Help Desk FAQ

Life insurance


I am a smoker, so I will have to pay more for life insurance. Isn’t this discriminatory?

No. Insurance actuaries—experts who predict risks of death, illness, fire or theft—look at your age, health, occupation, hobbies, and habits, as well as your credit report in setting your premiums. Nonsmokers pay far less for life insurance. (Some insurers won't give former smokers the nonsmokers' rate until they've quit for one to five years.) Insurers also consider alcohol consumption and hazardous occupations or hobbies. Many companies charge women less since they have a longer life expectancy but there are some that offer unisex life insurance rates.

People who represent the greatest risk to the company, because of illness or dangerous hobbies, for example, pay the most for insurance—if they are able to get it. When purchasing insurance, you will have to fill out an application form, and may have to undergo a medical exam. Answer all questions truthfully; insurers double check your answers against your medical and credit records.





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Consumer Help Desk