A simples guide

Does smoking affect my life insurance premium?

Every year, around 100,000 smokers in the UK die from smoking related causes.
Smoking accounts for over one-third of respiratory deaths, over one-quarter of cancer deaths, and about one-seventh of cardiovascular disease deaths.

If you’re a smoker we’re not telling you this to have a go at you!

Rather, it will help explain why insurers see smokers as high risk when it comes to life insurance.

Unfortunately, as far as life insurance policies are concerned it doesn’t matter whether you smoke 20 a day or 5 a week. They simply differentiate between smokers and non-smokers. If you’ve had any tobacco products (including nicotine replacement products) in the past 12 months, you’ll be classed as a smoker.

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How much difference does it make?

Regardless of your age, being classed as a smoker will make a big difference to your premium. It’s estimated that for a 30 year old, premiums will be around a third higher, whilst for a 50 year old, they could be up to double the cost of the same aged non-smokers.

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Do I need to tell them?

It might be tempting to think “well I simply won’t tell them”.

Be very wary of doing such a thing. As far as insurance companies are concerned this would be classed as a ‘material misrepresentation.’ If you were to die and it was found that you were a smoker, the insurance company may well refuse your claim.

In that scenario the best hope would be that the insurer would pay out some smaller amount but there is a very real risk that they will turn down the claim altogether.

Life insurance is of benefit to loved ones left behind in the event of your death. In such circumstances, not only will you have wasted your money paying premiums towards something that will not pay out, but you’ll have robbed your loved ones of the financial security that you had planned for them.

Unfortunately, the only genuine way to reduce the premiums as a smoker is to not be a smoker any more. Quitting for 12 months would allow you to take out a policy as a non-smoker and benefit from lower premium rates.

We know that trying to find the right life insurance policy can be a bit confusing and intimidating so we have tried to take all the hassle out of this for you. Start a quote telling us a bit about you, the type of policy you require and a bit about your lifestyle. We’ll search a range of life insurance providers to give you a range of policies to choose from to find the right policy for you. Get comparing and see how much you could save!

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