Whole Life Insurance For Cancer Survivors

In the following article, we will go over all you need to get a quote for whole life insurance for cancer survivors. If all you want is a quote click here.

Here are two shocking statistics shared by the National Cancer Institute:

  • In 2016, approximately 1,685,210 new cancer cases will be diagnosed in the United States.
  • In 2016, approximately 595,690 people will die from cancer.

Furthermore, it is estimated that approximately 14 million Americans live with cancer.

It goes without saying that anyone diagnosed with cancer will face various challenges.

First and foremost, this will change the way you view your health. Your health and well-being will always be front and center from treatment to testing.

Secondly, cancer can significantly impact a person’s financial situation. For example, treating this disease can cost one person millions upon millions of dollars. Even with health insurance, there are bound to be out-of-pocket expenses.

Getting Whole Life Insurance For Cancer Survivors

On top of this, cancer survivors often find it difficult to purchase any insurance. However, whole life insurance can become very attractive if you or someone you know goes through cancer treatment. Because you understand the importance of buying coverage that lasts forever. However, you may  find one of two things to be true:

  • You are not sure if you can get life insurance after your type of cancer
  • You are scared that the price will be too high 

While there are definite challenges associated with buying any life insurance as a cancer survivor, it’s important to note some key steps you can take to improve your chance of doing so.

Waiting Period And Possible Rating After Cancer

Each company has guidelines for how much you have to wait after you have had cancer and/or cancer treatment. Also, each type of cancer is treated differently.

However, here we have general guidelines that could help you determine if you are eligible to get whole life insurance after cancer.

Depending on the severity of treatment or state of cancer you had, the price of the policy will vary.


Colon Cancer

Whole Life Insurance after Colon Cancer guidelines

Whole Life Insurance after Colon Cancer guidelines

You can get life insurance after colon cancer. However, there are many variables to consider. The price associated with colon polyps depends on the number, type, and microscopic characteristics.

Non-Adenomatous Polyps

You will not have an increase in risk for colorectal cancer. Therefore you could get up to a Preferred rating.

Adenomatous Polyps

Preferred offers may also be available in cases with a few adenomatous polyps, if there are favorable microscopic features and the polyps have been completely removed.

If you do regular follow up, those with several adenomatous polyps or those that have certain unfavorable microscopic characteristics may qualify for standard rates. However, you may get a small temporary rating.

Colorectal cancer risk will depend on the depth of invasion through the bowel wall and the presence or absence of lymph node involvement. Many cases of colorectal cancer can be underwritten within 2-4 years from completion of therapy and would be charged a temporary extra premium.


Breast Cancer

Whole Life Insurance after breast cancer guidelines

Whole Life Insurance after breast cancer guidelines

Offer will depend on the type of cancer, staging, treatment, and time elapsed since the end of treatment.

In situ (not invasive, Stage 0)

Best cases, you will be eligible to get a Preferred rating.

Others Stages

May require 1-yr postpone period after completion of therapy followed by either: Temporary rating, Low Substandard permanent rating, or Standard.

Invasive Breast Cancer Best Cases

Temporary Rating Other

Lymph nodes negative – You will have to wait for 1-5 years then you will get a temporary rating.

Some will also require a Low Substandard permanent rating

Lymph nodes positive

You will have to wait for 1-5 years, and after that, it will depend on each situation.


Thyroid Cancer

No spread to lymph nodes or other organs

Postpone for 1- 3 years followed by Temporary Rating

With spread outside of the thyroid

Individual Consideration



Best Cases with a low stage

You will have to postpone for 2 – 3 years from the completion of successful treatment. Then you will get a Temporary Rating.

Higher stage

Postpone for 3 – 5 years from completion of successful treatment followed by a Temporary and Permanent Rating.



Papillary (superficial, Stage 0 or 1)

In best cases you could get a Preferred rating.

Others, no recurrences

Usually Postpone for 1 – 3 years after completion of treatment, then a temporary rating.

With 1 – 3 recurrences

May require a permanent rating in addition to above

With more than three recurrences

Individual Consideration

Invasive, Stage 2

Postpone for 3 – 5 years after completion of treatment, then a temporary rating Invasive, Stage 3 or higher – Individual Consideration



Stage 1, tumor limited to kidney

Postpone for 3-4 years following completion of treatment, then temporary rating

Higher stages

Postpone for 3-4 years following completion of treatment then Individual Consideration depending on your health and follow-up records.


Lung Cancer

No current tobacco use

Postpone period of at least five years after completion of treatment followed by one of the following: Temporary rating Permanent Substandard rating. Individual Consideration

Continued tobacco use

You will not be able to get coverage.


Prostate Cancer

Age < 70, treatment successful

Low stage, low grade – You can get apply for whole life, but you will get a Temporary Rating.

The higher stage, higher grade – You will need to wait for 2-3 years before you apply. Then you will get a Temporary Rating.

Age > 70, treatment successful Low stage, low grade – Standard possible

The higher stage, higher grade – Postpone for 1-3 years followed by Temporary Rating and/or Permanent Rating

Treatment unsuccessful or untreated, all ages – You will have to wait for 1-3 years and then Individual Consideration.

 Other Types

There are hundreds of different types of cancer, each with specific guidelines for life insurance. Just because we didn’t list cancer, it doesn’t mean that you will not be able to a policy.

Getting Universal Life Insurance For Cancer Survivors

Another alternative that may be more cost-effective is Universal Life Insurance. The previous rules that we listed for all cancer types also apply to get universal life insurance.

The main advantage of universal life for cancer survivors is that the cost of the insurance will be significantly lower than whole life insurance. However, you can still get guaranteed permanent life insurance that you cannot outlive.

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Remember, there are many moving parts to applying and getting approved. But rest assured that we can help you find the right whole life insurance after any cancer.

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