A lot has changed in the last 25 years in regards to AIDS and HIV.
If you were diagnosed in 1996 it was essentially a terminal diagnosis as those infected were only expected to live about 10 years.
Thankfully modern medicine has come a long way since 1996! The current life expectancy for someone with HIV that was detected early and continues with proper care now matches the standard life expectancy for those even without this diagnosis.
While this is wonderful news, this diagnosis will still drastically affect your ability to qualify for top final expense insurance companies.
Final Expense Insurance with AIDS or HIV
The fact of the matter is that this diagnosis will affect your ability to qualify for a plan with immediate coverage.
The only type of policy that will be available to people with an AIDS, HIV, or ARC diagnosis is a policy that offers guaranteed acceptance.
Why it matters
Having this diagnosis is of great importance to the insurance providers because of the health risks that come along with this immunodeficiency virus.
Having a virus that attacks the immune system causes it to not work as effectively as it should.
This greatly opens up the possibility of contracting opportunistic infections and cancers due to the vulnerability of the immune system.
Some of the more common opportunistic infections and cancers include:
- Cryptococcal meningitis
- Herpes simplex viruses
- Pneumocystis pneumonia
- Salmonella septicemia (food poisoning)
- Tuberculosis (TB)
- Mycobacterium avium complex (MAC)
- Invasive cervical cancer
- Kaposi sarcoma
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
Clearly, this is a long list of hard-hitting potential diagnoses. This is exactly what the providers want to avoid when deciding to accept someone.
Underwriting is the process that the carrier goes through to determine if they will provide coverage to an individual.
Insurance companies that provide coverage with no waiting period ALL ask about this immunodeficiency condition in largely the same way.
“Have you ever been diagnosed with, received, or been advised to receive treatment or medication for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), AIDS Related Complex (ARC), or tested positive for HIV?”
While your diagnosis might be fully under control and closely monitored by both yourself and your doctor, the carriers do not care.
If you have EVER been treated for or diagnosed with ANY of the 3 conditions listed in the question, you will be unable to qualify for any plan other than Guaranteed Issue.
This type of policy, as the name suggests, guarantees acceptance to 100% of applicants.
These plans have two standard identifying features.
No Medical Questions – While all Final Expense policies advertise no medical exams, only Guaranteed Issue offers coverage with no medical questions.
This of course means that even for people who are in “unfavorable health” they are still very much eligible for these policies.
No health questionnaire. No MIB (Medical Information Bureau) checks. No prescription history checks.
This results in 100% acceptance.
Two-Year Waiting Period – These policies will ALWAYS come with at least a 2-year waiting period.
Throughout the waiting period if the insured passes away the beneficiary receives the paid premiums plus a predetermined amount of interest, typically 10%.
While you will not have full coverage right away, a guaranteed 10% return is much better than most investment strategies.
Plus, thanks to modern medicine infected individuals have essentially the same lifespan as everyone else so most will make it through this waiting period with ease.
In addition, all Final Expense Insurance comes with several other associated attributes.
The coverage that you sign up for on day-one will remain the same for your entire life, assuming you pay the scheduled premiums.
With other types of coverage, this is not the case. Some plans will change the coverage amount as the insured ages.
Similar to the coverage lock, the price will remain the same for your entire life. The price you pay for your first premium will be the price you pay for the rest of your life.
This is why it is often best to take out a policy sooner rather than later as the cost will increase the older you are upon initial policy application.
Final Expense is a type of Whole Life Insurance which lasts for the entire life of the insured, thus no expiration.
Other plans may actually expire on a certain date or once you reach a certain age which is not ideal when planning for your end-of-life expenses since no one knows when exactly this will be.
Builds Cash Value
Typical of most Whole Life policies, a cash value is built over time. This allows you to draw on the policy in the form of a loan.
Basically, a portion of each premium goes into the “cash value pot” that you are then able to borrow against if needed.
Once the day comes for your beneficiary to file a claim for the policy, they will receive a tax-free lump-sum check. This money can be spent in any way they deem necessary.
It is always recommended to have a beneficiary that you can explicitly trust and that will follow through with your wishes.
The below recommendations are for those with the diagnosis of HIV, AIDS, or ARC.
There are several companies that offer policies with guaranteed coverage, however, not all policies are treated equally.
Guaranteed policies all provide generally the exact same coverage. While there are minor differences here or there, the main thing that you want to keep in mind is the price.
Policies with guaranteed acceptance are already more expensive than other plans that have tight underwriting requirements, so let’s not have you spend more than what’s necessary.
$10,000 of Coverage
$10,000 of Coverage
AIG offers rock bottom rates with top-tier coverage and is always our go-to recommendation.
Additional benefits included at no extra cost include:
- Temporary Accidental Death Benefit
- Chronic Illness Accelerated Death Benefit
- Terminal Illness Accelerated Death Benefit
While Gerber provides great rates that are similar to AIG, they do not provide the additional benefits included in AIG’s plan.
Gerber does offer other plans in addition to coverage for end-of-life expenses. If you are in the market for a plan for a young child or a college-age young adult they offer some nice options.
This company advertises heavily on television and by direct mail (along with several other companies like Colonial Penn and AARP).
The truth is, the prices offered by John Hancock are much higher than you would get through many other companies.
Captive vs Independent Agencies
A captive agency is one like John Hancock or Allstate. These agencies are contractually obligated to sell products only from the one company that they represent.
An independent agency on the other hand is not tied to just one company. They are able to represent as many companies as they wish.
The main difference you need to know as a consumer is that independent agencies are able to price check their products between the carriers they represent and a captive agent cannot.
Price checking or shopping around on your behalf will ultimately lead you in the direction of obtaining a better price and potentially better coverage.
You will not be saving money by purchasing directly through a carrier, rather, going with an independent agency will most likely save you money on your premiums.
Typically the low-cost plans that are available through these agencies are not available if you attempt to contact and purchase through the carriers directly.
Why Willamette Life
Willamette Life is an independent agency that specializes specifically in Final Expense coverage.
This singular focus allows our agents to fully understand the specialty that each plan can bring to the table.
By representing a variety of companies, each with several plan variations, this allows us to best serve the unique and individual needs of our clients.
From Oregon to Georgia and everywhere in between, Willamette Life will get you covered.
a. Affordable Final Expense Insurance with AIDS or HIV is possible to obtain, however, there will be a 2-year waiting period imposed before full coverage can be awarded.
b. When it comes to selecting a company to take your policy out with, our recommendation is AIG due to their low rates and added benefits.
c. Even though you now know what plan you may need, it is vital that you speak with an independent agency, such as Willamette Life, to make sure you are getting the best coverage at the lowest possible rate.
Give Willamette Life a call 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.