Should I get life insurance with no medical exam?

Updated on January 13, 2022

Deciding to invest in life insurance is always a major life decision, one that needs serious consideration with regard to your relative age and familial situation, as well as to your general health.

Whether you’re relatively new to the world of life insurance or you’ve been around the block a couple of times, you probably know that the future is incredibly uncertain. 

When you’re at different stages of your life, you’ve got different priorities, but each of these priorities can set the stage for finding life insurance policies that work for you. Qualifying for a policy sooner rather than later on in life can mean you may benefit from paying lower premiums or different living benefits you can take advantage of.

Why quality of life matters when considering life insurance policies

Qualifying for life insurance is not always as straight-forward as choosing your provider; usually, you’ll need at least a basic understanding of your medical history so that the provider can vet how much of a liability you are to cover. Often insurers will require a round of medical underwriting, which can mean medical exams to take a look at your health.

If you’re dealing pre-existing conditions like obesity, heart disease or diabetes, you run the risk of not being covered at all by certain plans if you are past a certain age threshold. Otherwise, you might have to pay a hefty monthly premium. If you live a relatively healthy lifestyle, on the other hand, a medical exam shouldn’t be a barrier to an affordable premium.

Known behaviors linked to smoking, exercise, employment history, and dating can all impact your ability to find life insurance policies, as well as what premiums you’ll be paying if you buy one. If you’re not convinced some of those aspects of your life paint the best health history, you may be wondering if you should choose life insurance with no medical exam instead.

Should you consider life insurance with no medical exam?

Simplified issue life insurance relies on a basic medical questionnaire, rather than a full exam, to determine your insurability. Guaranteed issue requires even less medical background, with only a few basic questions serving as the medical underwriting process.

If you don’t qualify for other life insurance at all due to pre-existing health conditions, simplified or guaranteed issue insurance can offer some much-needed peace of mind. However, these options are likely to come with higher premiums as well as limited death benefits. If your health issues are not as severe, a policy with a full exam may still offer better value.

For those considering life insurance with no medical exam, it’s important to note that you still need to be completely honest on the simplified medical forms involved in applying. If the insurance company finds evidence of a pre-existing condition that was withheld, it may result in your coverage being voided.

Additionally, guaranteed issue life insurance will often only offer a percentage of its death benefit if the policyholder dies within a year or two of buying the policy. Guaranteed issue is most valuable when used to help cover end-of-life costs, such as any outstanding medical bills or funeral costs.

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