Life insurance is available to breast cancer survivors and patients. Depending on how you answer key underwriting questions, you may qualify for specific types of insurance.
Medical advances have contributed to the increase in breast cancer survival rates. Hence, life insurers are more likely to approve an application.
The information you'll find here will guide you through the process of underwriting breast cancer, how to apply to companies, sample quotes, and what to expect.
Breast cancer and life insurance:During the application process, underwriters will want to know specific details about your breast cancer.
Answer the following questions with a pen.
1. When were you diagnosed and when did you last receive treatment?The underwriter considers two dates crucial - the date of diagnosis and the date of treatment completion (if applicable).
The date of diagnosis:If you were diagnosed with breast cancer at an early age, how old were you? A diagnosis at age 40 or older is generally preferred by underwriters.
Why? Breast cancer diagnoses at a young age can raise additional concerns:
● Recurrence is more likely
● Other possible health conditions or genetic abnormalities
When was your last treatment? You should wait as long as possible after finishing treatment.
You can purchase guaranteed issue life insurance policies while you are still receiving treatment.
Most traditional carriers (e.g. a 20-year term life insurance policy) want to see proof that you have completed treatment for years.
2. How do you identify a particular type of breast cancer? Cancers of the breast are known as breast cancers.
There are different types of cancerous breast cells, and some are more treatable than others.
● Breast milk ducts are affected by a non-invasive cancer known as ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS).
● Carcinoma cells that form in milk ducts and spread throughout the body are called invasive ductal carcinomas (IDC). They account for 80 percent of all cases.
● Breast cancer that is triple negative - tumor cells lack three of the three common growth receptors.
● Cancerous cells invade the skin and lymph system of the breast inflammatory breast cancer (IBC).
● A spongy or lumpy appearance sometimes characterizes a carcinoma of the mammary glands.
● Tumors specific to tubular structures usually appear after age 50.
● Colloid cancer (mucinous carcinoma) - an aggressive cancer that starts in the milk duct and spreads to nearby tissues.
Known as mammary Paget disease, Paget disease of the breast or nipple is a form of cancer that affects the breast and nipple.
3. Which stage and grade does the student belong to? You should discuss your breast cancer stage and grade with the underwriter during the application process.
Phase: The TNM system is often used by oncologists to determine the cancer's stage. As well as checking your hormone receptor status, protein production (Her2), and BRCA status, your oncologist may have performed other tests as well.
Underwriters ask specific questions, but be prepared to respond in detail to their questions.
You will need to provide at the very least:
Grade 1 - slower-growing, with good differentiation
Grade 2 - medium growth; moderate differentiation
Grading 3 - fast-growing; poorly differentiated
4. Which treatment plan did you follow? Your treatment plan should include one or more of the following:
● Excisional biopsy
● Radical mastectomy
● Partial mastectomy
● Teletherapy or Radiation therapy
● Hormonal therapy
5. Is prescription medication part of your daily routine? Tell me if you've been given a prescription or if you're currently taking:
6. Did you experience a recurrence? Recurrence refers to the return of the same cancer after its treatment, whether it occurs a short time after treatment or years later.- American Cancer Society
Cancer will not return to most breast cancer survivors. During the first five years after remission, you are generally at a greater risk of recurrence. As a result, life insurance companies prefer remission for long periods of time.
7. How are you feeling in general? Underwriters evaluate a client's risk of becoming ill in general, but not only for breast cancer specifically.
Prepare to answer the following questions:
● Weighing yourself (to see if you are overweight or underweight)
● Nicotine use
● Other types of cancers in history
● Family medical history (blood-related) of parents and siblings
● Addiction to drugs or alcohol
● History of prescriptions
● A history of cardiovascular disease (such as a stroke or high blood pressure)
● Convictions for DUI (e.g.)
How Do You Qualify For The Lowest Rates? Most of the following requirements must be met in order to qualify for a Standard Plus or Standard health rating:
● Involvement of a few lymph nodes
● For many months, even for over a decade, remission is possible
● Low-grade and early-stage breast cancer
● Treatment that has been successful and is complete
● Good general health
FAQs:The following questions are frequently asked by applicants.
If I am in treatment, what options do I have? Guaranteed issue life insurance is almost always only available to people who are currently undergoing treatment for breast cancer.
Is it possible to find an affordable insurance policy? Several things can be controlled by you.
The first step is to evaluate multiple carriers, since breast cancer is underwritten differently by each. Consider partnering with an independent agent.
A proactive approach is also necessary. Don't forget to contact your oncologist so that the pathology report can be shared with your agent.
Finally, go to your doctor regularly to show you are responsible. The underwriters look favorably on proactive health care.
Finally, take steps to keep your health in good shape. Consider quitting smoking. Lose weight by eating healthy.
If my application has been turned down, what should I do?You need not be concerned.
There is no definitive correlation between a decline with one company and a decline across the board.
A guaranteed issue policy or even traditional coverage with another company may be an option for you.
Is there a waiting period before I apply?You should apply for coverage now, even if you are eligible for lower rates in the future.
Buying life insurance was a good idea yesterday. It is an even better idea today.
When your health improves or you have exceeded the waiting period, you can reapply for better rates.
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