Get life insurance when you have HIV
When creating a financial plan, purchasing life insurance is paramount. But finding a carrier to insure you can be difficult when you’re HIV+. Let’s take a look at some options to get life insurance when you have HIV.
Can I get life insurance if I have HIV?
Yes, you can buy life insurance when you’re HIV positive but there are limitations.
Although you can get life insurance when you’re HIV positive, it’s an incredibly difficult task. When Sa El spoke with us a few years ago, he mentioned that John Hancock was the only carrier that offered coverage for those who have HIV.
When I reached out to a list of 10 insurance companies, some of them flat out told me that someone who had HIV would automatically be denied.
Even for the few companies that do offer life insurance for HIV positive folks, there are strict requirements. For example, Sa mentioned the fact that if you had another health condition, like diabetes, that’d be a reason to deny you coverage.
With that being said, you do have some options for getting life insurance with HIV.
Hear how to get life insurance when you have HIV on this Queer Money® podcast:
4 best life insurance options when you’re HIV positive
1. Group life insurance through an employer
Group insurance is a policy that’s underwritten for a group. There’s no medical exam requirement. For example, my job offers a $25,000 term life and accidental death and dismemberment policy to me at no cost.
While this policy is enough to bury me, it wouldn’t be enough to replace my income if I had kids and/or dependents.
Also, if I got fired or laid off, I wouldn’t be able to take this coverage with me. For that reason, Sa El recommends never depending on your employer’s insurance.
Even if you plan on retiring from your job, don’t count on keeping this benefit. At my place of employment, the life insurance amount is reduced from $25,000 to $5,000 when you retire.
2. No-Exam life insurance
No-exam life insurance is similar to group life insurance in that you don’t have to take a physical exam or get blood work done. However, as Sa mentioned on the podcast, your medical records will be pulled.
One of the no-exam products Sa mentioned on the show is called simplified issue insurance. With this option, your medical records aren’t pulled. You’ll get an instant response.
According to Insure, with simplified issue insurance, you’ll still be asked a few questions and when you sign the application, they’ll have permission to take a look at your health information via the Medical Information Bureau database.
From my research, no-exam coverage policies can have higher coverage amounts. There seems to be no limit on the amount of coverage you can get.
But keep in mind, if you apply for no-exam coverage with HIV, insurance companies will have two or more years to contest your claim, in the event of your demise. As Sa mentioned, this might be a good option for those who don’t know if they have HIV or any other health condition.
3. Final expense life insurance
Final expense life insurance is insurance coverage designed to cover your funeral expenses. It’s typically purchased by older folks for whom life insurance premiums are too expensive. According to Investopedia, the payout is usually between $2,000 and $50,000.
While this insurance probably won’t be enough to take care of your loved ones when you’re gone, it’ll minimize the amount they have to spend out of pocket on funeral costs.
4. Guaranteed life insurance
Guaranteed life insurance is permanent life insurance that’s very similar to final expense life insurance, except it doesn’t expire – it’s guaranteed for as long as you live.
With this option, you don’t have to worry about having your medical records pulled, taking an exam or answering health questions.
Like final expense insurance, it doesn’t offer you much coverage. According to Forbes, the coverage amount usually maxes out at $25,000.
What requirements do underwriters require to get life insurance?
- Age 30-65
- Monitored by a qualified physician
- Minimum five years compliance (no lapses in treatment)
- A CD4 count of 350 cells/mm3 or higher for at least two years
- Current CD4 count
- Current negative hepatitis B and C testing
- Current and prior two years of viral load
- Undetectable with <20 copies/ml or below current lab limit
How to get life insurance if you have HIV
Where can you apply for life insurance with HIV?
To apply for life insurance with HIV, you should take one of the following steps:
- Call John Hancock directly
- Reach out to Sa El @ SimplyInsurance.com
- Find another insurance agent to help you find companies that’ll offer you coverage
- If you’re looking for simplified issue life insurance, try going through Policygenius
Does life insurance for HIV+ folks cost more?
Yes, life insurance for HIV+ folks will cost more. How much more? Here’s what Sa El had to say when we spoke to him on the Queer Money® podcast: “If you’re approved for this coverage, you’re not going to be approved at a low rate. The rate can range from 250% to 400% more.”If you’re approved for this coverage, you’re not going to be approved at a low rate. The rate can range from 250% to 400% more. - Sa El of Simply InsuranceClick To Tweet
Given that the average monthly life insurance cost is $29.80 a month for nonsmokers, according to Value Penguin, that would mean you could expect to spend between $74.50 and $119.20 monthly.
Although this may seem high, remember that you’re not purchasing life insurance for yourself. Sa El encourages you to “remember that you’re buying life insurance for those you are leaving behind.”
Will you be comfortable knowing that your loved ones will be taken care of when you’re gone? That’s a decision you’ll have to make for yourself.
Hear why all queer people need life insurance on this Queer Money®:
For more help from Haven Life, click this link here.
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This was originally a guest post written by Sa El, co-founder & CEO of Simply Insurance. Sa is a licensed life and health insurance agent with over nine years of experience in the industry.
This has since been edited and updated by Jerry Brown, the mastermind behind the blog Peerless Money Mentor. When he is not reading thought-provoking books or studying finance, he is spending time with family, biking or taking a random adventure somewhere.