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Less than 1% of life insurance companies truly underwrite an application for someone with serious health conditions and take more than just that condition into account. There are rumors or urban myths that if you have a serious health condition, whether that is diabetes, heart disease, bipolar disorder or cancer (or others), you won’t be able to get life insurance. The truth is, well, that’s not true. While it may seem like an impossible task to track down the 1% that are willing to give your health condition a fair hearing, that is what independent life insurance agents do for you. The best of them, known as impaired risk agents, know how to help you and how to get the protection you need approved.

I recently got an got an email from someone who had been declined for life insurance by a company for a minor depressive disorder. Being a successful doctor with a nearly 20 year old successful practice he said he just didn’t understand how he didn’t qualify at all. He wasn’t suicidal or having trouble functioning and was on a mild medication, so why not an approval at some risk class…. or how about any risk class? But this company took a long standing diagnosis and ignored the all of the positives in the rest of the story. We shopped the case and just got it approved today at standard plus rates by Prudential, a company well known for the fair hearing it gives to mood disorders. In  this case it was a simple review of the records and a quick approval.

A company that was bought up for their block of business years ago, US Financial, started a trend they called clinical underwriting. This involved underwriters digging deeper than a diagnosis and determining how a proposed insured was doing with that impairment. Were the compliant with treatment? Was the condition well controlled? Did their impairment lead to problems in their life? Several companies filled the void left by US Financial and they are approving impaired risk cases daily.

Bottom line. Home run for our doctor client today and kudos to Pru for taking the narrow path and looking at the client rather than the impairment and the life insurance underwriting manual. Consider the fact that if 99% of the life insurance companies do a horrible job of underwriting and approving cases that are a little out of the ordinary, your chances of finding the right agent who uses the right companies is slim. Do your homework before you contact an agent. Type your health issue into Google as in “Bipolar life insurance” and look for someone who appears knowledgeable and isn’t just using the key word for traffic. If you have questions or feel like your life insurance application ran into a wall of unreality and needs a fresh set of eyes looking it over, call or email me directly. My name is Ed Hinerman. Let’s talk.