Applying for life insurance online has never been easier, but there’s one aspect that can still seem like a hassle: the life insurance health exam.
Truth be told, even that part isn’t too bad. The insurance company wants to make it simple for you to apply. They’ll work with you to schedule a time for an exam, the nurse or technician will come to your home or office, and best of all, the insurer pays for it! Who doesn’t love a free physical?
But what if, for whatever reason, you want to pay for your own life insurance health exam?
Unfortunately you can’t, and you’ll have to settle for a complimentary exam.
If you’re willing to pay for your own exam, the most likely reason is that you want to use your own doctor. There could be a few reasons for that: she knows your medical history, you’re comfortable around her, you know she’ll be down for fudging some things to make you look a little healthier and help you save a few bucks on your monthly premiums…
Yeah, that last reason is why life insurers prefer to take the reins when it comes to health exams. You see, the health exam is how insurers figure out how risky you are to insure. They look at obvious things that affect your health – weight, blood pressure, cholesterol – along with a blood test to find other medical conditions that might impact your life expectancy. An underwriter will dig through this information and find out how much it’ll cost to insure you.
And that’s why insurers don’t want a potentially-biased third party performing the exam. They use professional medical testing companies like ExamOne to be impartial in their diagnosis.
This is the best solution for everyone. From the insurer’s point of view, they’ll know exactly what to set your monthly premiums rates at, and there won’t be any surprises like you suddenly dying in 5 years because you asked your doctor to tell a little white lie on your exam.
As for yourself, you wouldn’t be doing yourself any favors by lying about your health. If the insurer finds out that fraud was committed, they can cancel your policy or not pay out the death benefit. That means your family isn’t protected and it was all for naught anyway.
"But it really is because my doctor knows my medical history!" you might say. "I’m not trying to be shady, I just want everything to be correct!"
That’s very considerate of you, but you still don’t have to pay for the insurer to take this into account. If needed, the insurer will request an attending physician statement, or APS. This is your medical history from your doctor’s point of view. Something fishy pop up during your health exam? An APS will let the underwriter know if it’s a temporary side effect of a medication or an actual issue that could have long term effects on your health. This way you get the unbiased view of the medical testing company along with the intricacies that your personal doctor knows so well. It’s the best of both worlds.
Then, of course, there’s the option where no one pays for a health exam: a no-exam policy, in which you bypass that step completely. That’ll cost you a lot more in premiums, though, so it’s probably not your best option.
As much as you’d like to pay for your own life insurance health exam, you won’t be able to, but rest assured that it’s not necessary. It’s in everyone’s best interest to get you the most accurate test results possible. So sit back, relax, and let the insurer pay for it.
You won’t get too many other opportunities where someone else is more than willing to foot the bill.