In the event you are turned down for a life insurance depression request or anxiety life insurance what should your next step be? Firstly, it’s important to double check everything has been entered into the application correctly. It’s not uncommon for people to make mistakes. In fact, it is very common that they make mistakes. Ask to run through all the answers you have given with the insurance representative and check them all for accuracy. And that doesn’t just mean the details for depression and anxiety life insurance questions. Check everything, including things such as your date of birth and height and weight have been recorded correctly. A figure that is inaccurately input here or a date which is wrongly recorded there can have a big impact on the decision of an application. So, check and double check everything.
If you arrive at the conclusion that your case has been turned down, then make sure you are aware of the type of decision. There are two kinds of results for a ‘no’ you can get from an insurer. One is known as a postponement. This is when an insurer is in essence saying they won’t offer cover today, but they may in the future and typically after a specified period of time. A postponement is generally applied when there is an unresolved matter or a recent change in circumstances.
Examples could be a person has recently been diagnosed say in the past 3 months. In this case an insurer may ask for a period of 6 months before they will consider an application. Or, perhaps an applicant has recently increased the dosage of their medication to improve control of their symptoms. Again, an insurer may ask for 6-9 months before reapplying so that it can be clearly judged if the improved control has been achieved.
The other type of ‘no’ is a decline. This is when an insurer has taken the view that they are unable to offer insurance due to the circumstances presented to them. In this situation and as with a postponement decision, it is vitally important to have a full understanding of why. And by a full understanding, not just a vague reason such as, ‘because of your depression’. This is not detailed enough to help in assessing how best to progress. Quite often there will be a specific reason and it can very often be something with a work around. Was the reason related to depression or something else disclosed on the application? Is it because you are currently having a particular type of treatment such as visits to a psychiatrist or psychologist both of which trigger an automatic decline with the chosen insurer? An experienced and knowledgeable broker will be able to explain the exact reason. If the person you are dealing with is finding this difficult, then perhaps that is a red flag (more on this shortly).
What is the purpose of this level of understanding the reason for a ‘no’? If it’s a ‘no’, it’s a ‘no’ right? Well, no! Not all insurers are the same. What is deemed to be outside of a tolerance level for one insurer could be well within an acceptable level for another. As well as this, the way questions as structured differs from life insurer to insurer. In essence, there are horses for courses within the life insurance marketplace. Different companies employ different philosophies to their underwriting processes and decisions. Being denied life insurance because of depression with one insurer can very often be a ‘yes’ for depression life insurance with an alternative. And this is where using the right person for the job can make such a difference….
We’ve already touched on this subject a couple of times, but it is so vitally important, it’s worth contemplating in more detail. Finding the right person/organisation to assist in your search for life insurance for mental health patients can make a huge difference. Using a broker with a detailed understanding of how their panel of insurers work and assess circumstances is key. As already mentioned above, not all insurers are the same. And, it can be in the detail where an experienced individual can identify differences. This can affect not only being successful in an application for insurance but also the cost of the cover. It’s one thing being able to get the cover. But why pay more for it if there is a cheaper option available?
This is in contrast to many of the alternatives available in the life insurance marketplace. Someone wishing to get life insurance for people with depression or life insurance with anxiety may want to avoid certain organisations. This is mainly due to the way they are set up. The large price comparison companies who advertise nationwide as well as some insurers or large brokers work on a volume business model basis. They set huge targets and demand that their staff reach them. In this environment, there is little room for those applicants who fall outside the perceived ‘norm’. This can be because of lack of training, or little appetite to cater for more specific requirements. In essence these companies just want people they can process as quickly as possible.
By using such a route to the market, depression and anxiety life insurance customers may well experience a lack of motivation by the salespersons to find the best solution to their needs. If you find yourself talking to someone who seems to have little understanding or motivation to help, it might be time to look somewhere else? Equally, if you are offered a product at an increased price without consideration of other options, maybe it’s not the right choice for you? Don’t allow commission hungry, target driven call centre staff to dupe you into thinking ‘it’s this or nothing’. It may be that the price offered is the best you will find. But make sure you are confident that is the case before you commit by ensuring sufficient research has been completed into all your options before you decide.
