Why a Medical Exam is a Good Thing

If you’ve ever purchased life insurance before, you already know just how invasive and thorough the application process can be. Life insurance companies make it their business to know everything about an applicant’s health because their business depends on it. That’s why most companies require you to have a medical exam from one of their authorized practitioners before approval. The results of your testing typically plays an important role in determining your rates. Should the doctor find any possible medical issues, such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol, you can almost count on having higher rates.

What does the Medical Exam Involve?

  • Blood test
  • Blood pressure
  • Height and weight measurements
  • Heart tests
  • Treadmill tests may be required for extensive policies

You may have heard of certain companies offering plans that do not require testing. Believe it or not, they really do exist, but they aren’t usually the best choice for most people, even if they have some possible medical issues that could come out during the testing. So, what’s wrong with no-exam plans? For starters, they are typically more expensive than products that do require testing. Insurers feel they are taking a sizable financial risk by not requiring testing of applicants, so they make up for that risk with higher premiums. Another major disadvantage associated with these plans is that they have lower coverage amounts. That means you could probably get a substantially larger benefit by purchasing a policy that does require a medical examination. Also, many policies that do not ask for testing have some small, but important, provisions attached. For instance, these plans may not pay out benefits until the plan has been effect for 1-2 years. Finally, while the jury is still out on the the decision between term and permanent life insurance, you won’t have much of a choice in the matter, as no-exam policies are almost exclusively for term life insurance. Despite the convenience of being able to purchase a plan without an invasive medical overview, the higher cost makes them an unattractive option for most people.

Don’t Fear the Doctor

No one looks forward to health testing of any kind, let alone one that could potentially raise your rates, but it’s generally in your best interest to have one. Policies that require testing have better rates, more options, and pay out a higher benefit than no-exam plans. In today’s cash strapped society, we should all be looking to get the most from our money. Now that’s a doctor’s visit everyone should look forward to.