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Life insurance premiums and cover for people with Epilepsy

More people are being diagnosed with epilepsy in the UK than ever before. Epilepsy is one of the most common types of neurological conditions which is most well-known for the seizures it causes.

We’ve had personal experience of how life-changing this condition can be. A good friend of ours sadly passed away in his thirties recently from a severe seizure which resulted in a serious head injury. So this subject is something that is very close to our hearts.

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Life insurance and epilepsy

Here are a few of the most common questions that we get asked by people with epilepsy. If you need any more information or a FREE quote then call our experts on 0800 009 6559

How does having epilepsy impact life insurance?

A life insurance policy is designed to protect your family and takes account of your health or medical condition. Cover for someone who has this particular condition will differ more depending on the type of seizures you have and how many. Some people who suffer from epilepsy have very few seizures which means that they can easily get cover generally.

It is important to understand that some insurance providers are better at underwriting epilepsy than others. You might even find that some insurers can be two or three times the price of others which is shocking. It could also be the case that an insurer might decline your application for cover but others could accept without any problems.

Some of the questions you might be asked about your epilepsy if you apply for life insurance are:

  • What was the cause of your epilepsy (e.g. alcohol, brain swelling or scarring, other medical condition, drug use, or medication)?
  • Are you awaiting any scans, tests, or investigations?
  • When was your first seizure?
  • Has your treatment changed in the past 6 months?
  • Has your epilepsy caused any cognitive issues or mental health problems?
  • Have you been admitted to the hospital because of your epilepsy?

Life insurance can seem unfair and infuriating at times which is totally understandable for someone with epilepsy or other medical conditions. If you’ve experienced this situation then you may feel let down or disillusioned about life insurance. Don’t be disheartened about getting cover for your family and it’s important to know that there are other options.

More information about LIFE INSURANCE

What’s different about life insurance with epilepsy?

Life insurance is the same product generally, regardless of your health or medical conditions. It will pay out a cash lump sum to your family or to your beneficiaries if you die which will provide financial security in the future. If you’ve been diagnosed with epilepsy then you’ll need to answer some questions about it and potentially provide a GP report.

The process of applying for life insurance if you’ve got epilepsy might be slightly different than others. This is simply to take account of your medical situation so that there are no questions at the point of claim. You should make sure that you disclose your epilepsy and answer any questions accurately to the best of your knowledge.

Will I need a medical?

In most cases where the symptoms are mild and seizures are fewer then you’ll probably not have to give medical evidence. The purpose of medical reports is to make sure that your application has been fully assessed and underwritten.

For a lot of neurological conditions, a GP report will be requested but that’s not a bad thing. If you apply for life insurance and you’ve got epilepsy then you’ll probably be asked to provide your GP details. The next stage is underwriting and where your GP report might be requested.

You will also have the option to view your medical report in this instance which means that you’ll be able to check the information before it gets sent to the insurer. In this instance, you would need to visit your GP to check the report before it gets sent on. If you’re happy with the information on your medical records then you can skip this step to save time.

Has Coronavirus (COVID-19) changed life insurance rates for epilepsy?

The impacts of COVID-19 are similar for most medical conditions because most insurers have placed similar restrictions. Someone with mild epilepsy looking for life insurance would generally see no change to their application journey. It is only towards the more severe end of the scale where there are changes generally.

There are potential links to additional risks connected to epilepsy medication with extra mortality from Coronavirus. Most people with symptoms of COVID-19 would be postponed for a period of 30 days after symptoms have gone. If you had been exposed to certain circumstances where there is a potential risk of contracting the virus then there could be limitations in cover.

Some Coronavirus questions include:

  • Have you tested positive for coronavirus?
  • Have you been told to self-isolate?
  • Are you experiencing symptoms such as cough, temperature, or loss of taste/smell?
  • Do you know anyone with Coronavirus that you’ve been in contact with?

While this situation has been an unprecedented period in history, there’s nothing to suggest that something like this might happen again.

There have been certain limitations that came into force during the pandemic which caused restrictions for some people. The limits only tended to be towards the severe end of the spectrum where people had complications or control issues. Some of those limits put in place include:

  • The maximum amount of cover available (£1 million max)
  • Restrictions to underwriting levels
  • Some medical evidence requirements restricted

The limits are expected to be temporary, however, there could be longer-term effects on medical underwriting for life insurance.

Can I get critical illness cover if I’ve got epilepsy?

People with epilepsy can usually get critical illness cover with no real issues, especially where seizures are mild (absent seizures). If you’ve got epilepsy and you’re considering taking out critical illness cover then here’s how it works. You’ll be asked a series of medical questions about your condition as well as the usual general questions about your health, lifestyle, and occupation.

The main things that will be taken into consideration when you’re applying for this type of cover with epilepsy are:

  • Type of seizures you have (e.g. absent or tonic-clonic)
  • Date of diagnosis
  • Frequency of symptoms/seizures

We’ve dealt with thousands of these types of applications over the years so we know which providers offer the best cover as well as cheaper premiums. It’s often the case that some insurers are far better than others in terms of underwriting for epilepsy and especially with more complicated products such as critical illness cover.

You should need to consider that some insurance companies will remove certain elements from your critical illness cover policy connected to your epilepsy. These are called ‘exclusions’ and in this case, you might find that certain neurological conditions will be excluded.

Make sure that you check your documentation thoroughly to ensure that you’re satisfied with what you are being offered. And remember that cheap isn’t always best in this situation, it’s more important to have the right cover.

Epilepsy critical illness cover amounts

If your epilepsy is well controlled with no recent symptoms, obtaining critical illness cover is a straightforward process. In this case, critical illness cover should be offered under standard rates – this is very similar to the unwritten guidelines of life insurance cover.

