Life Insurance with Athlete’s Heart

by Jeff Rose on January 18, 2015 · 0 comments

If you are a serious athlete, you might have a condition known as athlete’s heart. This is when your heart becomes enlarged because it has adapted to your intense training. While athlete’s heart doesn’t cause any health problems, it can become an issue when you apply for life insurance because this condition makes it look like you might have heart problems.

To get prepared for your application and to avoid unnecessary issues because of your condition, be sure to review our guide to insurance underwriting for athlete’s heart.

Life Insurance Underwriting with Athlete’s Heart

When you apply for life insurance with an enlarged heart, your insurance agent will ask you several questions about your condition to see whether it’s an athlete’s heart or a more serious problem.

You’ll need to answer:

  • When were you diagnosed with an athlete’s heart?
  • Have you ever had problems like chest discomfort, dizziness, shortness of breath, or chest palpitations?
  • Have you ever taken cardiac tests like a measured exercise treadmill or an electrocardiogram? If yes, were the results normal or abnormal?
  • Did you have any other problems with your heart?
  • Do you smoke, have a family history of heart disease or have any other risk factors for heart disease like high cholesterol?
  • Are you taking any medications?

While there are no medications specifically for athlete’s heart, you might be taking medications for heart disease like: Beta blockers, Nitrates, ACE inhibitors, Statins, and Diuretics. All of these medications could be insurable depending on your overall health.

Be sure to answer all the questions on your application in as much detail as possible. This is your chance to show that you have athlete’s heart and not a more serious problem.

Life Insurance Quotes with Athlete’s Heart

When insurance companies receive your insurance application, they will want to learn more about your condition. You may need to take an electrocardiogram and/or a stress test to complete your application.

If the tests show that you are in good health and just have an athlete’s heart, this condition won’t be a problem for your rating. It may actually help your rating because it shows you are in good shape. If the insurance companies find other heart problems, it will hurt your rating. While each company uses slightly different rating standards, here are some general guidelines to help you predict your rating.

Life Insurance with Athlete’s HeartPreferred Plus: You could get this rating if the application tests show that you only have athlete’s heart and you have no symptoms of heart disease (dizziness, chest discomfort, etc.) You should also be in near perfect health and have no family history of heart disease.

Preferred: Also possible if the tests show you only have athlete’s heart. This rating is a bit easier to get and is more likely for applicants in good health who have an athlete’s heart.

Standard: The most likely rating for applicants with an athlete’s heart and no other health problems. Insurance companies will give you this rating if you have some minor health problems like slightly high blood pressure or cholesterol along with your athlete’s heart.

Table Rating (substandard): You would get a table rated policy if you are showing signs of heart problems along with your athlete’s heart. You could also get a rated policy if you have other risk factors for heart disease like very high cholesterol or a family history of serious heart problems. Your rating would depend on how serious your symptoms of heart problems are as well as your overall health.

Declines: If the tests for athlete’s heart actually show you have serious heart disease or heart failure, your application would be declined. Your application could also be declined if you are showing symptoms of heart problems and you refuse to take any additional medical tests for underwriting.  This does not mean you cannot get insured.  We may be able to get you a reasonable rate with a no exam life insurance policy or even a guaranteed issue policy if necessary.

Athlete’s Heart Insurance Case Studies

When you apply for life insurance with an athlete’s heart, a good application can help you chances of getting a good rating. Here are a couple real life case studies that prove this point:

Case Study: Male, 35 y/o, diagnosed with an Athlete’s heart at 30, no heart problems and in near perfect health

This applicant was in great health and was an active rower. Because of his training, he ended up with an athlete’s heart. When he applied for life insurance, the insurance company gave him an expensive rated policy, which didn’t make sense considering this applicant’s great health. We thought this was because the insurance company didn’t realize the applicant had an athlete’s heart and rated him as someone with heart problems. We recommended he see his doctor and get a note verifying his condition. With this new information, the client reapplied and receive a discounted Preferred policy.

Case Study #2: Female, 46 y/o, diagnosed with Athlete’s heart at 36, used to have high blood cholesterol, treated the problem with lipids

This applicant was generally in good health and was a serious athlete. However, despite all her exercise, she was surprised to find out in her forties that she had high cholesterol. This turned out to be because of a family predisposition. She tried applying for life insurance with high cholesterol and couldn’t get a good rating. The risk of cholesterol plus the possibility of heart problems from her athlete’s heart was too much of a risk for insurance companies. After she treated her cholesterol with lipids, we recommended she try applying again. We also referred her to a company that regularly deals with athlete’s heart. When she tried again this time, she received a more appropriate Standard rating.

Don’t let your athlete’s heart get in the way of the insurance rating you deserve. With a little planning, you should get a decent rating. We can help your chances. Our company specializes in finding insurance for people with this condition. We can guide you through your application and find the best life insurance company match for your needs.

For more information and free rate quotes, call or fill out our online application form today.

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