If you have never applied for life insurance, knowing what to expect is helpful. The process is relatively simple and straightforward.
Prior to applying, take the time to learn about the different types of insurance available. While this does not change the process itself, it is time sensitive as an exam is required.
The application itself varies. It could be a 15-20 minute phone call or office interview. Many agencies have shifted to an online process. In some cases, a combination is used.
Your application will consist of a series of basic questions. Since your rates are affected by your answers, it is imperative you are 100% honest. If discrepancies arise later, it could be caused to terminate a policy or lead to fraud investigations in extreme cases. Losing a policy in this way could make it difficult later to get coverage or lead to paying higher premiums.
The Para-Med Visit
Life insurance policies require a medical examination. Your age, health, and lifestyle will affect your rates. This exam is similar to a typical wellness check and will include taking your blood pressure (you may want to skip the coffee that morning), your height and weight, as well as blood and urine samples.
While factors found do not necessarily mean you will not be approved, they can result in higher monthly premiums (why it is best to get life insurance early in life).
Attending Physicians Statement
Medical records are requested in addition to your exam. This allows the underwriters to look at your medical and health history (where the exam looks at your current state of health).
Getting DMV records
A Motor Vehicle Report is usually requested/is required as part of the process.
Life insurance application underwriters want to check on the safety of the applicant while driving his or her motor vehicles. They mainly look for serious infractions such as multiple speeding tickets within the last three years. Also for arrests for drag racing, reckless driving, DUIs, DWIs and other major charges that could cause a serious accident. Their main concern is checking to see that the applicant does not drive recklessly. They are generally looking for DUI, reckless driving and multiple speeding tickets.
Getting your financial credit rating
A pattern of bad credit can indicate risk for the insurance company. The biggest concern here is sadly suicide. Every year people take their own life because of mounting financial debt. A pattern of credit problems that could lead to the insured deliberately triggering the insurance as a last resort.
Checking for prescription medication use
Life insurance companies use a centralized computer system that will indicate every time you purchase prescription drugs. It will show what specific drug was purchased, where it was purchased and when it was purchased. Make sure you answer the prescription medication use questions thoroughly. Let them know about all medications you have used. They will easily find out what you have used so don’t conceal anything.
How long does the underwriting time take from start to finish?
The underwriting time on a conventional life insurance application takes on an average of four to six weeks. This time period can be shorter or longer depending on the life insurance company. One of the main factors outside the control of the underwriter is how fast can your doctor supply your medical records.
Once the records are received, the number of entries or medical conditions will affect how long the process takes. If an applicant does not have many medical conditions, the underwriting time will be shorter.
No Medical Exam life insurance applications can sometimes take 24-48 hours though these policies usually cost more.
The final step is an approved (or denied) policy. Once approved, you are set. Our best advice is to never let the policy lapse. It may not be possible to reinstate it and applying later in life when you are likely to have more medical issues will decrease your chances of finding coverage or cost you more in premiums.
If you are ready to apply
Feel free to use our quote engine to compare the best term life insurance rates online. Simply complete the basic quoting form and then press the submit button it is that simple. You will be able to compare instant life insurance quotes from over 40 of the best life insurance companies. Take a moment to read our about us page to learn more about us and our life insurance business. Thank you for taking the time to read this article, I hope it answered many of your questions.
If you have any questions or a specific experience, let’s chat.