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How Much Is Life Insurance With Pre-Existing Conditions UK?

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If you have a pre-existing medical condition, you may be worried about whether you can get life insurance cover and how much it will cost. The good news is that having pre-existing conditions does not necessarily exclude you from life insurance – you can still get covered, but the premiums are likely to be higher than for someone with a clean bill of health. In this blog post, we’ll explain more about how much life insurance with pre-existing conditions in the UK cost and what options are available.


Here’s what we’ll be covering:


What Are Pre-Existing Conditions?

Before considering how much life insurance with pre-existing conditions in the UK costs, it is necessary to know about them. Pre-existing conditions refer to any illnesses, injuries or health problems you had before applying for life insurance. This includes things like:


  • Chronic diseases – e.g. diabetes, asthma, heart disease, kidney disease
  • Cancer – if you’ve had cancer before, you’re likely to pay higher premiums
  • Mental health problems – e.g. depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder
  • Musculoskeletal problems – e.g. arthritis, back pain, joint/mobility issues
  • Autoimmune disorders – e.g. Crohn’s, coeliac disease, lupus
  • Any major injuries or surgeries in the past
  • Ongoing medications or treatment


Insurers will ask for full details of your medical history when you apply. Any pre-existing conditions must be disclosed at the time of application so they can accurately assess and price your policy.


How Pre-Existing Conditions Affect Premiums

Pre-existing condition life insurance premiums in the UK can differ significantly depending on:


  • Type and severity of the condition
  • Age when first diagnosed and current age
  • Treatment and prognosis
  • Any complications or related conditions
  • The current state of health


Some minor conditions may have little impact on premiums, while more serious illnesses like cancer often mean paying higher rates. However, specialists are usually able to source policies despite health issues. Quotes are assessed on an individual basis.


Here are some examples of how pre-existing conditions could potentially affect your premiums:


  • Diabetes – Low to medium impact on premiums in well-controlled cases. But complications can increase costs.
  • Asthma – Usually low to medium impact for mild to moderate asthma. Severe asthma will have a higher impact.
  • Cancer – Can significantly increase premiums depending on prognosis, time since treatment finished, and if in remission.
  • Back problems – Low to medium impact in uncomplicated cases that responded well to treatment. Higher for ongoing issues.
  • Anxiety/depression – Low impact if mild. Moderate to severe cases will increase costs.
  • Arthritis – Low to medium impact, depending on severity and mobility.


While individual rates will depend on your circumstances, you could expect to pay 50-100% more for life insurance with pre-existing medical issues versus standard rates. Very serious conditions may increase rates by over 200%.


Getting Covered With Pre-Existing Conditions

While shopping around yourself is an option, using a specialist broker can save time and ensure you get the best deal. Brokers have access to the whole market and understand which insurers are more likely to cover pre-existing conditions.


Here are three recommended specialist partners who can help source competitive policies for pre-existing conditions:


  1. IAM Insured – An award-winning broker with years of experience in the industry. Their dedicated team can search the entire market to match you with insurers who offer policies tailored for pre-existing conditions. Depending on your needs, they may recommend guaranteed acceptance plans or regular life insurance at an adjusted rate.


IAM Insured*


  1. The Insurance Surgery – Offer expert advice on finding cover if you have pre-existing conditions. They work with top insurers to secure policies on tailored terms. Insurance Surgery aims to take the hassle out of finding insurance by simplifying the process for your needs.


The Insurance Surgery*


  1. CURA – Specialise in insurance for the over 50s and those with pre-existing medical conditions. Their brokers have extensive knowledge of matching clients to appropriate policies from top insurers. If you have complex health needs, CURA has the expertise to help you find affordable cover.




When comparing life insurance quotes, make sure to choose an offering that matches both your budget and cover needs. Don’t just go for the cheapest policy. Instead, look for an optimal plan with sufficient cover from a reputable insurer who is likely to pay out claims.


What Type of Cover Should I Get?

The type of policy you choose will impact how much you pay for life insurance with pre-existing conditions:


  • Level-term insurance – Offers an affordable way to get a set payout if you pass away within the term. Ideal if you need cover for a certain number of years.
  • Decreasing term insurance – Pays out a reducing sum if you die during the term to cover a debt that reduces over time, like a mortgage. Generally more affordable.
  • Whole of life insurance – Provides lifelong cover, which continues paying out whenever you die. Premiums are higher as you’re covered for life.
  • Over 50s life insurance – Specialist policies for older applicants may overlook some health issues. But premiums increase sharply with age.
  • Guaranteed acceptance plans – Designed to accept applicants with pre-existing conditions. Limited cover for higher premiums.
  • Funeral insurance – Provides a payout to cover burial and funeral costs. Can offer acceptance despite health issues.


Consider your budget, age, health outlook and the level of cover you need. This will help narrow down what type of policy to apply that balances affordability and sufficient protection. To learn more about the types of cover, check out our pre-existing conditions guide.


How Can I Reduce My Premiums?

While life insurance with pre-existing conditions in the UK will often increase premiums, there are some particular steps you can take to potentially lower your costs:

  • Only apply for the cover you need – Don’t pay for extra benefits you won’t use.
  • Pick a longer policy term – Longer terms of 10 years+ typically have lower monthly premiums.
  • Reduce your cover amount – The lower the sum insured, the cheaper the premiums.
  • Improve your health – Losing weight, quitting smoking, and controlling chronic conditions can help.
  • Pay annually rather than monthly – Avoid the loading fees added to monthly payments.
  • Partner discounts – Joint policies for couples may qualify for multi-policy discounts.
  • Review your policy after a set time – Pre-existing condition premiums could reduce if your health improves.