Can you get life insurance if you have HIV?

Yes, it can be possible to get life insurance with HIV.

Many believe that life insurance is unobtainable if you’re living with HIV and some even cancel their policy upon diagnosis.

However, securing and retaining life insurance is still very much achievable.

While premiums may be higher than those who don’t have the condition, you could still find a cost-effective solution.

As an FCA-regulated broker service, Reassured can compare life insurance quotes and ensure you’re getting the correct cover, at the right price.

What’s more, we have a specialist impaired life insurance team who are dedicated to helping customers previously declined.

Simply contact a member of our friendly team.

How does HIV affect life insurance?

Years ago, it was impossible to secure life insurance if you were living with HIV.

However, thankfully, since the introduction of Triple Therapy (HAART) treatment, insurers now offer protection to those with HIV.

This development in underwriting is the largest to have taken place over the last 10 years and has resulted in HIV being treated like other pre-existing medical conditions.

Previously, the maximum term offered to someone with HIV was 10 years[1].

However, due to medical advances and developments in underwriting, it’s possible to be offered the same level of cover as those with other pre-existing conditions.

While now completely possible to obtain life insurance, those with HIV may see inflated premiums (monthly payments), due to the increased risk the condition may pose.

Applying for life insurance with HIV

Insurers may ask for more detailed information about your HIV.

Certain aspects regarding HIV are considered during your application, and it's highly likely your policy will then undergo additional medical underwriting.

Those with HIV won’t be denied life insurance on their diagnosis alone. If a denial is made, it'll be due to the perceived risk to the insurer.

In order to determine the level of risk, an HIV questionnaire for life insurance will be used during the application process. Questions will include:

  • Date of HIV diagnosis
  • Current or past treatments administered
  • CD4 count (measuring immune system function)
  • Viral load (the amount of HIV in your bloodstream)
  • Any history of drug use
  • History of hepatitis

It's likely you'll have to provide medical evidence regarding these aspects, and go through manual underwriting before being accepted.

Newly diagnosed applicants are likely to go through a 6-12 month deferral period to determine how HIV affects your body, and how you respond to treatment.

If the insurer deems the results favourably, then it's likely the policy cover can go ahead.

Life insurance for people with HIV

The stage of your condition and the risk imposed to the insurer will have an impact on the type of cover you can secure.

Different insurers will also provide varying levels of cover and pricing strategies for individuals with HIV.

Previously, the maximum term offered to someone with HIV was 10 years. However, due to medical advances and developments in underwriting, it’s possible to be offered the same length of cover as those who don’t have the condition.

At Reassured, we can offer four types of life insurance from some of the top UK providers:

HIV life insurance level term cover
  • Provides a fixed lump sum if you pass away within the term
  • Term is predefined - can last up to 40 years.
  • Fixed monthly premiums
  • Critical illness cover can be added for an additional cost
  • Terminal illness included
  • Medical information required

A great choice for:

  • A person with HIV who has an interest-based mortgage
  • Those who want to provide a fixed sum for loved ones if they pass

Other notes:

A pay out will only be made if you pass away during the term.

HIV life insurance decreasing term cover
  • Provides a fixed lump sum which decreases over time if you pass away within the term
  • Term is predefined - can last up to 40 years
  • Fixed monthly premiums
  • Critical illness cover can be added for an additional cost
  • Terminal illness included
  • Medical information required

A good choice for:

  • A person with HIV who has a repayment mortgage
  • Those on a tight budget who want some form of cover in place

Other notes:

A pay out will only be made if you pass away during the term.

HIV life insurance whole of life cover
  • Provides a fixed lump sum if you pass away
  • Pay out is guaranteed and cover lasts for life
  • Fixed premiums
  • Critical illness cover can’t be added
  • Terminal illness not included
  • Medical information required

A great choice for:

  • Those who want to guarantee a fixed pay out to their loved ones
  • For those who are older with HIV, who are in good overall health otherwise, and require a larger, guaranteed sum than over 50s can provide

Other notes:

On average, this is the most expensive policy type and you could potentially pay in more than you receive.