If your epilepsy causes you regular symptoms or is newly diagnosed, the obtainment may be less straightforward with the addition of premium loading. If you are eligible, here are factors to consider when applying for critical illness cover:

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

More information about CRITICAL ILLNESS COVER

Is income protection available with epilepsy?

Most people with epilepsy work normally with no major restrictions on lifestyle so income protection is important. This is something that’s quite common so here’s a bit more about how it might work for you. If you’ve got epilepsy and want to protect your income then you should be able to get covered in most cases.

If you are only suffering from mild symptoms and you are well controlled then you should be able to get this type of cover quickly and easily. Some people with mild absent seizures that happen infrequently could get accepted for cover immediately with no further medical underwriting. It may be the case that you would not be covered for anything connected to your epilepsy in this instance, this can vary depending on the insurer.

People who suffer from more severe symptoms such as tonic-clonic seizures or more frequent symptoms could require further medical underwriting. There’s a chance that you could see some providers offer cover with some limitations which could include exclusions or limits to the length of the deferment period.

A deferment period is the number of weeks you have before you are able to make a claim, usually in this case it will be a minimum of 13 weeks. This basically means that you would be able to submit your claim once you have been off work for 13 weeks and usually for 12 to 24 months from that point.

There are also other types of income protection policies that might be more suitable for someone with epilepsy. These more unique and exclusive products would offer cover for shorter claim periods (e.g. 12 months) with no medical underwriting. We offer these policies because they’re ideal for people with medical conditions like epilepsy.

Epilepsy income protection amounts of cover

If you suffer from epilepsy, it is likely that you will be able to get income protection, however, exclusions may be applied.

Here are some things to consider when taking income protection:

  • Monthly income (after tax)
  • Mortgage/rent payments
  • Debts (other)
  • Cost of living

More information about INCOME PROTECTION

How much does epilepsy life insurance cost?

When you apply for life insurance, there are a few things that insurance companies will need to consider before offering cover.

Firstly, the type of epilepsy you have will influence your eligibility and your premiums. If you are diagnosed with petit mal epilepsy and experience fewer seizures, then the cover can be quick and cheap. However, if you’ve been diagnosed with grand mal epilepsy and have experienced symptoms, your premiums can increase.

Secondly, the type of seizures you have can impact the cost of your epilepsy life insurance policy. Symptoms can vary from simple partial seizures to tonic-clonic seizures where the loss of consciousness is likely. If you have the latter, it is likely that cover may cost slightly more.

Finally, the regularity of your symptoms, diagnosis timescale, and the level of control you have over your epilepsy will influence the cost of your policy

Premiums for Epilepsy life insurance

Here is a list of the main considerations for Epilepsy life insurance rates and premiums:

  • Date of your epilepsy diagnosis
  • Epilepsy type, including the type of seizures and level of control present
  • Your medical history, including any treatment
  • Frequency of last seizures and date of the last attack
  • The type of insurance cover you need – (Income protection, critical illness cover, travel insurance)
  • The term of your epilepsy life insurance policy

iam|INSURED is an expert in finding affordable cover for people who live with pre-existing medical conditions such as Epilepsy life insurance, critical illness cover, and income protection. We search the UK’s top insurers to find you the most suitable cover and the best rates to protect your family, home, and business.

Exclusions for epilepsy life insurance, critical illness cover, income protection, or travel insurance

When applying for epilepsy life insurance, critical illness cover, income protection, or travel insurance, you may also experience ‘exclusions’. Exclusions are classified as conditions that can be linked/caused by your epilepsy symptoms and will be excluded from your policy.

How much cover do I need?

When applying for epilepsy life insurance, income protection, critical illness cover, or travel insurance, it is difficult to give a recommendation on the amount of cover you will need.
Once full details of your medical history and epileptic diagnosis are provided, a clearer observation will be provided. In the meantime, if you would like to make a rough estimation, follow our below outlines:

Epilepsy life insurance amounts of cover

If you’re looking for life insurance, your recommended cover amount will depend on the extent of your epilepsy diagnosis, along with any symptoms and your diagnosis period. If your epilepsy is mild, such as petit mal, and have controlled your symptoms for a while, normal terms will be offered.

Here are some factors you should consider prior to applying for life insurance:

  • Mortgage amount (£’s)
  • Outstanding debt (e.g. Loans, second charge, credit cards, and other)
  • Dependents
  • Spouse or Partner
  • Income (after Tax)
  • Assets (e.g. car, house, business, etc.)

To discuss the application process for epilepsy life insurance, contact our team today on 0800 009 6559

What are the potential problems for someone with epilepsy getting life insurance?

Epilepsy is one of the most common neurological medical conditions with a wide range of potential symptoms, severities, and treatments. It’s important to be aware of the possible problems that you might encounter when you apply for life insurance.

We’re always 100% focused on making sure that our customers get a fair price but also that they get the right cover. Here’s what we know are some of the slightly more complex issues around getting life insurance with epilepsy:

  • Recent hospitalisation can cause some concerns for underwriters or multiple hospitalisations can also be an issue. If you’ve had hospital treatment because of your epilepsy then you’ll be asked for information about it
  • Tonic-clonic seizures can also be a concern for some underwriters because they are classed as more serious than absent seizures
  • Outstanding investigations will also often cause your offer of cover to be postponed until those investigations have been completed and results are available. This is just to ensure that nothing shows up in the results of tests

Many people that we speak to with epilepsy have been refused cover elsewhere or offered premiums that seem high. We’re often able to get you covered even if you’ve had an application declined previously so give us a call.