Sleep Apnea and Life Insurance Underwriting- The Real Facts
Life insurance with sleep apnea can be intimidating. We understand that and want to help. Also, sleep apnea and life insurance underwriting sometimes don’t go hand in hand but that all depends on many factors at the end of the day. Many life insurance companies will still offer very favorable rates and approve life insurance applications for individuals with sleep apnea.
We will cover in depth what it takes to ensure that this is possible. We always want you to achieve the best possible rates for your life insurance. That’s why we always take the time to review all life insurance carriers and why we take the time to break down as many medical conditions or high risk preexisting medical conditions that we come across.
Without the valuable information, many clients and consumers can be left feeling hopeless and not knowing which direction to turn or which life insurance company to work with ultimately.
We can tell you a few things we are sure of at Good Life Protection
We can assure you of one thing. It always boils down to a few things. It’s not a secret that sleep apnea and life expectancy could be an issue with life insurance but that really depends on how well you manage your sleep apnea and how diligent you are with doctors’ orders and treatment methods and plans.
At Good Life Protection, we work hard to writing these articles to ensure you know everything from point A to Point b about how to obtain life insurance with these pre-existing medical conditions. Really, life insurance with any lung condition not even related to sleep apnea such as asthma or COPD can be tough and needs some TLC.
Let’s jump into it and see how sleep apnea will impact your life insurance rates and overall approval chances.
All About Sleep Apnea- Why It Impacts Life Insurance Rates and The Process
Understanding that Mortality Rates Matter and Yes Sleep Apnea Can Kill You!
According to the Mayo Clinic, Sleep apnea is a severe sleep disorder where breathing repeatedly stops and then begins. Many individuals start realizing there is an issue if they are still profoundly fatigued after a night’s rest or a spouse or partner informs them of loud snoring on a regular basis.
You Have 3 Major Forms of Sleep Apnea
Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Obstructive sleep apnea is prevalent and occurs most frequently when the throat muscles relax.
Central Sleep Apnea
Central Sleep apnea occurs when your brain isn’t sending the signals to the muscles that tell you to breathe. Obviously, this can pose problems.
Complex Sleep Apnea Syndrome
This form of sleep apnea is a combination of both central sleep apnea and obstructive sleep apnea.
Common Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
Why does this matter when it comes to purchasing life insurance?
The kind of sleep apnea you have is critical when It comes to purchasing life insurance. First, the type of sleep apnea you have can indicate more danger to your overall health than another form of sleep apnea.
Life Insurance companies live and breathe using mortality tables. If one type of sleep apnea shows more signs of danger to your immediate health, the life insurance company will know this.
Due to this factor, they will adjust the rates to reflect this added risk. This is essentially how life insurance companies remain liquid and financially stable is by underwriting individuals and certain health conditions accurately.
Without proper underwriting for these situations, religious timely premium payers would most likely run into issues down the line collecting a death benefit.
Why? Well, the companies would most likely be struggling financially if they didn’t charge accordingly based on your overall risk and chance of passing away at certain age intervals.
Treatment methods for Sleep Apnea
Depending on which form of sleep apnea you have, you may be required to use what’s known as CPAP machine or possibly even a dental device.
You have two problems that can arise when applying and getting approved for life insurance with sleep apnea
Problem 1 Obtaining Life Insurance with Sleep Apnea
The problem with obtaining life insurance with sleep apnea is that it’s not as simple as just telling your agent or the life insurance company what form of sleep apnea and the current treatment method. They like a little reassurance and some proof so to speak.
A recent sleep study indicating how the treatment is working for you would go a long way to achieving approval and ultimately better rates.
Problem 2 Obtaining life insurance with sleep apnea
Sometimes your doctor hasn’t ordered a sleep study yet, and sometimes they aren’t covered at all by insurance. If they are, sometimes the coinsurance or deductibles are much higher than your typical procedure or doctor appointment.
With this being the case, sometimes clients can’t get a sleep study performed. These tests are known to run anywhere from $1000-2000 to complete. A recent trend and a great alternative are to order your home sleep study kit and have your doctor document the results.
This can save you over 1,000.00, and once the results have been documented, the life insurance company can proceed at better rates and ultimately an easily approved life insurance policy.
Best life insurance with sleep apnea
To ultimately achieve the best life insurance rates with sleep apnea, you need to do a few things. The first thing is to stick to working with an independent life insurance agent only.
Well because we only have access to 60-100 life insurance companies that all underwrite and treat sleep apnea differently. What does this allow us to do?
When we get your approval back on your policy and know the actual rates or cost of the plan, we can shop it out to all the other companies to ensure that we ultimately have the best price possible. A captive life insurance agent just isn’t capable of this.
Here’s a tad more on the sleep apnea underwriting process with life insurance
After you decide you are applying for life insurance, we the agency or life insurance agent are going to ask you some questions to adequately understand your condition and sleep apnea and ultimately provide you rates that are accurate and an easy to navigate the path from application to approval.
