Is No-Exam Life Insurance Worth It?

No matter your age, choosing a life insurance policy is an important step in planning for your future. But qualifying for life insurance can be difficult if you’re older or in poor health. So if you’re in this situation, you would naturally want to find a simpler way to get yourself covered. No-exam life insurance can help speed up the process and cover you when other policies won’t. But is a no-exam life insurance policy worth it?article title and stethoscope wrapped around red heart on a table

What Is No-Exam Life Insurance?

medical doctor writing on a chart with a pen
You don’t need a medical exam to get life insurance.

Usually, insurers require you to undergo a medical exam so that they can get an overview of your general health, and know how much of a risk it would be to insure you. They want information like your height, weight, and blood pressure to get an accurate read on the state of your health. But there are policies, known as no-exam life insurance policies, that allow you to skip the medical exam.

In most cases, though, no-exam does not mean no health questions. Most insurance companies who offer these plans will require you to fill out a health questionnaire. This helps them get at least some baseline information about your health. 

Another benefit of no-exam policies is, while traditional policies can take weeks or even months to go through an underwriting process, no-exam policies are usually approved in around a week, and in some cases in only a few minutes.

What Types of Policies Are Available without an Exam?

No-exam policies have become popular in recent years, with insurers offering more and more options. The most popular choices are:

  • Simplified issue life insurance – These policies let you skip the exam, but you will have to fill out a health questionnaire. They will ask you about your and your family’s health history, your smoking history, recent hospitalizations, and drug usage. Most of these policies will only cover you up to $100,000, depending on your answers.
  • Guaranteed issue life insurance – This type of policy is usually only offered to those between 50 and 80-year-old, but you are guaranteed coverage if you meet the insurer’s age requirements. That means there is no medical exam and no questionnaire. These policies are best for those who don’t qualify for regular life insurance due to a terminal illness or age. And they usually have a coverage limit of $25,000. 
  • Accelerated underwriting life insurance – With this type of policy, insurers use technology to quickly decide whether to offer you coverage. Instead of a medical exam, insurers will use an algorithm to assess your possible risk for these policies. The algorithm will analyze data from things like your motor vehicle record, prescription drug history, and even your credit report. All of these factors determine how much of a risk you are to insure. But if you’re a generally healthy person you can be approved for up to $1 million in coverage without having to wait through a long underwriting process.

It’s important to note two things about no-exam policies. First, they usually only cover death from natural causes, although some can offer coverage for accidental death, as well. Second, because your insurer will be taking a bigger risk insuring you, your premiums will be higher than they would be with a traditional policy.

Is No-Exam the Right Option for You?illustration of a silhouetted family walking with a heart drawn around them and a red heart in the background

Everyone is different, and your life insurance should reflect your specific needs. No-exam life insurance can be worth it if you’re older, a smoker, or have a terminal illness. Any of these factors can raise your premiums, or even disqualify you from getting a traditional policy.

Even if you are young and healthy, a no-exam policy can still be right for you. For example, if you have a busy schedule and can’t squeeze in a check-up, or if you have a fear of needles, you might want to check out one of these policies. Even if you just like the convenience of getting coverage without having to leave the house, one of these policies can work for you.

The bottom line is a no-exam life insurance policy is not right for everyone. But this type of policy will get you covered quickly without being invasive. No-exam policies can ensure that you get the coverage you need regardless of age or medical history. You should check with your insurance company to see what you qualify for. And weigh the pros and cons to better help you decide what is best for your situation.

To get more information, and for help choosing a no-exam policy, look below. We’ve compiled a list of the top insurance companies who specialize in life insurance. You can skip the medical exam, but don’t skip comparing multiple insurance sites to find the best fit for you.

Co-written by Brianna Hartnett

What Is Graded Benefit Whole Life Insurance?

There are a whole lot of life insurance policies out there to look into. In fact, there are multiple types of whole life insurance alone, one of them being graded benefit whole life insurance. This type of policy can be good in certain circumstances. To determine if your circumstance is a good fit for graded benefit whole life insurance, you need to review the pros and cons before deciding if it is right for you and your family.

