HIV Life Insurance

HIV Life Insurance used to be an option that just did not exist for people infected with the HIV virus. Many life insurance companies do not have enough information to make a fair assessment of the risk, to properly underwrite the risk of insuring people with HIV for life insurance.

A study performed by the Dutch Association of Insurers announced on March 15, 2002, that "HIV is no more of a risk factor for insurers than someone with diabetes – a positive step toward increasing the insurability of HIV patients."

The study examined the mortality of HIV patients from an insurance standpoint. Among this group the mathematical probability of death due to HIV was found to be as low as one-tenth of one percent per year. These odds put HIV patients in the same risk category as people with diabetes or a serious heart problem.

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Life insurance provides protection against the financial consequences of death of the insured person. In the past, life insurance companies would not knowingly insure a person infected with HIV. However, due to significant advances in the treatment of the virus, it is possible for people who are HIV positive to get life insurance.

When applying for life insurance it is important to know that you must disclose your HIV positive status to the insurance company when filling out your application. If you do not, and the insurance company finds out, your coverage will be cancelled.

If you contract HIV after your life insurance policy is issued, your coverage cannot be canceled based on your HIV positive status.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance may be one option for people living with HIV. However, there are restrictions on these life insurance policies that may not make them a viable option for you. There is usually a waiting period of 2-3 years. That means the coverage does not take effect for that time period, but you are required to pay your premiums. If you do not outlive the waiting period, the policy would pay nothing to your beneficiary.

The benefits offered by guaranteed issue policies are usually limited to $5,000 to $25,000 of coverage.

The cost of guaranteed issue life insurance may be quite expensive, averaging up to $50 or more per month, depending on the policy and the coverage amount.

This type of coverage is usually only available to people over the age of 40 or 50, in some cases.

Make sure you pay the premiums, if you miss a payment, you may be canceled and lose all the money you put into the policy.

Another option for HIV Life Insurance may be your Employer Group Life Insurance Policy. Remember, once your employment ends, you may be able to convert your group life insurance policy into an individual life insurance policy. But this change must take place within 31 days (usually) of the end of your employment.

Or, you may want to join an Association, Union, or Credit Union in order to be eligible for enrollment in a group life insurance policy.

There are some life insurance companies that have chosen to offer life insurance policies to people with HIV. Among those is Guarantee Trust Life Insurance Company, based in Glenview, Illinois. They are a life insurer specializing in life insurance for high-risk individuals.

People ages 20-49 may qualify for $25,000-$250,000 of life insurance, depending on your current health, and the level of the virus. Coverage availability may be limited to certain states. About 50% of HIV-positive people who have sought coverage have been denied, from the time Guarantee Trust started offering the coverage in 1997 through 2004.

Other insurance companies who have offered HIV Life Insurance include New York Life, Mutual of Omaha, and Physician’s Life - all offer life insurance to individuals who are HIV positive. The requirements as well as the amount of coverage available may vary by company. You may want to contact an independent life insurance broker to get you quotes for life insurance from these companies.


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