How to pass your life insurance medical exam
Worried about passing your life insurance medical exam? That’s ok. Read on for some tips and advice.
Worried about passing your life insurance medical exam? We can help with that. This article is going to explain the life insurance medical exam process, and provide information that will help you know what to expect. Read on for our top life insurance exam tips and advice.
In this article:
What to expect
When you schedule the life insurance medical exam, you will be asked about your health history, medications you take and details of recent medical treatment you may have received. You can do the exam at your home, place of work, or at the offices of the company performing the exam. It’ll take between 20 and 30 minutes, and the experience will be very similar to an annual physical exam at your doctor. You’ll do a blood test and urine test, get your vitals checked, and your height and weight will be recorded. The physical exam is pretty straightforward, and not very invasive.
Now, before we get onto life insurance medical exam tips, let’s get the most obvious question out of the way…
Can you cheat?
If slugging baseball players, world champion cyclists and impossibly fast racehorses can cheat on drug tests, you may be wondering if there’s some way for you to cheat when you take a life insurance medical. The answer is no. Not only will the insurer be looking at an applicant’s medical records (which are very hard to fake unless you’re an international espionage professional), the person administering the exam takes blood and urine on the spot, so there’s no way to borrow a little hemoglobin from a healthier friend.
Moreover, if you did manage to pull a fast one on your medical test, this would have negative implications in the event that you die, because your insurer would then have reason to contest the payout of your policy, an unfortunate process that will make your loss harder, not easier, on your loved ones. (And isn’t the whole point of life insurance to make losing you a little less hard?)
Got that? Good. So, since cheating isn’t an option, what are some life insurance medical exam tips you can actually use?
1. Take the exam as soon as you can…
Fact 1: You’ll never be younger than you are today. Fact 2: Generally speaking, a younger person will pay a lower premium for a life insurance policy than an older person. Which brings us to, lucky fact 3: For most people, the sooner you get a life insurance policy, the lower the premium you’ll pay every month. (Bonus: You’ll also have life insurance.)
But to get that proverbial ball rolling, you’ll need to take that life insurance exam at your soonest convenience. Chances are, you’ll also be a little healthier than you will be a year from now. (And even if not, as we explain below, there’s not a lot you can do over the next few days, weeks or months to get so much healthier that it will have an impact on your term life insurance rates.)
All of which is to say, taking your exam ASAP isn’t just a way to GSD — it could also save you a little money.
2. …unless you’ve had an exam lately
If you have had a life insurance medical exam in the past 12 months, it is possible that you can use those exam results if you apply for coverage with a different provider, without you needing to do another exam. Our advice? If this applies to you, and if you think this is of interest, contact the insurer to see if it’s even possible, and what (if any) impact this might have on your rate.
3. Don’t break a sweat (at least not for this)
Life insurance underwriters look at the past 12 months of your health. So even if you make significant changes to your diet or exercise habits a few months before your medical exam — say, hitting the gym more or lowering your cholesterol — the insurer will still use an average of everything from the past year when making their decision. For example, if you’ve recently lost weight, the insurer will add half that weight back when they make their assessment. At Haven Life, we strongly believe that people should make healthy choices whenever possible — just not for the sake of a life insurance medical exam.
4. So what should you do?
At the exam, you want to be your best self (as far as health goes). To achieve that:
Adopt a healthy lifestyle:
- Avoid processed foods that are high in sodium and sugar. They can elevate your blood pressure and sugar levels.
- Eat a balanced diet with servings of fruits and vegetables.
- Drink plenty of water daily.
- Consider reducing your intake of coffee, caffeinated tea, or energy drinks since too much caffeine could skew your blood test results.
- Use alcohol in moderation.
Within 24 hours of your medical exam:
- Get plenty of sleep the night before your exam so you’re relaxed.
- Avoid stressful situations that could elevate your blood pressure. (For example, try not to be late.)
- Don’t do a vigorous workout, otherwise your body may be recovering while you take the exam, which will affect your results.
- Wear lightweight clothing with sleeves that can easily be rolled up. This will make checking your blood pressure and collecting a blood sample easier — and it may even save you some pounds on the scale.
What to bring:
- Photo ID
- Write down the names and dosages of medications you take
- Have your medical history on hand (doctors’ names, locations, approximate dates of visits)
- Be prepared to share your family medical history
And really, that’s it.
A life insurance medical exam is surprisingly hassle-free, and it’s well worth taking one if you want to get the best possible price for life insurance coverage. A mere 30 minutes of your time could save you real money every month for many years.
About Michael DavisRead more by Michael Davis
Our editorial policy
Haven Life is a customer-centric life insurance agency that’s backed and wholly owned by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). We believe navigating decisions about life insurance, your personal finances and overall wellness can be refreshingly simple.
Our editorial policy
Haven Life is a customer centric life insurance agency that’s backed and wholly owned by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). We believe navigating decisions about life insurance, your personal finances and overall wellness can be refreshingly simple.
Our content is created for educational purposes only. Haven Life does not endorse the companies, products, services or strategies discussed here, but we hope they can make your life a little less hard if they are a fit for your situation.
Haven Life is not authorized to give tax, legal or investment advice. This material is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for tax, legal, or investment advice. Individuals are encouraged to seed advice from their own tax or legal counsel.
Haven Term is a Term Life Insurance Policy (DTC and ICC17DTC in certain states, including NC) issued by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), Springfield, MA 01111-0001 and offered exclusively through Haven Life Insurance Agency, LLC. In NY, Haven Term is DTC-NY 1017. In CA, Haven Term is DTC-CA 042017. Haven Term Simplified is a Simplified Issue Term Life Insurance Policy (ICC19PCM-SI 0819 in certain states, including NC) issued by the C.M. Life Insurance Company, Enfield, CT 06082. Policy and rider form numbers and features may vary by state and may not be available in all states. Our Agency license number in California is OK71922 and in Arkansas 100139527.
MassMutual is rated by A.M. Best Company as A++ (Superior; Top category of 15). The rating is as of Aril 1, 2020 and is subject to change. MassMutual has received different ratings from other rating agencies.
Haven Life Plus (Plus) is the marketing name for the Plus rider, which is included as part of the Haven Term policy and offers access to additional services and benefits at no cost or at a discount. The rider is not available in every state and is subject to change at any time. Neither Haven Life nor MassMutual are responsible for the provision of the benefits and services made accessible under the Plus Rider, which are provided by third party vendors (partners). For more information about Haven Life Plus, please visit: https://havenlife.com/plus
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