Life Insurance if You’ve Had Cancer
Let’s talk about cancer and how it relates to life insurance. A question you may be asking is, “if I’ve had cancer, can I still get life insurance?” I’m going to break this down for you because there’s not really an easy answer, but hopefully this will help explain things.
First, a couple of statistics. This is new data from 2022. An estimated 1.9 million new cases diagnosed this year in 2022 in America, according to cancer.org. And an estimated 609,000 deaths this year are due to cancer. It’s definitely something that we need to be aware of. It’s on a lot of people’s minds. I was one of these cases last year in 2022. I had a cancer diagnosis. Fortunately, it was simple and got taken care of quick and easy, but some people aren’t so fortunate.
If you haven’t had cancer before
Before I talk about your odds of getting a life insurance policy if you’ve had cancer, let’s talk about if you haven’t had cancer. If you’ve not had cancer and you’re in really good health, now is a great time to apply. Get as much life insurance as you can because life insurance is based on your ability to qualify based on your health as of the date of the application.
Remember, if you qualify for coverage today, you may not qualify for it tomorrow. Plus, if you had the ability to qualify for a policy, you could potentially get living benefits in your policy.
There are a lot of people that don’t realize this is available. It’s newer in the world of life insurance. What it means is your life insurance is not only a death benefit, it can actually pay out if you did get a life-threatening cancer diagnosis down the road. But, again, you have to qualify before you get the diagnosis. So if you’ve had cancer, you’re likely not going to be able to get that benefit any longer.
Let’s talk about life insurance if you’ve had cancer
Carriers have in their underwriting something called a lookback period. And there are some that have a specific lookback period for cancer. I have one in particular that’s 10 years. I know another one that’s five years. The good news is you have options if you’ve remained cancer-free for a good period of time and not had recurrence of multiple cancers. If your cancer has metastasized or spread to other organs or other areas of your body, you don’t have as many options.
If yours was a simple cancer like mine that was taken care of, that helps. Suppose you’ve gone five or 10 years (depending on the carrier) being cancer free and no treatments, then the carriers would look favorably at you. Some would potentially consider offering you coverage. I say “potentially” because there could be some other health issues that would keep you from getting approved.
It’s important that you meet with good agent that has access to a lot of different carriers. That person can shop around for you and find which carrier has the underwriting requirements that fit the criteria that would meet your specific cancer situation. It’s not a one size fits all situation.
So you want to see if you can get life insurance if you’ve had cancer. What we would need to do is review your specific situation: how severe the cancer was, how long ago it was, number of recurrences, if it metastasized, and the follow-up treatment. All those are questions that can determine your eligibility and we can figure that out in a simple phone call.
If you’d like to explore that, if you’re considering getting life insurance, you’d like to see what your options are and you have had cancer, don’t despair. It just depends. We need to find out what your options are. If you’d like to explore, get on my calendar. I’d be happy to go over those options with you.
I hope this clears up a little bit of confusion or some questions that people have about your odds of getting coverage if you’ve had cancer.