There is no doubt that after a heart attack, there are some big changes that need to happen in your life. From exercise to diet, your lifestyle is bound to change. Along with these big adjustments, other things are affected, such as life insurance acceptance.
If you did not have life insurance before becoming a heart attack victim, you are most certainly thinking about it now after experiencing this life-changing event.
The average US burial costs $7,643 before a cemetery plot or headstone is taken into account. The best burial insurance companies can help plan for these costs.
Burial Insurance After A Heart Attack
Perhaps this is your first time looking into whole life insurance after a heart attack, or maybe you were denied a large death benefit from a traditional or term policy and are left thinking it’s impossible.
Can You Get Life Insurance After a Heart Attack?
There are several different life insurance types on the market, and burial insurance is a very affordable option. The main thing these companies care about is how much time has passed since your heart attack occurred.
Burial Life Insurance Basics
Burial insurance is a small whole life policy. This permanent coverage is also known as funeral insurance or final expense insurance.
Created For Seniors: These policies were built for people age 50 to 80 to provide an affordable way to plan for and cover funeral expenses. It is not intended to replace an income but instead cover the final costs left behind after someone dies.
Affordable Coverage: The reason these life insurance plans are considered low-cost is that they come in smaller policy amount options. Traditional whole life insurance starts at $50,000 while final expense coverage death benefits are $2,000 to $40,000.
No Medical Exam: Funeral life insurance plans are considered simplified issue, so seniors will never be asked to get a medical exam. Applications can be completed completely over the phone by answering a few easy health questions.
Whole Life Insurance Benefits
There are some basic marks that an insurance policy needs to hit to be considered whole life coverage.
No Expiration: A whole life insurance plan provides permanent protection. As long as the policyholder pays the required monthly premiums, the policy will remain active until the day they die.
Coverage Lock: The amount of coverage taken out will never fluctuate. Some plans decrease the death benefit with age, but that is not the case with this simplified whole life insurance.
Price Lock: The cost never varies. The monthly price paid in month one will remain the same for the life of the policyholder.
Cash Value: The cash value provides a living benefit option. Over time this account accumulates with each payment made and can be borrowed against if necessary.
Underwriting After A Heart Attack
Different insurance companies offer additional benefits and have slightly different requirements to qualify for coverage.
The big thing to understand is that someone’s pre-existing conditions will affect their ability to qualify for coverage.
However, this varies from company to company as they each set their own requirements. This decision-making process is referred to as underwriting.
Why Having a Heart Attack Matters for Coverage
Heart Disease is the number one cause of death in the United States, with someone experiencing a heart attack every 40 seconds.
After experiencing a myocardial infarction, your heart may be damaged, which could affect your heart’s rhythm and the ability for it to pump blood to the rest of your body. You could also be at a higher risk for a second heart attack, stroke, transient ischemic attack (TIA), kidney disorders, coronary artery disease, and peripheral artery disease (PAD).
These are all complications that could affect your ability to qualify for coverage.
Given all of this information, there are still many final expense insurance companies that will accept you with heart concerns.
Other heart conditions that will affect your ability to qualify:
- Heart Bypass Surgery
- Stent Placement
- Stroke or TIA
- Congestive Heart Failure
- Heart Transplant
- Coronary Artery Disease
How Time Affects Qualifying for Coverage
It depends on how long it has been since your heart attack, along with if you have had any other pre-existing conditions.
Most carriers look back in your medical history 2-4 years when determining if you qualify.
Over 24 Months Since Heart Attack
Most companies will award funeral insurance after a heart attack with no waiting period if it has been over 24 months since the incident. Essentially you will be able to answer “no” to their questions about a heart attack happening within the past 2 years, so you will be given coverage as though it never happened.
12 – 24 Months
Select carriers will provide immediate protection if you fall into this timeframe since your heart attack. This slightly more expensive prospect still provides no waiting period and is a great option.
Less Than 12 Months
Heart attacks that have happened within the past 12 months will be subject to a waiting period. The shortest and most common waiting period is two years from getting the policy for full coverage to be available upon death.
Level: As a premier plan, level policies have no waiting period and the lowest prices. The health guidelines to qualify are more strict than the other tiers.
Graded: With partial protection immediately, graded policies have a 2-year waiting period before the beneficiary is eligible to receive the full death benefit. These plans are more lenient than level and provide a middle-ground option depending on the applicant’s health.
Modified: Often called a “return of premium” plan, modified policies are commonly the most expensive, but you still have to qualify by answering medical questions. Modified plans are not usually recommended.
Guaranteed Issue: These plans ask no medical questions and award anyone with insurance protection regardless of their health. Guaranteed issue life insurance plans have a 2+ year waiting period with a similar payout structure as the modified option.
How To Find The Best Burial Insurance After A Heart Attack
Each company has different health standards for heart conditions and other pre-existing conditions. Because of this, there are three things that people will want to look at before applying for funeral insurance with pre-existing conditions.
Financially Reliable Company: Companies with good financial ratings will ensure that they are still around to pay the claim when due. A company’s financial ratings can be found through an easy google search.
Affordability: Getting a policy that you can afford well into the future is important. If you are unable to make your monthly payments, the policy will lapse. While the monthly premiums will never change, your income might. Make sure it fits your current and projected budget.
Coverage Start Date: Depending on when your heart attack was and any other pre-existing conditions, getting funeral insurance with no waiting period is another top priority. While immediate protection is not always possible, having a plan with an optimal payout structure is a top priority.
Companies to Look Into
Depending on when your heart attack was will determine which company is best. Mutual of Omaha, Aetna (CVS Health), and Guaranteed Trust Life are great companies that meet the three criteria above.
Mutual of Omaha burial insurance will be best for heart attacks over two years ago. Aetna (CVS Health) is best for heart attacks 12 – 24 months ago. Heart Attacks that were within the last 12 months will be best served by Guarantee Trust Life.
Captive vs. Independent Agents
There are many ways to purchase final expense insurance after a heart attack. However, the access to different carriers will vary drastically depending on the route you take.
Captive: These agents represent insurance coverage from only one company. This can create a problem with pre-existing conditions such as a recent heart attack or stroke due to the leniency of the specific insurance provider they represent.
Independent: The opposite is true for independent agents as they have access to multiple insurance carriers and plans. This allows an independent broker to shop around on behalf of the client to find the plan that best meets their health and budget requirements.
You should always work with an independent agency specializing in this niche that has multiple carriers to select from. This allows them to search prices on your behalf, saving you time and money.
How Willamette Life Can Assist You
Willamette Life is an independent insurance agency specializing in senior life insurance.
We help clients qualify for burial insurance with pre-existing conditions because of the wide array of insurance companies we represent.
a. Several final expense insurance companies offer coverage after heart attacks. The best life insurance provider will also vary depending on other health concerns the applicant has.
b. The main component when determining coverage and costs is the length of time that has gone by since your heart attack.
c. Contact an independent agency to help you find coverage tailored to fit your budget and health conditions.
Call Willamette Life at 844-576-0019
Stacie manages the content for Willamette Life by keeping it up to date and accurate. By taking the questions frequently asked by clients she has been able to assist in developing a series of blogs that will hopefully be able to help more people than just those we are able to speak with.
We would be happy to answer your specific questions if there is anything we haven’t covered yet.