For many people, getting approval for the life insurance that they need can be easy. It is typically just a matter of completing an application for coverage, taking a medical exam, and then awaiting the approval to come through.
But for others, if there are certain types of health issues present, then it can present more challenges with being able to obtain life insurance coverage. If you have benign tumors, though, you could still qualify for traditional life insurance protection. To do so, it could take working in conjunction with a life insurance brokerage that specializes in higher risk cases such as life insurance for overweight people or life insurance with lupus.
How Having Benign Tumors Can Have an Effect on Your Life Insurance Application
A benign tumor is defined as being “a mass of cells – or tumor – that lacks the ability to invade neighboring tissue or metastasize. These characteristics are required for a tumor to be defined as cancerous and therefore, benign tumors are not cancerous.”
These types of tumors will typically develop when cells in the body divide and grow at an excessive rate. A benign tumor will usually be classified based on where in the body it is growing.
The cause of benign tumors is not entirely known by medical professionals. However, these tumors develop when cells grow rapidly. Usually, the human body is able to balance the growth of cells and their division. For example, when old or damaged cells die, they will automatically be replaced with healthy and new cells. However, in the case of tumors, the dead cells will remain and in turn, form a growth that is known as a tumor.
Cancerous cells will typically grow in the same manner as benign tumor cells. But, unlike the benign tumor cells, the cancerous cells can invade nearby tissue and then spread to other parts of the body.
Depending on its location in the body, there can be a variety of different symptoms with benign tumors. These can include the following:
- Pain and / or discomfort
- Weight loss
- Night sweats
- Loss of appetite
A benign tumor may or may not be large enough to detect without an MRI. And, many of these types of tumors are not large enough to cause pain or discomfort. If they are painful, they can often be removed. In some cases, however, treatment may not even be necessary for those who have benign tumors.
While many people who have benign tumors are able to obtain life insurance coverage, the insurance company’s underwriters will still want to know as much as possible about your condition.
What the Insurance Underwriters Will Want to Know
In addition to the application for coverage, you will also likely be asked some more in-depth condition-related questions so that the underwriters can get a much better picture of your overall health, and particularly your benign tumor. These questions may include some or all of the following:
- When were you initially diagnosed with a benign tumor? The time since your benign tumor has been discovered can be important. This is because, if the tumor has not increased in size over the past six to twelve months, then it may not pose a more serious condition.
- Where is your benign tumor located? The location of the growth can also be important. This is because if the growth is located in areas such as the muscle, tissue, skin, or bone, then it may not be a serious issue. If, however, a benign tumor is located in or near major organs, the lungs, or the brain, then it can be more serious, and in turn, it could cause a Substandard rating on your life insurance policy.
- Do you have a family history of benign tumors? As certain conditions may be genetic, knowing your family health history may be able to assist the underwriters with further determination of how your tumor may progress.
- Do you take any medication for your condition? While medication for benign tumors may not be common, it is important that the insurance company knows whether you are taking any prescription drugs, as well as the amount of the dosage(s).
- When did you last visit your physician and / or specialist regarding your benign tumor? If you have been to a medical professional within the past six months, it can show that you are working to manage and / or control your condition – and this can be a good sign in the eyes of the life insurance underwriters. In addition, if your growth has not increased in size since your last visit to the doctor, that can also be a good sign – and could indicate that you may be qualified to obtain a Standard rated policy.
- Have you had any relevant diagnostic lab tests performed within the past six months? Having recent lab testing performed can also be a good sign, as it also shows that you are working to control and / or manage your condition. If you have the results of this testing, the life insurance underwriters may wish to review this information, as it can help them to get a clearer view of your health and the condition of your tumor.
- Have you had any past surgeries (or surgery) performed to remove your growth? If you have had surgery performed, especially if it took place within the past six to twelve months – and there is no evidence of the tumor growing again – then this could be a positive sign, and it could indicate that you may be able to obtain a Standard policy rating.
There is also a medical exam that will take place shortly after the home office receives your application. There’s nothing to be worried about here, the paramed will ask a few more questions, prick your finger, and collect a urine sample.
They can also request your permission to review medical records.
After all of the results are in and the home office has looked over the anlysis they’ll then determine what your class rating and premium will be.
What If You Don’t Qualify for Traditional Life Insurance Coverage?
If you do not qualify for a traditionally underwritten life insurance policy (i.e., a policy that requires you to take a medical examination), then there are other avenues that you can take. For example, you could apply for a no medical exam or a guaranteed issue policy.
As the name implies, a no medical exam policy will not require you to take a medical examination as a factor for policy approval – and in some cases, you may also not be required to answer medical related questions. For these reasons, those who have various health issues may be more apt to be approved for the life insurance coverage that they need.
How Much Will Your Life Insurance Cost If You Have Benign Tumors?
There are many parameters that can come into play when a life insurance company determines the premium price of your policy. These can certainly include the type and the amount of the coverage that you are applying for. It can also be influenced by your age and your gender.
Your overall health condition will also play a big role in the premium cost of your coverage. This will include any possible adverse health issues, such as the seriousness of your benign tumor. If your benign tumor is not considered to be serious – and you are also otherwise in very good health – then it is likely that you could qualify for a Standard policy rating. This means that the premium cost of your life insurance coverage would be in line with other policyholders who are of your same age and gender.
If, however, your benign tumor is more serious – because it has increased in size recently and/or it is in an area of the body that is considered to be more serious – then it is possible that you can still obtain life insurance coverage. However, it could be that you would get a rating of Substandard. This means that the premium cost of your policy would be more than that of an average policyholder.
It is important to note that, similar to other types of products and services that you may purchase, life insurance coverage can also be priced differently by different insurance carriers – even for the same type and amount of coverage. For this reason, it is important that you shop and compare policies and insurance companies prior to making your final determination on a plan.
How to Find the Best Rates on Life Insurance – Even With a Health Condition
Even though a benign tumor is not malignant – and therefore, it is not cancerous – these types of tumors can still cause certain issues. This can especially be the case if the tumor is located in or near nerves, blood vessels, the brain, or other vital organs.
If you have benign tumors and you are in the process of shopping for life insurance, it is typically a good course of action to work in conjunction with an independent insurance agency or brokerage that has access to numerous life insurance carriers. Doing so can help you to find the best life insurance companies and their rates, and doing so can allow you to more directly compare policies and prices – and from there, you can then determine which will work the best for you.
We understand that the purchase of life insurance can be somewhat overwhelming. There are many variables to keep in mind, and you want to be sure that you are getting the proper amount of protection that you need for the ones you love. The good news is that you have an ally on your side. We can work with you in finding the life insurance carriers that are most apt to provide protection for those who have benign tumors, as well as other potential health issues. So, contact us today – we’re here to help.