she will also want to know the name and dosage of any medications you are taking as a result.
In your application process, be sure to disclose whether you’ve had any surgeries. The longer it’s been since the surgery took place, the better it is for your application.
It’s best to wait one year after having heart surgery before submitting a life insurance application.
Another important factor: tobacco use. All smokers pay more (usually double) for life insurance in comparison to non-smokers.
It doesn’t matter how healthy the applicant is or isn’t. Being tobacco-free for at least 12 months will qualify you as a non-smoker.
Policy Types for Diabetics over Age 50
Consider your needs first when shopping for affordable life insurance for diabetics. If you do your homework then you are certain to find the right financial protection at the right price.
Most life insurance policies fall into one of the below categories:
- Permanent Life Insurance: Permanent life policies (such as whole or universal) are available for diabetics, but they are often the most expensive choice. One reason permanent life is so expensive is because of the cash value component. A permanent policy grows cash value over time which you can take a loan against.
- Term Life Insurance: Term insurance is purchased for periods of time such as 10, 20, or 30 years. Premiums are guaranteed for the life of the term, and the death benefit is paid to the beneficiary as a non-taxable lump sum. There is no cash value component to a term policy.
- Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance: Guaranteed life insurance is perfect for those that may not pass medical underwriting. Keep in mind, these policies will cost the most of all the plans. This is because the life insurance company is not getting the opportunity to evaluate your risk. So they simply inflate the cost of the policy in anticipation that your will be a high risk candidate.
Best Companies for Diabetics over Age 50
Life insurance for diabetics is offered by dozens of different companies. Each company has different underwriting guidelines, overall policy terms, and premium rate tables. So it’s very important to shop around and find the best life insurance company for your needs.
In the meantime, we found the following life insurance companies to be the most affordable life insurance for diabetics over 50 years old. As you see below, they each have excellent industry financial ratings and very good reputations.
|Insurance Company||A.M. Best Financial Rating|
|Lincoln National||A+ (Superior)|
|Mutual of Omaha||A+ (Superior)|
Tips to Get the Best Rates
To help you save as much in premium dollars as possible, follow the following tips. These are things you can do to help get the best life insurance rate possible.
Stop smoking! Tobacco users pay a lot and so it’s worth mentioning a second time. Don’t pay more than you need to for life insurance. If you are a smoker then you’ll pay double what your non-smoking peer pays. Kick the tobacco habit for 12 consecutive months and you can secure a non-smoker rate.
Take care of your overall health! Chronic illness adds up to a great concern for the life insurance company and a higher premium for you. Do your best to control your diabetes, blood pressure, and cholesterol. Follow your doctor’s orders and take your medications as prescribed. Keep your weight in the normal range. All of these factors will keep costs low.
Shop Multiple Life Insurance Companies! Each life insurer has different underwriting guidelines and premium tables. There are dozens of insurance companies that will be pleased to insure a diabetic. You will just need to do some shopping and comparing. Don’t settle for the first premium proposal you receive.
Improve Your Diabetes and Get a Re-Consideration! Keep in mind, most life insurance policies will allow the insured one re-consideration during the term of the policy. This means if you lose weight, stop smoking, lower your A1C (or experience any other improvements in health or lifestyle) request a re-consideration. This could result in the life insurance company giving you a better rate.
Living with diabetes is challenging but not impossible. Neither is finding the best life insurance possible for you. Be sure to prepare for the application process, shop the best insurance companies and rates for you, and continue trying to improve your overall health.
The effort you put in will be worth it once you have secured life insurance. Even more than your own peace of mind, your family will be relieved.
For help navigating the life insurance market with diabetes, contact Over 50 Life Insure today. Our experienced agents will be a great resource in uncovering a suitable life insurance policy.