HIV life insurance over 50s plan
  • Provides a fixed lump sum if you pass away
  • Pay out is guaranteed and cover lasts for life
  • Fixed premiums
  • Critical illness cover can’t be added
  • Terminal illness included with certain providers
  • No medical information required
  • Only available to UK residents aged between 50 - 85

A good option for:

  • People with HIV who have additional health complications and are UK residents aged between 50 - 85

Other notes:

The maximum sum assured available is lower due to being accepted without medical information.

How much life insurance do people with HIV need?

Enter your financial commitments to understand the level of HIV life insurance cover you require.

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£137,934 is the estimated mortgage debt per household in the UK.

The purchase of a home is likely to be the largest financial commitment any of us will make in our lifetime. Your life insurance should cover your remaining mortgage balance to allow your loved ones to stay in the family home should anything happen to you.

Source: Moneynerd.co.uk

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The average monthly household budget in the UK is £2,548 (that’s £30,576 per year), which is spent on transport, food & drink, utilities (gas, electricity, water etc), clothing, council tax and leisure activities.

With energy prices hitting a record high and the cost of living rising sharply in the UK, you may wish to factor in utility bills and family living expenses into your cover.

Source: Nimblefins.co.uk

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The average personal debt of UK adults has risen to £34,566 (not including mortgage debt), with credit cards, personal loans and overdrafts being the most common forms of debt.

Factoring in any debts into your life insurance cover means that, if they need to be paid back from your estate after your passing, your loved ones won’t miss out financially.

Source: Money.co.uk

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According to SunLife, the average cost of a funeral in the UK is £3,953 (with the overall cost of dying at £9,200).

Funeral costs have increased by 116% since 2004 and are a significant cost which should be factored into the amount of life insurance you secure.

Source: SunLife.co.uk

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When factoring in cover for your children, you may wish to calculate the amount based on how long it is until they reach financial independence.

This could include childcare (£7,000 per year for part-time care), school expenses (£1,519 per school year for uniforms, lunches, stationary etc), as well as an additional sum for further education (this could be a contribution of up to £5,000 per year).

Sources: Daynurseries.co.uk, Primarytimes.co.uk & Savethestudent.org

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2 in 5 adults say they are relying on an inheritance to fund their retirement.

Factoring in an inheritance to your sum assured could allow loved ones to live a more financially comfortable life. Alternatively, you could leave a cash gift to a charity of your choosing.

Source: Moneyage.co.uk

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If you’re lucky enough to have your own savings or are part of the 30% of UK residents who already have a life insurance policy in place, this can provide financial protection for loved ones.

By entering your current cover, savings or death in service amount you can reduce the sum assured you require.

Source: Scottishbusinessnews.net

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Your total cover estimate

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Let us find you our best available quotes.

How much is life insurance for a person with HIV?

There isn’t a universal premium amount those with HIV will pay.

However, when it comes to life insurance, HIV is now classed as a pre-existing medical condition with many providers.

Whilst those with HIV will be required to pay higher life insurance premiums compared with someone with no health conditions, your premiums will also be impacted by:

  • Age
  • Occupation
  • Additional medical/health conditions
  • Your smoking status
  • Your weight
  • Your lifestyle
  • Length of required cover
  • Sum assured required

Will my life insurance get cancelled if I get diagnosed with HIV?

Being diagnosed with HIV during the policy term doesn’t invalidate your cover, providing you were honest during the application.

While unlikely, you should check the conditions of your cover to ensure HIV isn’t an exclusion.

  • If it isn’t an exclusion - You’re not obligated to inform the insurer of your recent diagnosis
  • If it’s an exclusion - You should inform your insurer, as the policy won’t pay out for HIV. New cover will need to be arranged to meet your change in circumstances

Certain occupations bring an increased risk of contracting HIV, such as medical professionals, emergency service workers and the military.

Being diagnosed won’t affect the terms of your existing policy. If you work in a profession where you’re at higher risk you may consider taking out cover sooner rather than later, to ensure you’re fully protected.

Do I have to disclose HIV to get life insurance?

Any non-disclosure regarding your HIV status during the application will deem your policy invalid. As a result, no pay out will be issued if you pass away.

Unfortunately, even in 2023, being diagnosed with HIV still brings inaccurate connotations.

This fear of judgement, coupled with the possibility of higher premiums, can make it tempting to be dishonest about your HIV status.

However, this can result in your policy being invalidated and risks a pay out being denied.

