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Addison’s Disease Life Insurance Guide 2024

It is often possible to buy life insurance if you have Addison’s disease, and you will be protected if you die because of Addison’s disease or something unrelated. Living with Addison’s disease is often challenging, and life insurance provides some peace of mind that your family is financially protected if anything happens to you.

In this guide, our independent insurance experts explain how Addison’s disease can affect life insurance and the easiest ways to find the best and cheapest policies in 2024. We will cover everything that you need to know about the application process, including potential questions that you might be asked and the easiest ways to save money on your cover.

Addison’s disease isn’t a common condition in the UK, but there are around 9,000 people who are known to be living with this condition.

We’ve spoken to hundreds of people over the years who have autoimmune conditions and are worried that this will stop them from getting life insurance. Generally this isn’t true, and there are now several insurance companies that can provide the protection that you need for your family at an affordable price.

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60-Second Summary – Addison’s Disease Life Insurance Guide 2024

Life insurance with Addison’s Disease is often available through most of our standard insurance partners, as well as some specialist insurers for people with more severe symptoms.

You should ideally get advice from an Addison’s Disease life insurance specialist, who is used to dealing with this condition and other pre-existing medical conditions. This is usually the simplest way to find the cover that you need at a price that suits your budget.

  • Addison’s disease life insurance premiums can vary dramatically from one insurer to another, so it’s very important to get proper advice from a medical insurance specialist.
  • Outstanding investigations for Addison’s disease will often mean that your application will be postponed until results have been received.
  • Most applications for Addison’s disease life insurance will require a medical report from your GP to confirm your symptoms, treatment, and any relevant dates.
  • People with Addison’s disease will often pay more for life insurance than a standard application for someone with no pre-existing medical conditions, however there will be no exclusions so you will be fully covered.

Many people with conditions like Addison’s disease worry that life insurance will cost far too much for them, or that it isn’t available at all. Realistically, life insurance is often available for people with Addison’s disease, but the price can vary massively based on the insurance company that you choose.

We know that it can be an intimidating experience to apply for life insurance for the first time, especially if you have an autoimmune disorder or any medical condition.

This is why it is useful to speak to a life insurance expert, who can guide you through the entire application process. They will also be able to tell you which insurers are most likely to offer the best terms and pricing, based on your overall health and lifestyle.

Can you live a normal life with Addison’s disease?

It is possible to live a normal life with Addison’s disease, particularly if your symptoms are mild. However, there is a risk of certain complications (e.g. adrenal crisis) which can be very serious, and this is where policies like life insurance can offer the most protection.

According to the NHS, there are around 300 cases of Addison’s disease diagnosed in the UK every year, mainly affecting people between the ages of 30 and 50. Other forms of autoimmune disorders are more common in the UK, which includes conditions like multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis.

This video from BuzzFeed explains more about different types of autoimmune disease, and how these conditions can affect your life each day.

I Have An Autoimmune Disease

There are a lot of options when buying life insurance with Addison’s disease, so you should choose the policy that feels like the best fit for you. Your main options for cover include level term life insurance (family protection) and decreasing life insurance (mortgage protection).

There are also a few other types of policy that can be cheaper and might be better for some people, such as family income benefit. In most cases, when you apply for life insurance you will be asked some extra questions to help the insurance company understand how Addison’s disease affects your general health.

These extra questions aren’t anything to worry about, as it is standard to be asked for more information in any application where someone has one or more pre-existing conditions.

Key factors for life insurance with Addison’s disease:

  • How old were you when you were first diagnosed?
  • Are you taking any medications?
  • What was the date of the last attack of symptoms?
  • Have you been prescribed any other treatments?
  • What are your current symptoms and how severe are they?
  • Do you have family history of any other medical conditions?
  • Do you have any other medical conditions?

Is guaranteed life insurance a good option for me?

Standard life insurance is often available for people with Addison’s disease, and some specialists will even be able to offer cover for people with more severe symptoms. However, if you are worried about answering a lot of medical questions, you might prefer a policy like guaranteed life insurance.

