Obtaining Life Insurance with Depression- How does It Impact your Rates?
All you Need to Know
Obtaining life insurance with depression used to be much more difficult than it is today. Insurance companies have adapted and it’s now possible to find life insurance with depression with much less resistance. It’s not consider as high risk and the rates are much more affordable than they have been in the past as well.
Life insurance companies look at many factors when considering an applicant for life insurance. In the end, it all comes down to your overall risk for mortality and which rating class the insurance carrier will classify you as. We will break this down in more depth further in the article.
In today’s life insurance market, it’s important to know that even if you suffer from various forms of depression, you can still qualify for excellent life insurance rates.
With hundreds of life insurance carriers flooding the market, it’s important to know which carriers are best for your situation and which carriers will view your depression in the best possible light.
That’s what we are here to help with. Explaining those exact questions to you. Depression is tough enough to deal with to allow life insurance comparison shopping to become another burden. Let us help and explain the best methods to obtaining life insurance with depression.
Depression in the U.S.
Depression is a rapid growing health concern for many in the United States. More specifically, According to the National Health Institute.
More than 16.2 Million Americans suffered at least one Major Depressive Episode in 2017. This Accounts for 6.7% of all U.S. Adults
Females Tend to be diagnosed more frequently. About 8.5% more frequently than men.
44% of these documents cases are being treated with Physician care and medications.
37% of the cases receive no treatment at all for the depression (not recommended) and 6% are treated with medication only.
Why is this important? The life insurance carriers will have several questions and ways of evaluating the current state of your depression. Knowing where you fall within the depression spectrum is what allows the insurance carriers to correctly rate your case and assign your risk class.
Depression can come in many different forms. How many? 9 according to our calculations but one could argue even more fall into this category. It’s important to learn which mood disorder category you may ultimately land in so let’s cover that briefly.
Your main 9 forms of depression.
Major depression usually indicates that you suffer from the symptoms of depression “most of the time” or on most days. You may also lose interest in activities you use to enjoy or have trouble concentrating or making decisions. In addition, you typically have severe fatigue and loss of appetite.
Persistent Depressive Disorder
This is when depression persist for 2 or more years. You may also have severe loss of appetite or the opposite causing you to overeat. Fatigue is also present with persistent depressive order.
Bi Polar Disorder
Also known as “Manic Disorder”, you will experience severe mood swings that will range from very manic episodes of high energy all the way to severe lows where fatigue and depression are at peak levels.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
SAD typically impacts individuals during the winter months of the year or days where sunlight time is shortened dramatically. This depression typically subsides come spring and summer.
This is a combination of Major depression but usually will have additional symptoms including false beliefs, or hallucinations.
Peripartum (Postpartum) Depression
Women are the victims of the Postpartum depression and usually begins shortly after childbirth and can range anywhere from 2-12 months or longer.
Premenstrual Dysphonic Disorder (PMDD)
This depression also only impacts women and typically is prior to a menstrual cycle.
This refers to a short-term depression which impacts you due to a major event that occurs in your life such as a death in the family, a divorce or losing a job.
This form of depression is a bit different than the rest of them. It’s typically a depression that follows a pattern and your mood tends to improve with certain events or situations.
Good Life Protection would also argue, PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) can call into this category as well. To see your exact, diagnose, visit our individual articles pertaining to each form of depression above.
1 Step Deeper into Life Insurance with Depression
We have now identified which kind of depression you have but it again, dives 1 step deeper once you begin formally applying for life insurance.
Life insurance with depression has a lot to do with how severe the depression. The life insurance will break your depression into 3 main categories.
First, they will break down into 3 mood disorders. Bi-Polar, Anxiety or Major Depression.
It will than come down to if the depression is…
How do they determine which of these you fall into when underwriting your case.
Mild would require no more than 1 medication to control the depression. You also need to show the life insurance carrier that your stable in other areas of life. What do we mean by this?
Preferably to fit a mild rating for your depression you would want none of the following.
