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Life insurance and bariatric surgery

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Louise (not her real name) rang me in an awful state.

She was due to close on her mortgage in the next couple of days…

…but had just found out from her bank that she couldn’t get mortgage protection insurance due to upcoming bariatric surgery.

She was frantic, and terrified she was going to lose her dream home.

Could we help?

Can you get life insurance after bariatric surgery?

In most cases yes, you can get life insurance after weight loss surgery.

But the procedure, such as:

  • Stomach stapling
  • Gastric banding / lap band
  • Gastric balloon

must have taken place at least 6 months before you apply.

In Louise’s case, she was on a public waiting list for bariatric surgery…

…and she had been for 10 months.

She didn’t know if she would ever even have the surgery!

I could understand her frustration so I spoke with our underwriters, but I didn’t hold out much hope.

You see it’s usually an automatic postpone where there are investigations planned or test results outstanding.

How insurers deal with being on a waiting list for bariatric surgery

Some insurers are better than others when it comes to life insurance with weight issues.

The first 4 underwriters I spoke with couldn’t help.

They would postpone making a decision until the weight loss surgery took place, they had no wriggle room on this.

So I wasn’t very confident before speaking to insurer number 5….

But lo and behold, she was willing to consider cover!

She had come across a number of similar applications before and took a reasoned view:

Louise would have to pay an extra premium until the surgery took place but once the surgery had taken place, my underwriter would review and reduce Louise’s premium.

The extra premium was quite high (€39 increased to €110) but Louise was over the moon:

Oh my God Nick, thanks so much. When I read your email  I actually nearly cried.  This has been so stressful, not wishing to sound like a moan, and I am so happy now.
I am out of the office today (on top of everything else am in final month of a part-time masters so am studying from home), so will sign first thing tomorrow.
Thanks very much again, once dust settles, I will be very happy to add review to your website if that’s of any help
I was delighted too, I’m happiest when I can get clients cover after another insurer lets them down.

What do insurers need to know when it comes to weight loss surgery

In Louise’s case, they requested she attend a nurse medical.

This was done on the Friday at 5pm, the results were back with the insurance company on Monday.

The nurse medical confirmed the details Louise had disclosed on her application form

  • Louise’s height and weight (5’6, 19st)
  • her BP (controlled by a tablet 135/75)
  • and all other readings as normal

Louise’s policy issued on Tuesday!

It’s not always that quick but the insurer really helped me out….plus I pestered them quite a bit 😉

Where to get the best quotes for life insurance after stomach stapling?

  • Use an independent broker who has a relationship with all 6 insurers.
  • Avoid discount brokers who give all their business to one insurance company.
  • Definitely avoid going direct to an insurance company or bank (as Louise did)

Over to you…

If you have had bariatric surgery or are on a waiting list and require life insurance or mortgage protection, please get in touch.

Use the short form below and I’ll be right back.

We’re the experts when it comes to more complex life insurance applications and would be delighted to help you in the strictest confidence.

Nick McGowan
lion.ie | making life insurance easier.

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