Life Insurance After Lung Cancer [How to Qualify]

Life insurance after lung cancer is intimidating.

Heck, life insurance for cancer survivors and cancer patients can be scary.

But it is 100% possible.

Have you finished your treatments for your lung cancer and now in the position to shop for life insurance?

That’s great. We ultimately recommend comparing rates with all life insurance companies to find the best life insurance rates possible.

You can do easily below using our instant quote tool.

It will compare rates with over 50 of the top rated life insurance companies for you.

It’s a little trickier than purchasing life insurance with no medical background, but it can certainly be done.

Life insurance for high risk people always requires a bit more groundwork but it’s what we are accustomed to doing at Good Life Protection.

Let’s walk through the process and the rates you may be looking at, after your approval.

To get the ball rolling, let’s emphasize this key point one more time.

Lung Cancer and Life Insurance

You will be surprised how good your rates can ultimately be for your life insurance after lung cancer.

Lung cancer has been a growing concern among the population over the last few decades and a tough illness to overcome.

Cancer, in general, is a difficult medical condition to conquer and defeat so we want to make the life insurance process as easy as possible for you at Good Life Protection.

Following the steps and having transparency with your life insurance agent will ultimately give you a great chance at approvals for your life insurance after lung cancer.

Insurance companies have been offering life insurance coverage after lung cancer for some time now, but a few items need to be checked off the list before this can take place.

We know the common misconception is that obtaining life insurance after lung cancer or with any pre-existing medical conditions is tough, but lung cancer is one of those pre-existing conditions that’s possible to provide coverage for.

If and only if you follow our easy guide that we are about to lay out for you

Lung Cancer Statistics and Why Life Insurance Companies May Be Concerned

According to, Lung cancer is the second most common form of cancer currently.

If you are a man, you have only a higher chance of developing prostate cancer but following prostate cancer lung cancer comes in 2nd place.

For the ladies, you only have a better chance of developing breast cancer but again lung cancer falls into 2nd place.

Currently, 14% of all new cancer cases are diagnosed with lung cancer.

This includes both small cell and non-small cell lung cancer.

In, 2018 234,000 new cases of lung cancer have been diagnosed.

It’s a pretty equal split between men and women.

Men coming in at 121,000 and women just over 112,000 new lung cancer diagnosed cases.

Unfortunately for the sake of obtaining life insurance after lung cancer, it gets a little rough with the next fact about lung cancer.

It’s BY FAR the leading cause of death among cancer’s in men and women.

If you combine colon, breast, and prostate cancer deaths, it still falls short of the overall number of deaths caused by lung cancer each year.

This is what can make life insurance after lung cancer a bit more tricky.

Currently, the average age to develop lung cancer is 70 years old.

It’s extremely rare for someone under the age of 45 to develop lung cancer.

If however, you fall into this category…Obtaining life insurance is going to be very difficult.

Your overall chances of developing lung cancer as a man in the United States is currently 1 in 15.

For the ladies, you sit at 1 in 17 chance of developing lung cancer.  This statistic does include smokers and non-smokers.

However, SMOKING dramatically increases your chances of developing lung cancer.

In addition, smoking also hurts your chance of obtaining life insurance after lung cancer.

lung cancer statistics

Life Insurance and Lung Cancer and the Risk Involved

Many things can increase your chances of developing lung cancer at some point throughout your life but according to, here are the top risk factors for developing lung cancer.

These have no direct impact on if you can get life insurance after lung cancer.


Cigar Smoking

Second-Hand Smoke

Exposure to Radon

Exposure to Asbestos

Family History

Exposure to other Pollution’s or Chemicals in the Workplace

Marijuana Smoking (Not Currently Proven)

Risk Factors for Lung Cancer

Odds for Life Insurance After Lung Cancer

You can’t necessarily control if you ever develop lung cancer or not and can’t run from it but there are a few helpful tips that could help.

Here are the top ways to reduce your overall risk of developing lung cancer during your lifetime.

  • Avoid Radon
  • Eat a healthy Diet
  • Avoid Exposure to other dangerous chemicals


The Application and How Lung Cancer Impacts Approvals

  • What was your age at the diagnosis of lung cancer?
  • Which of the following treatments did you undergo?
  • Radiation?
  • Chemo Therapy?
  • Targeted Therapy Drugs?
  • Radiofrequency Ablation?
  • Surgery or Removal?
  • What was the stage and grade of lung cancer?
  • What Is your current prognosis?
  • Any Family History of Lung Cancer?
  • Any other Health Concerns outside of the Cancer?
  • Currently a Tobacco User?
  • Are you following doctors guidelines? Are you Diligent about follow up with your Doctor?

All of these factors will determine how high risk you are and your overall pricing.

What kind of lung cancer did you have exactly?

Did you have non-small cell lung cancer or Small Cell Lung Cancer?

Was the lung cancer …( this has a huge impact on if you can obtain life insurance after lung cancer)

  • Stage 1?
  • Stage 2?
  • Stage 3?
  • Stage 4?

How Stages of Lung Cancer Impact Life Insurance

All these cancers act differently and have different impacts on your life insurance application.

The carrier/ life insurance company needs to know which kind of lung cancer you had to accurately assess the risk and determine your approval and ultimately what price you will pay for your life insurance policy.

Depending on the stage and form of lung cancer you had, the mortality risk for each changes drastically.

Typically, the stages with all cancers including lung cancer represent three major components.

