Can You Get Life Insurance if You Have PTSD?

Shawn Plummer

CEO, The Annuity Expert

Factors Affecting Life Insurance Eligibility for Individuals with PTSD

People with a history of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) may face challenges when applying for life insurance, but there are still options available. The key factor for underwriters is the management and stability of the condition, along with adherence to a doctor’s treatment plan. Several aspects can influence the underwriting process:

  1. History of Substance Abuse: If there is a history of substance abuse, it can be a red flag for insurers as it may indicate higher health risks.
  2. Social or Work Withdrawal: Signs of social isolation or difficulty in maintaining employment due to PTSD can affect the underwriting decision.
  3. Hospital Stays: Frequent or recent hospitalizations for PTSD-related issues can impact the assessment of risk.
  4. Non-compliance with Medications: Not taking prescribed medications regularly can be seen as a sign of poor management of the condition.
  5. History of Suicide Attempts or Thoughts: This is a critical factor and can significantly impact the possibility of obtaining life insurance.

Life Insurance Options for Business Owners with PTSD

Business owners with PTSD have specific options for life insurance, particularly in the context of their business needs:

  • Key Person Insurance: This policy is designed to protect the business in case of the death of a key employee, including the owner. If the owner has PTSD, the policy can still be obtained, but the focus will be on how the condition impacts their role in the business.
  • Buy/Sell Agreements: In the case of partnerships or multi-owner businesses, life insurance can be a part of a buy/sell agreement, where the death benefit is used to purchase the deceased partner’s share of the business. For owners with PTSD, underwriting will consider how the condition affects their business involvement.


Factor Influencing UnderwritingImpact on Life Insurance Eligibility
Well-managed and Stable PTSDHigher likelihood of eligibility
History of Substance AbuseMay reduce eligibility
Social or Work WithdrawalPotentially negative impact
Irregular Medication AdherenceCould lead to declined application
Suicide Attempts/ThoughtsSignificantly affects eligibility


Navigating life insurance with PTSD can be challenging, but it’s not impossible. It’s crucial to demonstrate stable and well-managed conditions, adherence to treatment, and understanding the specific insurance needs, especially for business owners. This guide provides insight into the factors that affect life insurance eligibility for individuals with PTSD and the options available to them.

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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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