AXA Equitable announced recently an easing of foreign travel restrictions for both term insurance and universal life products. These new guidelines now allow, depending on the destination, 4-12 weeks of travel and in some cases living abroad for extended periods.

To say these guidelines have eased is putting it lightly when they will now allow up to 4 weeks travel to such notables as Iran, Iraq and Afghanistan with restrictions only for high risk occupations. Up to 12 weeks travel is allowable to Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Egypt and India.

They define high risk occupations as arms dealers, diamond/jewelry merchants, missionaries, political and government officials and other occupations that would, by their nature, put you in harms way.

This is no small shift in the underwriting world. It’s right up there with man bites dog, or “don’t worry, if it was only one heart attack we won’t hold it against you”. Unfortunately they will hold the heart attack against you, but if you happen to have a policy through AXA Equitable that covers your foreign travel, the good news is that if you have a heart attack and die in Afghanistan, you’re covered.

Bottom line. AXA is sticking their head out where no one else is currently going and for that reason I have to wonder how long they will hold this stance. If your foreign travel has caused issues in the past with life insurance, contact an independent agent today.