Can I get life insurance with asthma?

5 min Read Published: 16 Apr 2020

Around 5.4 million people in the UK are currently receiving treatment for asthma which equates to around 1 in 12 adults. For most, the symptoms are relatively mild and easily controlled by medication, however the condition can be far more serious for some.

In this article we explain how asthma can affect a life insurance application, as well as the additional questions an insurance company is likely to ask about your condition. We also reveal the best place to buy life insurance if you have asthma including how to get £50 cashback.

How will my asthma affect a life insurance application?

Firstly, an insurance company will want to know more about your condition. Additional questions an insurance company may ask are as follows:

  • What age were you diagnosed?
  • What was the date of your last asthma attack (if applicable)?
  • What medication are you on?
  • Have you ever had to go to hospital?
  • Have you ever had any time off of work?
  • Have you ever smoked?

Life insurance for non-smokers with well-controlled asthma

Broadly speaking, if you do not smoke and your asthma is mild and well-controlled then you should have no trouble getting life insurance cover and you shouldn't expect to pay an increased premium (often referred to as a 'rating' or 'loading').

How will my asthma affect a critical illness insurance application?

Again, insurance underwriters will want to ask some additional questions to understand your condition better. Underwriters will pay particular attention to whether you smoke, the type of medication you are on, the frequency of symptoms and whether you have been hospitalised.

For asthma that is mild and well-controlled, no special exclusions or premium increases should apply. Applications are assessed on a case by case basis and each insurer is likely to view your application differently, so make sure you speak to an independent specialist who can do the detective work for you.

Will my premiums increase or will I be declined life insurance if I have asthma?

It depends. Very few people are declined life cover for asthma alone and in fact, it only tends to be those that have asthma with a combination of other factors that struggle to get life insurance. Even if you have a combination of factors, if the conditions that you disclose are well managed then it is likely you will still get accepted, however you may have to pay a higher premium.

Insurance underwriters will pay particular attention to the frequency and severity of your symptoms, whether you use steroid treatment and whether you have been hospitalised or had time off of work. These factors could lead to an increase in premiums and we explain later in this article how to ensure that you get the cheapest life insurance quote without having to speak to every insurance company.

I already have life insurance but my asthma has improved, should I re-apply?

Yes. You have nothing to lose. If you already have life insurance then you have nothing to lose by finding out if you can get it cheaper now.

Where is the best life insurance policy if I have asthma?

Each life insurance provider has a different underwriting process and so it is difficult to pick out one because the answer will be different depending on exactly who is applying for the cover.

Online comparison sites can provide a good guide to the rough cost of life insurance however it is often not the best place to purchase the cover. The price you see on screen is often not the final price you will pay and so you would be better speaking to an independent specialist who has access to every insurance company on the market. An independent specialist also has the advantage of speaking to all of the insurance companies on your behalf before you apply for the cover, this saves time and ensures that you only ever have to fill out one application form.

A life insurance specialist, such as Lifesearch, will be able to do all of the above without charge and even help to put your policy into trust, meaning any future payout is not subject to inheritance tax. They will even give you £50 cashback if you take out a policy through them, although there is no obligation to.

Looking for a financial adviser near you?

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Alternatively, Hargreaves Lansdown, one of the UK’s largest firms providing restricted financial advice, is offering a £200 John Lewis voucher* to new clients.