What do insurers deem as high risk and how will this impact…
Yes, it may still be possible to get life insurance after surviving cancer.
If you've had any form of cancer in the past, insurers will regard it as a pre-existing medical condition, meaning each application would need to be considered on a case-by-case basis.
With over 200 types of cancer now prevalent in society, it’s predicted that one in two people will develop some form of cancer in their lifetime.
This highlights the growing need to financially protect your loved ones should the worst happen.
However, many question whether they can secure cover after a cancer diagnosis.
Thankfully there are multiple insurers, including those available through Reassured, who offer life insurance to those who’ve previously had some forms of cancer.
Keep reading this in-depth guide to find out how a cancer diagnosis can affect your ability to secure life insurance, as we cover:
Using an insurance broker with specialised staff, such as our impaired life insurance team, could help you to get some form of cover. Simply contact us today.
Yes, you’ll need to disclose a previous cancer diagnosis during the application process.
Insurers require this information so they can accurately assess the level of risk you pose and offer the most appropriate policy options.
Failure to provide this information is known as non-disclosure and it can prevent a pay out from being made to your loved ones.
The exception to this is with an over 50s plan as you won’t be obligated to disclose any medical information with this policy type.
If you already have life insurance in place and are diagnosed with cancer during the term, you aren’t obligated to inform your insurer.
Providing all the information when completing the application was correct, your new diagnosis won’t impact your current policy.
Most insurers won't approve an application until a specified recovery period has passed. This is usually 2 - 3 years but can be up to 5 - 10 years.
If you apply for life insurance during this recovery period, it's likely that you'll be denied, or the application will be postponed until the desired recovery period has been reached.
As the desired recovery period differs between insurers, it's essential to shop around and find the cover which best suits you.
The cost of life insurance premiums after cancer can be affected by a number of factors.
You’ll need to provide both standard information and details about your cancer diagnosis.
Your personal details include:
|Your age||On average, the younger you are, the cheaper your policy premiums will be|
|Smoking status||Smokers pay a higher premium, on average|
|Occupations||High risk occupations will require higher premiums on average|
|Policy details||A longer policy term and higher sum assured (pay out amount) will be reflected in your premiums|
|Drug use||Your application is likely to be declined if you actively use drugs|
|High-risk hobbies||Dangerous or high-risk hobbies will result in higher premiums|
Information about your diagnosis includes:
|Time since recovery||To know if a specified recovery period has passed|
|Type of cancer and grading||Your insurer can obtain this information from your GP (with your permission)|
|Treatment types||Insurers will need to know the type and length of the treatment you underwent, and whether it was successful|
|Medication||Any medication you’ve taken during and after cancer|
|Full medical examination||Most insurers will cover these costs|
The type and stage of your cancer, as well as the treatment you've received, will have a significant effect on your premium. This is to account for the likelihood of cancer returning.
The sooner you apply for life insurance after the specified recovery period, the higher your monthly life insurance premium is likely to be.
This is because the chance of recurrence reduces over time and, therefore, you become less of a risk to the insurer.
It's highly likely that your insurer will want to obtain information from your consultant, as well as have you undergo a medical, prior to calculating your premium.
Reassured can find affordable cover for cancer survivors by comparing quotes from a panel of mainstream providers and smaller specialists.
Our friendly team can then walk you through the whole application process.
We can also provide the below calculator to help you determine how much life insurance you may need.
Due to the level of risk involved, some policy options may be more attainable than others when securing life insurance after cancer.
This is because some policies will require you to provide medical information during the application process.
Disclosing a previous cancer diagnosis could impact the policy terms you’re offered and the price you’ll pay.
While it’s not impossible to secure cover, you may be required to undergo additional questioning, have a medical exam, or have your policy written via manual underwriting.
The most common forms of life insurance and how they’re likely to be impacted by a cancer diagnosis are:
Yes, it could be possible to secure life insurance as a breast cancer survivor.
Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer among women in the UK, with around 1 in 8 women being diagnosed in their lifetime. In rare cases, men can also be diagnosed with breast cancer.
Just like any form of cancer, insurers will need to know certain details about your condition. Such as:
You may experience loaded (higher) premiums due to the increased risk, or your application may be postponed until a recovery period has been reached. In some cases, you may be declined life insurance.
Yes, obtaining life insurance as a prostate cancer survivor could be possible.
However, underwriting processes will vary between insurers so it’s important to compare quotes to find the most favourable policy.
In the UK, 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer within their lifetime. The risk of being diagnosed increases with age.
This highlights the need to have adequate life insurance in case the worst were to happen.
You’ll need to provide medical information (detailed above) so that insurers can assess the level of risk you pose.
It’s likely that you will experience higher premiums or a postponed application if a certain recovery time has not yet been reached.
Both breast cancer and prostate cancer are more prevalent in those over 50, making over 50s life insurance a good option if you’re diagnosed, between 50 - 85, and a UK resident.
However, you would have to survive 12 - 24 months from the policy’s start date in order for a claim to be successful.
Yes, it could be possible to secure life insurance if you’re a survivor of skin cancer.
Melanoma is the fifth most common cancer in the UK, with around 15,400 people being diagnosed with the condition each year.
As with many other cancers, the risk of being diagnosed with skin cancer increases as you get older.
Just like breast and prostate cancer, if you’ve been diagnosed with skin cancer prior to securing life insurance, insurers will need to know certain information about your condition.
This includes when you were diagnosed, what stage the cancer was at, what treatment you received and when you last had treatment.
Premiums may be increased due to the higher risk you pose to the insurer, or your application may be postponed until a specified recovery period has been reached.
