If you have ever wondered how using tobacco products affects life insurance premiums, take a moment to read this post, and we will cut through all the smoke for you. You will also learn how to purchase life insurance for smokers at the best possible rates. Life insurance for smokers usually is always going to represent higher premiums.
It can depend mainly on what form of tobacco you use and how much you use it. Sometimes you can qualify for non-smoker rates under certain conditions.
You will need to do your homework to get the best rates if you decide to apply for life insurance, plus connect with an experienced agent. We work with over 40 of the most competitive life insurance companies. The biggest tip is that choosing the company that will be the most liberal towards tobacco use will be the key to unlocking the best rates.
Table of Contents
- How to Find the Best Life Insurance Rates for Smokers
- What Types of Tobacco Products Can Affect My Premiums?
- Frequently Asked Tobacco-Related Questions & Answers
- How Does Marijuana & Tobacco Affect My Rates?
- Does Vaping Affect Life Insurance Rates?
- What Companies Have the Best Rates for Smokers?
- How do Medical Conditions Affect My Application?
- Does Chewing Tobacco Affect Life Insurance Rates?
- How Is Non-Med Life Insurance for Smokers?
- How to Use a Quoting System to Compare Smoker Rates
- What is the Easiest Way to Apply for Coverage?
- In Conclusion
Other forms of tobacco products are under the underwriting microscope other than cigarette smoking.
Here are a few examples:
- Cigar Smoking
- Chewing Tobacco – Such as Beechnut or Red Man
- Electronic Cigarettes (also known as E-Cigarettes)
- Marijuana use is also a form of smoking.
- Snuff such as Skoal, Copenhagen, Kodiak, etc.
- Pipe Smoking
- Nicotine Patches or Gum
Virtually any tobacco product that can be chewed or smoked will be reviewed on a life insurance application.
Q: I don’t smoke, but my life insurance application returned a smoker rate with much higher premiums; what gives?
A: Tobacco traces in your system stem from other tobacco products such as chewing tobacco, nicotine patches, or gum. This is not uncommon, to say the least, because most people don’t realize these other products could ignite a problem.
Q: Why do life insurance companies charge more for smokers than non-smokers?
A: That question is straightforward because smokers typically live a shorter lifespan than non-smokers. The studies and statistics indicate smokers usually die off sooner because of heart disease and cancer. Smoking is a hazardous hazard to your health. Smokers are a much more dangerous risk than people who do not use tobacco products.
Q: Where should I begin looking for the best life insurance quotes for smokers? I want the very best rates I can get.
A: Activating the quote engine on the right side of this page will instantly display the best life insurance quotes for smokers. The rates are all up to date and accurate to the penny.
Q: How long does Nicotine usually stay in my system and remain detectable by an exam?
A: With the high-tech testing of today, some medical experts claim can find it over one year. Conventional testing used to be limited to Blood, Urine, and Saliva test results. Now the labs can find it in your DNA.
Q: Can the smoker rate on my existing policy be removed if I quit smoking after some time?
A: Normally, the answer will be yes with some companies. This will all depend on the company you have your current policy with. For example, some companies require you to be smoke-free for six months.
Other companies will require you to be smoke-free for one year or more. Most of the time, you will be required to take a blood, saliva, or urine test to prove you quit smoking. This period can be based on the type of tobacco used.
Q: What does the rating Preferred Tobacco mean?
A: A rating of Preferred Tobacco means that you are a very healthy risk, but you occasionally use tobacco products on a limited basis.
The insurers’ main concern is how much Marijuana an applicant smokes.
Smoking Marijuana can be looked at from several points of view depending on the best life insurance companies. Some insurers will add a smoker rate, and some will not. Smoking Marijuana can have the same dangerous effects as tobacco does. Even though Marijuana is not a tobacco product, it can still easily damage your heart and lungs anytime. Marijuana smokers apply for life insurance daily, and a good agent will place them with the most appropriate life insurance company.
If minimal amounts of Marijuana are used, there may be no extra cost to a term life insurance policy. However, if everyday Marijuana use exists, a smoker rate will be applied and possibly a decline if the Marijuana use is heavy enough.
Some Insurers Offer the “Occasional Smokers” a Non-Smoker Rate
If you are what the industry refers to as a “social smoker,” you only smoke once or twice a month. You may qualify for non-smoker rates with some of the carriers. This will also depend on the specific life insurance company you are applying to. You also must test negative for Nicotine for this to happen with a few companies. If you show positive for Nicotine, you will not always be given the non-smokers rates. At present, two companies will allow this.
A Smoker Rate Does Not Always Apply to Cigar and Pipe Smokers
This, again, will depend on the company you decide to apply with. Several companies will give cigar smokers a non-smoker rate. This can also depend on how many cigars you smoke per month or year. Some people do not inhale cigar smoke which will, in turn, reduce the risk a little. You can always acquire mouth Cancer from just holding a cigar in your mouth. Cigars can be just as dangerous to your health as cigarettes if you smoke enough and inhale the potent unfiltered smoke. This type of underwriting also applies to pipe smokers as well.
The Tobacco Industry and the Addiction to Tobacco Products
Tobacco can be more addicting than many forms of narcotics.
According to the informative Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2021, an estimated 16.6% of Americans still smoke cigarettes. That breaks down to over 46.2 billion people using cigarettes in this country. That breaks down to around 290 billion cigarettes purchased each year.
The revenue coming from cigarette purchases exceeds 700 billion dollars. The medical profession estimates over 300 billion dollars have been spent in one year on tobacco-related diseases. People continue to smoke no matter what. They continue to smoke if it drains their wallet or damages their lungs. Many people with Cancer, Emphysema, COPD and other smoking-related diseases continue to smoke daily.
