Life Insurance Approval With Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders

Joseph Meyer
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What are insurance companies looking for regarding epilepsy?

Some people do not think about the future and how they can protect themselves and their family. For most, when the time comes they are not aware of what kind of life insurance coverage they need.

The fear of the unknown makes many people over react, especially when they require life insurance coverage due to a chronic condition like epilepsy or a seizure disorder. I understand the concern and apprehension one may have. Admitting the need for life insurance can be a very humbling experience …an admission that there is something wrong with one’s health.

But please don’t be discouraged. This topic is confusing and complicated. Depending on which insurance agent you speak with, you will hear different responses to the question, “Would I be able to get life insurance with a history of epilepsy?” The answer is not as simple as you would think.

Many insurance companies have established criteria that needs to be met for approval of life insurance. These criteria often include:

{1}. Medical Records: These are the most important part of the application process. If you have received treatment for seizures, or epilepsy in the past, it is important to obtain all records and have them sent to the insurance company.
{2}. Blood Work: This is typically sent out to make sure that medication prescribed for epilepsy or seizure control is not damaging.

What Life Insurance Companies Look For in Epileptics

Although a diagnosis of epilepsy or another seizure disorder may seem overwhelming, it doesn’t have to be an obstacle preventing you from obtaining the life insurance coverage (cover) you need to protect your family and pay off a mortgage or your medical bills.

A diagnosis of epilepsy may not be an automatic life insurance company denial as it was previously. That’s primarily because of all the research and information about epilepsy that is available to help you educate the life insurance company. Doctors are better educated and are able to relieve patient’s fears faster about a seizure disorder. Seizure disorders and epilepsy in general are not easily determined in the medical exam. And for that matter, neither is heart disease, which is the number one cause of death in the U.S.

Keeping all this in mind, it is important to make sure you are being honest and truthful in all of your dealings with the life insurance company …which means staying off ALL mind altering drugs.

Talk to the underwriter of the life insurance policy, so he/she is able to act on your behalf, and address concerns about prior medical conditions. The company will still want to report some of your medical records on your life insurance application.

What else will the Life Insurance Company Look at?

When your life insurance application is being reviewed, there are several aspects that are considered, but if you have a condition such as epilepsy, the loss of consciousness factor becomes more important. This is because the underlying cause of a seizure disorder is unknown. Although more research is being done on epilepsy, the loss of consciousness is not always known to have a specific cause. Many life insurance companies will deny a life insurance applicant with a seizure disorder under any circumstance.

Most life insurance companies will still approve a policy for someone who suffered from an epilepsy diagnosis 20 or more years ago, even with seizure activity in the present. They may also approve a policy for someone that has been seizure-free for several months or years. Additionally, the application may be approved if that person is not active within a risk-related environment. If you have a condition such as epilepsy, it is important to review your policy annually.

Getting Lower Rates

Life Insurance, Don’t Wait

To Get Approved!

You may be aware that many life insurance companies require a medical exam as a part of the life insurance application process. However, what you may not know is that some companies may decide not to approve your application without first performing a medical exam.

The issue of life insurance for people with seizure disorders or epilepsy comes up frequently in the news. It’s widely believed that, because of the possibility of a future loss of consciousness that could lead to an injury or death, people with seizure disorders and epilepsy are uninsurable. For more than a decade, legislation known as The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) has banned health insurers from using a person’s genetic information to make any decision about their health insurance. However, GINA doesn’t apply to life insurance.

Fortunately, the times are changing. As of the end of 2014, more than 20 life insurance companies now offer life insurance to people with epilepsy, and every year, more companies are offering new policies to people with seizure disorders. Still, it’s important to be aware of the potential obstacles so that you understand the insurance application process and you’re in a better position to make an informed decision.