Our team is friendly, professional and will not judge you. Simply contact us so we can help you make an informed decision about your life insurance options.

Do life insurance companies test for HIV?

HIV tests may be required during the application if the applicant:

  • Requires a high level of cover
  • Frequently travels
  • Uses drugs
  • Has any sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)

The cost of a HIV test will be covered by the insurer and will take place at either a public or private clinic.

If the results of the test are positive, it’s likely the insurer will defer your application for 6 - 12 months to determine how HIV affects your health and how your body responds to treatment.

You’ll not be required to undergo a test if you’ve already declared yourself living with HIV.

Does a HIV test affect life insurance?

Taking an HIV test won’t affect your life insurance, but the outcome of the test may have an impact.

If you're awaiting results from a HIV test, this should be declared to the insurer. You may be deferred until the results are provided.

During the application process, you'll be asked if you've tested positive for HIV.

A routine HIV test with a negative result won't affect your ability to obtain life insurance and there's no need to declare this.

A HIV test with a positive result could bring various implications mentioned within this guide, including deferral, increased premiums and providing medical evidence.

HIV and an existing life insurance policy

If you tried to secure life insurance more than 10 years ago and declared that you live with HIV, then you may have been declined, or the insurer would have made you pay much higher premiums.

However, with the advances in current HIV treatments, life expectancy has increased significantly, and insurers are reflecting this in their willingness to provide cheaper cover.

If you previously secured life cover while living with HIV, then it’s worth checking if you could obtain the same cover for a better price.

Reassured can provide you with no obligation quotes from some of the UK's leading insurers to compare against your existing cover.

However, as the cost of life insurance is based on many factors, including age and general health, we can’t guarantee that your existing premiums can be beaten.

Critical illness cover and HIV

HIV is covered by most critical illness cover, meaning that if you're diagnosed with HIV and have this protection in place, you'll receive a pay out.

These funds could be used to help pay for private medical treatment, make necessary adaptations to your home or to simply enjoy with your family.

Unfortunately, due to the effect HIV has on your immune system, it's not possible to obtain critical illness cover if you’re already living with HIV.

This is due to the increased likelihood of contracting additional conditions, due to a weaker immune system - meaning you’d pose too much of a risk to the insurer.

Drug use and HIV

Life insurance for people with HIV who use drugs will require further testing during the application.

People who inject drugs (PWID) may also need to perform a test regardless of their known HIV status.

Up to 10% of global HIV infections are due to injecting drugs[2], the third-highest category of people most likely to contract HIV.

During the application, you'll be asked information regarding whether you use drugs.

If declared within the PWID category, you'll be asked further questions regarding your drug use, and this will likely result in having to undertake an HIV test.

However, any active recreational drug use will result in your application being declined.

AIDS life insurance

As most people are aware, the biggest risk with regards to HIV is its potential to develop into AIDS-defining disease, which weakens the immune system.

Contracting AIDS during the term of your existing life insurance won’t invalidate your existing policy providing you were honest at the time of application.

Unfortunately, it's not currently possible to obtain life insurance if you’re living with AIDS at the point of application.

The exception to this is for UK residents aged between 50 - 85, as it's possible to take out an over 50s plan without the need to provide any medical information.

Simply contact our friendly team for your fee-free, personalised quote today.

Living with HIV UK

There are currently over 106,890 people in the UK living with HIV[3].

Whilst manageable, HIV is currently an incurable condition which can bring complications, such as AIDS-defining illnesses which damages the body’s immune system.

This highlights the need for life insurance cover to secure the financial wellbeing of your loved ones should the worst happen.

Life insurance quotes with HIV

With HIV now being treated as a pre-existing medical condition, it’s possible to secure life insurance.

Using the services of our FCA-regulated broker allows you to find the most suitable policy for your personal situation.

Why not save yourself time and money by letting our impaired risk specialists find you our best quotes.

And the best part is our award-winning brokerage service is completely fee-free to use.

Sources:

[1] https://www.covermagazine.co.uk/news/3010599/policyholders-hiv-urged-review-life-cover-term

[2] https://www.unodc.org/documents/frontpage/Facts_about_drug_use_and_the_spread_of_HIV.pdf

[3] https://www.tht.org.uk/hiv-and-sexual-health/about-hiv/hiv-statistics

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