These policies won’t require medical questions or GP reports, so this can work better for people with serious health issues or multiple conditions. A medical insurance expert can explain all your options to you, and they will also be able to talk you through every application question if you do decide to opt for standard cover.

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If you die from Addison’s disease and you have life cover in place already, your family will receive a lump sum cash benefit. This is the most common question that people ask about life insurance and the Association of British Insurers has stated that 96.9% of life insurance claims were paid in 2023, which is one of the highest of all insurance policies.

If you are diagnosed with Addison’s disease and you later pass away, life insurance can provide financial security to your loved ones for a number of things, including:

When taking out life insurance, we don’t generally think too much about what might happen to your health in the future. Your policy will be based fully on your health at the time when you applied.

If you are diagnosed with Addison’s disease in the future, then having the right life insurance policy can be life-changing. Addison’s disease is not always considered to be life-threatening, but it is possible that it can cause complications that might be fatal.

None of us want to leave our families open to financial difficulty, and life insurance can provide much need support during an incredibly difficult time.

The cost of life insurance will always vary from person to person, regardless of any medical conditions that you have. This is because other things like your age and the amount of cover needed (£s) will also affect the price.

You might end up paying slightly more for life insurance with Addison’s disease, compared to someone with no medical conditions. However, there are easy ways to lower the cost of your cover, such as choosing a different policy type or being covered for less years (policy term).

The simplest way to find a fair price for your cover is to shop around for the best quotes, and a qualified life insurance expert can quickly compare these quotes for you.

To give you an example, the table below shows details of a real live policy which our experts helped a customer with back in July 2023. As you can see, the price is very affordable, and medical conditions don’t automatically mean that your policy will be too expensive.

Example Addison’s disease life insurance policy

Details of applicantMrs D. was born in 1968 and is a non-smoker.
Addison’s disease details and informationAddison’s disease symptoms are well controlled and treated with medication.
She experienced an adrenal crisis around 4 years before applying for her policy.
Other health informationHeight: 5’3” / Weight: 15st 5lb (99kg)
Cover requirementsMrs D wanted £100,000 worth of level term cover to protect her family, with an ideal budget of around £35 per month
Monthly premiums (£s)£31.43 per month
Guaranteed (fixed) premiums
Standard insurance company (Liverpool Victoria/LV)

Mrs D. got the cover that she needed to protect her family for just over £30 per month, which may have been more expensive if she hadn’t applied with the help of a specialist broker.

Many people that we speak to are concerned that applying for life insurance with a medical condition will be a long and confusing process, but this generally isn’t the case. The application process will be similar to applying without medical conditions, though there will usually be some extra questions.

You are likely to be asked more about your Addision’s disease diagnosis and treatment, and the insurance company might want to see a medical report from your GP. Most of the time, you will be accepted for cover at this point, and you will simply need to pay for your policy each month for your cover to stay active.

Another potential outcome when applying for a non-standard cover such as Addison’s Disease life insurance, critical illness cover, or income protection, is for an ‘exclusion’ to be applied to your policy. This would mean that certain benefits like guaranteed insurability might not be available, but you will still be covered for most scenarios.

How much life insurance do I need?

It is difficult to say how much cover you need when you are applying for Addison’s Disease life insurance, critical illness cover, or income protection. There are however some simple rules that you can follow which will give you a good idea of how much coverage you need before you apply.

You should think about things like:

  • Your usual outgoing expenses each month (e.g. rent, mortgage)
  • Outstanding mortgage balance
  • Average cost of childcare each year
  • Any other debts that would need to be repaid

If you’ve been diagnosed with this condition and have already applied for life insurance, you might have been declined. This isn’t a big problem because life insurance companies aren’t particularly concerned about whether another company has refused cover in the past.

