Life Insurance for History of Depression
Life insurance companies will take a number of different factors into consideration when calculating the premiums that you will pay for coverage. If you review a life insurance application, you will notice that there are a number of different questions that might not seem relevant. Each and every question on the application is relevant to the underwriter, because depending on how you answer, you may pose more risk to the company. While your physical health plays a major role in the premiums that you will pay for coverage, your mental health can also affect your premiums because certain conditions like depression can affect your mortality rate and increase your likelihood of filing a claim.
Depression and Mortality Rates
One major statistic that insurance companies use to determine whether or not to extend an offer for life insurance to an application is the mortality rate. While there are very broad mortality rates for individuals in specific age groups or for males and females, there are also mortality rates for individuals with specific physical or mental pre-existing conditions. If you have been diagnosed with depression, your mortality rate is higher than that of people who do not have a history of depression. To the insurance company, this higher mortality rate means that you are more likely to file a claim and therefore a larger risk to insure.
If your medical history shows that you have a history of depression, the insurance company will consider this a pre-existing condition and look closely at your diagnosis to determine whether or not you qualify for insurance. Understanding what the company is looking at and what signs may be considered red flags will help you during the application process for coverage.
What Will the Insurance Company Look For?
When you answer yes on an application for a history of depression, the underwriter will immediately order your medical records to learn about your history and your diagnosis. In some cases depression history, you will find other underlying disorders like bipolar disorder. Please keep in mind that a depression diagnosis will not completely disqualify your eligibility for coverage, but there are red flags that may. What the underwriter really wants to find out is how your physical health, your lifestyle, and your current state of depression affect your well-being. Here are some of the factors that the underwriter will consider when deciding whether or not you are eligible for coverage:
- How old you were when you were diagnosed with depression
- How much time has passed since your diagnosis
- How long you have been depressed and how severe your condition is Whether or not you are taking anti-depressant medication and if the medication is effective in treating your condition
- How often you have changed medications or remained on the same medication
- Whether or not you have been hospitalized due to your depression
- Whether or not any suicide attempts have been reported
- Whether or not depression or other mental health issues have classified you as disabled
- If there are any alcohol or drug abuse problems
How Will Any of These Factors Affect Your Ability to Get Life Insurance?
If you have a mild or moderate case of depression with no complications, you should not have problems finding affordable life insurance coverage. If the underwriter uncovers that you are not on medications, are hospitalized frequently, have attempted suicide, or have substance abuse problems, your chances of finding coverage decline dramatically. Someone with a history of depression and concerning complications may be denied life insurance coverage or pay a high rate for coverage.
When Depression Will Not Affect Your Ability to Get Life Insurance
Not all cases of depression are the same. If the severity of your condition is only mild and you are in good overall health, there is a good chance that you will not have a problem finding coverage. In fact, if your diagnosis and your medical history show that you have general depression, there are no complications, and you are not treated frequently, you may even qualify for preferred rating groups that offer lower premiums. It is important to keep in mind that underwriters look at applicants with a history of depression on a case by case basis. By looking at your entire depression history, your physical health, and the answers to the other questions on your application, the company can determine what rates you will qualify for.
Finding life insurance with a history of depression is not impossible, but it will require a little time. By doing business with an experienced brokerage that partners with all of the leading life insurers in the industry, you can find a policy that provides you the coverage you need at a price that you can afford. Make sure that you are honest and you disclose all of the information requested on your application and work with your broker to get approved for a policy with your pre-existing condition.