Guide to Final Expense Insurance with Cancer

Written by Ross Quade

There is a famous quote from a cancer survivor. It says that people who have cancer have no idea how strong they are until they realize that strength is their only option. Cancer is one of the world’s most medically devastating diseases. About 1 million to approximately 2 million people are diagnosed with cancer every year. Of that amount, about 600,000 people will not survive their diagnosis.

Over 46% of Americans will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetimes. At any given moment about 15 million people are living with some form of cancer. By 2024, that number can increase to almost 20 million. Over 65% of people with cancer were diagnosed over five years ago. Only about 15% of cancer survivors were diagnosed over 20 years go. Cancer can afflict the bone, lungs, breasts, blood, colon, skin, prostate, brain, and any number of human body parts or organs.

Also, cancer can manifest itself as a genetic predisposition is a family bloodline, which means that cancer can develop anywhere in a family bloodline. Most Americans spend over 4 billion dollars a year out of their pocket to pay for their cancer-related medical treatments. Meanwhile, the cost to medically treat and research cancer costs the American medical industry about 88 billion dollars a year.

Applying For life Insurance With Cancer

What is the point of all this data? Well, you should be aware of such data if you have been diagnosed with cancer and are trying to apply for life insurance. The life insurance industry is all about crunching data according to their financial benefits and lowering their risk of paying benefits sooner as opposed to much later. Life insurance companies much prefer to approve young, healthy applicants.

As for the other side of the coin, older applicants in ill health represent a financial risk for life insurance companies. Such applicants are more likely to cause an insurance company to begin paying benefits. To reduce such risks, life insurance companies list an array of preexisting medical conditions and diseases they will not cover. Or, will cover at increased cost to you like cancer.

You can be approved for a life insurance policy, even if you are diagnosed with cancer. However, it depends on the kinds of life insurance you apply for, how much-increased premium you are willing to pay for, and the amount of coverage was limiting conditions you are ready to endure. If you have cancer, you can realistically apply for term life insurance, permanent life insurance, and final expense life insurance. Your best option may be final expense insurance.

Passing the Expense

Almost all life insurance companies are reluctant to cover applicants who are diagnosed with cancer. The rare condition is if you have been diagnosed with a form of cancer known as basal cell carcinoma. Medical data supports that basal cell carcinoma does not spread easily to other parts of the body. It is also usually treatable with medication and surgery. However, beyond that, most life insurance companies will not want to approve such applicants.

If you are currently undergoing cancer treatment, or have been diagnosed with cancer multiple time in the past, then you have higher chances of being rejected, or, be forced to pay astronomically high premiums. The insurance company does not want to be in the position of having the expense of your cancer treatments passed on to them, or, paying out any benefits to a cancer patient who may pass away soon after approval.

It is a morbid way of looking at life, but the life insurance industry is all about data crunching. The probability of approval increases if you were diagnosed over two or three years ago, is in remission, and are not currently undergoing any medical treatments for cancer.  Also, you may have to undergo a medical exam and provide a complete medical and prescription history. Additionally, you may also have to give a complete medical family history as well.

Final Expense Insurance

Term life insurance is a kind of coverage that may approve an applicant with cancer. The average policy is worth about $250,000 to $500,000. Also, the premium payment could be a few hundred dollars a month. While this is a viable option, it is also a gamble. A term life insurance policy stays in effect for a predetermined number of years, Like, 5, 15, or 30. If you outlive the predetermined term limit, then the life insurance company doesn’t have to pay any death benefits.

Permanent life insurance, like whole life, will be prohibitively expensive. Coverage lasts a lifetime, and a life insurance company will adjust premium rates, according to the severity of your health to reduce risk. Many final expense insurance companies have coverage riders that allow for approval of cancer patients who were diagnosed over two or three years before application. As every application is unique, there is no real way to gauge how much you may pay in premium. It could be $80 a month or $200+ a month. Brace yourself for paying more.

Final expense insurance is a kind of basic life insurance policy that is used to pay for funeral expenses. They are designed to offer policyholders the benefit of not having to worry about paying their final expense. Especially older applicants, people in ill-health, and people with preexisting conditions. Unfortunately, you may not be able to get around enduring a two-year waiting period. If you die within two years of policy activation, no death benefits will be paid out.

Life Insurance Companies

Numerous companies offer final expense insurance to applicants with cancer. They provide policy packages ranging between $5,000 and $50,000. Almost anyone can apply for final expense insurance, but they are usually marketed to people aged 50 to 85. Such companies include AIG, Americo, American National, Assurity, Baltimore Life, Foresters, and Gerber Life.

Stay Strong

If you have cancer, final expense insurance may be your best option to get coverage. Research every final expense company you can find. Compare rates and benefits. Try to the get the best coverage to benefit your needs.

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Ross Quade
Ross Quade has been a licensed insurance agent since 2008. State of Texas license #1702965. He has a Bachelor Degree in Psychology from University of Minnesota and minored in Applied Economics. He has been quoted in several online publications including Huffington Post, Young Startups and various financial blogs. Ross frequently writes about issues related to the insurance and finance industry.
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