Can You Get Life Insurance If You Have COPD?

Shawn Plummer

CEO, The Annuity Expert

Understanding Life Insurance Options with COPD

COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) can impact your eligibility for life insurance, but it doesn’t entirely rule out the possibility of obtaining a policy. The key factors influencing the availability and terms of life insurance for individuals with COPD include:

  1. Diagnosis Date: When you were diagnosed with COPD.
  2. Cause of COPD: The underlying reasons behind the development of COPD.
  3. Smoking History: Whether you currently smoke or have a history of smoking.
  4. Table Rating System: Insurance companies use this to determine the risk and premium rate for applicants with COPD.

Types of Life Insurance for People with COPD

  1. Fully Underwritten Life Insurance:
    • Tailored based on individual health assessments.
    • May offer better rates for those with mild or well-managed COPD.
    • Requires detailed medical history and possibly a medical exam.
  2. Final Expense Plans:
  3. Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance:
    • No medical questions or exams required.
    • Ideal for individuals with severe COPD or those using oxygen.
    • Higher premiums and usually a graded death benefit.

Life Insurance Options for COPD Patients

Insurance TypeSuitable forCoverage AmountPremium CostMedical Exam Required
Fully UnderwrittenMild/Moderate COPDHigherVariableYes
Final ExpenseAll COPD stagesLowerHigherNo
Guaranteed IssueSevere COPD/Oxygen UsersLowerHighestNo


Navigating life insurance with COPD involves understanding the different types of policies available and how your specific condition impacts your eligibility and rates. Whether it’s a fully underwritten policy, a final expense plan, or a guaranteed issue plan, there are options available. Each type offers its own benefits and limitations, tailored to the severity and management of your COPD. Understanding these options ensures you can make an informed decision to secure the financial future of your loved ones.

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Shawn Plummer

CEO, The Annuity Expert

Shawn Plummer is a licensed financial professional, insurance agent, and annuity broker with over 14 years of first-hand experience with annuities and insurance. Since beginning his journey in 2009, he has been pivotal in selling and educating about annuities and insurance products. Still, he has also played an instrumental role in training financial advisors for a prestigious Fortune Global 500 insurance company, Allianz. His insights and expertise have made him a sought-after voice in the industry, leading to features in renowned publications such as Time Magazine, Bloomberg, Entrepreneur, Yahoo! Finance, MSN, SmartAsset, The Simple Dollar, U.S. News and World Report, Women’s Health Magazine, and many more. Shawn’s driving ambition? To simplify retirement planning, he ensures his clients understand their choices and secure the best insurance coverage at unbeatable rates.

The Annuity Expert is an independent online insurance agency servicing consumers across the United States. The goal is to help you take the guesswork out of retirement planning and find the best insurance coverage at the cheapest rates

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