Hypoglycemia, also known as low blood sugar, is a common medical problem which afflicts countless people across the United States.
It most often makes itself known through symptoms such as heart palpitations, shakiness, anxiety, and confusion.
These symptoms vary in severity depending on how severe your hypoglycemia is. Some people only experience them mildly, while others have full on low blood sugar attacks.
Once you’ve been diagnosed with hypoglycemia, you might be wondering if you can still qualify for life insurance.
The answer to the question is yes, but it depends 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 from traditional coverage because of their hypoglycemia can look into several alternatives, including a guaranteed issue life insurance policy.
Our goal today is to explain the life insurance process application more in-depth, specifically how it pertains to those with hypoglycemia.
First, What (Exactly) is Hypoglycemia?
Hypoglycemia is low blood sugar.
When the level of sugar (or glucose) in your blood falls too low, a number of serious symptoms present themselves.
Chief among these are anxiety, confusion, shakiness, and heart palpitations. 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 severe symptoms which occur only with a severe case of hypoglycemia include seizure or even falling unconscious.
The key to understanding hypoglycemia is how it affects everyone differently. It’s why it’s so important you seek medical help as soon as you notice these symptoms.
Getting a handle on your hypoglycemia by starting treatment early is the key 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 Gets Hypoglycemia?
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 from 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.
Remember, just because you fall into one of these at-risk groups, who 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.
Questions You’ll Be Asked
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.
It’s this underwriter’s decision 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 disease?
- 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.
The Application and Approval Process
As discussed above, qualifying for life insurance starts with filling out an application.
The point of the application is to enable underwriters at each life insurance company to assess your overall risk for the company.
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 that 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.
Those with hypoglycemia can expect to wait the entire 4 to 6 weeks before hearing a response, if you want the cheapest possible policy.
Your Life Insurance Options
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 from coverage altogether.
There are two main factors to consider.
- First is the specific life insurance company you’re applying to. Some 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 with hypoglycemia are most likely to do the same again.
- The second factor to consider is the severity of your low blood sugar. Mild cases 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 managed, the better 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 from traditional coverage altogether.
If you’re denied from traditional coverage, you can look into the handful of life insurance alternatives available.
Remember, your hypoglycemia is only one factor that 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.
Finding the Best Life Insurance with Hypoglycemia
The key to finding the best life insurance with hypoglycemia is doing your research.
And we can help.
Let us research the companies most likely to extend insurance your way.
Getting an early start on applying for life insurance gives you the most options. It guarantees you’ll find the best coverage for your specific situation.