Finding Life Insurance with Diabetes

Finding Life Insurance with Diabetes

How Does Having Diabetes Impact Life Insurance?

According to a report released by, as of 2012, an estimated 29 million Americans are living with diabetes and these numbers are increasing. With diabetes being the 7th leading cause of death among Americans, how are people finding affordable life insurance to protect their families?

The truth is, some companies will not insure a person diagnosed with diabetes, and of those which do, we find that insurers will charge 2 or 3 times that of a competitor for the same coverage!

At, we work with over 35 top-rated life insurance companies, to provide “one stop shopping” for our customers. There’s no need to check around, as rates are regulated and we’ve hand chosen the best life insurance companies for common conditions, including those offering the most competitive rates for diabetes/elevated blood sugar.

Am I Insurable?

There are 4 major factors life insurance companies consider when underwriting diabetes:

  1. What was the age at initial diagnosis?
  2. How well-controlled is the diabetes?
  3. Is blood sugar controlled with insulin, oral medications, or both?
  4. What is your current height and weight?

How Old Were You When You Were Diagnosed?

In general, type-2 diabetes is much easier to insure than type-1 diabetes. The older you are when you were diagnosed with diabetes, the better, as there are fewer years the condition is affecting a person’s health.

When considering approval, the insurance company will consider the number of years you’ve been treating your blood sugar, and the age you started treatment.

The more favorable rates are available if you were diagnosed with diabetes after age of 50, your blood sugar is well-controlled with oral medication, and you’ve been treating your blood sugar for fewer than 10 years. In this scenario, some of the top diabetes underwriting insurers may offer our clients as good as a “Standard” rating.

If you are were diagnosed in your 40’s, we have carriers that can offer a “Standard” rating if you have been treating it for less than 10 years.

With a diagnosis prior to age 40, or if you have been treating your blood sugar for more than 10 years, working with an expert can save you thousands of dollars over the life of your policy.

We recommend working with an independent agent specializing in pre-qualifying applicants with diabetes. It can literally save you thousands of dollars over the life of your policy, and avoid the disappointment of being turned down (“declined”) by insurance companies which choose not to take on this risk.

Type-1 diabetes or diabetics diagnosed prior to age of 30 will have a tough time finding life insurance, other than smaller final expense policies (usually max at $50,000). These are the “no health question” policies you see advertised and a few other carriers.

How Well-Controlled Is Your Diabetes?

Is Your Diabetes Controlled with Insulin, Oral Medication, or Both?

Life insurance companies will consider how well your body responds to your diabetes medications and which medications you are taking. The life insurance companies are the most lenient with diabetics or “pre-diabetics” controlling blood sugar with diet and exercise, but if you’re like most people, this commonly isn’t a long term solution.

Life insurance companies tend to be the most lenient with diabetics using an oral medication like Metformin/Glucophage. If your blood sugar does not respond well to oral medication or if you require insulin to control your blood sugar, working with an independent life insurance agent may be your only option to find a term life insurer.

If your are insulin dependent through injections or an insulin pump, you’re likely still insurable as long as your A1c is below 8.5, were diagnosed after the age of 30, and no complications or other significant health issue.

What is Your Height and Weight?

Life insurance companies consider everyone’s current height and weight when there’s a history of diabetes. Many will also ask if you’ve lost more than 10 lbs in the past year. If you are a diabetic, and no more than 40 pounds above “ideal weight”, your rates may not be affected by your build, so losing weight, other than improving your blood/sugar levels, is not a good reason to delay applying for life insurance.

If you are more than 40-60 pounds overweight, it will normally affect your life insurance by 1 risk class if choosing insurers more liberal for weight. 60-100 lbs normally affects rates by 2 risk classes, as long as there are no other weight related health issues.

If you are more than 100 pounds overweight with a history of elevated blood sugar or diabetes, it’s pretty tough to qualify for term life insurance. But don’t give up….give us a call so we can advise you accurately.

Also published on Medium.



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