Getting Life Insurance With a History of Prostate Cancer: Prostate cancer is the most common cancer for men with about 238,590 new cases being diagnosed every year. Unfortunately, this disease can make getting life insurance difficult, and this is unwelcome news to a man who just wants to ensure that his family is financially taken care of in the future. Just know that it’s possible to get life insurance for cancer patients.
Let’s see what life insurance options are available to you.
Getting Life Insurance With a History of Prostate Cancer
Have you already applied and been denied life insurance because of a prostate cancer diagnosis? The good news is that if you have been diagnosed with prostate cancer and are interested in life insurance, all hope is not lost. Many insurance companies can and do provide coverage for men with a history of this kind of cancer. The key is finding the companies that will look most favorable towards your specific situation..
In the meantime, let’s go over what you need to know in order to get insured.
Life Insurance after Prostate Cancer Questions:
Insurance providers will look at a wide variety of factors concerning your medical history and your battle with prostate cancer, and you can give your approval chances a boost by being prepared with this information.
Here are some of the main questions you should be able to answer:
- When were you diagnosed, and how old were you?
- What treatment did you receive?
- What was the Gleason Score (grade given by pathologist after looking at the most recent tissue simples)?
- What was your pre-treatment Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) reading?
- What was your most recent PSA reading?
- Has there been a recurrence of the cancer?
- When did your treatment end?
Let’s get into a little more detail about these main questions.
1. Age of Cancer Diagnosis
The life insurance companies are usually more lenient if you were given a later diagnosis of prostate cancer. The older the better. In fact, the most favorable age is after age 60. If you were diagnosed after age 60, you will probably get a better rate.
2. Treatment Type
Exactly how was your prostate cancer treated? This will also play a major role in how much coverage will cost. Typically, life insurance carriers look most favorably if your prostate cancer was removed and treated by surgery.
- Surgery: Possibility to buy coverage right away after surgery. It will be helpful if your PSA levels are below .02.
- Radiation: Did you receive external beam radion or brachytherapy? If you received beam radiation, was it IMRT, Proton Beam, SBRT? More than likely, you’ll be required to postpone applying for 1 year after your final treatment session before a company may approve you.
3. Your Gleason Score
What is your Gleason Score? Life insurance companies will want to see a Gleason Score of 6 or less. What if your Gleason Score is 7.0 or above?
It’s possibly that you can still qualify for coverage, but a flat extra may be applied to your policy. The flat extra can significantly increase the cost of your life insurance rate.
4. PSA Levels
The insurance company is going to want to know that your PSA levels. This goes for not only your pre-treatment levels, but also for your post treatment levels.
Your PSA levels are one of the major details that life insurance underwriters will be looking at. Men in good health should have a 4.0 PSA level or lower.
When it comes to life insurance, a PSA level of 10 or below may qualify for Preferred rates. Life insurance underwriters will want a PSA level of 20 or less at the date of diagnosis.
When Am I Considered Insurable?
The most important factors are your PSA readings, Gleason score and the length of time since your treatment was completed.
It’s impossible to say precisely what the line is between insurable and uninsurable since everyone is different, but generally speaking, a low Gleason score (like between 2 and 6) will make it easier for you to get approved for coverage quickly.
On the other hand, a high Gleason score over 9 means you will in all likeliness have to wait longer to get approved. This postponement could be up to five years following successful treatment. If you are considered a bit young for prostate cancer, such as younger than 50 years old, you will most likely also have to wait for coverage.
Life Insurance with Prostate Cancer: Example of Pricing
Insurance rates are largely determined by the health class applicants are placed into, which basically outlines their risk level.
Sub Standard Table Ratings
Most men with a history of prostate cancer will typically be placed into the substandard class (table rating 2-4) although if your cancer was caught in a very early stage, did not require extensive treatment and/or you have been cancer-free for several years, it may be possible for you to get standard rates.
|Rate Class / Risk Class||Pricing Result||Cost Rank|
|Preferred Best / Plus||50% of Standard||1 (Best)|
|Preferred||63% of Standard||2|
|Standard Plus / Select||86% of Standard||3|
|Sub-Standard / Table Ratings|
|Table 1 / A||25% over Standard||5|
|Table 2 / B||50% over Standard||6|
|Table 3 / C||75% over Standard||7|
|Table 4 / D||100% over Standard||8|
|Table 5 / E||125% over Standard||9|
|Table 6 / F||150% over Standard||10|
|Table 7 / G||175% over Standard||11|
|Table 8 / H||200% over Standard||12 (Worst)|
Let’s take a look at an example of what you could end up paying for life insurance with prostate cancer.
In our example, Jon is a 62-year-old man who is applying for a $250,000 policy for a 15-year term. Based on this information and a rating of sub-standard class Table 2, the best price is with Banner Life Insurance, …
… will cost around $242 per month.
Just for the record, a 10-year term life insurance policy for the same amount would be around $171.06 per month with Banner as well.
Now, let’s say it is discovered that Jon has been cancer free for over five years and is otherwise healthy. With this scenario, he may get standard rates. For a 10-year, $250,000 policy, his best rates will be with Banner Life…
…at $138 per month.
For a 15-year term, SBLI will offer the best rate at $192.05 per month.
What If I Am Denied?
This does happen, but many times it is not the end of the road. If you applied through another agency we would look at which life insurance company, and why they declined you, and see if it makes sense to submit an application to another company that may be more likely to approve you.
If you applied through us and got denied we would also look at why, and see if we should submit to another company, or look at a high risk life insurance policy – also called Simplified Issue or Guaranteed Issue life insurance.
Read our article on life insurance types to get a better understanding of all your policy options.
Help is on the way
How can we help you get coverage? We use over 60 top rated companies to give our impaired risk clients the best chance of coverage at the lowest rate possible.
Fill out the quote form to get an idea of what kind of term life insurance rates may be available to you. And of course, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 888-411-1329 to further discuss your life insurance options with a history of prostate cancer.
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