There are a few reasons why you might have been turned down in the past but don’t worry, we can help. Here are some of the main reasons why people are declined for life insurance with Addison’s disease:

  • Wrong time: You might have been diagnosed recently or you could have been going through a difficult period in terms of your medication or control
  • Surgery/treatment: It is likely that if you were awaiting treatment or results of tests, then you would be postponed or even declined cover
  • Wrong insurance company: Some insurance companies are simply not great for some conditions, and especially some more complicated medical issues
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It’s often a scary experience to be diagnosed with a new medical condition, especially if you aren’t sure how this will affect your health and lifestyle moving forward. This is why critical illness insurance exists, as this can provide a cash lump sum to support you and your family through your diagnosis.

Some critical illness insurance policies will pay out for a diagnosis of Addison’s disease, but this will depend on your policy and the insurance company itself.  Every insurer will cover different medical conditions and the amount of conditions covered can vary massively.

It is best to check the terms and conditions of your policy, so you know exactly where you stand and what you can claim for.

Critical illness cover can be available for people who already have Addison’s disease, and many people choose to add on critical illness cover when buying life insurance. If Addison’s Disease has been well controlled and there have been no recent issues with your condition, you should be accepted for critical illness cover.

Critical illness insurance will pay out a cash lump sum on diagnosis of a serious medical condition such as cancer, which is the biggest reason for critical illness claims. The pay out from your policy can help with important expenses like:

  • Income (after tax)
  • Mortgage payments (annual)
  • Cost of living (annual)
  • Any other possible costs (e.g. medical treatment or adaptations)

As with a life insurance application, the insurance company will often want to look at your medical records to assess the level of risk for your application. In some cases, your application might be postponed or declined if you have recently experienced serious complications like adrenal crisis.

We understand how frustrating this can be, and this is why it is always best to speak to an insurance expert in this situation. Some insurance companies may be more likely to accept your application than others, and an expert will be able to check if other companies can offer cover. They can also get back in touch at a later point, when the cover has become available for you again.

What is Addison’s disease?

Addison’s disease is a disorder that occurs when your body produces insufficient amounts of hormones produced by your adrenal glands. The adrenal glands produce too little cortisol, and often insufficient levels of aldosterone as well.

Treatment for Addison’s disease involves taking hormones to replace the insufficient amounts being produced by the adrenal glands, and other symptoms include fatigue, weight loss, decreased appetite, hyperpigmentation of the skin, low blood sugar, joint pain, and depression. The signs and symptoms of Addison’s disease can appear suddenly, resulting in acute adrenal failure.


Is Addison’s disease a disability in the UK?

Addison’s disease is classed as a disability under the Equality Act 2010, as are other serious conditions that affect the adrenal glands. Addison’s disease is usually thought of as an ‘invisible disability’, as the symptoms are not always obvious to anyone who doesn’t know about your diagnosis.


How does Addison’s disease make you feel?

Symptoms of Addison’s disease can develop very suddenly and can have a big impact on your immune system. You should always speak to your GP if you suspect you might have Addison’s disease.

Symptoms of Addison’s disease include:

  • Fatigue
  • Muscle weakness
  • Low mood
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Being more thirsty than usual

If you experience an adrenal crisis or ‘addisonian crisis’, this is where your body can’t increase the amount of the hormone cortisol which is made in stressful situations. This then results in low blood pressure and blood sugar and can lead to loss of consciousness.

The simplest way to find the best quotes for Addison’s disease life insurance is to speak to a medical conditions life insurance expert. Our team have more than 20 years of expertise in life insurance for conditions like Addison’s disease and have access to all the UK’s top life insurance companies.

To get free and impartial advice, call 0800 009 6559 or CLICK HERE to fill in our online life insurance quote form.

Useful resources

If you have Addison’s disease or have a loved one with this condition, the organisations below may be able to offer advice and resources that could be helpful for you.

Hidden Disabilities Sunflower

The Hidden Disabilities Sunflower is a Worldwide organisation that aims to raise awareness of 'hidden' disabilities, diseases, and common conditions that don't have visible symptoms. Wearing a Hidden Disability Sunflower is a way to voluntarily show that you have a hidden disability, and many organisations in the UK have been trained in the Hidden Disability Sunflower scheme.