- Suicide Attempts
- Criminal history during depression
You would also want to have a stable working life. Why does all this matter? It simply shows the life insurance carrier that you may have depression, but you are managing it well and it’s not impacting every other facet of your day to day life.
Moderate depression would allow for 2 medications. You could also have one of the medications be an antipsychotic. None of the medications can fall into the MAOI category however, otherwise you may drop to severe for your depression rating.
Severe includes past suicide attempts, MAOI inhibitor medications and possible lifestyle interruptions such as bankruptcies or loss of employment.
Depression Overview and Side notes
The way depression is currently impacting your life is a major factor the insurance company wants to inquire about when applying for life insurance. All the above categories are possible stages and ratings a life insurance company may give you for your depression, but the outside factors are equally important.
If things are going well outside of the depression and the medication use is limited, your chances at top class ratings is still strong. We told you life insurance with depression isn’t all that scary!
Top Questions the Life Insurance Company Will Ask
Here is a brief overview of the questions the life insurance company will have for you when applying for coverage with depression.
- Which kind of depression have you been diagnosed with?
- When was the diagnosis for the depression?
- What are the current medications being taken for the depression?
- What medications have been prescribed in the past?
- Have you made several medications changes?
- Any psychotherapy involved or necessary?
- Are you diligent with doctor orders and recommendations?
- Any suicide attempts? How many? How long ago?
- Any use of MAOI inhibitors?
What Ratings can you expect?
After breaking down the possible category your depression may fall into, it’s time to understand where you may fall, and which companies would serve you best for your needs. ASSUMING ALL OTHER MEDICAL CONDITIONS ARE GOOD AND STABLE, you could expect the following ratings for your application. Our Example would cover Age 35 both Male and Female on a 20 year life insurance policy.
Mild Depression – Preferred Rates (Best Possible Class)
Moderate Depression – Table 4 Ratings
Severe Depression- Table 6 to Decline (Depends Greatly on Past Suicide attempts and Medication History)
Who’s the Best Company for Life Insurance with Depression
If you ask 5 different life insurance agents who would rank #1, you would most likely get different answers. However, if you asked the same 5 life insurance agents the top 4 companies, you would probably see the 4 same companies in that list, just in different orders. Here are the Good Life Protection top picks for the best ratings and highest approval percentage for life insurance with depression.
Protective Life is a top-rated company and has been around since 1907. They have aggressive underwriting and we see many of our depression cases go through underwriting with favorable outcomes and small amounts of declined cases.
Who doesn’t know who Prudential is? Prudential is one of the best companies to consider for life insurance with depression. The biggest life insurance company makes splashes in many categories for underwriting, but depression is no exception. Prudential is a top go company if you are currently battling depression and seeking life insurance.
Lincoln Financial Group
Another undisputed highly rate life insurance company. Very close to the same scenario as Protective and Prudential. They have been around for decades and have certain underwriting niches. Depression cases seem to have favorable outcomes at competitive rates with Lincoln Financial Group.
5 Star Life
This is an honorable mention. If you had issues obtaining life insurance with depression you should at least give them a look before ending your journey for coverage. However, this should be your last resort for coverage. The reason 5-star life could be a great fit is because if you have never been declined and take several medications you can get approved at great prices. 5 Star life does not run a RX (Prescription report) which dramatically increases your odds of gaining coverage at favorable pricing.
Don’t Forget About Guaranteed Issue Life InsuranceYou always have options. If you have been declined or don’t think you can qualify after reading this post, don’t forget about guaranteed issue life insurance. No questions are asked about your background for this form of policy. Although coverage is limited to 25,000 in coverage, it’s still an option to adding some protection for you and your family. If this is the route you think you need to take, we highly recommend 1 of the 3 carriers for these policies.
Depression is a major issue in the United States. It’s likely not going away and tends to be a growing issue across the country. Don’t let it impact another area of your life. We are here to help, and we always try and give you the best possible to options and advice. Make sure to work with an Independent Agency and agent to increase your chances of finding the best possible rates.
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