Can you get life insurance with leukaemia?

If you’re currently living with leukaemia, you'll be declined for traditional types of life insurance.

However, if you’ve been in remission for several years and have reached a specified recovery period, you could have more options available.

Ultimately, your options can depend on what stage you’re at in your diagnoses.

If you're a UK resident between the ages of 50 - 85 you’ll be able to secure an over 50s policy regardless of your medical history due to not needing to disclose medical information, as this type of policy offers guaranteed acceptance.

In the UK alone, 27 patients are diagnosed with leukaemia every day (that’s 10,000 people a year)[1].

If you're looking for help on life insurance during or after your leukaemia diagnosis, Reassured offer support and assistance through our specialist impaired team who focus on finding some form of cover for non-standard applicants.

What is leukaemia?

  • Leukaemia is a type of blood cancer
  • Main symptoms include tiredness and/or anaemia, repeated infections, increased bruising and bleeding
  • There isn't a cure for leukaemia, however this doesn't mean some people don't achieve long-term remission
  • People in stages 0 to II may live for 5 to 20 years without treatment
  • Over 65 out of 100 people will survive their leukaemia for 5 years or more after being diagnosed[2]

Life Insurance Calculator

Calculate how much life insurance you may need by filling in the costs you’d like your policy to cover.

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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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What policy options are available to leukaemia patients?

If you’re currently living with leukaemia, then you'll not be able to secure traditional life insurance.

If you're a UK resident aged between 50 - 85 then an over 50s plan will be your only option to secure life cover.

Over 50s life insurance offers guaranteed acceptance, meaning regardless of your medical circumstances and if you fit the age range, you can secure a policy.

Over 50 plans key points:

  • Sum assured up to £20,000 (depending on your needs and budget)
  • No medical information required during application
  • Guaranteed pay out when you pass away
  • Insurer will calculate premium costs by age, smoking status and sum assured
  • Waiting period of 12 - 24 months (depending on the insurer, meaning the policy won’t pay out for natural causes, including leukaemia, during this time)
  • Over 50 Life insurance can start from just £5 through Reassured

If you’re exploring your options for life insurance after recovery from Leukaemia, you may want to consider options like level or decreasing term life insurance or whole of life insurance, this can depend on your personal circumstances and budget.

Reassured have written a comprehensive guide on life insurance after cancer that can help you explore what options you have »

Do you need to tell insurers about your leukaemia diagnosis?

For traditional life insurance policies, yes. Unless you're applying for an over 50s policy, you’ll be asked for medical information and also family medical history during the application.

Insurers calculate your premiums based on a variety of factors, one being medical history, to accurately assess the level of risk you pose.

If applying for traditional policy types, insurers will ask about:

  • Age
  • Smoking status
  • Medical history
  • BMI
  • Occupation / lifestyle
  • Sum assured
  • Term length
  • Type of policy

If you're over 50 and have been diagnosed with leukaemia, when applying for an over 50s life insurance policy you'll only be asked about your age, smoking status and sum assured.

If you already have life insurance in place and are diagnosed during the policy term, you aren’t obligated to inform your insurer and it won’t affect your current policy.

How long after having leukaemia can you get life insurance?

Insurers will require a specified recovery period to pass before you can secure a policy.

This can vary between insurers, depending on the treatment you have had and what type of leukaemia you had been diagnosed with.

When looking for the right life insurance policy, it is crucial to compare different insurers and quotes to ensure you're getting the best coverage at the most competitive price.

Unfortunately, it’s highly likely you’ll be declined if you apply for a policy before this period or if you’re still living with leukaemia.

However, there are no medical restrictions when applying for an over 50s policy. If you’re a UK resident aged 50 - 85, at any stage in your diagnosis you may apply and you’ll not need to disclose your medical history to your insurer.

At Reassured, we'll take your personal situation into account and provide you with any available options that are applicable to you.

Will life insurance cover leukaemia?

Yes. If you already have an existing policy and pass away during the term, then your loved ones will receive a pay out.

If you had recently secured an over 50s policy but were currently in the waiting period, a pay out won’t be made if you pass away due to natural causes (including leukaemia) during this time.

Although, you’ll be covered for accidental death. Once the waiting period is over, you will be fully covered.

Can I be denied life insurance for leukaemia?

Yes, if you’re currently living with leukaemia or have not yet reached the insurers specified recovery period, you’ll be declined.

Unfortunately, you’ll be declined a policy if applying for standard life insurance policies, such as term life insurance and whole of life insurance.

If you're worried about being declined or have been declined previously, Reassured offer a specialist support service with our impaired life insurance team.

FAQs

Will a family history of cancer affect my life insurance?

Maybe. If cancer is common in your family medical history, this may affect your premium costs.

Insurers will look at your medical history, as well as your family’s and if many immediate family members have been diagnosed with cancer, this may pose a risk to insurers - this also applies to other medical conditions not just cancer.

Will insurers ask about my leukaemia in the application?

Yes, during the application you’ll need to disclose your leukaemia diagnosis and answer additional questions, such as:

  • When/what age were you diagnosed?
  • What was the stage/grade of your cancer?
  • What treatment did you receive (and for how long)?
  • How long has it been since your last treatment?

Insurers could also request a medical exam or report from your GP.

What medical conditions are linked to leukaemia?

Finding Life insurance with leukaemia

Being diagnosed with leukaemia yourself or to see a loved one go through it can be a difficult and emotional time for anyone.

We understand it’s a hard time and life insurance may not be an immediate priority, however, if you were wanting to explore what options may be available to help protect your family if the worst were to happen, our professional agents are just a call away.

We can also offer expertise from our specialist impaired team who can inform you of any questions you may have regarding being declined or life insurance before/ after being diagnosed with leukaemia.

Get in contact today to see if there is a suitable option that fits your needs.

Sources:

[1] https://www.leukaemiauk.org.uk/about-leukaemia/

[2] https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/about-cancer/acute-lymphoblastic-leukaemia-all/survival

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