Are all mental health conditions treated the same by a Life Insurance company?
In a perfect world, the answer should be ‘Yes’, but in a commercial and ever changing world different life insurance companies have different assessment standards for different health conditions.
This is why a specialist risk insurance adviser is your best chance at finding the right insurance company who understands your personal situation.
Can a person living with a mental health condition still get life insurance?
Yes. A person living with mental health issues can still qualify for a range of life insurance products but additional information about your health would be needed first for the insurance underwriter to make a better assessment about what cover you may qualify for.
Can a person with a previous mental health condition qualify for life insurance?
Yes. Insurance underwriting rules usually require a person to live symptom and medication free for a reasonable period of time and recognise that many people who were once living with mental health issues improve their health, happiness, recover and go on to lead busy and authentic lives.
This is why you need to work with a specialist risk insurance adviser who understands mental health management and recovery.
Does a Mental Health Care Plan (MHCP) mean I could never be eligible for personal insurance cover?
No. Some people use a mental health plan to increase their life and professional skills, personal awareness and insights while others as a support to a mental health diagnosis. Depending upon each person's personal situation, their health, occupation and their following their MHCP, different levels of time may be needed symptom and medication free, before full insurance cover is available to them.
How does a mental health condition affect the cost of a life insurance policy?
Life insurance companies usually choose to either exclude a particular health condition that they cannot understand or provide cover for or increase the cost of the policy premium they charge to offset any increased risk of having a pre-existing condition.
I have a 10 Session Counselling Plan from my GP. Does this automatically stop me getting life insurance?
No. A counselling plan (talk therapy) for a specific set of circumstances might not include a mental health diagnosis. Each person's personal situation and environment is different. This is why you need to work with a specialist risk insurance adviser to help find the right life insurance provider and product for you and your very personal circumstances for the best chance at getting cover in place.
I have a current Mental Health Care Plan (MHCP) so can I still apply for insurance cover?
Yes. When you need insurance cover, apply for it as soon as you can. Once you're living symptom and medication free for a reasonable period of time, work with your adviser to review and remove any mental health exclusion clause applied to your policy.
Is reactive grief treated the same as long term depression?
No. The high quality life insurance companies make a distinction between a reactive depression to an understandable grief event - for example the death of a partner - and long term generalised depression.
The three keys areas considered are Cause (what was the stressor), Time (how long ago was the event and how long did it persist), and Effect (how were you affected eg: ability to work, time off and outcomes).
This is why you need to work with a specialist risk insurance adviser to help find the right life insurance provider and the right underwriting policies for you and your very personal circumstances so you can have the best chance at getting cover in place.
Is there a difference between current and historical mental health when applying for life insurance?
Is there a difference between how current and historical mental health issues are assessed by a life insurance company?
Yes. People living with current or active mental health issues can still be successful in applying for life insurance cover but would usually have a mental health exclusion clause applied to the policy.
Once they are living symptom and treatment free for a reasonable period of time, any mental health exclusion clause applied to an insurance policy can be reviewed and removed.
This is why you need to work with a specialist risk insurance adviser to find the best insurance application strategy for you and then work with you later for the best policy update and review strategy, as your health improves.
What additional medical information is needed when making an application for life insurance when I’m currently living with depression?
An insurance underwriter would need to know your formal mental health diagnosis (if you have one), when you were first diagnosed, what is your current treatment strategy and how successful have you been keeping to it.
Other key issues might include information about:
- How does it affect your daily life or your ability to work and earn an income?
- Were there any major mental health episodes that may have occurred in the last 12 months to 5 years?
- Is there any history of self harm?
- Were illegal drugs involved in a mental health condition?
- Was the environment a contributor to a mental health condition?
- Your mental health history, any formal diagnosis you may have received and any medications you make be using to help manage your health, and
- Wether you have any associated or co-occurring health conditions?
- When did you become symptom and treatment free?