How to Get Term Life Insurance With Melanoma

Getting term life insurance with melanoma may be more expensive depending on the severity and success of treatment. However, you may be able to get life insurance with melanoma for as little as $11/month. Life insurance companies want to see that applicants with a history of melanoma have (1) received full treatment, and (2) have completed regular follow-up visits per doctor’s orders. Compare quotes now with our free tool below.

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Schimri Yoyo is a financial advisor with active life and health insurance licenses in seven states. Born in Haiti. Reared in Brockton, MA. Matured in Philadelphia. Schimri is a proud graduate of Arcadia University, having earned both a Masters in Special Education and an MFA in Creative Writing from the castle-riddled campus in Glenside, PA. By personality and by profession, Schimri is an educator...

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Benjamin Carr was a licensed insurance agent in Georgia and has two years' experience in life, health, property and casualty coverage. He has worked with State Farm and other risk management firms. He is also a strategic writer and editor with a background in branding, marketing, and quality assurance. He has been in military newsrooms — literally on the frontline of journalism.

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Reviewed by Benji Carr
Former Licensed Life Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Jul 19, 2021

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Melanoma is one of the most serious types of skin cancer, and if you have skin cancer life insurance can be harder to obtain.

Even if you choose no medical exam life insurance, a history of melanoma might cause you to be turned down or to pay a higher rate for insurance. The best way to protect yourself from the sun is to cover up and use sunscreen, and the best way to protect your family from financial hardship is to buy life insurance.

If you didn’t buy that insurance before your diagnosis, you may be worried you can’t get term life insurance with melanoma. Fortunately, that isn’t necessarily true.

It’s possible to buy life insurance with a melanoma history. Find affordable life insurance with melanoma right now by using our free rate quote tool and compare term life insurance rates.

Does skin cancer affect life insurance?

Melanoma can happen to anyone. You could get melanoma regardless of your gender or age. But certain factors put you at increased risk:

  • Ultraviolet light exposure
  • Atypical, or dysplastic, moles
  • Multiple benign moles

But is skin cancer covered by insurance? Can you get life insurance after having melanoma? The answer is yes. Having a quality term life or whole life policy will provide the ease of mind of knowing that if a life changing event occurs, your family will be covered by your policy. To get a sense of how much you might pay for term life insurance with melanoma, check out the table below:

Top Term Life Insurance Companies Rates Comparison
Companies$100,000, 20-Year (Male - 40)$250,000, 20-Year (Male - 40)
Minnesota Life$11.04$21.00
State Farm$21.40$33.72
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Paying as little as $11.04 / month can ensure that if a life-altering event does occur, your family will have some financial security in place.

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Melanoma Life Insurance Underwriting Rating Classes

In general, life insurance companies group applicants into rating pools. The table below provides an overview of general rating pools for various medical conditions.

Life Insurance Rating Classes for Specific Medical Conditions
Medical ConditionsPreferred PlusPreferredStandard PlusStandard
Crohn's DiseaseNoNoPossibleYes
Heart DiseaseNoNoNoYes
Hepatitis A & BNoPossibleYesYes
Hepatitis CNoNoNoYes
Kidney/Liver DiseaseNoNoNoYes
Lung DiseaseNoNoYesYes
Multiple SclerosisNoNoNoPossible
Rheumatoid ArthritisNoNoNoNo
Sleep ApneaNoNoPossibleYes
Type I DiabetesNoNoNoNo
Type II DiabetesNoNoPossibleYes
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It is important to remember that each insurance company will review your individual case and assess based on how advanced your condition might be, whether you have been actively receiving and responding to treatment, and whether there has been a suitable amount of time since you’ve been in remission.

What Life Insurance Companies Look For

Life insurance companies want to see that applicants with a history of melanoma have (1) received full treatment, and (2) have completed regular follow-up visits per doctor’s orders. Life insurance for melanoma in situ (localized cancer in the top layers of skin) is also easier to get than if the cancer has spread. Life insurance for melanoma patients still in treatment is the hardest to obtain.

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The life insurance company you apply with will be looking specifically at:

  • Your age at diagnosis
  • The amount of time since diagnosis
  • The stage and grade of cancer
  • The tumor size
  • Any lymphatic node involvement
  • Whether metastasis is present
  • The mitotic rate, or how rapidly the cancer cells are dividing
  • Whether there is ulceration, or a missing layer of the melanoma
  • Whether there was any recurrence of cancer following recovery
  • Length of time since treatment and/or recovery
  • The treatment success and adherence to treatment recommendations
  • Follow up visits as recommended by doctor
  • Whether you are a tobacco/drug/alcohol user
  • Any other major health problems

If you are wondering how much does life insurance pay out for skin cancer, the answer is that standard term life and whole life insurance policies will cover cancer deaths and payout the accumulated benefit or the term benefit.

How much can you claim on life insurance for skin cancer will depend upon the specifics of your policy.