What Is Graded Benefit Whole Life Insurance?

doctor's office exam room
Graded benefit whole life insurance does not require a medical exam.

Graded benefit whole life insurance is a type of policy that will only be paid out in the first 2 to 3 years if the policyholder dies accidentally. These policies don’t require a medical exam or traditional underwriting. And because of this, life insurance companies that offer these policies take a significant risk when providing them. That means these types of policies will generally have higher premiums compared to other types of life insurance policies. 

There is a waiting period with graded benefit whole life, typically 2 years, but you won’t lose your money if you pass away during this period. In fact, if you do pass during your waiting period, your premiums will be refunded plus interest ( typically around 10 to 20%) depending on the company.

The 2 Types Of Graded Benefit Whole Life Insurance

There are two different types of graded benefit whole life insurance policies:

  1. Simplified issue– With this type of policy, you will have to answer medical questions to qualify. Because of this, this type of policy will usually have a higher benefit amount.
  2. Guaranteed issue– You will not have to answer any health questions with this type of policy, and you cannot be denied or turned down due to your health. This policy will have a lower benefit amount and is typically more expensive than a simplified issue policy.

Graded Benefit Whole Life and Your Health

Different companies and policies will require different information. If you opt to get a plan that requires answers to health questions, such as a simplified issue policy, it is better to be prepared with what types of questions you can expect. You can expect to answer the following questions (although questions might vary from insurance company to insurance company):hand holding a pen and filling out a survey

  • Have you been diagnosed with or received treatment for HIV, AIDS, or AIDS Related Complex?
  • Have you been diagnosed with a terminal illness?
  • Do you have a disability that requires the use of a wheelchair?
  • Are you confined to a nursing home or other facility?
  • Have you received a diagnosis of heart disease, kidney disease, cancer, diabetes, or another serious illness in the last 24 months?
  • Have you had a stroke?
  • Do you have Alzheimer’s or any other cognitive impairments?

Is It Right For You?

Graded benefit whole life insurance is usually purchased by people with serious health problems who might get denied through traditional life insurance. If you have health conditions and are worried you will get denied life insurance, know that you do have the option of a graded benefit whole life insurance policy! Not only will you be accepted no matter what health conditions you may have, but it will provide your family with a substantial amount of financial security when you pass. Having health issues should not stop anyone from protecting their family with a life insurance policy. 

If you’re not sure which policy is best for you, your best bet is to compare policies from different companies. There are many great affordable life insurance options to choose from that will provide enough money for your family, for a low monthly price. The best way to find the right life insurance policy for you and your specific needs is by working with an agent who specializes in life insurance. We have provided the top life insurance companies in the nation below; each offers hassle-free assistance and the most competitive rates. Always check multiple sites to make sure you have bargaining power and know the advantages of each company. Make sure a hard time isn’t made harder by a financial burden, check life insurance rates today.

Don’t Let One Of These Reasons Stop You From Buying Life Insurance

It happens way too often. You’re presented with an opportunity to get life insurance, whether through work or from your insurance company – you briefly consider it and then ask yourself, “Do I really need this extra expense?” and ignore the offer.  Money might be one reason why you’ve chosen not to get life insurance, but there are lots of reasons why people put off buying life insurance – we’ve seen them all before! And maybe life insurance doesn’t feel like that much of a priority right now, but putting it off can put your family’s financial future at risk. We’re here to tell you that life insurance is affordable, and worth it for your family, so don’t let one of the following reasons stop you from buying life insurance.

“I Don’t Want to Go Through a Medical Exam”stethoscope

The medical exam that you’ll have to undergo for some types of life insurance policies can seem a bit daunting, but they’re not the invasive experience you might think they are.  These exams are sort of like a scaled-down version of a physical you might get at your doctor’s office: the life insurance company will send someone to your house (if you would like), who will check your height, weight, and heart rate, and take a blood and urine sample. If you’re worried that the results of your exam will be used against you when calculating your risk and rates, know that you have options! There are many life insurance policies you can choose from that don’t require you to undergo a medical exam. 

