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Will Life Insurance Rates Increase Due to COVID-19?

life insurance and covid 19

By Byron Udell | March 31, 2020

Life insurance rates are still low, but it won’t last long. Click below and watch Byron explain how this will play out in the coming days. If you prefer to read, scroll down to read the video transcript.

Video Transcript

With all this extra risk out there, is it possible to get life insurance now? Are the life insurance companies issuing policies? What about the pricing?  Are they adding surcharges for the extra risk? Are the rates increasing?

I’m gonna answer all those questions…

First, my name is Byron Udell.   I’m the founder and CEO of AccuQuote.  Since 1986, we’ve helped millions of people save a fortune on their life insurance.

I’m sitting here in my home, like everyone else, essentially locked down, so this video may not look like many of our other videos on YouTube, but I wanted to get this information out there, as it goes right to the heart of the issue we’re dealing with.

Life insurance is a hot topic right now.  Whenever there is a heightened awareness of our own mortality, we think MORE about LIFE insurance.   That is causing demand for life insurance to be UP right now

Right now, consumers are asking whether insurance companies are doing anything different, or perhaps even postponing the ability of consumers to obtain life insurance, for obvious pandemic related reasons.

Here’s what I can tell you…as of right now, today, March 30, 2020, policies ARE being issued.  But, a few things HAVE changed.   If you recently returned from a country fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, most of the life insurance companies are making you wait 30 days before applying.  The same 30-day wait applies for folks who have knowledge that they’ve been exposed to someone that has the disease, like a spouse or family member.   That does NOT mean that if you MIGHT have been exposed (like going to the grocery store, which we ‘ve all been doing) that you have to wait 30 days… you don’t.

Also, if you happen to fit the profile of someone with extra risk factors … like you’re over 65, a smoker, have COPD, you’re diabetic, and overweight, some insurance companies are making you wait 90 days before they’ll consider your application.

The other thing that’s different right now is that many life insurance companies, as part of their application process, make you do a paramedical exam.   That exam is generally performed in your home by a licensed paramedic, which the insurance company pays for.   But Right now, nobody wants a stranger coming into their home, so a lot of those exams aren’t happening.   The good news is, there are plenty of life insurance companies that DO issue policies without a medical exam!

Another issue is that many life insurance companies, as part of their underwriting process, often want to see copies of your medical records.   Unfortunately, with medical offices having bigger fish to fry at the moment, a lot of them have sent the folks that do records copying home.   So, the records requests are piling up, making it difficult if not impossible for these insurance companies to get what they want in order to approve a policy.

Insurance companies that DON’T request medical records, will use other ways to evaluate you…like screening the prescription database, Medical Information Bureau, Motor vehicle records, and even some big data black box type stuff.   And they get their answers and make their decisions quickly.

The last issue, and this is a BIG one… is the PRICING of life insurance.  Life insurance rates are driven by not only the risk of death, but also the ability of the life insurance company to invest your premiums. You see, life insurance companies typically invest your premiums in bonds and with the bond market at historic lows and the additional COVID-19 deaths, that’s about to translate into higher prices for new policies.

In FACT, I just got word this morning that, due to the low-interest rates, at least 6 major life insurance companies are raising rates in April, and at least 1, possibly more, are going to suspend the issue of certain products at their current pricing.   I can’t share the specifics, because they haven’t officially released their price changes to the public.   But believe me, they’re coming, in just days, or weeks.

SO… here’s the bottom line:

Pre-COVID-19 life insurance rates are STILL available… but not for long.   If you’re even considering life insurance – you better move fast. In other words, if you want new coverage, or you want to increase your existing coverage, get it before the prices go up!

Once you own it, they can’t change the deal.   But they CAN raise rates on new customers.

Over the past 25 years, life insurance rates have fallen dramatically, to record lows. For example, a $1,000,000 20-year level term policy on a perfectly healthy 40-year old male can be found today for under $600 a YEAR.   Even without a medical exam.    That’s about 70 percent LESS than what the same policy cost just 25 years ago.

Again, I don’t expect those rates to be around much longer.

Like I said earlier, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, and I might argue BECAUSE of it, life insurance purchases are surging. Those that HAVE life insurance, want more. And many folks that don’t have coverage, are now seeking and/or exploring life insurance for the first time.   If you’re thinking about it, now’s the time to get it done.

Understand, this is a quickly changing environment, and as early as next week, I may need to update the information, but meanwhile, if you have any questions feel free to email me at budell@accuquote.com. Or call us for a free quote at 800-442-9899

Stop waiting and call us now at 800-442-9899 or GET A QUOTE FOR TERM NOW.

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