Life Insurance And BMI

Their are many benefits which can be attributed to maintaining a healthy weight, but one of the last things on your mind may be life insurance and BMI. However, your BMI does play a significant role in your life insurance premiums, and can play an impact on your ability to obtain coverage.

Whether you are someone who maintains a healthy weight and are curious about the life insurance discounts you can receive, or you struggle with weight gain, both can impact what you expect to pay for life insurance coverage. Before applying for a life insurance policy it is best to know what to expect, especially when it comes to how your life insurance and BMI will impact your ability to find affordable options.

How Life Insurance And BMI Are Related

Weight has a big influence on your life insurance rates simply because of the health problems which are more common among people who are overweight. Many people who are overweight also have other health issues such as diabetes, high cholesterol, and heart issues. Anytime you start thinking about health issues, life insurance companies start to charge higher premiums. Insurance companies look at many different factors when it comes to what they charge you. Most of these factors are based on health, age, and any risky habits you have. Your life insurance and BMI are related in the sense if you BMI is above or below normal you may pay higher rates.

When it comes to weight each life insurance company is a bit different. They each go off of build charts, and many companies have different build charts for the relation of your life insurance and BMI. This is why it is so important to work with an independent agent who can pair you with a company who will give you the best shot at affordable coverage. We know which insurance companies have the best build charts, and that can make a big difference when it comes down to your premium.

Traditional Coverage Options

If you have a BMI which is above normal levels than you may be wondering what life insurance options are still available. The good news is, we have a solution for you regardless of where your BMI is. If your BMI is within a range of a traditional life insurance policy than we would recommend a fully underwritten policy. The reason we would go toward a traditional policy in the beginning is because it is much more affordable. The more in depth of a look the insurance company can get, the more competitive the premiums will be.

However, if your BMI is outside of certain ranges, then we would not want to submit your application for an almost certain decline. One of our primary goals at Waterway Financial Group is to avoid unnecessary declines. This wastes not only your time, but it doesn’t look good for a decline on your record.

For these types of situations, we would recommend a guaranteed issue insurance product. This type of policy is exactly as it sounds, it has guaranteed acceptance as long as you fall within the certain age parameters. These products are more expensive, but they are your best option when your BMI gets to a certain level.

Obtaining life insurance for overweight people requires some research into what the life insurance company requires, and the different options which are available. It seems like you can’t turn on the tv without seeing a show about weight loss, or a promotion for a product which claims to help you lose weight.

Over the past several years, obesity has become a major issue in the United States, with over 127 million being considered overweight, and another 60 million more who are obese according to ObesityInAmerica.org.

With so many people dealing with weight issues it is no secret why so many products and programs are coming out daily to help people lose weight.

One of the primary reasons people want to lose weight is to become healthier, because they recognize the negative health side effects associated with being overweight. Insurance companies in the United States are well aware of the multitude of health issues which are caused by being overweight, and the many more which can occur when someone is obese.

Weight And The Life Insurance Application

When completing the life insurance application, the applicant is asked a multitude of different questions pertaining to their health. In addition to the health questions, applicants are also asked for their height and weight. Just like applying for your license at the DMV, many people are tempted to fudge the numbers in their favor just a bit. Your weight is one of the key factors the underwriters look at in addition to your medical history. Just as I would advise you when answering the medical questions, it is important you are truthful when providing your weight as well.

One of the reasons to be truthful on the original application regarding your weight is because when a nurse comes to complete your medical exam they will most likely bring a scale and require you to be weighed. It obviously does not look good if the weight you provided, and your actual weight, have a large discrepancy. Honesty is key when applying for life insurance for overweight people.

Will Being Overweight Stop Me From Getting Life Insurance?

Being overweight, and having no other health issues, will most likely not get your declined for life insurance coverage. When we see a decline for someone who is overweight it is often associated with a multitude of other health issues the person is experiencing. The most likely event for someone who is applying for life insurance for overweight people  is they will receive a rated policy, meaning you would be paying a slightly higher premium than someone in a normal weight range. It is best to shop your rate among different insurance carriers since each company may have different build charts.

Losing Weight and Life Insurance

Losing weight is the best option to increase your probability of getting a better rated life insurance policy. It is important to speak with the agent to get a good idea of the build charts, because losing 5-10 pounds may be able to get you in a better rated policy, saving you money on premium.

Be aware, the insurance companies normally ask if you have lost more than 10 pounds in the last year, and if so, they normally average your previous weight and your current weight. They do this because they want to see the weight being kept off, and unfortunately many people end of gaining the weight back on.

In addition, how you lose the weight matters, too. If it’s over a long period of time and a result from diet and exercise, great. But those results will be viewed differently than someone who had surgery.

Health Ratings And Obesity

If you are slightly obese, you may be able to still qualify for standard life insurance rates depending on any other health issues. If you are slightly obese it is very important to work with an insurance carrier who may have slightly more liberal build charts. This could keep you from slipping into a more expensive substandard category.

If you are moderately obese, you can probably still qualify for a traditional life insurance policy, which is the most cost effective type of life insurance policy. You may however receive a substandard table rated life insurance policy. All this means is the insurance company views you as slightly higher risk and will charge you a higher premium. It will not impact your coverage, it will just increase premiums. If you do lose weight in the future you may also be eligible for a re-rating, thus lowering your premiums.

If you are classified as severely obese, then you may have a more difficult time qualifying for a traditional life insurance policy. This is why we have access to guaranteed issue life insurance policies. These do cost more than a traditional policy, but they will guarantee you life insurance coverage despite any obesity issue.

What Constitutes Obesity?

One of the largest health issues in the U.S. right now is obesity. According to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, “more than one-third of U.S. adults (35.7%) are obese” and this number is rising every year. They also report, “obesity related conditions include heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer are some of the leading causes of death.”

Obesity is a condition in which someone has too much body fat in relation to their height. This is different than being overweight which is just defined as just weighing too much. Obesity is different than being overweight simply because being overweight could be due to a variety of things such as bone weight, or something such as water weight. Obesity is strictly related to having too much fat. Life insurance for obese people will only consider obesity, not just being slightly overweight.

Getting Started

If you are curious about how weight can affect life insurance, we are here to help. You may not have thought life insurance as a possibility, but for most people are still is an affordable option. Please contact us so we can help you evaluate what would be the best option for your personal situation.

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