LIFE INSURANCE FOR SMOKERS 2021
What is an Smoker for Life Insurance purposes ?
If completing a Life Insurance application - many Uk Insurers ask if you have smoked or used 'any form of tobacco users or nicotine based products' in the past 12 months; If so, you are still classed as a smoker - as a catch all Insurers question.
If you are giving up smoking, beyond minimum 12 months is for most Insurers deemed as OK. However, many Insurers will still then ask when you last smoked... ie; how long are you an ex-smoker in case you restart ? eg; Was this 1 year/3 years/5 years or more.
Is e-cigarettes (Vaping) - classed as Smoker for Life Insurance ?
These newer alternative liquid form vaping smoker products may state they reduce the risk on your health, but many Insurers can still classify this as smoking ( but some may apply better terms...please ask us for advice here.) ie; No nicotine based products for at least 12 months.
Is Gum or Patches or Inhalators - classed as an Smoker for Life Assurance ?
Again these products may help reduce the risk on your health, but many Insurers can still classify this as smoking ( please ask us for advice here.) ie; No nicotine based products for at least 12 months.
Life Insurance Occasional Smoker still classed as an Smoker for Insurance ?
So anyone who maybe still smokes the odd 'one off' occasional cigarette socially, or that Xmas cigar - in many Life Insurance companies eyes is classed as a smoker. As such, therefore still deemed a risk for life insurance as you have not quit smoking. If unsure ask your Broker or Provider - as terms may vary for this with some insurers.
Cannabis, Pot or Marijuana Smoking ? How is this classed re Tobacco Users ?
This is much different, as Insurers class these as drugs, so will increase the risk on your health. Insurers will need to know exactly what drugs you took & any adverse side effects on say your mental health. They will definately ask how long you have taken them for or given up. It does not follow the timeline same criteria as tobacco or nictotine products for say an ex smoker [ but the longer the better ]. It is best to inform your broker or insurer & then view what can be offered and maybe only after GP reports.
Will I be tested by the Life Insurance Company - To prove I am a Smoker ?
How do Insurance Companeis know if you smoke ? If you declare yourself a non-smoker on the life insurance application, there is a possibility you will maybe also asked to undergo a cotinine test to prove you have quit smoking ie; ex smoking status. This test checks your nicotine levels & reads how long absent this is from your body. No point in lying when you apply, as your policy may not payout & you could waste the premiums and leave your family devastated.
My current Life Cover has Smoker Rates... Can I now get Ex-Smokers Life Cover ?
If you have an existing life insurance or critical illness policy taken out when you were a smoker & as mentioned above, you now believe youself to be an ex smoker, there is a good possibility you could qualify now for a policy on Non Smoker rates. Dependant on when you took the life insurance out [ assuming you have had no other major health or lifestyle issues interim ] you could maybe qualify to get potentially lower ex smokers premiums. It is best to inform your broker or insurer & then view what choices can now be offered.
Should I tell my Doctor I quit smoking to get None Smoker rates ?
This does make sense to advise your GP that you have quit smoking & that it is noted in your medical health records you are now a ex smoker or none smoker. Again, they may do a cotinine check as mentioned above.
If I start smoking again Life Insurance - Do I need to now tell Insurers ?
Life Insurance cover is based on full disclosure at the time you took the plan out - so does not void your policy. If you had legitimately stopped smoking for over 12 months at that time, you were entitled to get better Ex Smoker Life Insurance rates. As such, you may wish to advise the Insurers you have started smoking again - but this should not affect the original policy terms which should still stand - you were being honest. Also maybe suggest letting your GP know if this is the case.
In Conclusion, Being an ex smoker means you appreciate the various challenges that is required on a daily basis to overcome any nicotine urges; Let trying to get life insurance on Smoking terms hopefully not be another great challenge. Either way please approach us for friendly Professional Help on the Best Life Insurance for tobacco users.
LIFE INSURANCE FOR SMOKERS - UK PRODUCTS REVIEW 2021
MORTGAGE PROTECTION - for Smokers
Designed to cover a repayment mortgage on death or terminal illness as it decreases during the plan term. Can also include critical illness cover.