This section is an extension of what’s been discussed above. As with many forms of marketing, the lure of a price is often used to entice people in a certain direction. With life insurance for people with depression or life insurance for anxiety sufferers this can be misleading. A life insurance quote is just that. A quote. Until that is, it turns into an offer of insurance. And in no circumstances will an offer of insurance ever be made until a full application has been assessed via underwriting by an insurer. The quotes you can produce online prior to discussing your circumstances in detail or completing an application are standard prices. They do not take into consideration anything other than your age, smoking status and the amount of cover and length of time you have requested for it to run. In short, these quotes assume you do not have anything to disclose as part of your application.
This leads on to a second consideration. And once again, adds to the strong argument that using a specialist life insurance for mental health patients’ brokercan be key. A good broker will ask you many questions before they provide you with a quote. By doing this they are finding out all the necessary information they need to give you an accurate quote. Using this information, they will be able to give you clear examples of options and their prices. In some cases, it may be that they will need to go away and compile some further research before they can provide a quote. It may be that the price is unaffected by any mental health considerations and is the same as a ‘standard’ price. Or, it may be that due to your circumstances there is the likelihood of a ‘rating’ to be added to the premium.
As a rule, this is an affective way of gauging the knowledge and experience of the company you have approached to help in your search for cover. If the person you are speaking to is asking you informed questions around the topic of your mental health history, then that is generally a good sign. If, however, the person you are speaking to doesn’t seem to have any prior knowledge or fails to address it as an issue, then proceed with caution with any quotes. The less questions you are asked prior to being presented with a depression and anxiety life insurance quote, the less chance it has of being accurate.
We’ve covered a lot of ground here so let’s look again at some of the main points in getting life insurance with depression & anxiety. Before you begin, make sure you are prepared. Get together timelines of dates including those for diagnosis, medications and treatments. Get dates together for any periods you were off work as well as the frequency of your symptoms. Give yourself a flying start and save yourself the pressure of being put on the spot. Pick an environment you can talk freely and comfortably in. It’s not always easy to talk about your mental health history, but it’s worse when there’s the risk of people eavesdropping as well!
Before you commit to an offer or a price, ask yourself if you’re confident that is the best you are going to get. Don’t be pressured into accepting something just because it’s the easy option for the person on the other end of the phone. Or, because they either are not motivated or too inexperienced to guide you through alternatives. And remember, if you do decide you must accept a rated premium due to your depression or anxiety, you are free to review it at any time. There are no tie in periods with life insurance and no penalties to cancel the cover at any time during the term. A good broker will be able to provide details of when you will potentially qualify for a cheaper rate and will offer to diarise a call to remind you then. If you find you circumstances improve in the meantime, then be proactive. Get on the phone and get the ball rolling.
A specialist, if chosen correctly, can save time and cut to the chase with all your options from their panel of depression and anxiety life insurance providers and their prices. You are free to do the leg work yourself of course. And, armed with this guide you will no doubt make a good job of it. But it will be time consuming and laborious. And remember the rule, the less questions you are asked, the less likely the life insurance quotes you revive will be accurate. If the person you are speaking to seems unsure or not set up to deal with your circumstances, then it’s a pretty good reason to move on.
If you get turned down, first of all double check everything in detail. Make sure the details you have given are the same as what has been input on the application. And if the decision is still the same find out exactly what the decision is and why. If it’s a postponement, find out the reason and the timescale. A good broker will diarise a time to get back in contact after exhausting all the other options first. If it’s a decline, get right to the bottom of the reason with all it’s detail. Not all insurers are the same. If one says no, that does not mean they all will.
And on a final note, if you have an existing policy and the price was increased due to mental health disclosures, why not review it? Just because you were asked to pay a higher price then does not mean you will be asked to pay a higher price now. And of course, you are always free to review your depression and anxiety life insurance policy at any time. And it won’t cost you a thing except a few moments of your time. So, what’s stopping you?
Top tips recap;
We hope this is a useful tool in helping you on your way to getting the life insurance as one of the many people in the UK who live with depression and anxiety. It would be impossible to have covered every scenario here. So, we are always ready and happy to talk through any further questions you might have. Feel free to get in touch and ask away.
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