Does Depression Affect Life Insurance?

Depression is a serious illness that affects more people than you might think. According to a study conducted by the National Institutes of Health, nearly 35 million Americans suffer from depression severe enough that it requires treatment. In addition to the struggles of daily life, these individuals who suffer from depression also may have to deal with challenges related to health insurance or life insurance coverage.

No matter your age, when you apply for life insurance you will be required to fill out a complete health history form and, likely, get some form of physical of physician’s clearance. If you suffer from depression, you are obligated to inform the insurance company of your health history. While there is no set rule about depression and how it relates to approval or denial of coverage, hiding it can be an extremely damaging mistake. Make sure to follow these tips as you look for life insurance to protect you and your family.

What to do if you have depression

  • Be proactive: First, it is imperative that you or your loved one seek treatment for depression. The National Institute of Mental Health? has an extensive site that can help you learn more about your options. You can’t begin to think about life insurance coverage until your condition – or the condition of your loved one who is suffering from depression – is under control.

  • Be honest:Talk about your situation with your insurance broker. Be realistic: depression is a risk for insurance companies because of the increased risk of suicide. This is a delicate issue for you and your broker – so be upfront and honest about it, and try to find a solution. If you make your broker aware of this at an early stage, your condition can be worked into your insurance quote. (This will be particularly important during the underwriting phase.)

  • Be realistic: You might not be eligible for the type of coverage you want, but your depression might not exclude you completely from life insurance coverage. If you have sought treatment and have been under physicians’ care for years – without incident – it is likely that your insurance coverage will be less of an issue.

  • Be smart: Ask for “pre-qualified” quotes – make sure you are pre-qualified for coverage with depression. This can reduce your risk for a declined application. You might need to verify with your insurance broker that you are receiving a pre-qualified quote – which means your depression has already been taken into consideration.

  • Be your own advocate: You may need a letter from your physician that explains how you are reacting to treatment and the progress you have made. You may also need to provide documentation of which factors triggered your depression – was it the death of a loved one? A change in employment? – and what you did to get the depression under control. If your medical records can show that you’ve taken an active role as a patient, your chances of getting life insurance coverage will increase.

About UsContact Us
Most Recent

5 Ways to Reduce the Risk of Breast Cancer

Breast cancer remains one of the biggest fears for women, but the truth is that it is becoming more and more detectable and curable. And now, there are ways for us to make breast cancer a bit more preventable. By controlling our alcohol intake and living healthily, we can better detect and even prevent this disease.

Continue Reading »