Last Updated on
How do you get life insurance after cancer?
With our service, you won’t get stuck with the wrong insurance company or some agent who doesn’t understand high risk life insurance underwriting.
Get answers to your cancer insurance questions
The type you had, staging, treatment history and recurrence if any determines when life insurance is available.
- Life insurance by type of cancer
- Will life insurance be available after cancer treatment?
- Is life insurance available if my cancer is in remission?
- How long after cancer do I have to wait?
- Can a person with cancer buy life insurance?
- Can you get life insurance if cancer has returned?
- How does family history of cancer affect my life insurance?
- What life insurance company is best after cancer?
- Do most life insurance policies cover cancer?
According to the American Cancer Society, there will be approximately 1,735,350 new cancer cases diagnosed in the United States in 2018, and the number of cancer survivors continues to improve.
Life Insurance by Type of Cancer
The type of cancer you had, staging, treatment and time since completion of treatment will all factor into underwriting.
80,000+ new bladder cancer cases diagnosed each year in the U.S.
The cancer stage and treatment received affect the availability of life insurance.
Read More: Bladder Cancer Life Insurance
Breast cancer affects more women in America than any other cancer except skin cancer.
Approximately 350,000 American women develop breast cancer each year, ranging from in situ to invasive breast cancers.
Our underwriting experience will help you find the best insurance company based on your history.
Read More: Breast Cancer Life Insurance
15,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer in America each year.
Many cervical cancers will require postpone periods ranging from 1-5 years after treatment.
You’ll find detailed information in our article about cervical cancer.
Read More: Cervical Cancer Life Insurance
140,000+ new cases of colorectal cancer are diagnosed each year in the United States.
See our digestive system section for other non-cancerous conditions.
Our colon cancer underwriting and rate information will help you find affordable life insurance.
Read More: Colon Cancer Life Insurance
Kidney cancers affect 65,000+ Americans every year.
Life insurance is available for many kidney cancer survivors and our guide provides detailed information based on cancer stages, treatment and time since treatment.
Read More: Kidney Cancer Life Insurance
165,000 new prostate cancer cases are diagnosed each year according to the American Cancer Society.
It’s estimated that 1 out of every 9 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer at some point in their lifetime.
Advances in detection and treatment have led to many improvements in life insurance underwriting over the past few years.
Read More: Prostate Cancer Life Insurance
More than 5 million cases were treated in America last year.
Basal cell skin cancer, squamous cell skin cancer, melanoma or related conditions such as actinic keratosis or dysplastic nevi may negatively impact life insurance underwriting.
Read More: Skin Cancer Life Insurance
If you’ve had thyroid cancer and need life insurance, we have several companies available that specialize in thyroid cancer underwriting. We cover non-cancerous thyroid conditions here.
Read More: Thyroid Cancer Life Insurance
Will life insurance be available after cancer treatment?
How long you will have to wait generally depends on the following:
- What type of cancer did you have?
- When were you diagnosed with cancer?
- What stage was the cancer?
- What was the cancer grade?
- How was the cancer treated?
- When did you complete all treatment?
- Has there been any recurrence?
- Do you have any other pre-existing conditions?
A lot of factors go into life insurance underwriting, but the date of cancer diagnosis and staging are some of the critical factors that determine availability.
A postpone period is the amount of time that life insurers require you to wait after your treatment plan has ended, before the insurer will offer you coverage.
Is life insurance available if my cancer is in remission?
Life insurance is available if you are in complete remission. Once you reach remission status, life insurers postpone offering coverage for 1-5 years depending on the details of your cancer history.
The two types of remission are complete remission and partial remission.
In a complete remission, you are cancer free and all signs of cancer are gone. All blood and urine test levels are within normal ranges.
Life insurance should be available after the above postpone periods.
With partial remission, the cancer is still there but the tumor may have gotten smaller, or you have less cancer in your body if it is a cancer such as leukemia.
With partial remission, life insurance options are typically limited to guaranteed issue types of policies.
The availability of guaranteed issue policies will vary by state.
How long after cancer do I have to wait?
With most cancers, you have to wait before life insurance is available.
The wait time after cancer varies by the type and stage of cancer, but general guidelines are as follows:
- Stage 1 surgery only – Postpone period = 6 – 12 months.
- Stage 1 surgery and radiation/chemo – Postpone = 12 months
- Stage 2 cancers – Postpone period = 12 months (note #1)
- Stage 3 cancers – Postpone period = 5 years from completion of treatment.
- Stage 4 cancers – Guaranteed issue and accidental death only.
This is very general in nature as there are many exceptions to this.