Vaping is known to be more dangerous than cigarette smoking.
You bet they do! Electronic cigarettes, also known as e-cigarettes or vaping, put nicotine into their user’s lungs every time they are used. That is not just some harmless vapor that comes out of those mouthpieces. E-Cigarettes can increase your premiums quickly by another 50%. This is still considered smoking in the life insurance industry.
Some companies will allow E-Cigarette users to receive non-smoker rates if they have not smoked conventional cigarettes within the past 12 months. But, the amount of vaping must be limited to a specific degree. E-cigarettes have grown into a multibillion-dollar industry in the United States alone. It has also been found that death caused by vaping is higher than by cigarette smokers.
We will look at some sample rates for a 30-year-old male purchasing a 20-year term policy with a face amount of $250,000. This individual is in excellent health but smokes two cigarettes daily. His health rate class is “Preferred Smoker.” We can see how each company compares with its rates.
- Banner Life – $462.49
- Transamerica – $462.50
- North American – $495.00
- American National – $495.00
- John Hancock – $512.00
- AIG American General – $516.50
- Prudential – $517.50
- SBLI – $535.88
- Lincoln Financial – $550.00
- Principal National – $582.29
- Foresters Financial – $590.00
- Nationwide – $607.50
- Fidelity Life – $607.50
- Mutual of Omaha – $645.00
Choosing the Correct Life Insurance Company is Critical for Smokers
The company your agent helps you choose will make all the difference when looking for the lowest rates possible.
Some life insurance companies can differ in premiums for the same plan design. For example, the lowest premium was $462.49, and the highest was $645.00. That is a difference of $182.51 per year. Since this is a 20-year term policy, if you multiply the $182.51 by 20 years, you will have $3,650.20 over the 20 years.
It is choosing the company that will save you thousands of dollars throughout paying for your policy over the lowest rates.
Medical conditions are the most important element of an application.
If you add medical conditions to a smoker application, it can be worse than if the applicant was a non-smoker. Health conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and being overweight or obese go hand in hand with smoking. Smoking magnifies health conditions that could cause heart and other internal organ failures. For example, being heavy with high blood pressure and smoking cigarettes is a recipe for a heart attack or stroke.
If you have health conditions and smoke simultaneously, the life insurance company has a dim view of your interest in staying healthy. Your attitude towards your health plays a big part in the underwriting process. It is the same as a person that never sees a doctor when they have severe medical conditions.
The insurers like to see a simple attempt to preserve your health. Unfortunately, many health issues cannot be eliminated, but smoking can.
Like cigarettes or cigars, chewing tobacco puts Nicotine into the user’s body. Therefore, it gives the same indications as cigarettes on a medical exam even though it does not have all of the dangers of cigarettes.
It can still cause medical problems such as mouth Cancer or Cancer of the throat. Depending on your company, you could quickly go from a tobacco rate to a non-tobacco rate. Some carriers automatically give you a smoker’s rate for chewing tobacco products.
Chewing tobacco or snuff for 30 minutes has as much nicotine absorption in the human body as smoking three or more cigarettes!
The smoker rate cannot be eliminated even if you apply for a No Medical Exam Policy.
No Medical Exam life insurance can always be a good choice but remember, you will still be classified as a smoker. Purchasing life insurance will speed up the application progress to 24-48 hours. You can still get some of the best life insurance rates with no medical exam.
Conventional, fully underwritten policies will have the lowest cost if you look for the lowest premiums. You can try No Medical Exam life insurance, and there is no application cost. If your final decision is not to your liking, you can constantly reapply to another company.
Our quote engine will display the best life insurance quotes from over 40 of the most competitive life insurance companies. In addition, you will be able to compare low-cost term life insurance specifically for your age, health, and tobacco status. Complete the basic information on the instant quoting form and review the best rates. Of course, you can also call us, and we will happily give you quotes over the phone.
Using a quoting system probably will not be very realistic if you have any medical conditions. So instead, I recommend completing our 5-minute medical pre-screen form, and we can give you an accurate quote based on your current health and lifestyle.
Here Is Our Best Tip, Quit Smoking!
Putting aside the cost of life insurance, your health is the most important consideration.
You can apply for your life insurance immediately and begin your family’s financial protection immediately. Then you will be able to work on the task of giving up cigarette smoking and live a much longer life. After you quit, you can have the smoker rate removed and watch your rates drop like a rock.
All it takes is six months to a year to be off the cigarettes, and you can enjoy the premium reduction of non-smoker rates. Respiratory illnesses are the worst form of medical issues to endure. Don’t fall victim to COPD, Lung Cancer, Emphysema, or many other terrible diseases.
Telephone applications are a snap to complete.
The fastest and most straightforward way to apply is with a telephone application. Years ago, we all had those 20-page paper applications that everyone dreaded filling out. They were very time-consuming, and you always had to be careful you did not miss any questions, or the application could not proceed. After that came the online applications, which were much better.
The only drawback was the applicant had to own a computer and have enough experience to use the application software without getting confused. However, these days are now in the past. All you have to do with a telephone application is know how to talk on the phone.
Shopping for life insurance for smokers is a straightforward process. We can direct you to the best companies for tobacco users that will offer you the lowest rates in minutes. In addition, independent agents such as ourselves work with all the best companies that do not penalize smokers for their tobacco use like many other companies do.
All the best,
If you have questions about life insurance for smokers, contact us today to help you with no cost or obligation. We are brokers and work for our clients, not insurance companies. Our job is to help you get approved for the best policy for your needs with the lowest rates possible. You can also set up a time at your convenience to talk.