When you apply for a life insurance policy, you are often required to undergo a medical examination. During the examination, the insurance company doctor takes your vital organs, reviews your medical history, and asks questions about your work, lifestyle, and hobbies.
Based on the results of your medical examination, the life insurance company determines whether you are eligible for coverage and uses the results to calculate your premium. In general, young and healthy people pay the lowest life insurance premiums, while older people and those with pre-existing medical conditions pay higher rates.
However, some life insurance companies offer policies without a medical examination, which do not require a medical examination to be approved. In this guide, we’ll explain everything you need to know about non-medical life insurance, including how it works, which companies offer it, and who should consider it.
What is non-medical life insurance?
Non-medical life insurance is any life insurance policy that does not require a comprehensive medical examination to be approved. Your approval is not based on a personal physical examination, but on a health questionnaire. You may also be required to attend a telephone interview with an insurance company representative.
You can think of non-medical life insurance as one category of policies. There are several types of non-medical coverage you can purchase that vary in terms of the underwriting process, cost, and amount of coverage available.
Read more: Term vs Life Insurance: What’s the Difference?
Simplified life insurance
Simplified life insurance is a form of life insurance without a medical examination. Instead of a medical examination, you must answer a series of health questions on the application. In addition to basic information such as your age, height, and weight, you may also be asked to report tobacco use, recent hospitalizations, prescription drug use, and driving history.
While simplified extradition rules are easier to qualify for, not everyone gets approved. Depending on your answers to the health questionnaire, the insurance company will decide if you are eligible for coverage. Typically, you can get more coverage with a simplified policy (for example, $1 million or less), but premiums are more expensive than a fully signed policy that requires a medical examination.
Guaranteed life insurance
Guaranteed release life insurance is a type of policy that does not require a medical examination and has automatic approval for almost anyone who applies. It only takes one or two health questions to apply, and you can often get coverage the same day you apply.
Guaranteed release life insurance is also called funeral or end-of-life insurance because it is usually purchased by older people who have pre-existing medical conditions and who cannot be approved for life insurance after a medical examination. These policies have some of the highest premiums and only offer a small amount of coverage, usually no more than $25,000, depending on the insurer.
Read more: Best Life Insurance Companies: Find the Best Quotes
Group life insurance
Group life insurance is coverage you get through your employer as an employee benefit. Group life insurance policies are issued as a guaranteed issue, which means you can automatically get approved without an exam or a detailed health survey.
One of the biggest benefits of group life insurance is that premiums are subsidized by your employer, so you pay less out of pocket than with an individual policy. However, keep in mind that you generally lose group life insurance if you change jobs.
Keep in mind that if you become ill with something life-threatening and have to stop working, you will lose your life insurance just when you need it most.
Pros and cons of life insurance without medical examination
Choosing life insurance without a medical examination may seem like a more convenient way to get coverage. But the truth is that this type of life insurance has its advantages and disadvantages. Before applying for coverage without a medical examination, weigh the pros and cons to see if this is the best option for your needs.
- Easier approval for people with pre-existing medical conditions.
- The application is much shorter and takes less time to complete.
- It is often possible to get coverage on the same day without a long waiting period.
- Insurance premiums are more expensive than policies that require a medical examination.
- Some medical examination waiver policies provide only a small amount of coverage.
- You may be limited in the types of life insurance you can get without an exam.
Read more: How much life insurance do I need?
Who should get life insurance without a medical examination?
When it comes to life insurance, non-medical coverage is a good option for some people. This type of life insurance can be useful for people with pre-existing medical conditions, people who want coverage quickly, or people who have “failed” a life insurance health screening in the past.
However, coverage without a medical examination is not suitable for everyone and has several disadvantages. In particular, insurance premiums are more expensive and you may be limited in the amount of coverage you can buy. It is generally recommended that you only consider non-medical life insurance if you cannot get approved to cover the medical exam.
Where to buy life insurance without medical examination
Not every life insurance company sells policies without a medical examination, but there are a growing number of providers that sell this type of coverage. Here are a few non-medical life insurance companies we recommend checking out:
Bestow is an online life insurance carrier that exclusively sells non-medical term life insurance. You can choose from 10 to 30 years (in 5 year increments) with coverage ranging from $50,000 to $1.5 million. You can get a quote online, apply in just minutes, and if approved, your coverage will begin the same day.
One more thing we like Grant is that it advertises affordable coverage without a medical examination. Term life insurance rates start at just $10 per month, so it’s easy to fit into your budget.
Bestow also has excellent ratings, such as an A+ rating from AM Best for financial strength, which proves its reputation.
Get a quote with Bestow or find out more in our Bestow life insurance review.
Lemonade best known as a digital renters insurance platform, but more recently the company has entered the life insurance market. Through lemonade life, you can purchase non-medical term life insurance completely online without filling out a lengthy health questionnaire. The application process only takes about five minutes, and rates start at $9 per month, the company says.
Lemonade Life sells term life insurance policies with terms of 10, 15, 20, 25, or 30 years, and you can get up to $1.5 million in coverage.
Lemonade Life’s no-medical screening policy is guaranteed by the North American Life and Health Insurance Company, which is the same provider that guarantees no medical screening at Bestow.
Get a quote with Lemonade or find out more in our Lemonade life insurance review.
Ethos is another digital life insurance company that sells non-medical term life insurance. You can choose from 10 to 30 years of coverage up to $2 million (above the coverage limits offered by Lemonade Life and Bestow). However, you must be at least 20 years old to get a policy from Ethos (the minimum age for Lemonade Life and Bestow is 18).
Ethos has partnered with several highly regarded life insurance companies including Legal & General America, AAA Life and Ameritas Life Insurance.
Each policy has a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you have the option to cancel coverage within the first month if you decide it’s not right for you.
Get an offer from Ethos or find out more in our Ethos life insurance review.
As the name suggests, non-medical life insurance eliminates the need for you to undergo a medical examination to be approved for a life insurance policy. While this is a good option for those who have already had problems or had difficulty getting approved for life insurance in the past, be aware of its higher premiums and possibly limited coverage.
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