  • The size of the original tumor or tumors
  • Has any spread occurred to nearby organs?
  • Were any lymph nodes involved or did cancer migrate to any nearby lymph nodes?

Another common question the life insurance carrier will have for you is which stage the lung cancer or which stage it was the lung cancer before treatment.

Life insurance approvals after lung cancer can depend greatly on which stage your lung cancer was at prior to treatment can have a huge impact on your life insurance application.

Typically, this is a breakdown of what you would be looking when shopping for life insurance after lung cancer.

Stage 0 Lung Cancer-  Cancer was caught early and confined to the lung- Possible Standard Rating after waiting period is complete

Stage One Lung Cancer-  Cancer was caught early and confined to the lung- Substandard Rates or possibly a flat extra charge after waiting period is completed.

Stage Two Lung Cancer-  Cancer stayed localized in the chest area- Long Waiting period and sub-standard rates if approved.

Stage Three Lung Cancer- Cancer may have spread to other nearby organs. – Declined Life Insurance-Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance still an option!

Following those questions, the life insurance company is going to want to know which form of treatment you underwent and if the cancer was graded at all?

Was Your Lung Cancer Graded?

Your lung cancer may have been graded which gives an idea of how the tumor will grow and the chances of spreading.

Your Lung Cancer may have been either

  • Grade 1- Cancer typically looks small and uniform like normal cells. Slow growing cancer and low-grade cancer
  • Grade 2- This grade, the cells are larger and typically grow and spread more quickly
  • Grade 3- The cancer cells look different than typical cancer cells and reproduce very quickly

How can Lung Cancer Stage Impace your Rates

These grades are something the life insurance company will dig into, to accurately underwrite your application.

Which Method of Cancer Treatment did You Undergo?

In addition to the vast amounts of questions the life insurance carrier will have for you, there happens to be more.

Treatment is also a huge piece of the puzzle to obtaining life insurance after cancer.

The life insurance company wants to know

Which Treatment method you underwent?

The success of said treatment?

Success of the treatment could be considered the top factor for your life insurance after lung cancer.

How diligent you are about to follow up after treatment?

You may have been treated with

  • Surgery
  • Chemo Therapy
  • Radiation

Understand the Waiting Period for Lung Cancer Before Applying for Life Insurance

Waiting before throwing out life insurance applications is also a key tip to success when shopping the life insurance market after lung cancer.

Typically, regardless of the treatment method you underwent for your cancer, the life insurance company will want a minimum of 3- 5 years to be passed before approving a life insurance application.

Sometimes the waiting period may even be if 10 years depending on the circumstances and severity of the lung cancer.

This is because they need to verify the treatment is working and look at all the factors we discussed, and it is ultimately decided after evaluating all other aspects of cancer history.

What Else Matters with Lung Cancer When Obtaining Life Insurance

Is Recurrence possible or any Evidence of Recurrence?

Once your treatment is completed for lung cancer, the physician commonly tells you your overall chance of reoccurrence taking place.

It’s typically in the form of a percentage such as 5% or 20%.

The life insurance company you apply with will want to know which of these stats apply to you to accurately underwrite the application.

Last Questions Life Insurance Underwriters Will Ask About Lung Cancer

Below are other key factors that not only impact your rates and approval chances with lung cancer but can impact ALL life insurance applications.

The questions asked specifically about lung cancer we discussed previously will be asked but that will not be the end of the background questioning.

Here are the top other questions the life insurance agent and company will have for you and if they don’t ask these, you should choose a different life insurance agent or company to work with.

It greatly impacts your ability to get approved for coverage and accurate answers are a MUST!

Top Questions Life Insurance Applications Include

  • Are you currently a smoker?
  • Any family history of other cancers, heart attacks, strokes where someone passed away prior to age 60?
  • Any other medications?
  • What Medications are you taking related to Lung cancer?
  • Any Depression, anxiety or other mental impacts that accompany your lung cancer?
  • What are those medications for?
  • Any DUI’s or multiple driving violations in the last 5 years?
  • Have you ever been declined life insurance?
  • Any kidney or liver issues or complications
  • Your current height and weight

Consider Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance if Necessary with Lung Cancer

With lung cancer, it’s important to understand the waiting period that we discussed previously.

It’s also important to understand that you may have to consider a policy that doesn’t ask any medical questions.

These are known as guaranteed issue life insurance policies and are available for individuals ages 50-85.

Companies such as American General Life offer great options for these policies. If you think you may in this boat, be sure to read our post below.

Here is our full AIG Life Insurance Review.

It will provide the rest of the details that you need to know about these specific life insurance policies.

Conclusion, Life Insurance Is Possible After Cancer, Don’t Hesitate

Don’t be scared to pursue life insurance after lung cancer.  Just realize it may take time and you have a chance at being declined.

First and foremost, work with an independent agency and life insurance agent ONLY.

Other agents or CAPTIVE life insurance agents will not have the tools to help you.

You see…. It’s important to have the ability to pivot carriers, shop all rates for all top companies and for an agent to know the underwriting guidelines of how to effectively handle your life insurance application after lung cancer.

You don’t want to be stuck with only 1 option or risk getting declined coverage.

Your family depends on it so choose who you allow to represent you wisely.

At Good Life Protection, we have helped 100’s achieves great rates after being diagnosed with lung cancer.

Resources: American Cancer Society


other Cancers: ProstateBreastUterine