Being diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, commonly referred to as A-Fib, can certainly be worrisome. It probably has you thinking about how it’s going to affect your life in a physical sense.
You may not have initially thought about how it could affect your ability to qualify for the best funeral insurance plans.
Funeral Insurance With Atrial Fibrillation
Getting funeral life insurance with AFib at an affordable price is possible. Some carriers do not care if you have atrial fibrillation, while others might deny coverage altogether. A denial of coverage usually depends on the timeline of your diagnosis.
Funeral insurance is extremely affordable protection that is easy to understand and obtain, especially with a pre-existing condition such as A-Fib. It is a type of whole life insurance covering you for your entire life and is commonly referred to as burial insurance or final expense coverage.
Basic Whole Life Benefits
Never Expires: This coverage is permanent and will cover you up until the day you pass away. The only reason a policy would no longer be valid is if the premium payment were not made for several consecutive months.
Price Lock: The premiums never increase. The price you pay for the first premium will remain the same moving forward.
Coverage Lock: The death benefit size will never fluctuate. This creates peace of mind knowing that the beneficiary will receive the money for funeral costs as you intended. Other policies are known to decrease the death benefit as time goes on.
Builds Cash Value: A cash value creates a living benefit for the policyholder to draw from if needed. The cash value is generated by allocating a small portion of each premium into this account. Over time, the value builds.
What Sets Final Expense Coverage Apart
Funeral insurance works by providing an affordable way to cover funeral expenses. Having a plan to pay for this inevitable cost will relieve your family of any financial burden.
Low-Cost Payments: Traditional life insurance policies start with death benefits of around $50,000. Final expense coverage provides death benefits from $2,000 to $40,000. Having a smaller coverage amount means the monthly premium payment will be lower.
No Medical Exam: Burial insurance falls into the category of simplified issue whole life. This means that the applicant will never be asked to get a medical exam. All that will be required are a few yes or no health questions. Coverage can be issued completely over the phone without needing to leave home.
No Waiting Period Options: Everyone can get final expense life insurance coverage, but not everyone will qualify for immediate protection. Some policies will provide no waiting period, and others will not. To have immediate life insurance with atrial fibrillation, seniors will need to apply with an afib-friendly company.
Underwriting: Why Does Atrial Fibrillation Matter?
Having a pre-existing condition like arrhythmia is going to increase the likelihood of future health complications. These companies know this to be true, which is why your health matters to them.
According to the Center for Disease Control, AFib causes about 1 in 7 strokes.
AFib is listed as the primary diagnosis in over 454,000 hospitalizations each year in America. It also contributes to about 158,000 deaths each year. Not only that, but the death rate from atrial fibrillation (as the primary or a contributing cause of death) has been rising for more than twenty years.
These statistics show why life insurance companies want to know about your irregular heartbeat.
How Insurance Carriers Will Ask About A-Fib
Each final expense insurance company sets its own qualifying criteria for a policy. With that said, some insurance providers do not ask about this heart condition at all.
Listed below are some common ways that an application for final expense coverage will ask about atrial fibrillation.
Irregular Heart Rhythm: Atrial fibrillation falls into this category. Applications may also ask about A-Fib or arrhythmia.
Any Type of Heart or Circulatory Procedure: This covers a wide array of circulatory and heart procedures. You could fall into this category depending on how your afib was treated.
Cardioversion: This is a common way to fix arrhythmia, and some applications list this out specifically.
There are three general time-restriction categories that applicants will fall into. Depending on when your irregular heartbeat was diagnosed or treated, the plan tier could vary.
- Less Than 12 Months Ago
- 12 – 24 Months Ago
- Over 24 Months
Generally speaking, if your irregular heartbeat was corrected 2+ years ago, there will be no issues in getting coverage from most insurance companies.
There are a handful of common medications that are prescribed for atrial flutter and other heart diseases. The main thing to understand is that the final expense insurance company will check your prescription history during the application process. If you take any medicine commonly prescribed for an irregular heartbeat, such as blood thinners, the carrier could assume you have this condition. The same goes with all other pre existing conditions.
Level: Multiple carriers will provide level coverage with an irregular heart rhythm if treated or diagnosed over 12 months ago. Level coverage has no waiting period and offers the lowest prices.
Graded: Offering partial coverage immediately, graded policies are offered to people who have A-Fib. Depending on the carrier, seniors applying for funeral insurance will be accepted if they have been treated or diagnosed within the last 2 years. These plans are generally a little more expensive, with a percentage of coverage available upon policy issue and full coverage after 2 years.
Modified: Commonly viewed as the most expensive option, modified plans have a 2-year waiting period. During this time, if the insured dies, the beneficiary will receive the paid premiums as the death benefit rather than the full coverage amount.
Guaranteed Issue: Everyone is eligible for a guaranteed plan because it will not ask any health questions. This policy type comes with a 2-year waiting period and return of paid premiums. Once the waiting period has ended, the beneficiary can get the full coverage amount upon the insured’s death.
The only reason someone with A-Fib would need to get guaranteed coverage is if they have several other complications. Our recommendation for the top guaranteed issue plans on the market is either AIG or Gerber.
How To Find The Best Life Insurance Companies For AFib
It is vital to understand that each carrier provides coverage at their own discretion. Funeral coverage is very specific when it comes to the health complications that each carrier will accept.
If you have been diagnosed with A-Fib, there are plenty of low-cost companies that will accept you with no waiting period. However, it is your overall health that goes into determining coverage eligibility.
If you meet the health qualifications laid out by the carrier, you will be able to obtain coverage. The key is to know what company accepts which condition, and working with a professional agent can help.
The longer it has been since your diagnosis and treatment of afib, the better rates you will be able to qualify for.
What to Look For in Final Expense Coverage
With all of these varying health restrictions, there are three main things that you’ll want to look for in a policy.
Low-Cost: Affordability is what makes these plans so popular. Making sure you are getting the lowest cost based upon your health is important. Comparing rates and qualifying standards will help you find the lowest price that fits your budget.
High Financial Rating: Third-party rating companies evaluate the financial strength of every insurance provider. Varifying that the company has a high rating before getting a policy is important as it shows that they will pay out your claim when due. You can find these ratings through a simple online search.
Coverage Start Date: Whenever possible, getting life insurance coverage with no waiting period is a top priority. Specific health concerns will be unable to qualify for immediate coverage no matter how many carriers you look at, but luckily this isn’t the case for final expense insurance with atrial fibrillation.
Captive vs. Independent Agencies
There are plenty of agents and companies to purchase life insurance coverage through. However, the price you pay and the coverage you receive could drastically differ based on getting it from a captive or independent agency.
Captive: This type of agency represents one insurance carrier. Commonly, these agencies have a high level of brand awareness with a branch in every neighborhood. Since they only provide products from one provider, agents cannot shop around for insurance costs and acceptance standards.
Independent: On the other hand, independent agents can represent several insurance providers. Since these agents are not tied to a single provider, they can compare many plans according to each client’s budget and health.
Working with an independent agency will save you time and money.
How Willamette Life Can Help
Willamette Life is an independent agency that specializes in senior burial insurance. Our agents can assist people with pre-existing health concerns to find the best policy to fit their needs.
As an independent agency, Willamette Life represents multiple highly rated insurance carriers, each willing to accept different conditions, such as atrial fibrillation.
a. Funeral insurance with atrial fibrillation is possible to get at an affordable rate with no waiting period.
b. All insurance companies are very different when it comes to acceptance based upon health. It is the overall health of the applicant that matters.
c. Speaking with an independent agency to determine what company is best for you will provide the most streamlined experience.
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.