Get coverage now. It’s almost never too late to get life insurance with Alzheimer’s.
If you notice any of the following signs in a family member, you should make sure they have life insurance or a Final Expense policy BEFORE they are formally diagnosed or treated with medication.
• Confusion and disorientation even when in similar settings
• Weakening comprehension even with simple questions
• Easily forgetting things and objects after seeing them
• Misplacing items
• Difficulty in talking and writing correct words
• Irrelevant conversations
• Social withdrawal
• Behavior and personality changes
Once the diagnosis has been made by any medical practitioner (including doctors, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, psychiatrists or psychologists), your life insurance, or more commonly known as Final Expense Insurance options are more limited but not impossible.
What kind of Life Insurance can you get after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s?
Getting life insurance with Alzheimer’s does not depend on the phase it has reached. The majority of insurance companies will not issue a policy to anyone who was diagnosed or treated for Alzheimer’s, dementia or memory loss, but there are a few companies that will. This type of policy should be a small amount of whole life insurance sometimes referred to as Final Expense, Burial or Funeral plans.
Most insurance companies don’t offer coverage for individuals with this condition because of its underwriting risk valuation. But, if you are looking for a life insurance or Final Expense policy for your family member or yourself, you can get coverage through the age of 85 and keep it for as long as you live. Unfortunately if the person is 86 or older, there are no options for Alzheimer’s patients.
Final Expense whole life insurance policies that don’t ask any health questions are sometimes called “Guaranteed Acceptance” life insurance. The only stipulation is that the insured person and the owner is either a U.S. citizen or legal resident. They are all guaranteed to never end, the coverage will never decrease, and the price will never increase.
You should pay your premiums by automatic draft out of a bank account, or in some instances with a debit or credit card to get the best value. You can choose to get a bill every month, but they’ll charge you more for the insurance so it’s not worth it.
The main provision of Guaranteed Acceptance policies is that it will include a 2-3 year graded period. This means that if the covered individual passes away within the first 2-3 years due to a natural cause, the beneficiary will receive return of all premiums paid plus about 10% interest. Most of these policies will pay out the full death benefit if the cause was due to an accident. After the insured lives beyond the graded period, 100% of death benefits are paid out regardless of the cause of death. AIG, Gerber Life, Columbian Life, United Home Life and Kemper are all companies that offer Guaranteed Acceptance Life insurance policies.
What is Alzheimer’s?
Alzheimer’s is a disease that progressively damages brain cells causing memory loss and deteriorates other significant brain functions. Individuals who suffer from this mental disease may at first experience minor confusion and difficulty remembering things. Since this disease causes damage to the brain cells, it comes with a great loss of social and intellectual skills, making it a leading cause of dementia.
You may be asking yourself “why does it matter when someone has Alzheimer’s trying to get life insurance?” If you aren’t familiar with the disease, you may not be aware that this progressive disease will eventually cause death. It will disable a person’s ability to swallow, effects balance and mobility, and impairs the body’s ability fight off infections and can cause aspiration.
As the disease progresses, the individual eventually won’t recognize their loved ones, places and simple information about their lives. The memory loss usually leads to high levels of frustration and dramatic behavioral changes. Alzheimer’s disease usually develops slowly but finally damaging nearly all the sections of an individual’s brain.
These are just a few things a healthy person would otherwise not have an issue with. As the brain cells die off, the body will cease to function accordingly. So you see Alzheimer’s itself won’t cause death, but it greatly increases the chance of death.
The average individual diagnosed with Alzheimer’s is expected to live between 8 to 10 years, although some can live up to 20 years after they were first diagnosed. Medications can slow the progression of the disease, but there is no cure.
The Alzheimer’s Association estimates that slightly over 5 million individuals live with this condition in the US. It is approximated that about 5.3 million people of 65 years of age and above suffer from this disease, whereas an estimate of 200,000 people of 65 years of age and below are affected. The numbers of those living with this disease, however, continue to increase day by day. Currently, one person in US develops the Alzheimer’s condition in every 66 seconds.
Determine if you should buy life insurance with Alzheimer’s
If you want to make sure that your funeral expenses aren’t left behind for your family to bear the burden, then life insurance is worth purchasing no matter how old you are. The idea is that you’ll have the full death benefit available in as little as two years. A $10,000 policy for a 70 year old woman with Alzheimer’s will cost about $70 per month. It would take over 14 years to just save $10,000 by saving $70 a month. This disease will eventually take part in causing death in less than 14 years.
There are a lot of other expenses that many don’t think of expenses associated with dying that you may not have even thought about like outstanding auto loans, unpaid medical bills and the cost to maintain a home until it’s sold. The cost of an attorney, airline tickets for family members and lost wages are all expenses that few people every think of.
Since coverage policies and limitations vary among companies, it is important to understand the terms of the insurance and purchase the one that suits you best. We’re hear to help. Whether you are shopping for an insurance cover for yourself or for a family member with this condition, it will be important to look for a professional and independent agent to guide you on how to find the best coverage for your needs.