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Multiple Sclerosis Community
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335728 tn?1331418012

Life Insurance

A few years back I applied for Life Insurance.  I was turned down due to having a pre-existing condition, "inactive" MS although that isn't the way they saw it!  ha ha

Just wondering if anyone here has been deemed ineligible for Life Insurance due to the diagnosis of MS even though MS has been deemed as non-life threatening?
11 Responses
Avatar universal
It's amazing that you brought this up because I was thinking about that very thing this morning....I don't have any life insurance, and was wondering if I should do it right now BEFORE a dx.....

"inactive"!!!!   GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!  

Tammy
228463 tn?1216765121
Hi gals!

My husband broke his back two years ago and almost died and we never got life insurance, (DUH!!!).  Well when my symptoms started in May of last year I thought, hmmm, now is the time before a dx comes.  We applied and were accepted  in JUne.  

I started thinking about MS and how it would affect my life and realized that I should have applied for Disability insurance at the same time as the Life. By August I finally got it all together to apply for that and by then my initial diagnosis of peripheral neuropathy had already been submitted to my insurance company.  I was denied due to that and was also told by an insurance agent that getting disability would be next to impossible at this point as they have a main system they pull their info from and with that dx in there I will probably never qualify.  

Long story short, or should I say long, sorry!!  I decided to go back to school to be a teacher thinking that if I could get in under the state system  and I ever do get a dx, I may have state disability insurance and it may be covered.

I know you both are in Canada, but down here my SSDI would not cover what I need to make so we can live.  

Don' t walk, run to your insurance agent, if I were you Tammy!!  Sorry Rena that you were turned down!
Big Hugs!
Kristin



Avatar universal
Hi there! I'm new here, but just wanted to respond when I saw your message, although, unfortunately, with nothing helpful. Have you applied to several insurance companies?

Also, if you or your hubby happen to have a credit card, call their 1-800 number and find out if they offer life ins. in any way. Example: we got a notice in the mail a couple of years ago that my credit card was offering this huge life ins. policy in partnership with American General for this really low fee every month - we signed up immediately, and the policy is a good one.

What I'm thinking is, when you start calling around to insurance companies regarding getting a policy, you certainly may be able to find one, but the downside is it might be horribly expensive to pay on monthly.

One more thing, is there any way you might could do some research on "inactive MS"? Meaning, you may have a case with the ins. companies to give you ins. if you can show data/info. that inactive MS really means nothing is wrong with you? Forgive me, I know that you have MS, but if you're crappy doctors are too wimpy to stand by an inital, true dx of MS so that you can be treated with MS meds, maybe they should be called on the carpet for that. Why not benefit from their incompetency if it means protecting your family financially?

Good luck and I hope something I said was beneficial - Shannon
Avatar universal
Shannon has a good point here, Rena.....

This way it will make those doctors sh** or get off the pot, so to speak....
They can't have it both ways, now can they??

Interesting.

Tammy
Avatar universal
This is kinda off the question but this is just good financial advice...for those of you with children, if you get them a whole life insurance policy when they are young, they can maintain that policy when they are older, increase the benefit as their family grows, and they will have life insurance for next to nothing.

My dad had a policy on me from birth, I increased the benefit amount when I got married, and now I have a really good policy for only $120 a year.

I took out similar policies on each of my children and they will have great coverage as adults.

It's odd taking out life insurance on your children, but they will never have to worry about it as adults.

I know that doesn't help anyone in the situation now, but those with children might see the benefit to this.

Wanna
  
335728 tn?1331418012
Just wanted any opinions on what dandb posted on this subject....
382218 tn?1341185087
I think what Shannon and Tammy say is worth a shot.  

If it were me, I would get in writing from the docs a written statement confirming that you have 'inactive MS;' a detailed explanation as to what this is (references to studies to back up the claim would be nice); and the rationale for WHY you are not being treated with DMDs.  And if they do not cooperate with putting this in writing, I would seek other measures as per those contacts I sent you previously.

Yes, doctors, sh** or get off the pot!  

Either your illness should be treated with DMD's, or, if it TRULY so 'inactive' that it does not require treatment, then you should be as insurable as the next guy.  