Here’s a list of the questions we will ask when it comes to your life insurance with sleep apnea. Yes, we know it seems nosey, but it’s also necessary if you want to know realistic outcomes and not just a random guess or stab in the dark at your possible life insurance rates with sleep apnea.
Questions We Will Ask When Underwriting Sleep Apnea when applying for life insurance.
You will also have some additional health questions. These are for the life insurance company to see if there are any other issues in addition to the sleep apnea such as.
Who’s’ the best company to work with if you currently have sleep apnea?
Let’s cover two of them. A fully underwritten life insurance policy that requires a medical exam and a company who doesn’t need a medical exam. Yep that’s the power of working with someone who represents all the company’s ladies and gentlemen. It’s that simple.
Let’s look at the option that requires a medical exam first. Our top pick for a company with sleep apnea that needs a medical exam would be hands down Prudential Life Insurance. They are incredibly favorable with individuals with sleep apnea.
Non-substandard rates are even possible if that condition is controlled and well documents which is much better than some of the other companies are willing to offer in these situations. You could potentially even be looking at Preferred Rates with Sleep Apnea.
How exactly do you do this?
Surprisingly, it’s simple. You need the underwriter to see how minor of an issue it is for you. If you’re taking all your medications and prescribed treatments ordered by your doctor you can quickly get approved at the best life insurance rates. Even with having a pre-existing medical condition or being deemed high risk.
Special Note– Sleep apnea would need to be your only issue to be considered for rates like these. If you have other pre-existing medical conditions going on the sleep apnea won’t be the only issue carrying weight with the underwriters.
Make sure to be honest with your life insurance agent, tell them everything related to your health and the questions your agent asks entirely and in the most detail as possible and ultimately you will end up doing much better on your overall price, and the approval process will be as easy as 1,2,3.
Here’s an easier way to break down what would be needed to achieve the cheapest rates for life insurance with sleep apnea.
Just ask yourself these simple questions, and you will know how close you potentially are to achieving the best rates possible with sleep apnea.
What was the date of diagnosis? When you look back and evaluate the date it was diagnosed, has it been at least 1 year? If so, you’re still in good shape. Have you followed all orders from your physician to the nose as your life depends on it? In all honesty, your life probably does depend on it, but that’s besides that point. If that answer is yes, it comes down to 1 last item.
Therefore the 1-year mark is essential. Have you had a new sleep study conducted that showed improved results and the category of the sleep apnea has improved overall?
If so and you have no other high-risk issues we can start working in your corner.
Now let’s look at life insurance with No Medical Exam and who’s the best with sleep apnea
We would recommend if you have sleep apnea and are trying to save some premium dollars, you will probably want to complete the exam, but it’s not 100% necessary. It’s just cheaper at the end of the day by doing so. If you’re terrified of needles or just don’t feel like doing it, our top pick would be Phoenix Life Insurance Company.
Over the last few years, Phoenix Life Insurance has quickly become one of the carriers we use most frequently. They have fast approvals, and many niches with underwriting and sleep apnea happen to be one of them.
What prices and ratings can we expect if we have sleep apnea?
Here’s a quick look at the best life insurance rates you can expect with sleep apnea and how it breaks down.
If it’s controlled and looking awesome- Preferred Rates Still Possible
If it’s moderate and not entirely known of the overall condition- Standard Rates are Possible
If it’s Moderately Severe, no Sleep Studies completed yet, or a CPAP machine is needed every night, you’re looking at a Table 2 Rating which merely is one class below the standard rating.
What’s the best life insurance possible with Sleep Apnea?
We have already touched on this but to recap, preferred rates are possible, and overall the best life insurance you can have with sleep apnea is ANY life insurance. Life insurance is critical to your overall financial future and family’s financial security and should be ignored due to something such as sleep apnea.
In fact, I would argue sleep apnea is one of the easiest pre-existing medical conditions
Do we feel confident about obtaining life insurance with sleep apnea? What are you waiting for?
To sum things up, we believe at Good Life Protection that obtaining life insurance with sleep apnea is an easy task and the biggest roadblock is usually something related to the sleep study status or getting one completed. Don’t ignore life insurance over something such as sleep apnea.
We handle these cases weekly and can get it done for you too. Most likely at rates way better than you ever expected. Representing over 60 life insurance companies is a powerful thing for us as the agency and a powerful thing for you as the consumer. We shop your rates until we find you the best deal possible regardless of your pre-existing medical condition.
As always, thank you for reading, and we appreciate you. If you haven’t done so already be sure to subscribe to our email list for the latest news in the industry, rate changes, and our most recent blog post. If you’re ready to protect your family, feel free to check the possible rates you may be looking at by filling out the form on the right.
Till next time.
Josh Martin is the founder of Good Life Protection. He began his career as a captive Agent working for New York Life Insurance Company. After continued education and designations, Josh founded Good Life Protection to provide consumers with more options and insurance that truly fits into your budget and health classification.