“I Can’t Afford Life Insurance Because I Have Health Issues”

Having pre-existing conditions is not as much of a barrier to getting affordable life insurance as you might think – it depends on what your health issues are. If you are living with a serious condition, that could raise your life insurance rates, or even mean that you will be denied a policy, but you still have the option of a no-medical exam policy that guarantees you’ll be accepted. No medical exams policies are perfect for people with pre-existing conditions, and include options like: 

  • Guaranteed Issue Life– With this type of policy, you will not be rejected for any health-related reason. You will simply need to answer a few questions about your health to determine your policy rate, and you can receive coverage in as little as a day. The death benefit for this policy can be anywhere from $5,000 to $25,000.
  • Simplified Issue Life These policies last for a certain time period (or term) – usually 10, 20, or 30 years, and are a step up from guaranteed issue life policies. They are more expensive than traditional life insurance policies, but because coverage is often limited, they are cheaper than guaranteed issue policies.
  • Guaranteed Death Benefit Life- Similar to guaranteed issue life insurance, with some slight differences. You will have to answer some health questions, with the number of questions depending on the insurance carrier. Because there might be more health-related questions, these policies are slightly less expensive than guaranteed issue life insurance. These policies offer coverage up to $50,000.
  • Final Expense Life Also known as burial insurance; coverage is designed to cover end-of-life expenses, including burial costs, funeral ceremony costs, final medical bills, and any small debts. Policies offer coverage from as low as $2,000 to up to $50,000.

“I Have Other Financial Priorities”blue envelope open with letter coming out with invoice on the top of it and a hand with money next to it

Maybe life insurance isn’t a priority for you because you have other financial responsibilities, especially if you have a family. But, there are so many affordable life insurance policies out there, with some – like term life – costing as little as $15 a month for healthy people – that’s cheaper than the cost of lunch these days! The only way to find out if you can afford a policy is to research, compare, and work with an agent who specializes in life insurance. 

“I Don’t Understand It”

Life insurance is not something you learn about in school or even something you’re taught about as an adult. It is something you have to learn about on your own, which can be very frustrating. If you are unsure how it works, and which policy is right for you, rely on an insurance professional who can guide you in the right direction when buying life insurance. 

Your family has financial obligations that will not go away when you are gone; they will need your help more than ever with their expenses, and the last thing you want them to worry about is money while they are grieving. The best way to understand how life insurance works, and find the right policy for you and your specific needs, is by working with an agent who specializes in life insurance. We have provided the top life insurance companies in the nation below; each offers hassle-free assistance and the most competitive rates. Always check multiple sites to make sure you have bargaining power and know the advantages of each company. Make sure a hard time isn’t made harder by a financial burden, check life insurance rates today.

The Different Types Of Life Insurance Policies

Shopping for a life insurance policy can feel a little bit overwhelming, because there are so many different types – but the upside is that, with so many options, you’re sure to find a policy that fits your needs and budget. If you’re not sure where to even begin, we have listed multiple types of life insurance policies, how they are different from each other, and what you can expect from each, in order to make the process a little easier and less stressful for you. 

Term Life Insurance

illustration of a person walking with 3 arrows in front of him
Term life insurance is great because it offers you insurance for a duration of time, and there are different options to choose from.

Term life insurance is one of the most affordable types of life insurance available, but these policies only cover you for a limited period of time (or term), generally anywhere between 5 and 30 years. This type of life insurance is best for people who want coverage for large expenses such as mortgage payments, college tuition, and other debts, usually those who are younger or middle-aged and want to be able to replace income in case of an unexpected death. One of the great things about term life is you can convert your policy to permanent life insurance before it expires without having to go through medical underwriting again.