I think this is definitely worth pursuing.

db1
382218 tn?1341185087
It sounds like for anyone in limbo awaiting a dx, it is in your best interest to apply for both life insurance AND disability insurance now.  Also, if you are well enough to be job hunting, now is a good time to try to find an employer who offers life insurance as a benefit, not to mention medical, disability, etc.  However I realize that good jobs are not plentiful in many places nowadays.


I don't have kids, but I think Wanna's advice is great and is something I was never aware of.


I have never tried applying for insurance outside of what is provided to me as a benefit at work.  For my group plan (incls. medical, short term disability, LTD, life insurance, AD&D) there was no medical required nor any exclusions based on health status; I was insured the first day of my job.

I realize I am extremely lucky; I used to work for a non-profit at a much lower salary and pretty much zero benefits, so I was a dependent on my spouse's benefits.  It is pure dumb luck that I wandered into my current job 6 years ago, never dreaming that these benefits would be so important to me in such a short time.  We have contemplated moving away from here (no roots - friends and family are far away) but I am very reluctant to make a change now, given my current situation.  I do not think I would find anything nearly as good in benefits and salary (if I ever actually get back to work!), and would be reluctant to start a new job in the shape I now find myself in.

If I find myself on LTD at some point, I can request permission from the insurer to relocate.  That would probably not be a problem and would leave my spouse free to pursue employment elsewhere - hopefullly somewhere in closer proximity to a MS clinic.

db1
Avatar universal
A couple of things about insurance

1) All disability insurance policies require that you are declared disabled by Social Security.  In addition to that they deduct the amount of the SSDI payment from their amount.  So read the fine print and understand what you're purchasing,  Also know that most policies automaticaly expire at age 62

2) Of better value pehaps is Long-Term Care insurance, which typically does not require a Social Security disability status.  LTC is kinda like life-insurance except it pays based on your Doctors diagnosis.  The one I have from Unum requires that I have 2 out of 6 conditions, like needs assistance dressing, or needs assitance walking, or needs assistance getting out of bed or bathing.  Some policies will only pay if you're in a nursing facility, but this policy pays if I'm home and will pay even if I decide to have my Wife care for me.  So I think its a better deal than disability if you can get it and of course it is expensive.  I'm 48, and for a policy that pays $3000 a month for 12 years, I pay almost $200 a month.  The way I see it is like an investment.  where there's a 50/50 chance I can collect maybe as much as $450,000 for maybe $20-30,000 investment. Trick will be that interloping time between loosing my job and abilty to pay and getting the doctor to make those declarations.  But I believe that's much more likely to happen in a time frame I can deal with tha waiting for Social Security to declare me disabled.
Avatar universal
Jon M, what you said about disability insurance is no where on my husband's policy.  He is not forced to apply for Social Security Disability when on LTD.  In fact, I called a disability attorney today and he said that you cannot collect LTD from a policy and Social Security disability at the same time.  When you go on SSD, you forfeit private LTD insurance.    Social Security has no direct impact on our LTD policy.

Apparently, according to the attorney, some LTD companies try to get you to apply for SSD, but it is not mandatory and if you have an attorney. they will make sure you are on LTD if that is what yiou want.

However, when on LTD you lose health insurance.  On SSD you have to wait two years till after you are approved and on SSD before Medicare takes over as your primary health insurance.

Maybe all LTD policies are different, but at least my husband would not have to apply through Social Security.
Elaine
Avatar universal
Years and years ago, on the advice of a financial planner, I applied for long tern care insurance, which boiled down to nursing home care for X amount of time as future protection. Got turned down because--------------I had just had an abnormal brain MRI. No diagnosis of anything. Since this info goes into some huge database, no other insurer would touch me, the first being UNUM.

Also from what I've been reading in the paper and seeing on TV, the SS disability claims examiners (headquarters is here) are under a lot of heat from being slow to process. They are swamped with applications that have no chance of succeeding. The applicants are forced to apply first for gov't disability by their private insurance companies, and the federal requirements are much stricter than those of private insurers. So when they get turned down, only then can they try the private route.

ess
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