Have you been declined for life insurance or asked to pay a higher rate due to alcohol abuse or a history of alcoholism?
Will alcohal usage effect my life insurance rate?
Alcohol usage, including a history of alcohol abuse and/or alcohol treatment, can have a major impact on your ability to obtain a competitively priced life insurance policy. In fact, depending on the specific circumstances, many insurance carriers will decline to offer insurance at all. If you have a history of excessive use of alcohol or have been treated for alcohol abuse, there is still a very good chance of being approved for alcohol life insurance at a good rate. The key is to know how the insurance companies will view the specifics of your case and then select the company that will treat you most fairly. The information below will provide you with details on how life insurance rates are affected by alcohol usage and ways to improve your chances of getting the best possible rate.
Alcohol Usage Defined
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, over 61% of the adult population consumed alcohol at some time in 2004. Responsible (moderate) alcohol usage under most circumstances does not affect life insurance prices. However, the level and frequency of alcohol consumption is of significant importance to all life insurance companies.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), average alcohol consumption of more than 1 drink a day for women and 2 drinks a day for men is considered to be heavy drinking. A standard drink may include one 12-ounce beer, 8-ounces of malt liquor, 5-ounces of wine or 1.5-ounces of 80-proof distilled liquor (gin, rum, vodka, whiskey, etc). Anything consistently above these levels may be viewed as a red flag depending on the insurance company.
Risk Factors of Alcoholism or Alcohol Abuse
Excessive drinking can result in significant health problems over time and is a major concern for every life insurance company. Many of the conditions below are the result of chronic alcoholism and are frequently irreversible. Some of the more serious risk factors include:
- Automobile accidents and other unintentional injuries.
- Liver disease- Cirrhosis or elevated liver functions.
- Cancer of the mouth, throat, stomach or esophagus.
- Drug use or other substance abuse.
- Heart problems, high blood pressure, blood and nervous system conditions.
- Adverse driving record including DUI, DWI or Reckless driving conviction.
- Depression and Suicide.
The Impact of Alcohol Usage on Life Insurance Rates
Excessive use of alcohol or a history of alcoholism is viewed by life insurance companies as a lifestyle issue that is proven to negatively impact an individual’s life expectancy. Therefore, most companies are not very flexible when it comes to alcohol abuse and many will simply decline coverage. If there has been a significantly long history of excessive alcohol use and there are signs of deteriorating health, the chances of obtaining a policy are likely slim. Additionally, factors such as relapsing after an impatient rehabilitation program or having multiple DUI’s or DWI’s may make it difficult to obtain coverage.
As mentioned above, an alcohol abuse history does not rule out the possibility of getting a competitive life policy. In most cases, there are things that can be done to help the insurance company give you the benefit of any doubt. One key to negotiating a good rate is to provide positive health and lifestyle factors to offset some of the negative risk factors. For example, if an individual has had a history of alcohol abuse and has successfully completed an impatient rehabilitation program, faithful attendance to Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meetings is a positive factor. Other examples include, a consistent marriage (no divorces), a clean driving record and normal liver functions.
The goal is to provide enough positive information to paint a clear picture of rehabilitation to the insurance company. The more positive health and lifestyle factors you can provide, the greater the likelihood of the company justifying a lower rate. For additional examples, see getting a lower rate on your life insurance with a history of alcohol abuse.
How Can MEG Financial Help?
At MEG Financial, we have worked with many individuals across the country that have had related histories and have helped many obtain fairly priced alcohol life insurance rates. A number of these clients previously attempted to buy life insurance elsewhere but were either turned down or asked to pay a significantly higher rate. Our experience helping others with related problems is invaluable to you in identifying the insurance company that will treat you most fairly.
For more specific information or to obtain a custom quote, call MEG Financial today at (877) 583-3955. You may also submit this short form and an independent insurance agent will personally contact you to go over any questions or other concerns.