Once you’ve been diagnosed with hypoglycemia, you can still qualify for life insurance, but it will depend on the specifics of your case.
A good portion of those with hypoglycemia will qualify for traditional coverage, but not everyone.
Those who are denied traditional coverage because of their hypoglycemia can look into several alternatives, including a guaranteed issue life insurance policy (discussed below).
Our goal here is to explain the life insurance application process in more depth, as it pertains to those with hypoglycemia.
Table of Contents
Why Would Hypoglycemia Impact Insurance?
Learning more about hypoglycemia and why it is considered an insurance liability is key to finding the best coverage under your specific circumstances.
The long term risks of undiagnosed or uncontrolled hypoglycemia is a risk to insurance companies, so knowing what it is, how it affects your body, and how to keep it under control is paramount to securing the best rating.
Hypoglycemia, also known as low blood sugar, is a common medical problem which affects countless people across the United States.
When the level of sugar (or glucose) in your blood falls too low, a number of serious symptoms present themselves.
Chief among these are heart palpitations, confusion, shakiness, and anxiety. Many people also experience extreme hunger, fatigue, and excessive sweating.
Still others experience symptoms like dry or tingling lips, nausea or vomiting, blurred vision, slurred speech, and irritability.
The most serious symptoms, which occur only with a severe case of hypoglycemia, include seizure or even falling unconscious.
These symptoms vary depending on how severe your hypoglycemia is. Some people only experience them mildly, while others have full on low blood sugar attacks.
The key to hypoglycemia is understanding it affects everyone differently.
Getting a handle on your hypoglycemia by starting treatment early is essential to managing the disease.
And managing the disease not only translates to a better quality of life, but a better chance of receiving traditional life insurance coverage as well.
Who is the Highest Risk?
Hypoglycemia tends to affect certain groups of people more than others.
At the top of this list are those with diabetes. Hypoglycemia is often a direct symptom of diabetes.
It’s important to note if your hypoglycemia is caused by diabetes, most life insurance companies will put more emphasis on your diabetes than your hypoglycemia.
The underwriters at life insurance companies consider diabetes a more serious risk and will rate you accordingly.
Other risk factors for hypoglycemia include excessive drug or alcohol consumption, older age, and a number of diseases including renal disease and cognitive dysfunction.
Remember, just because you fall into one of these at-risk groups, it doesn’t necessarily mean you will ever develop hypoglycemia.
It just means you should be much more aware of the development of any of the disease’s symptoms.
How Does the Application Process Work?
Expect to answer a wide range of questions when you apply for life insurance.
Most life insurance applications, at least for traditional coverage, are filled with questions to help assess your overall risk.
Once the application is turned in, it’s a life insurance underwriter’s job to review these questions to see how risky you are for the company to insure.
This underwriter will decide whether or not the company should insure you. It’s also their decision as to the level of insurance they should provide.
In short, the underwriters at each life insurance company decide what your premium is, and what your policy covers.
The basic questions on a life insurance application cover your general health and lifestyle. You’ll be asked about your medical history in addition to your:
- Activity level
- Weight and BMI
- Whether or not you smoke
Be sure to mention your hypoglycemia on your application. It’s better to be honest upfront than try to pull a fast one; they are going to find out anyway.
Because most life insurance companies also require a current medical exam to qualify for traditional coverage, there’s no point in saying you don’t have hypoglycemia if you truly do.
Once you note you have hypoglycemia, you’ll be asked several more specific questions about your low blood sugar.
These will include questions such as:
- When were you diagnosed with hypoglycemia?
- What are your symptoms?
- How severe is your low blood sugar?
- What are you doing to treat or manage the condition?
- What is your current prognosis?
The life insurance underwriters use your answers to these questions, along with your current medical exam, to decide whether or not you qualify for traditional coverage.
What Is the Approval Process Like?
The underwriting process generally takes between 4 and 6 weeks. You’ll receive a “yes” or “no” response at the end of this time period, with any corresponding ratings.
Those who receive a “yes” response will also be assigned a rating class. Your rating class dictates what premium and policy type you’re eligible for.
Those who receive a “no” response will usually be directed to other options. Common life insurance alternatives include a guaranteed issue policy.
While some companies now offer expedited approval in as little as a few days, this offer generally isn’t valid for those with a medical condition like hypoglycemia.
With hypoglycemia, you can expect to wait the entire 4 to 6 weeks before hearing a response, if you want the cheapest possible policy.
Finding the Best Life Insurance Company
There are a lot of different factors which must be considered when applying for life insurance with hypoglycemia.
Just because some people qualify for a Standard rate for life insurance, doesn’t mean everyone will. In fact, some of those with hypoglycemia are denied coverage altogether.
There are two main factors to consider:
- The specific life insurance company you’re applying to
- The severity of your hypoglycemia
Some insurance companies are much more likely to insure those with hypoglycemia than others.
Target these companies first in your search. Those with a track record of offering life insurance to applicants with hypoglycemia are most likely to do the same again.
Also take into consideration that mild cases of low blood sugar are much more likely to be insured than more severe cases.
For example, most people with controlled hypoglycemia will qualify for traditional coverage, often at a Standard rate.
Even those with hypoglycemia stemming from diabetes can receive great rates on traditional coverage as long as both conditions are properly managed.
Note: the longer you can prove your symptoms have been under control, the higher your chances of receiving the best rate possible.
It’s only those who have very severe hypoglycemia, or can’t manage their symptoms, who will be denied traditional coverage altogether.
If you’re denied traditional coverage, you can look into the handful of life insurance alternatives available.
Remember, your hypoglycemia is only one factor companies look at. Even those with mild, controlled hypoglycemia might be denied if they fail to meet other criteria.
These other criteria include things such as weight/height/BMI, whether you smoke, family medical history, and other medical problems you’ve had.
The key to finding the best life insurance with hypoglycemia is doing your research and working with an independent agent who has access to several different insurance companies.
Getting an early start on applying for life insurance also gives you the most options. It increases the likelihood you’ll find the best coverage for your specific situation.