Smoking & Life Insurance: What You Need To Know
When insurance providers decide how much they’ll charge you for your life insurance, they consider a number of factors. Many of them center around your health, which makes sense. Healthier people are likely to live longer, giving life insurance providers more time to recoup their costs before paying your loved ones your death benefit.
It’s not particularly surprising, then, that smoking is heavily factored when determining your life insurance rates. Smokers in their 30s will pay between 30 and 100 percent more for their life insurance coverage, and the increased cost only increases as you get older.
To determine how much your smoking will affect your rates, your insurer will determine how much your smoke. They calculate “pack years” by multiplying how many years you’ve smoked by how many cigarettes you smoke each day. As you might guess, the more you smoke the more you can expect to see your life insurance rates increase.
It’s not safe to assume that you can just lie to your life insurance provider about your smoking. Most insurers will actually test you for cotinine, which is what nicotine turns into in your body, if you buy $100,000 or more of coverage. Additionally, there is a two-year contestable period on your policy. If your insurance provider finds out you’re a smoker during that period, they can increase your premiums or reduce your death benefit.
Would you like more information about how your habits affect your life insurance rates? To learn about what you can do to get the most affordable coverage, contact Remland Insurance. Serving Orange, all of Orange County, and the surrounding California area, we can help you understand your life insurance options so you can pick the right policy—paired with the right lifestyle—for cost-effective coverage.