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Everything you need to know about life insurance and diabetes

Everything you need to know about life insurance and diabetes

Apr 13, 2022

According to Diabetes UK, more than 4.9 million people in the UK have diabetes. A further 13.6 million people are now at increased risk of type 2 diabetes in the UK, while 850,000 people are currently living with type 2 diabetes but are yet to be diagnosed.

Around 9 in 10 people with the condition have type 2 diabetes. It’s an illness that leads to 185 leg, toe, or foot amputations every week in the UK while more than 1,700 people have their sight seriously affected by their diabetes every year.

If you have diabetes, you might think that it’s not possible to take out protection such as life insurance. However, many insurers will consider offering cover to people with diabetes. So, read on to find out everything you need to know about diabetes life insurance.

Can I get life insurance if I have diabetes?

Yes. Whether you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes there are many insurers that are willing to offer life insurance cover to you.

When you apply for diabetes life insurance, you may find that the cost will be slightly more to reflect the fact you do have a medical condition. This will depend on the provider and your specific state of health.

Many insurers will consider your application if you have a diabetes diagnosis. This means you can benefit from the peace of mind that your loved ones would receive valuable financial support if you were to pass away.

We’re specialists in finding life insurance for customers with diabetes. We can help you compare life insurance quotes from a range of different providers to find the cover you need at a competitive price.

What sort of diabetes life insurance can I get?

Even with a diabetes diagnosis, you can choose from a range of different types of protection to suit your needs.

  • Level term assurance pays a fixed amount of cover if you die within a specific term. For example, you might take £150,000 of cover over 20 years
  • Decreasing term assurance pays a reducing amount of cover if you die within a specific term and is normally used to protect a repayment mortgage
  • Family income benefit pays a monthly income to your loved ones after you die, for a specific term. For example, you might arrange cover of £2,000 a month for 15 years.

Our experts can help you to find the right cover for your needs.

Why does diabetes make me a “higher risk” for life insurance?

When you complete a life insurance application form, you have to disclose any existing medical conditions that you have. This includes diabetes.

The insurer will then assess your application based on the information you have provided. Many people with diabetes have higher blood sugar levels, which puts them at a higher risk of contracting serious or life-altering diseases such as:

  • Heart disease
  • Eye conditions
  • Kidney disease
  • Foot damage
  • Stroke

Bearing in mind this increased chance of developing more serious conditions, life insurance providers want to know that your diabetes is being managed effectively, to reduce the likelihood of further high-risk conditions.

What will an insurer want to know about my diabetes?

When you apply for life insurance, an insurer will want to know several things about your diabetes. You will likely supply some of this information on the proposal form, and the insurer may request further information from you, your doctor, or a specialist.

The type of diabetes you have

The first question insurers will ask is: “what type of diabetes do you have?”

This might be type 1, type 2, or rarer conditions such as gestational diabetes. The type of diabetes will partly determine the premiums you pay.

If you have type 1 diabetes, you are likely to pay higher life insurance premiums. This is because it is a condition that you are likely to have lived with for a long period of time.

The provider will also want to know when you were diagnosed, and your current treatment.

Your height and weight

Insurers will look at your body mass index (BMI) when considering your application. If you have a higher BMI, you are more likely to be prone to health complications, which is why insurers take this into consideration.

If your BMI is over 30, you will likely see an increase in the cost of your life insurance.

Your HbA1C reading or a urine test

The insurer may ask you to submit an up-to-date HbA1c reading or a urine test. The more recent and lower the HbA1c reading is, the lower your premiums are likely to be, because this shows a provider that your condition is being managed.

If your reading is between 4.5% and 8%, you will generally be accepted for reasonably priced cover. However, if your readings are above 9%, there may be a chance that insurers will increase your premiums or decline cover.

Associated risk factors

Insurers may also ask related questions about your condition. These may include:

  • Any related conditions you have
  • Whether you have relatives with any medical conditions
  • How much you smoke and drink.

Answers to these questions will help an insurer assess your overall health and potential for risk in other areas of your life.

Do I need a medical assessment to buy life insurance?

While a life insurer will usually request your medical records from your doctor, you may also be asked to attend a medical examination.

This will often be the case if you a looking for a significant amount of cover.

Life insurance and diabetes FAQs

Do I need to tell my existing insurer if I develop diabetes?

No. If you have life insurance and you develop diabetes after you take it out, you do not have to let your provider know. Your premiums won’t change.

However, it’s important that you tell an insurer about any pre-existing condition you have when you take out a new policy. If you don’t, you may find that a claim is refused later on.

Will all insurers offer the same cover?

Different insurers have different underwriting criteria for life insurance. So, providers will all treat your application slightly differently.

It can be beneficial to use an independent broker who can work with many providers to find the most appropriate diabetes life insurance at the right price.

Being able to compare the cost of cover is a big advantage, so speak to one of our experts who have experience of working with a wide range of the UK’s top insurers.

How do I buy diabetes life insurance?

If you’re not sure where to turn when it comes to buying diabetes life insurance, working with an independent expert can help.

For example, we are an independent life insurance broker with specialist knowledge in helping those with pre-existing medical conditions find suitable cover. This includes helping many people with diabetes to find the right life insurance for them.

Our experts will take time to understand your personal circumstances and exactly what life insurance you are looking for. You might want to protect your family, pay off a mortgage, or cover funeral expenses.

Even if you have already had a life insurance application declined because of your diabetes, talk to us. We work with some of the UK’s leading insurers and so we are excellently placed to help you find the cover you need.

Simply get your free quote through our website and our friendly team will be able to find cover.


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