Smoking and Life Insurance

Life Insurance happens to be where I began my career in the insurance industry and like it or not, it also happens to be one of the most important insurance products you can own.

While at a local networking meeting this week, I shared several ideas on ways for people to recognize who would be a good referral for me for Life Insurance. A discussion began to take place regarding smokers and the difference in premiums they can pay as opposed to non-smokers. I thought this was a good opportunity to answer some of the questions that come up with regards to smoking and how it can affect your premiums.

Why do smokers have such a huge premium for life insurance? Unfortunately, smokers are much more likely to have ongoing health problems and have a shorter lifespan than non-smokers, making them more of a risk for the insurance company.

How much more does it cost for a Life Insurance policy when you are a smoker? The premiums for a Life Insurance policy for a smoker can be anywhere from 40% to 100% higher than a non-smoker. Other contributing factors include family and health history such as if a family member has had lung problems before the age of 65.

I’ve only had a few cigarettes in the last year – am I still considered a smoker? This will depend on the insurance company, however, in most circumstances, the answer is yes. Research shows that occasional smokers will become regular smokers and will consistently use tobacco.

What happens if I tell the insurance company that I don’t smoke and they find out that I do? If you lie on your Life Insurance application and die because of a smoke related complication such as a heart attack or cancer, there is a possibility that the insurance company will not pay out your benefits. Depending on the amount of Life Insurance you are looking to purchase, your urine will be tested for nicotine regardless of whether you have stated you are a smoker or non-smoker.

How can I be rated as a non-smoker? Once you have been smoke free for at least 12 consecutive months, you are considered a non-smoker.

If you are considering purchasing Life Insurance and are concerned about the cost because you are a smoker, feel free to reach out to me for a non-obligation consultation and/or quote. On the flip side of that, you may have purchased a plan when you were a smoker and quit over a year ago. This is the perfect opportunity to get a different rate classification and save on your Life Insurance premiums.

With over forty different insurance carriers to choose from, I evaluate your health and will find a plan that best meets your needs. No two people are alike and not one plan will be a one size fits all. At Balanced Care, your life and family are in our hands providing balance, security, and peace of mind everyday.


512803HC_FullTerri Trepanier is the owner of Balanced Care Health and Supplemental Insurance and a licensed insurance consultant and broker with Associated Brokers.    Licensed in both Maine and NH,  her specialty is working with small businesses, individuals, and families with their health and life insurance needs.  She is certified to offer health plans both on and off the exchange and is contracted with every health insurance company that offers plans in both New Hampshire and Maine.  Her other passion is assisting Medicare beneficiaries with their Medicare Supplemental, Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plans, and Medicare Advantage plans. Terri has seen firsthand the importance of insurance products and how they help families.  Her goal with Balanced Care is to “Insure Security and Peace of Mind One Family at a Time”.

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