Insurers may also want to contact your GP or consultant or may ask you to undergo a medical exam to get a better understanding of your condition.
Yes, it might be possible to secure critical illness cover after you’ve had cancer.
However, like life insurance, whether you’re offered cover will depend on:
Insurers may also only offer cover once a certain recovery period has been reached.
As cancer is commonly covered within critical illness cover, insurers will need to mitigate the increased risk of a claim being made.
This might involve exclusions for cancer or cancer related illnesses being added to the policy and/or inflations to the premium you’ll pay. An exclusion means you won’t be able to make a claim for this condition and, sometimes, other associated conditions.
Alternatively, some insurers may decline you for critical illness cover.
Unfortunately, if diagnosed with terminal cancer, you'll be unable to secure conventional term-based life insurance as your risk is too high.
However, depending on your life expectancy diagnosis, it could be possible to take out over 50 life insurance.
Acceptance is guaranteed to UK residents aged 50 - 85 and offers life insurance with no medical.
Due to this you have no obligation to disclose your cancer diagnosis.
The only condition to take into consideration is that you're required to live a minimum of 1 or 2 years from the start of the policy, depending on the insurer. This is known as the waiting or qualifying period.
If you have life cover already in place when being diagnosed with terminal cancer, check your policy details to see if it includes terminal illness cover.
This will allow you to make an early claim on your policy and receive an early pay out, which can help you fund medical treatment and get your financial affairs in order.
Over 50s plans with terminal illness cover is not available through Reassured.
You’ll still be able to secure life insurance if someone in your family has been diagnosed with cancer.
However, your family medical history can affect the cost of your monthly premiums and policy options.
Certain forms of cancer can be hereditary. Therefore, if a close relative (mother, father, sister or brother) has previously been diagnosed before the age of 65, it's highly likely to increase the cost of your premium.
It's important that this doesn’t deter you from disclosing all information about your family’s medical history during the application.
This can lead to non-disclosure which can result in the denial of a pay out when the time comes.
Your policy won't be affected, providing you were honest during the application.
If you fully disclosed all the required information about your medical wellbeing and family history in the application process, your existing life insurance won’t be affected and the pay out will be honoured by the insurer.
Certain cover options will provide you with a pay out if you're diagnosed with cancer during the term of your policy. Typically, this in the form of:
Being diagnosed with cancer doesn't affect your special event option
A special event (or guaranteed insurability) option allows you to increase your level of cover without the need for additional underwriting. It’s included in some policies, or it may be added as an optional benefit at the point of purchase which incurs an additional cost.
If your policy includes the special event option, it can be used for life changing events such as having a baby, moving house or getting married.
Even if you're diagnosed with cancer, you still have this option available to you and can increase your level of cover in the instance of a specified special event occurring. However, being diagnosed with cancer would not be classed as an event which would allow you to amend your policy.
When a doctor mentions cancer, it's normal for people to think about the future of their loved ones and how it'll be affected.
Therefore, when suspecting a diagnosis of cancer, many people will question whether they can take out life insurance as a precaution for the worst.
Unfortunately, once you’ve had this discussion with your GP, it must be disclosed during the application process to ensure your policy is valid.
In this instance, it's likely that your application will be postponed until the results have been obtained and a diagnosis has been made.
Whether a life insurance pay out will be made for cancer will depend on whether you were diagnosed before or after your application.
Being diagnosed when your life insurance is already in place doesn't affect the terms of your policy, and a pay out will be made to your loved ones as it would with any other cause of death.
Similarly, if you have terminal illness cover or critical illness cover in place you should be able to make a claim.
Whether you’re a cancer survivor or have a family history of cancer, be reassured that there could be options available.
Why not get in touch with an FCA-regulated life insurance broker, like Reassured, to discuss your policy options?
A friendly member of the team can take your personal circumstances into consideration and provide you with details of the insurers from our panel who are most likely to offer you cover.
We also have a dedicated impaired team who could help applicants who have been declined in the past.
The best bit is you can use our award-winning service to compare quotes completely free of charge.
What do insurers deem as high risk and how will this impact…
Life insurance providers won’t always check your medical…
As we know things in life change, but can your life…
A comprehensive guide detailing exactly what is covered…
Most dads need life insurance to secure the financial…
Life insurance helps mums secure the financial future of…
Securing life insurance doesn’t have to be confusing. Read…
It’s possible to secure life insurance if you’ve suffered a…
Many have attempted to quantify who the best life insurance…
According to internal data from Reassured, the average cost…
Life insurance myths are debunked in this comprehensive…
Secure family life insurance to protect your loved ones',…
Yes very pleased with my choice very helpful easy to understand and very pleasant transaction all good!Mrs M Rushworth
Very professional and reassuring. Life insurance sorted in about 10 minutes.Stephen Davies
very courteous and friendly. Polite professional and empathic.Stedroy Fenton
Another happy customer I am. They are very professional and kind. Fully communicative. I recommend.Piotr Stepien
Really attentive during the call, good clear guidance throughout. Well done.Michael Reynolds
Amazing service quick fast and easy and Joey was a star on the phone really help me thanks.Sera Woolley
I made the right choice and now I feel relieved that I did.glyn
Really genuine kind and compassionate team with great knowledge and friendly approach highly recommend them!Katelia Merritt
I must say Jake took me through every step and was brilliant, recommend them anytime.Allan Green
Very happy and everything explained well, so glad a took the time to take the call, normally I would say I'm busy. But compared to other company's we save so much more money.Jenny Berry