The way 99.9% of life insurance companies treat people with bipolar disorder drives me nuts. I’m not talking about an insurance company that fully underwrites an application and finds out something really sketchy in a person’s history. What slays me is agents that won’t even let you go beyond your admission of bipolar disorder without telling you that you will be declined, and are not likely to get life insurance from anyone. Life insurance morons!
I accept the fact that there are way more than the majority of companies who will not entertain an approval for anyone with bipolar no matter how mild or well controlled it is. But for the company or a representative of that company to tell someone that they not only can’t get insurance from them, but won’t be finding it anywhere else either is just wrong. They can’t possibly know that’s true, because it isn’t and to trash someone’s hopes like that, well, ought to be punishable by the insurance commission. Unfortunately, being a stupid life insurance agent is the one defense that always seems to work.
I get calls nearly every day from someone who has felt the sting of being mistreated by an insurance agent or company just because they have a well controlled mood disorder, whether depression, anxiety or bipolar. What is so offensive to me about underwriters taking those hard line stances is that statistically speaking, at least a quarter of them are being treated for some kind of mood disorder. And the chances are that they know someone who is bipolar and they don’t even know that about them. There are bipolar CEO’s, physicians, surgeons, executives, attorneys, teachers and homemakers spread throughout our society and unless they have shared their diagnosis with you, not likely you would ever guess.
So, we know that not everyone with bipolar disorder can get approved. There are some for whom the disorder is truly a nightmare and they aren’t a good insurance risk, but this set of guidelines has been a road to success for hundreds of my clients. As my bipolar website says, if you are:
1. A person who has not been hospitalized for bipolar disorder other than for diagnosis and maybe an occasional med change?
2. A person who has not attempted suicide or had bouts with suicidal ideations, or any attempt is long past and stability has been the case since? (Ideations become less relevant with time)
3. A person who is compliant with their treatment, both medications and regular follow-ups?
4. Someone who is a stable marriage and social life?
5. A person who is who hasn’t had lost time and instability in their work life?
6. Someone who is not on disability for bipolar and does not have issues with drinking or drugs? If there’s a problem here, then the answers to 3, 4 and 5 are no.
7. Better approvals come if you are not on anti-psychotic drugs, but there can still be approvals.
That is most certainly not to say that this is the magic formula with every company. I have six to eight companies who have helped me develop these criteria and with them it means something. Outside of those I don’t get offers or get ridiculous offers. I found out on a case I shopped recently that that Met Life has an almost endless table rating system. They quoted table P (16) on a case. That is 400% above a standard rate which is too high for a bipolar life insurance policy. That falls into the ridiculous category when other companies quoted table 8.
Bottom line. Whether it is CEO or Homemaker life insurance, make sure you don’t throw your bipolar out to the wrong agent or the wrong company. If you have any questions or have been decline or abused because of your challenge in life, call or email me directly. Let’s talk.