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Getting Life Insurance with Haemochromatosis

do you pay more for cover with haemochromatosis

What is haemochromatosis?

Haemochromatosis is an iron overload disorder. It is a genetic condition that causes people to absorb excessive amounts of dietary iron.

The iron becomes deposited in the various organs, mainly the liver, pancreas, heart and joints, as the body has no way of disposing of the excess iron.

Symptoms can include chronic fatigue, abdominal pain, impotence and arthritis.

Diagnosis is by a blood test.

Treatment is by the removal of blood, known as venesection or phlebotomy therapy.

Once the initial treatment has been completed, iron levels should return to normal, but regular monitoring will continue.

How does haemochromatosis affect life insurance?

how haemochromatosis affects your premium

As the graphic shows, it should be straightforward getting cove if you have hemochromatosis. However, if you’re in the middle of a course of venesections and your ferritin levels are stubbornly high, you may find yourself in a similar situation to Peter:

  • 35 year old
  • Genetic haemochromatosis
  • He received his diagnosis in a routine examination eight months ago.
  • Annual venesection treatment.
  • Latest ferritin level count 950 – dropping due to venesection.
  • No symptoms

Peter came to me in a bit of a panic.

He was about to close on buying his first home mortgage but had applied for a mortgage protection policy through his bank.

As he readily admits, he signed the documents without even thinking about it – he just wanted a mortgage.

But it didn’t turn out well.

The bank postponed Peter – they wouldn’t offer him cover, and without cover, he couldn’t buy his new home.

Frantic, Peter searched the internet for a solution. Fortunately, he found us, and we got him cover at the normal price within 48 hours.

He was so delighted he left us this lovely review.

Having dealt with other insurance brokers, lion.ie showed considerable expertise in haemochromatosis cases. This ensured I got hassle free insurance at the best price.

Living with haemochromatosis

A while back, I read an article in the Irish Times by former politician and academic Maurice Manning where he wrote about his experience of haemochromatosis.

He puts a positive spin on his haemochromatosis:

I realised that if I hadn’t been diagnosed with haemochromatosis at that time, I’d be a dead man now.

but this is the statement that caused me to take to the keyboard and write this blog post.

Some people are fearful of being tested because there is a potential extra loading on health and life insurances.

Life insurance with haemochromatosis

As with all medical issues, the life insurance companies will look at your personal medical history before deciding whether they can offer you cover or not.

When reviewing an application for life insurance with haemochromatosis, the following factors are the most relevant:

  • diagnosis date
  • your treatment (venesection or phlebotomy therapy)
  • results of your liver function tests
  • your ferritin levels

Treatment is most effective once started early and will stop or prevent any organ damage. Where damage has already occurred, treatment will stop any further damage.

You have a better chance of cover at the standard price if you start treatment soon after diagnosis.

Will haemochromatosis patients need to do a medical?

You won’t need to do a medical if your condition is under control (ferritin and iron levels within the normal range).

Will you have to pay extra for life insurance with haemochromatosis?

If your condition is under control, your ferritin levels are normal, and there are no complications, you will pay the same price as somebody without haemochromatosis.

You will pay the standard price for life insurance, serious illness cover and income protection.

However, if your ferritin levels are abnormal or there are complications, you could face a higher premium.

Over to you…

As Maurice Manning says in his article, don’t put off haemochromatosis test due to a fear of a life insurance premiums increase.

He’s correct when he says:

most life assurance companies understand haemochromatosis better and don’t load policies of those whose condition is under control and without complications.

And as our client Peter says

lion.ie showed considerable expertise in haemochromatosis cases.

If you would like further information on applying for life insurance with haemochromatosis, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

My direct line is 05793 20836, or if you prefer, you can complete this haemochromatosis questionnaire, and I’ll be right back.

Nick McGowan
lion.ie | making life insurance easier

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