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How Can a Smoker Get Term Insurance Cover?

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“Life is too precious to blow up in a smoke”

Tobacco consumption in any form is quite high in India. The World Health Organization (WHO) recently stated in a report that there are 120million smokers in India. This makes up 12% of the world’s total smoking population. Furthermore, the report even stated that over a million people face death due to the consumption of tobacco in India.

Still, after knowing this, people smoke. They know that they are shortening their lives, yet it has become a common activity for smokers. Well, surely the tobacco industry is growing but so is the myth that smokers can avail the benefit of term insurance cover!

According to a new survey conducted, nearly one-third of the respondents said that they didn’t go for an online term insurance policy as they believed that their application will get rejected. But little do they know that life insurance companies do offer coverage to smokers. Though, the terms and conditions are different compared to non-smokers.

How are smokers categorized by insurers? 

Statistically, the probability of a smoker passing away is higher than that of non-smokers. Thus, these statistics increase the opportunity for smokers to avail the term insurance plan. Now, when we talk about smoking, it’s not that every individual smokes the same amount as the other. There might be variations for the same. Well, bearing this in mind, term insurance companies have set up a categorization of smokers.

  • Preferred Smoker: The least amount of premium is set for this type. This is because, under this type, the smoker apart from smoking overall comes under the fit category.
  • Typical Smoker:  A premium slightly higher than the preferred smoker will be for typical smokers. These are the type of smokers who linger with minor health issues along with smoking.
  • Table rated smoker:  This type of smoker faces the highest premium of all the 3 types. This is because this individual has health conditions owing to smoking. Due to this, the insurance company looks to minimize its risk by letting them pay a higher premium.

 Smoking is injurious to your financial health too! 

Due to the high mortality rate amongst smokers, the premium amount is high. Term Insurance companies evaluate the premium of smokers by inquiring about the frequency of tobacco usage currently and in previous months. Secondly, they ask you about the tobacco-based products that you have consumed like cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, etc.

After the frequency and product, the insurer decides whether you are a seasoned or an occasional smoker. Once the consideration of other underwriting rules is done then the insurer decides to either highly increase or slightly increase your premium, as per your categorization.

Often insurers conduct a medical test before issuing a term insurance policy. It is always better to inform the insurer prior to the issuance of the policy as at the time of the medical test you won’t be able to cover up the traces of nicotine.

General Features of Term Insurance for Smokers

  • Age Limit For a smoker, few rules are different than that of a non-smoker. For instance, the minimum age limit to purchase a term insurance plan for them is 18years and maximum coverage can go till 75 years.
  • Term Limit  Term insurance coverage for a smoker is up to 5-10 years minimum and maximum it can go up to 30-40 years.
  • Sum assured When it comes to providing the sum assured the minimum provided to a smoker is up to Rs. 3 lakh and the maximum can go up to 50 lakhs or as per the amount the insured has requested. This will be done after consideration.
  • Eligibility These term insurance plans are available for only Indian citizens residing in India.
  • Maturity of the plan If there is a case where the insured smoker has outlived the maturity of the policy then the person does not receive any benefits for the same.

Bottom Line: 

Smoking is definitely harmful and is prone to multiple illnesses, but when faced with those illnesses at least you’ll be financially prepared. You’ll have the best affordable health insurance to help you in this scenario.

The only main deal with term insurance, especially when you are a smoker, is to be extremely honest with all the facts that you give while signing up!