There are different types of term life insurance policies to choose from including:

  • Level term life insurance: Your premium stays the same for the entire term
  • Decreasing term life insurance: Your death benefit decreases as the debt amount decreases
  • Annual renewable term life insurance: Allows you to renew your term policy for one year at the end of the initial term
  • Return of Premium life insurance: All premiums paid will be refunded if the policyowner outlives the policy term

Whole Life Insurance

Unlike term life, a whole life insurance policy lasts for the entire life of the policyholder, as long as you keep up with the premiums payments. With this type of policy, premiums will remain the same throughout the life of the policy and cannot be raised for any reason. One of the best things about  this type of policy is that it has a cash value component, meaning your policy will build tax-deferred cash over time at a guaranteed rate of interest. 

Whole life insurance is best for people who want a longer policy with a cash value that they can borrow from. Be aware that you must undergo a medical exam to qualify for a whole life policy, and that these policies are more expensive than term life policies.

Universal Life Insurance

coins in a row growing, with the last one with a branch on top of the stack
Universal life insurance has a cash value that grows over time.

Universal life is similar to whole life insurance in that it is also a type of permanent life insurance with a cash value that grows over time. This type of policy will not only provide you with lifetime coverage, but the premiums are flexible, meaning that you can modify your monthly premium when needed, as well as increase or decrease your death benefit to accommodate different life events. 

Premiums for this type of life insurance policy are generally higher than those for term life, because of the above features. It is best for people who prefer affordable permanent life insurance and want the ability to accumulate cash over time. With this type of policy you will need to undergo a medical exam, as well.

Variable Life Insurance

Variable life is a type of universal life insurance that also builds up cash value over time, but instead of earning a fixed rate of interest determined by your insurance company, the interest it earns is based on the performance of an investment account. You can withdraw cash from the policy through policy loans that are considered tax-exempt, but you can lose your cash value if the market performs poorly. This type of life insurance is best for people who are looking for permanent life insurance that builds up cash that can be used as a tax-exempt income. Premiums are based on your medical history, so you will have to undergo a medical exam. 

Simplified Issue Life Insurance

With this kind of life insurance policy, you do not have to undergo a medical exam, meaning policies will typically be more expensive because the insurer is taking a risk by insuring you without knowledge of your medical history. On the other hand, though, you don’t have to worry about being approved, and you will be able to get a policy in a matter of days as opposed to weeks or months. This type of policy is best for people who need coverage quickly, as well as for those who have pre-existing medical conditions and are afraid they might get denied any other type of coverage.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

Like simplified issue life insurance, guaranteed issue life insurance is a whole life policy that will provide insurance without requiring a medical exam. As long as you are within the eligible age requirements, you can purchase one of these policies, but it will cost more than traditional life insurance because of the risk the insurer is taking, and will generally only provide $25,000 to $30,000 in coverage. 

hourglass with blue sand in it dripping down
Guaranteed life insurance has a 2 year waiting period before the death benefit is paid.

There is one other caveat to this type of policy: there is a two-year waiting period before the full death benefit is payable to the beneficiary. This means that, if the policy owner dies within 2 years, the insurance company will only pay out 110% of premiums paid (as long as the insured dies from natural causes), instead of the agreed-upon death benefit. Guaranteed issue life is best for people who cannot qualify medically for traditional life insurance, but would like the opportunity to cover their loved ones when they are gone.

Final Expense Insurance

Final expense insurance is generally bought to cover funeral expenses, burial expenses, and any other medical debts you may have. There is no medical exam required, and it is relatively affordable, but the death benefits are usually capped at $35,000.

Joint Life Insurance

Joint life insurance will provide coverage for you and your spouse. You can choose from a  universal or whole life policy, but the death benefit is usually not paid out until both policy holders have passed away. A lot of couples will choose this option because it is cheaper than purchasing two separate policies, and the underwriting and rates are based on the younger and healthier partner.

Your family has financial obligations that will not go away when you are gone; they will need your help more than ever with their expenses, and the last thing you want them to worry about is money while they are grieving. There are many great affordable life insurance options to choose from that will provide enough money for your family, for a low monthly price. The best way to find the right life insurance policy for you and your specific needs is by working with an agent who specializes in life insurance. We have provided the top life insurance companies in the nation below; each offers hassle-free assistance and the most competitive rates. Always check multiple sites to make sure you have bargaining power and know the advantages of each company. Make sure a hard time isn’t made harder by a financial burden, check life insurance rates today.

