No Waiting Period for Life Insurance, Even If You’ve Been Diagnosed With Prostate Cancer
Have you been denied life insurance after being diagnosed with prostate cancer?
Maybe you were been instantly denied. Or maybe they said you could to reapply after a five year waiting period.
The possibility of being denied coverage is terrifying, and the agony of hanging in limbo for five years while the insurance company makes a decision is just as bad.
If you’ve been denied life insurance because of a prostate cancer diagnoses – we have good news!
There are companies who will waive the five year waiting period and put you on the fast track to coverage. You may even qualify for affordable premiums.
Why a 5-Year Waiting Period?
Most life insurance carriers require waiting five years from the date of your most recent treatment to increase the odds that your cancer won’t return.
Life insurance companies use SEER (Surveillance Epidemiology End Results) guidelines as a source of information on cancer survival and prevalence in the United States.
The patterns gleaned from this information are then used for underwriting. And they’ve decided that being cancer-free for five years reduces your overall risk profile.
This database, provided by the National Cancer Institute, is comprised of reports submitted by oncologists, doctors, and researchers. Each patient’s report is anonymous (they’re given a number instead of a name to provide information about his or her cancer).
While SEER is an excellent tool for looking at the patterns of cancer in patients, it is often only used to look for patterns rather than details. This means that an individual’s struggle with cancer is lost in the big picture.
For many people, five years is an arbitrary number. A cancer survivor can recover quickly (say, in 1-2 years) and live a long and healthy life. More aggressive cancers will require a longer waiting period before life insurance approval. The recovery period all depends on the person and the type of cancer.
What’s the Waiting Period for Prostate Cancer?
Prostate cancer, especially when caught and treated early, often doesn’t require a five year recovery period.
Most prostate cancers grow slowly, and many doctors recommend a “watch and wait” treatment of monitoring the cancer through biopsies, Digital Rectal Exams (DREs) and the patient’s PSA score.
Many insurance companies will begin to consider insuring a candidate with prostate cancer if their cancer has been “in situ”, or has not spread. The period of time that a cancer has to be “in situ” before approval varies from company to company.
How Much Will My Life Insurance Premiums Cost?
Your premiums are determined by four risk classes: preferred, standard, substandard, and declined.
For most companies, your premium will be based on how curable your type cancer generally is. The earlier prostate cancer is detected and treated, the easier it is for you to get insured.
Cancers are assessed by insurance companies on a “risk” scale, and every company views risk differently. Prostate, non-melanoma skin cancers, and thyroid cancer are all considered “low risk” cancers. The longer you remain cancer-free, the better your chances are of lowering your risk and your premium rates.
The two things that companies will scrutinize when considering you for coverage are your PSA and your Gleason Score.
This can pose a problem, as PSA is not always an accurate indicator of cancer in men. There are many reasons for an increased PSA, including age. Talk to your doctor about the different measures of your cancer risk.
Before Applying for Life Insurance
Before applying for a life insurance policy, there are a few things you’ll need.
You will need to make sure you have all of your medical records. This includes your current PSA, both your Gleason Scores, early pathology test results, and your treatment plan.
Your doctor can provide a full copy of your medical records. It is best if you wait until after all of your required tests to apply, so that you can use the most accurate and up-to-date information for your applications.
Providing accurate information can be an important factor in getting insured without the five year waiting period, as underwriters can compare your individual medical records to the patterns found in the SEER database. An up-to-date medical examination could also land you in a lower risk class and lower your premiums.
You should be following your doctor’s recommendations to the letter. Cancer patients are already red-flagged as high risk applicants, and ignoring the proper treatment is not only detrimental to your health, but could result in declines and loss of coverage.
Lastly, it is important to have patience. Living with cancer is scary and stressful. Insurance companies don’t always make it easy on you. Even if you don’t have to wait five years, you may have a short wait to getting coverage.
You Don’t Have to Wait 5 Years
Every company views risk differently, and some will bypass the 5 year waiting period.
Almost every company will offer you different premium rates, and your best bet to getting covered without a long waiting period and high premiums is to have as many options as you can.
It sounds easy, but can be time consuming and overwhelming.
It pays to get the advice of an independent broker who knows which companies will offer competitive prices and allows you to examine a multitude of options without all of the hassle.
We work for you, championing your needs, not the life insurance companies. This means we can find you the best policy possible. We are often able to get our clients covered without the 5 year waiting period.
A lot can happen in five years. Cancer doesn’t have to be a roadblock you or your family getting covered. By providing you with a wide range of options, knowing which companies view prostate cancer as low risk, and which companies don’t require a five year waiting period, I’m able to provide our clients with the coverage they need.
Let me help you eliminate the stress of protecting you and your family. Let us go to work for you NOW.