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When you’ve experienced a stroke, it becomes very challenging to get affordable life insurance. However, fortunately there are steps you can take to get life insurance after a stroke.
A stroke is considered to be a serious medical event, and your chance of having more health issues after having a stroke is very high and, therefore, insurance underwriters are very careful during the underwriting process. However, it is possible to get life insurance after a stroke.
Although experiencing a stroke is very serious, it is still possible for most individuals to qualify for traditional life insurance. The key is putting together a strong insurance application that offers a complete picture of your recovery. When the high-risk underwriters have this clear picture before them, they can make an informed decision regarding the risk you present and work toward offering life insurance after a stroke.
Although there are two types of strokes, each result when blood flow to the brain is cut off and the brain cells are deprived of oxygen and begin to die. When this event takes place, a person’s abilities that are controlled by the affected area of the brain such as memory and muscle control are lost.
Since life insurers base their rates on the age and health of the applicant, individuals who have suffered a stroke event are likely to pay more than healthy applicants. But independent insurance agents who understand high-risk conditions like stroke, offer applicants a better chance of getting affordable rates.
When an individual applies for life insurance, the agent should ask you many questions about your stroke and your recovery. Some of the questions you should expect are:
The more common medications that are prescribed after a stroke typically include aspirin, Plavix, Anticoagulants, Hypertension Meds, and Statins. Medications that are typically taken after a stroke shouldn’t affect your rating depending on your symptoms.
Your insurance agent will need to get all of the answers to the above-mentioned questions listed on your application so that your underwriter will be confident that you are providing all of the necessary information about your condition and your recovery. Any omitted information could lead to a significant table rating or a decline.
One of the most important factors for your application for life insurance is whether you experienced a full stroke or a mini-stroke. A mini-stroke is also known as a TIA (Transient Ischemic Attack) and presents the same symptoms as a full stroke, but the patient doesn’t experience any permanent neurological damage. Since a full stroke will result in brain damage, the underwriting is much easier when the event was a TIA.
Since a full stroke and a TIA make it likely for additional stroke problems, they both create challenges for obtaining life insurance. The rating you qualify for will depend on your answers to the questions regarding your stroke, and each company has different underwriting guidelines. There are, however, some general guidelines that can provide an idea about your insurability:
If your application was submitted by an independent agent and declined by the insurer, you can still purchase life insurance by choosing a guaranteed issue insurance policy. The guaranteed issue policy is life insurance that is issued without regard to the applicant’s health and it is the only way to get life insurance after a stroke if you have been declined. As such, there are no health questions on the application, and there is no medical exam requirement by the underwriter. There are, however, a few drawbacks that you will need to consider.
Most of the insurers that offer guaranteed issue life insurance will cap the death benefit at $25,000 to $30,000 depending on your age.
These policies will also have a waiting period of two or three years when the company will not pay the full death benefit if you die from natural causes. Most companies will, however, pay a benefit equal to the total premiums paid in, and in many cases, they will add 5 to 10 percent to that amount.
Since the insurer is willing to accept your health as an unknown risk, your premium will be substantially higher than a traditional life insurance policy.
Although there are some drawbacks to guaranteed issue life insurance, it is certainly a better option than passing your final expenses on to surviving loved ones.
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