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Life Insurance and Cannabis Use


gorilla smoking weed

High there?!

So I guess you’re here because you (or a friend of yours, wink, wink) smoke weed or have in the past.

And you’re wondering whether you should disclose this on your application form.

Am I right?

Here are the most frequently asked questions about life insurance and cannabis use:

Do you need to tell your life insurance company about cannabis use?

If the life insurance application form asks about cannabis use then you should disclose cannabis use.

Do all life insurers ask about previous drug use?

Yes, they all ask something like:

Have you ever taken cannabis, ecstasy, cocaine, heroin or any other non-prescribed drugs?

So you can’t avoid the question by choosing one particular insurer.

Does life insurance for marijuana users cost more?

Generally former use, or even current light use, doesn’t cost more.

Using every 2 to 3 days is usually where you’d see a loading (price increase) of around +50% compared to the price for a non user.

The insurers will class you as smoker even if you  take your cannabis straight up because cannabis contains carcinogens and evidence suggests that heavy cannabis use may be associated with oral cavity, pharynx, esophageal and lung cancers.

Other research shows cannabis is much less dangerous than tobacco but insurers are conservative so take the stricter view.

Is a medical required if you disclose cannabis use?

A blood test can detect cannabis anywhere between 3 and 14 days after use, depending on how frequently the user partakes. Whereas a urine test can show up cannabis use for up to a month!

But you won’t need to do a medical for life insurance. Usually the insurer is satisfied with a drugs questionnaire for cannabis use, at worst they will write to your GP for a medical report.

What questions do life insurance companies ask about smoking cannabis?

In general when it comes to life insurance and drugs, the insurers are concerned with:

  • Nature of drug/substance
  • Frequency of usage
  • Severity of dependence
  • Relevant dates, including last usage
  • Treatment, if any, and response
  • Whether history of mental illness
  • Whether any other habit

Where can a cannabis user find the best mortgage protection or life insurance policy?

Whether you still enjoy getting baked or did so just a few times at college, the best way to shop for insurance is through an independent broker who deals with all 6 insurance companies.

Better still, find one with lots of experience in this area…

What about cannabis for therapeutic use?

The issue around therapeutic use will come up more in future, but the underwriters generally look at the underlying condition more than the cannabis being used to treat it.

But because this type of cannabis use is taken to be regular and ongoing, a price increase of +50% is normal, in line with moderate use.

Can I get life insurance as a cannabis user?

As you can see from the above, the answer is yes – 100% yes.

I have yet to see an insurer increase my client’s premium because of cannabis use.

From speaking to the underwriters, it’s rare for them to ever increase premium due to cannabis use assuming the user has no other health issues.

Over to you…

If you smoked cannabis in the past or are even still an occasional user, don’t worry.

Just make sure you go through a broker who knows which insurer is best to apply to.

Some insurers will increase your premium due to any cannabis use.

Please don’t go through your bank or direct – they rarely have a clue so you’ll end up paying a lot more than you need to.

If you’d like some help, call me on 05793 20836 or complete the short form below.

Nick McGowan | making life insurance easier

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Life Insurance and Alcohol

Can an alcoholic get life insurance?

The simple answer is no - if they are still drinking.

Life insurance and alcohol is not a good mix.

If they haven't drunk in 2 years then there is a chance of getting life insurance.

But there will be a significant increase in the price of their cover (on average they'll pay three times the normal price)

Don’t know where to start?

Have a nose through our free life insurance guides

View our guides

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