For those who are dealing with overweight issues that’s a question you may be wrestling with. Every life insurance company out there has their version of a build chart and when you look at one you definitely understand that they consider obesity to be a mortality risk.

But is being overweight, or even morbidly obese, going to send you to the obesity life insurance decline bucket? The answer in almost all cases is no. With companies like Prudential and Genworth Life and Annuity taking more of a high road with weight issues, approvals are possible, and affordable rates are not out of the picture. Even Pru and Genworth understand the health issues that can be spearheaded by being way to heavy, but with them the key is applying when the only issue that is present is your build.

I was watching the news last night and listening to a man who had shed over 80 pounds in an effort to get his diabetes under control. He was literally paying out the equivalent of a mortgage for medications every month. This man is now off all medications and explained how it all started just by doing what he could. Better to walk 10 minutes a day than walk 30 one day and be too sore to continue. The real key is doing something and not overdoing it.

But let’s consider the cost of insurance prior to weight loss. There are two areas that are important. Where can you still get preferred best if you are on the heavy side? Let’s use 5’10” as the frame. With American General you would need to be 195 for their best rate, Banner Life would be 196, Met Life 188, West Coast Life 187, Prudential 202. Genworth Life and Annuity is at 209. 209# is pretty hefty for 5’10” and in the absence of any other risk factors we’re talking about the best rate class available.

On the other end of the spectrum is Prudential’s strong point. While they don’t win the prize for preferred best at 5’10”, they will still approve at standard rates up to 278# and that can even be with the addition of other risk factors that will fall within standard underwriting such as blood pressure treatment. Where Prudential really blows away the competition is the upper end of their underwriting approval range for build. At the same 5’10” a person is still able to be approved all the way up to 387#. No other company will touch that.

Bottom line. In the case of obesity life insurance does not have to end up being a life insurance decline. Fair warning to use the right agent. Many agents won’t use Prudential because they have a low commission scale. If obesity is the issue, insist on a quote from Pru.