Life Insurance For Stroke Victims

According to the CDC, every year more than 795,000 people in the U.S. have a stroke, and 1 in 4 people who suffer from a stroke will have a second one at some point in their life. If you have had a stroke, you know how scary it can be, as well as how difficult it can be to recover and avoid a second one. On top of all of that, you might be worried what would happen to your family if the worst were to happen, and you might also be wondering if you can still qualify for life insurance even if you’ve had a stroke, or even more than one stroke. The good news is that you will still be able to financially protect your family with a policy, but there are some things you need to be aware of. 

Can You Get Life Insurance After A Stroke?

illustration of a brain with a red lightning bolt in the middle
Obtaining a life insurance policy is possible if you’ve had a stroke, within certain limitations.

The simple answer to the above question is yes, but there are some requirements you will have to meet. For example, if you have had a stroke recently, some insurance companies will not consider your application for 3-12 months after the stroke. This is referred to as a “postponement” period.

In addition, life insurance companies want to make sure that applicants with a history of stroke are taking the proper precautions to prevent another one, which is why they will ask for your medical history and that you undergo a medical exam, unless you opt for a more expensive no medical exam life insurance policy. If you do choose to buy a more traditional life insurance policy, such as whole life insurance, the questions you will have to answer might include:

  • When did you experience your stroke or strokes?
  • Was it an actual stroke or a TIA (Transient Ischemic Attack)?
  • What tests did you undergo after your stroke or strokes?
  • Have you experienced any lasting neurological issues or other effects?
  • Are you experiencing any other health issues that are likely to contribute to another stroke such as hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes, or coronary artery disease?
  • What medications are you currently taking?

How Much Will a Policy Cost You?

How much you will have to pay for your policy will depend on the life insurance company, and on whether you experienced a mini stroke, a TIA (Transient Ischemic Attack), or a full stroke. Your insurer will also take into consideration how long ago your stroke was: if you had a stroke 6 or more years ago with no complications, the rate you will be offered will be lower than if you have had a stroke more recently; once you pass the 10-year mark, your rates will very likely be only slightly higher than those of someone who has never had a stroke. 

The best way to know how much a policy will cost you is to work with a licensed agent who can review your situation and compare different companies’ plans.

Can You Lower Your Rates?

Absolutely! You cannot control all of the factors that go into determining your rate after you’ve had a stroke, but there are some lifestyle changes you can make to reduce your risk and rates:illustration of hands breaking a cigarette in half.

  • Quit smoking
  • Reduce alcohol consumption
  • Exercise regularly
  • Keep your blood pressure low
  • Reduce saturated fat and trans fat intake
  • Follow up with your doctor regularly

What If I Have Had Multiple Strokes?

This can be tricky, but if you have had multiple full strokes, your application for life insurance will most likely get denied – but you do have other options, such as final expense coverage or guaranteed issue life insurance. It is important to note that most  insurers that offer guaranteed issue life insurance will cap the death benefit at $25,000 to $30,000 depending on your age, because they are accepting you despite your health being an unknown risk. 

If you have had more than one mini-stroke, you might still be able to get coverage, depending on the insurance company; you will need to do some research to compare plans and companies, so you can find out which ones will offer you coverage and for how much. 

Strokes are very common: on average, a stroke occurs every 40 seconds and kills one person every 4 minutes in the U.S. If you have suffered from a stroke, we understand that you are worried about leaving your family behind, and that you want to make sure they will be financially stable if you pass away. You can still purchase a life insurance policy, and protect your family, even if you have had a stroke, as long as you are honest during the application process. 

There are many types of life insurance policies to choose from and many different companies to compare, so the best way to find the right policy for you and your specific needs is by working with an agent who specializes in life insurance. We have provided the top life insurance companies in the nation below; each offers hassle-free assistance and the most competitive rates. Always check multiple sites to make sure you have bargaining power and know the advantages of each company. Make sure a hard time isn’t made harder by a financial burden, check life insurance rates today.

