When applying for life insurance, knowing what to expect is helpful. The application process is actually very simple.
We will go over everything you need to know so you understand the application process. You should feel confident when you go to apply. Also, prior to applying, take the time to learn about the different types of insurance available. We can explain all the many types available so you know all your options. The new modern telephone applications are a simple and easy way to apply. They are a walk in the park when compared to online or the obsolete paper applications. You will find that the modern applications process is much quicker and easier than the applications of the past.
The Quoting Process
Obtaining life insurance quotes takes place just before the application is taken. You and your agent will want to know what company will be your best choice to apply with. Every company underwrites their applications differently. If you have any serious health conditions, we can run a quick medical pre-screen to eliminate any surprises later. You can actually run our websites quoting system by filling out the form on the right. You will be able to view over 40 of the top rated life insurance companies in less than a minute.
The Application Itself
Your life insurance application will be the first step in the application process. It will consist of a series of basic questions. Since your rates are affected by your answers, it is imperative you are 100% honest. If any discrepancies arise at a later date. It could be a cause 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. Basically all you have to do is answer some questions and the insurance company you are applying with and your agent will do everything else.
The Para-Med Visit
Life insurance policies require a medical examination. Your age, health history, and overall lifestyle will affect your rates. This exam is similar to a typical wellness check and will include taking your blood pressure. Also your height and weight, as well as blood and urine samples will normally be taken. A Para-Med visit usually takes 15-20 minutes to perform. You can also receive a copy of the exam records for your own information and records. The exam is performed at no cost to you and is always done by a highly trained nurse with considerable years of experience.
Attending Physicians Statement
An attending physicians (APS) statement is just another word for medical records. These records are requested at no cost to you in addition to your para-med exam. This allows the underwriters to take a close look at your health history. Where the Para-med Exam mainly looks at your current state of health. The life insurance company you are applying with requests these records in writing from your doctors office. The insurance carrier has to pay a fee to obtain them. It usually takes 2-4 weeks for the average doctors office to copy your file and send them to your life insurance company. An APS is just a standard procedure in the life insurance application process.
Medical Information Bureau Reports
A medical information bureau report will be requested by the life insurance companies in most cases. This MIB report will allow the insurers to view when the applicant was ever admitted to a hospital. It will indicate was the visit was for along with some details of the stay such as tests performed. The hospitals are the ones that input all this information into the MIB computer database system. This helps the life insurance companies determine what health classification to place you in. Along with all the other forms of information they collect and review.
Motor Vehicle Records
A Motor Vehicle Report is normally requested as part of the standard underwriting 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. Your driving record is a very important part of the application process.
Your financial credit rating
A pattern of bad credit can indicate a higher risk for the insurance company. The biggest concern here sadly is the subject of 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. People can get very desperate when they are in debt.
Checking for prescription medication use
Life insurance companies use a centralized computer database 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 any medical conditions, the underwriting time will usually take much less time.
If time is an important concern, no medical exam life insurance applications can take 24-48 hours to be approved. But you have to remember that these policies usually cost a little more. The conventional fully underwritten type policies will normally be your best bet due to the lower cost.
The final step is an approved or declined life insurance policy. Once approved, you are all set and all you have to due is pay your first premium and sign off on the acceptance of the policy. Our best advice is to never let the policy lapse, because it may not be possible to reinstate it. Applying for new coverage later in life opens the door to higher costs due to your age and additional medical conditions.
Feel free to use our instant quoting system 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. Thank you for taking the time to read this article, I hope it answered many of your questions. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call us. We are available 7 days a week and during evening hours as well. You can also set up a telephone conference at no cost or obligation to address all your questions at your convenience.
All the best,