How to Prepare for Your Term Life Insurance Application

There are important measures you can take to prepare yourself before applying for term life insurance quotes with melanoma. Doing so will help your chances of getting approved for the best rating class possible when you buy term life insurance. Use the following tips for understanding life insurance rating classes:

  • Have all doctors’ name/address/phone available.
  • Make sure your doctor(s) has copies of all records regarding the cancer treatment, pathology reports, and follow up reports.
  • Have a list of all medications and their dosages available.
  • Do not skip any follow-up visits with your doctor.

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Real Examples from Real Customers

Here’s a look at some examples of applications for life insurance after melanoma.

Good Outcome

Kevin applied for life insurance after melanoma in situ when he was 52 years old.

  • Diagnosed at age 48
  • He has no family history of melanoma
  • His medical records clearly document his successful treatment
  • Regular checkups with the dermatologist have all been normal
  • Non-smoker
  • Outcome: Approved at a Standard Plus rating class
  • Premium: $294 annually

Not so Good Outcome:

Robert applied for term life insurance coverage when he was 45 years old.

  • Diagnosed at 40
  • Had a 3 mm melanoma with ulceration removed
  • Follow up visits with the dermatologist have been favorable
  • Non-smoker
  • Outcome: Approved at a Substandard Table 2 rating plus a flat extra of $10 per thousand for three years
  • Premium: $1,296 annually

Poor Outcome:

Sally applied for term life insurance after skin cancer when she was 55 years old.

    • Diagnosed at 53
    • Treated for Melanoma metastatic to three lymph nodes
    • A parent and sibling died from melanoma
    • This applicant has not seen a doctor for eighteen months
    • Outcome: Declined

You can see Kevin had the best outcome, due to a low-stage melanoma that was caught early and treated. Receiving regular follow-up appointments with his doctor also helped.
You should know that in the UK, companies like Aviva Life Insurance will not cover pre-existing conditions. You should search on your company to get more information on their policy specifics. (Ex. Aviva life insurance skin cancer)

Robert’s melanoma was extensive, and although he had no other medical conditions and good follow up results, the thickness of his cancer gave him a worse prognosis.

Finally, Sally had the poorest outcome. Her melanoma was the most severe, and she had a family history of melanoma. This along with her lack of routine follow-ups resulted in the decline of her application.

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What is the most aggressive form of skin cancer?

Melanoma is the most aggressive form of skin cancer.

For 2020, the American Cancer Society estimates:

    • About 100,350 new melanomas will be diagnosed (about 60,190 in men and 40,160 in women).

About 6,850 people are expected to die of melanoma (about 4,610 men and 2,240 women).

What are the advanced symptoms of skin cancer?

If you are in a high-risk group for skin cancer, you can remember these ABCDEs of melanoma when you do regular checks for any moles or skin growths on your body: asymmetry, border irregularity, change in color, diameter larger than a pencil eraser, and evolution of the mole’s characteristics.

If you have any concerns, see a dermatologist immediately. Like all other forms of cancer, the early you can detect and get treatment, the better your chances are.

How long do you have to live if you have skin cancer? That depends. Skin cancer will need to spread to other areas of the body, so seeing a dermatologist often, is important. If you are exposed to the sun on a regular basis, a regular dermatologist checkup can offer an extra measure of protection.

Treatment and Prevention

The American Cancer Society recommends professional skin examinations every three years for people between the ages of 20 and 40 and once a year for people above 40 years of age. Try to examine your skin once a month, using a mirror to check hard-to-see places. Get to know your skin and call your doctor if you notice any changes.

According to the CDC, the best way to prevent skin cancer is to reduce your exposure to sunlight. Try to avoid prolonged sun exposure between 10 am and 4 pm when the ultraviolet light is most intense. Protect the skin by wearing hats and sunscreen and avoid tanning beds.

What is the most aggressive form of skin cancer? Generally speaking, melanoma of the skin is an aggressive form of skin cancer with the risk of spread to other parts of the body. To treat melanoma, skin cancer, and some surrounding tissue has to be removed.

>The amount of skin removed depends on how deep the melanoma has grown. If the cancer has spread to nearby lymph nodes, these lymph nodes may also be removed. Treatment becomes more difficult when the melanoma has spread to other organs. You may also receive:

    Chemotherapy to kill cancer cells. It is usually given if the melanoma has returned or spread.

  • Immunotherapy medications such as interferon or interleukin to help your immune system fight cancer. They may be used along with chemotherapy and surgery.
  • Radiation treatments to relieve pain or discomfort caused by cancer that has spread.

Prevention is the best method of treatment. Scheduling regular visits with your dermatologist can help manage smaller issues early.

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Life Insurance With Melanoma: The Bottom Line

The good news about applying for term life insurance with melanoma is — yes, you can qualify for coverage! The bad news is the approval, and rating class can be very unpredictable and subjective. However, if you follow the advice we’ve provided and, more importantly, discuss your situation with your life insurance agent or broker, you can have a positive outcome.

And remember, if you are not pleased with the term life insurance rates and offer you receive, you can always try with another company or put the policy in force and work on improving the rating class through better control and lab results.

Life insurance rates with melanoma vary by company. Use our free quote tool to get a customized life insurance quote with melanoma or any term coverage. Get started now by entering your ZIP code.

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