When will term life insurance be available to you?
That will depend on the exact details of your health care records, including dates, and pathology information to provide you with accurate quotes.
Note #1 – There are some stage 2 cancers that are insurable within 6 months of treatment.
Can a person with cancer buy life insurance?
A person with cancer can get life insurance, although the type of life insurance and amount available may be limited for some time.
The short answer is that if you are currently a cancer patient and need life insurance coverage, you will probably have to wait until treatment is complete before life insurance is available.
But there are some exceptions to the rule.
The types that are insurable now are those that would be unlikely to progress if left untreated.
Examples of this include some low stage prostate cancers, some colon cancers in older age insureds and basal cell skin cancer.
Term life insurance may be available for some, although a guaranteed issue life insurance policy may be the only option for others.
Our article on types of life insurance provides details as to how these policies work.
Another section of our site that will be helpful to you is our life insurance FAQs section.
Can you get life insurance if cancer has returned?
A reoccurrence of cancer in life insurance underwriting is complicated as many factors have to be taken into consideration, including:
- Type – What type of cancer did you originally have?
- Pathology – What does the pathology report say?
- What type of treatment did you receive?
- Is the recurrent cancer the same type as your original cancer?
- How much time passed since completion of original treatment?
- Has the cancer spread to lymph nodes or other organs?
- What type of treatment did you receive for the cancer?
- When did you complete cancer treatment?
Underwriting will factor the original cancer and the repeat cancer as part of their underwriting.
Most life insurers postpone consideration for 5-10 years after completion of treatment the second time around.
Once this period is over, life insurance is considered on a case by case basis.
How does family history of cancer affect my life insurance?
Family history of cancer will affect your ability to receive the top rate classes unless you choose life insurers that do not penalize you for your parents or siblings’ medical history. Grandparents medical history is not held against you for underwriting.
To complicate matters further, family history guidelines vary by company.
Examples of how family history of cancer vary by company, include:
- Some companies only consider family history if the family member died.
- Other companies penalize you even if the parent or sibling survived.
- If you’re age 60 or older, many carriers will completely disregard family history.
- The age of your family member when they died is a factor with some companies.
- If the parent’s cancer was gender specific (prostate, cervical cancer) it will not be held against you (with the right companies) if you are the opposite gender.
- Some companies penalize you if more than one parent died from cancer.
- There are companies that disregard all family history of cancer, unless there is a hereditary cancer history within the family.
What life insurance company is best after cancer?
The best life insurance company for you will depend on the type of cancer you had, the severity and the treatment you received.
Some life insurance carriers may be very aggressive with certain types of cancers such as bladder cancer, thyroid cancer, while other companies are better with life insurance for prostate cancer survivors.
We specialize in high risk life insurance and know which companies are best based on the type(s) of cancer history.
We use a quick quote process with our clients to ensure we reach all of the competitive companies.
A quick quote is a summary of your medical history. Once we get the information we need from you, we’ll request quick quotes from the companies we work with.
The benefit to you is that we are able to get feedback from many companies in 3-4 days, and do this on an anonymous basis…we share your medical information but nothing that would identify you personally.
Once we have the feedback, we’ll tell you what companies have to say and what to expect in terms of price.
Do most life insurance policies cover cancer?
Yes, life insurance policies cover cancer if you die.
The main scenarios encountered are cancer survivors who had cancer, and those that are diagnosed with cancer after buying a life insurance policy.
As part of our conversation, we’ll review the type of life insurance policy to consider, life insurance ratings and death benefits to help you find the right policy, whether it is term life insurance, universal life insurance, whole life insurance or a guaranteed issue policy.
Cancer history and life insurance?
Cancer histories disclosed during underwriting are factored into your policy already and will be covered.
Diagnosed with cancer after purchasing life insurance?
If you’re diagnosed with cancer after you have purchased a life insurance policy, you’re insured. The insurance company will pay the death claim.
The life insurance company can’t terminate your policy or reduce the death benefit.
If you die within the first few years (contestability period) of the policy, insurers review death claims to ensure that all medical information was disclosed during underwriting.
Therefore, if you lied about your health during underwriting, your loved ones will have a problem collecting the death benefit.
Whether you’re a cancer survivor, currently have cancer or were approved for life insurance but now have questions about the price, we’ll help you.
Regardless of your type of cancer history, we have the expertise to help you find coverage and will help you apply for life insurance with companies that will offer you coverage.
In addition to helping people with cancer histories, we specialize in other health conditions such as endocrine disorders, gastrointestinal problems, heart disease, mental health, HIV positive, respiratory diseases and more.