TERM LIFE INSURANCE - for a Smoker
Offering a family protection lump sum if the policy holder dies or is diagnosed with a terminal illness during the term.
LIFE INSURANCE - Over 50 Smoker
Over 50's life insurance lump sum if the policy holder dies during the term or whole lifecover. Some Over 50's plans ask no medical lifestyle questions.
WHOLE LIFE INSURANCE - for Smoker
Indefinate protection if the policy holder dies and whenever this may occur.
FAMILY INCOME BENEFIT INSURANCE - for Smokers
CRITICAL ILLNESS INSURANCE - for Smokers
Helps ease financial worries if you are diagnosed with a critical illness as specified by the Insurance Company.
CHILDREN'S CRITICAL ILLNESS COVER
Helps ease financial worries if your child is sadly diagnosed with a critical illness as specified by the Insurance Company.
INCOME PROTECTION - for Smokers
Providing security by way of an income if you are off sick or have an accident.
LIFE INSURANCE FOR SMOKERS - Frequently Asked Questions
Single v Joint life Insurance for Smokers ?
A single life insurance means it covers just that 1 person only. It then pays out the chosen amount of cover if the person dies during the term of the policy or whenever it occurs if whole life. The benefit of having 2 seperate plans (Dual cover) if in a relationship & one partner dies, then the surviving partner still has their own seperate policy.
A 'joint' life insurance policy means it jointly covers 2 lives but then pays out on '1st death' basis. This means once the chosen amount of cover is paid, the policy benefits would then end. This is usually the cheaper option for Insurers ( as it only pays once ) but then conversely leaving the surviving partner without any cover.
What if my health or lifestyle changes after I have taken the policy out ?
Life Insurance cover is based on full disclosure at the time you took the policy out ie; being 100% as honest & accurate as possible. So any health or lifestyle changes since usually does not void your existing policy, as it wasn't relevant at that time of initial application. Please check your original T&C's
How does one make a Death Claim ?
Check firstly if premiums are still being paid or alternatively is the policy perhaps "paid up" meaning no further premiums were needed.
Then contact the Insurers claims line to inform them. They will provide you with their claim form for completion. You will need to send in a number of documents, most importantly being the death certificate proving the cause of death.
Insurers ( as well as other Providers ) will need the original death certificate, so ideally ask for several certified copies. Enclose your policy document, if you can find it and then send by recorded delivery or registered post to Insurers.
Once received, the Insurers usually cross check all information before processing and settling a valid claim ie; was the medical & lifestyle information correct at the time of original application
If everything is hopefully in order, the Insurer may pay out a claim & usually in a matter of days or weeks.
Death Claims, Life Insurance Trusts & Life of Another
Who the life insurance maybe actually then paid out to can be more complicated & many people wrongly assume it is a simple process.
If it is a joint life 1'st death policy or if it single life policy owned by another person " life of another" then it will just be paid to the survivor.
However, if it is a single life policy it can be more complex. Check if the policy was setup & written into a trust. If so the Insurer will pay the life insurance via the trustees named to the nominated beneficiaries directly. Sometimes there are a named beneficiary & others times a list of potential beneficiaries. The life insurance paid out doesn’t have to be included in the legal documents sent for probate and potentially it won’t be liable for inheritance tax either.
So should I put my Life Insurance policy into Trust ?
If the life insurance wasn’t written into trust, it will be paid to the executors of the deceased’s estate. They will handle the administration, known as probate in N Ireland, England, Wales and confirmation in Scotland. If not, the benefits will fall into your estate if you died prematurely. If you have not made a will this can then cause further complications with the life insurance monies.
Until probate is fully granted, no monies can be paid out to those named in the will. On average, this can take upto 6 months. By not placing the plan into trust may also swell up the total estate values, leading to potentially Inheritance Tax IHT issues
So placing a policy in trust can help to ensure that the policy proceeds go to the correct beneficiaries you decide to nominate at that stage & help avoid possible probate delays & IHT costs. Ask the Insurers if they provide any standard trust form wordings & seek legal advice if unsure.
Can you make changes to your Life insurance policy ?
In terms of changing your life insurance policy, often you can request some of the following:
The changes could be subject to medical underwriting based on your circumstances at the time & may well affect your premiums.
Best Life Insurance for Smoker