Life insurance after a heart attack

There’s no doubt about it – heart attacks are scary. It doesn’t matter how old you are – it’s an unwelcome reminder that none of us is invincible. It can also spur you on to do things that might not have even crossed your mind before, like taking out life insurance. Life cover isn’t about hastening the inevitable, it’s about protecting the people you care about financially. But if you’ve suffered a heart attack, what exactly are your options and does it mean you’re ‘uninsurable’?


How your premium’s calculated

Insurance is all about risk; whether something’s not risky, a little bit risky or a lot risky. Generally, the riskier something is, the higher the premium or the greater the number of exclusions (incidents that aren’t covered by the policy); or both. So life insurance is all about working out how likely it is that the policyholder might pass away compared to the population in general. We know it doesn’t make for comfortable reading, but now and again we all face facts.

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How might a heart attack affect my policy?

First of all, if you’re worried about not being able to get a policy – don’t be. If you’ve suffered a heart attack or have a heart condition, you could still get cover. It may be harder to find and more expensive; but it’s not impossible.

In the eyes of the insurance provider, if you’ve already had a heart attack then the probability of you having another and a claim being made on your policy, is greater compared to someone who’s never had one. It sounds like a sweeping generalisation but that’s the scenario your insurance provider has to start from. From here, your insurance provider then needs to devise a premium that reflects your level of risk based on your individual circumstances.

So to best assess what the chances are of a claim being made, insurance providers will ask you numerous questions about your heart attack, such as:

  • How severe was the heart attack?
  • When did the attack occur?
  • Did you have any surgery and if so are there any long term implications?
  • Have you had any recurrent problems?
  • Are you on any medication?

You’ll also be asked some general health and lifestyle questions such as whether you smoke, how much you drink and how much you weigh. You could also be asked if you take any exercise – it’s all about understanding what the chances are of you becoming ill again.

What are my options?

Mainstream insurance providers might class you as ‘high risk’ but getting life insurance at a reasonable price, isn’t an impossibility after a heart attack. If the attack was several years ago and you take good care of yourself; don’t smoke or drink too much and stay in shape – then you might be surprised. You’d certainly pay less than someone who’d had a heart attack but still liked to party hard with a drink in one hand and a cig in the other.

Any policy you’re offered may also have exclusions relating to heart conditions, so should you die of a heart attack, then your insurance provider won’t have to pay out. It’s important to read all the terms and conditions (and make sure you understand them) so that there are no unpleasant surprises for your loved ones if a claim’s made.

Be honest about your medical history. Although not always necessary, you may have to have a medical or your doctor will be asked for a report on your health, in which case, any health issues would become apparent. If having a medical is something that concerns you, then you can find out more about life insurance with no medical.

If your heart attack is a distant memory, it might be tempting to simply not mention it, but be truthful because if your insurance provider discovers an undisclosed heart condition or heart attack, then they could refuse to pay out in the event of a claim.

Different types of life insurance

Life insurance is a tricky subject; it’s certainly not the sort of conversation you’d have with your mates down the pub – it’s all a little bit morbid isn’t it? But that’s why we’ve put together our simples guides to help answer all those questions you have but probably don’t know how (or want) to ask.

So whether you just want to find out about the different types of life insurance or want to understand the difference between life insurance and mortgage life insurance or just need more information, then look no further. We can also help find you a safety net if you become ill and can’t work – consider critical illness cover which can usually be added onto your life insurance policy. Life’s full of surprises and it’s easy to get caught out; so let’s stay one step ahead, and start preparing.

Compare life insurance

Get a life insurance quote and start saving now

Get a quote