There is no doubt that after experiencing a stroke, many things in your life change. From preventative medication to diet and exercise, there are several things that your doctor will recommend.
Something you may or may not have thought about is your ability to qualify for the best burial life insurance plans.
Can You Get Burial Insurance After A Stroke?
Getting immediate burial coverage after a stroke is possible. The main thing that the insurance companies will look for is the length of time it has been since your stroke. If it has been over twelve months since your stroke, no waiting period will be imposed by several final expense life insurance providers.
The Basics Of Burial Insurance
Burial life insurance is a type of whole life insurance policy designed specifically to cover a senior’s funeral expenses. While this is intended, there are no requirements for what the money needs to be spent on.
Policy amounts are available from $2,000 to $40,000. With the average final expenses in 2019 being $9,135, these policies provide enough money for what they are intended to cover.
Whole Life Insurance Coverage
Four permanent benefits determine whether a policy is considered whole life insurance.
No Expiration: These policies last for the entire life of the insured. This gives peace of mind to the policy owner and beneficiary that the money will cover funeral expenses as intended.
Coverage Lock: The amount of the death benefit that is taken out will never fluctuate. While you can always get additional coverage, the initial amount will never decrease.
Price Lock: The monthly premiums will never be adjusted. The price you pay for the first premium will be the same as the last.
Builds Cash Value: The cash value provides a living benefit allowing the insured to borrow from the policy if desired. With each payment made, a small portion gets allocated to the cash value account. Over time this value builds and can become quite substantial.
Burial Insurance Specifics
These plans are also known as funeral insurance or final expense insurance. Certain features make burial coverage worth it for millions of seniors across America.
Affordability: These plans come at a low cost because of the small coverage amounts. Traditional whole life policies range from $50,000 into the millions, while final expense coverage maxes out around $40,000. The less coverage you have, the less the premiums will be.
No Medical Exam: Burial insurance falls under simplified issue whole life. A simplified issue plan means that applicants will never be asked to get a medical exam of any kind. These policies can be issued over the phone without leaving home.
No Waiting Period Options: Stroke victims can qualify for immediate coverage if it has been over 12 months since the incident. Final expense insurance after a stroke that happened within the last year will encounter a waiting period before full coverage begins.
Underwriting: Why Does A Stroke Matter For Coverage?
Your health matters to the insurance company. Stroke is the 5th leading cause of death in the United States and a leading cause of disability.
Depending on the severity of the stroke, you are susceptible to further health complications such as:
- Speech and language challenges
- Difficulty swallowing
- Involuntary muscle tightening
- Memory loss
- Visio-perceptual skills
- Emotional functioning/depression
- Personality changes
- Chronic headaches
- Blood clots
- Second stroke
There are four tiers of plans within final expense insurance coverage. The company’s leniency with stroke victims will depend on which one of its plans you are eligible for.
With each tier, the cost goes up as the leniency for pre-existing health conditions goes down.
Level: This policy has immediate protection and the lowest prices. Some companies divide this tier into two plan options, commonly referred to as preferred and standard. Both have no waiting period.
- Preferred: Has the lowest cost and the most strict health qualifiers
- Standard: Has slightly increased prices and somewhat lower health restrictions
Graded: Coming with a progressive policy payout, this plan has a 2-year waiting period. Common payout structures are 30%, 70%, 100% in years 1, 2, and 3+. This is typical for people who have experienced a stroke in the last 12 months.
Modified: This plan is also referred to as a “return of premium” policy. If the insured dies during the mandatory waiting period, the beneficiary will receive the paid premiums plus some interest. If death occurs after the conclusion of the waiting period, the full death benefit will be awarded.
Guaranteed Issue: Seniors will be subject to a waiting period of usually 2-years. This policy asks no medical questions and accepts all who want coverage. Also known as guaranteed acceptance, these plans have similar waiting period structures as a “return of premium” policy.
How Recovery Time After a Stroke Affects Coverage
Each insurance company has a different risk tolerance for accepting stroke survivors. Every application for immediate funeral insurance coverage will ask about strokes and TIA. The way that each company asks and reacts to this health history will be what sets them apart.
Over 2 Years Since Stroke
The majority of final expense life insurance companies will accept you with no waiting period if it has been over 24 months since your stroke. If this is the case, protection from the policy will come immediately upon approval. This would be a level or level-preferred policy option. A low-cost option would be Oxford Life Insurance.
12 to 24 Months Since Stroke
A select few carriers, like Atena/CVS, will accept stroke patients if it has been over one year but under two. These plans come with immediate coverage but are slightly higher in price. This is most often a company’s level-standard policy.
Stroke within 12 Months
There will be a mandatory waiting period if your stroke was within the past year. Some plan options will have partial coverage immediately, while others will only return the premiums paid if the insured passes during the waiting period. Depending on the carrier, this would be graded, modified, or guaranteed life insurance policies.
How To Find Good Final Expense Insurance Companies For Stroke Survivors
All the top burial insurance companies have different health criteria to qualify for coverage. This is important to understand because every health condition matters.
Overall, there are three things to look for when obtaining funeral insurance after a stroke.
Insurance Provider: Take a policy out with a life insurance company that has a strong financial rating. Having a high financial rating is a powerful indicator that the company will be able to pay its obligations when they come due.
Start of Protection: Twelve months or more after a stroke, it is possible to get coverage with no waiting period. Getting coverage that starts immediately is ideal.
Premium Prices: Not all plans are priced the same, and each company sets its own pricing. As always, try to get the lowest cost plan available.
Captive vs. Independent Agents
As long as someone has a license to sell life insurance in your state, you can purchase coverage from them. Agents fall into two categories, independent and captive. The way these types of agents go about getting insurance coverage for their clients is different.
Captive: A captive agency can contractually sell products from one specific carrier and can only offer those products to their potential customers. By only having an offering from one company, they may not be aware of a more suitable plan for your unique situation. This could lead to overpaying or being denied altogether.
Independent: An independent agency represents products from several life insurance companies, allowing them to shop multiple plans on behalf of their customers. They are not chained to just one carrier. This is of tremendous benefit to the consumer and will save you time and money.
Why Work with Willamette Life?
Willamette Life is an independent agency that specializes in burial insurance. We can help you find the best coverage for the lowest price, even with severe health concerns.
Final expense insurance is all we do, which allows us to put our energy and resources into being experts in this field. We represent several carriers to allow us the best opportunity to find you the coverage you want and need.
a. The biggest factor when finding burial insurance after a stroke is how much time has passed in your recovery process. The more time that has passed, the more options you will have.
b. If it has been over two years since surviving a stroke, you will have the most coverage opportunities. If it has been 12 – 24 months, there will be limited options. If your stroke has been within the year, there will be a waiting period enforced.
c. As an applicant with a pre-existing condition working with an independent agency will provide you with the most options. This will allow you to get the best coverage at a budget-friendly rate.
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.