Wearing the Sunflower lanyard lets others know that you might need some extra help or more time with certain tasks, without needing to ask for this yourself. The Sunflower symbol was chosen due to the flower's asscociation with happiness, positivity, and strength.

Contact details (UK)

Website - Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Online Helpdesk

Contact form - Submit a ticket

Due to Hidden Disabilities Sunflower having a small team in the UK, they currently do not have an option to contact them via phone, as there would not be enough staff members to answer all of the calls.

 

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Can I get life insurance with pre-existing conditions?

Yes, you will be able to get life insurance with almost any pre-existing medical condition, as long as it is not terminal. If traditional life insurance is not available due to the severity of your symptoms, then there are other guaranteed and specialist life insurance options, such as:

  • Accidental death
  • Over 50s life insurance
  • Guaranteed life insurance

Some of the most common examples of life insurance with pre-existing conditions are:

  • Overweight or High BMI life insurance
  • Diabetes life insurance (e.g. Type 2 or Type 1 diabetes)
  • Cancer life insurance
  • Heart attack or heart disease life insurance
  • Mental health life insurance
  • Multiple Sclerosis life insurance
  • Autoimmune disorders life insurance
  • HIV life insurance

There are literally thousands of types and variations of pre-exisiting medical conditions and so your situation is likely to be different to someone else. Life insurance with pre-existing conditions will take a number of elements in to account:

  • Severity and type of symptoms
  • Dates of diagnosis, episodes or attacks, and treatments
  • Any ongoing treatment and medications

Your life insurance premiums will be based on your own individual circumstances and how much cover you need. You should be able to adjust the levels of cover to suit your budget and it’s just as important to make sure that you at least have some cover in place.

What does Martin Lewis say about life insurance with pre-existing conditions?

MoneySavingExpert.com suggests that life insurance will ‘cost a lot more’ with a pre-existing medical condition. This is not true and it really does depend on your own individual circumstances so don’t be put off by this as they are not experts in this area.

It is true that some circumstances where the pre-existing medical condition is serious or severe, premiums can be higher to reflect the additional mortality risks. Ultimately, your life insurance premiums are unfortunately based on how likely you are to claim or if you have a higher chance of death within the policy term.

Martin Lewis doesn’t provide any real substance to his comment about pre-existing conditions life insurance and that’s not good enough. You should speak to a medical life insurance specialist to get a fully underwritten quote before you make any final decisions about whether or not you can afford to protect your family.

How much is life insurance with pre-existing conditions?

Most traditional life insurance providers will accept applications for people with pre-existing medical conditions. Often, you will have a number of potential options from several different insurance providers so you can usually save money as well by shopping around.

Historically you might have had less offers when you apply for life insurance with pre-existing conditions, but fortunately that is changing. Most of the more well-known high street life insurance brands are now offering more competitive rates and more flexible underwriting.

Top tips to save money on life insurance with pre-existing conditions:

  • Speak to pre-existing medical conditions specialist (these companies will understand the market better and should know which insurers will be cheapest for you)
  • Shop around and get different quotes (same as everything else, by shopping around you’ll get a better idea of what a good price is and what different companies offer)
  • Apply at the best time (timing can be important when applying for life insurance with pre-existing conditions, usually when symptoms are stable and not before or after treatment)

There are also other things to take into consideration, such as if you’re a smoker or if your weight is higher than normal. Can you do anything to improve your situation that might help to reduce your life insurance premiums.

Best life insurance for pre-existing conditions?

The best life insurance for pre-existing conditions will be different for each individual, based on their circumstances and the details of their health or medical history. There are certainly some insurance providers who are better for people with pre-existing medical conditions than others, such as:

  • The Exeter (better for people with more severe symptoms and serious health problems)
  • Legal & General (can sometimes be good for certain pre-existing medical conditions, especially mild to moderate symptoms)
  • Royal London (offers a number of specialist products and policies for certain pre-existing medical conditions such as diabetes and mental health)
  • Scottish Widows (sometimes good for moderate medical conditions and offers flexible underwriting for certain conditions)
  • The Guardian (also offers flexible underwriting towards some pre-existing medical conditions)
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