The 4 Types Of No Exam Life Insurance

If you’re looking for a life insurance policy, but have pre-existing medical conditions, you might be worried about undergoing a medical exam to get coverage: your medical status could mean that you will have to pay more, or you could even get denied for a policy altogether. Fortunately, though, even if you have health conditions, you have options! There are four types of life insurance policies that do not require medical exams, meaning you’ll still be able to provide financial protection to your family no matter your age or health history. Comparing these different policies will help you better determine which no medical exam life insurance policy is best for your family’s needs.

1. Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

stamp of the word approved in red with a red circle around
You will be approved no matter your health or age with a guaranteed issue life insurance policy.

The first type of life insurance that does not require a medical exam is guaranteed issue life insurance. With one of these policies, you will not be rejected for any health-related reason; you will simply need to answer a few questions about your health to determine your policy rate, and then you can receive coverage in as little as a day. The death benefit for this policy can be anywhere from $5,000 to $25,000. 

The drawback to guaranteed issue life insurance? Premiums will be higher than those of other life insurance policies; your insurance company will not have very much information about your health status, so they will be taking on a higher risk by insuring you. In addition, before your family can receive the policy’s death benefit, there is a 2 year waiting period, which means if you pass away during the first 2 years that your policy is active, your beneficiary will only receive a portion of the death benefit. This plan is best for those who are looking for quick, easy coverage for their family. 

2. Simplified Issue Life Insurance

This is a type of term life insurance that has been increasing in popularity over the last few years. These policies last for a certain time period (or term) –  usually 10, 20, or 30 years, and are a step up from guaranteed issue life policies; they are more expensive than traditional life insurance policies, but cheaper than guaranteed issue policies, but coverage is often limited. When you apply for simplified issue life insurance, you will be asked detailed medical questions and will undergo a background check, but you will not have to undergo a medical exam. 

These policies offer coverage anywhere from $25,000 to $200,000, depending on the results of your evaluation. Simplified issue life insurance is best if you are looking for convenience, quick approval, and coverage if you have moderate health issues. 

3. Graded Death Benefit Life Insurance

This kind of insurance is similar to guaranteed issue life insurance, with some slight differences. You will have to answer some health questions, with the number of questions depending on the insurance carrier; because there might be more health-related questions, these policies are slightly less expensive than guaranteed issue life insurance. These policies offer coverage up to $50,000.graded death benefit infographicOne of the major differences between graded death benefit policies and other types of policies is that the death benefits are paid out in percentages; after each year of having an active policy, your beneficiary will receive a higher portion of your death benefit:

  • Death in year 1- 25% of death benefit paid
  • Death in year 2- 50% of death benefit paid
  • Death in year 3 or above- 100% of the death benefit paid. 

4. Final Expense Life Insurance 

This kind of policy is also known as burial insurance; coverage is designed to cover end-of-life expenses, including burial costs, funeral ceremony costs, final medical bills, and any small debts. Even if you don’t have any other type of life insurance, you should consider having this policy: the average cost of a funeral is around $10,000, which is a lot of money for your family to come up with, especially if they are not prepared. 

Final expense policies offer coverage from as low as $2,000 up to $50,000. The great thing about these policies is that your premiums will not increase, and your death benefit will remain the same throughout your life. This policy is a good choice for people who have some health issues and need a smaller amount of coverage to help with costs related to their passing. 

There are options for life insurance that allow you to get a policy without having to undergo a medical exam – this means that, no matter what health conditions you have, you will still be able to get life insurance coverage. If you’re interested in one of the policies above, and you need help deciding on a policy, consider using online tools to see what is available, as well as working with an agent who will help you compare plans and see which is the right fit for you. To get you started, we have provided the top insurance companies that offer life insurance policies below; each can give you hassle-free assistance and the most competitive rates in the nation. Always check multiple sites to make sure you have bargaining power and know the advantages of each company. Make sure a hard time isn’t made harder by a financial burden, check life insurance rates today.