Getting a cancer diagnosis can be devastating for a number of reasons, but your loved ones shouldn’t have to struggle financially as well.  Life insurance provides financial protection for your family and loved ones in case you die prematurely. It helps to provide money for funeral costs, mortgage repayments, children's education fees and living expenses.

We'll discuss whether you can still get life insurance if you've had cancer, and what are your options for cover...

Does life insurance cover cancer?

If you have been diagnosed with cancer, there are some things you should know about getting life insurance. You may find it harder to get life insurance now because of the following reasons:

  • Your premiums may be expensive, as you are deemed a higher risk to insure.

  • Some insurers won't cover people who have cancer.

  • Your insurer may require you to undergo a medical exam.

  • You may have to pay extra money for additional benefits.

  • You may have to wait longer to receive payment.

  • Certain types of cancer may make you ineligible for some life insurance products.

If you have had any form of cancer in your health history, or are currently battling a cancer diagnosis, please contact an independent specialist insurance adviser.

Specialist advisers usually have access to a wider range of products and can give you a good understanding of what is out there and available.

You can contact our specialist advisers on

01392 436 193

Getting life insurance before cancer diagnosis

A life insurance policy pays out a cash lump sum in the event of your death. Your insurer may also issue a pay out your policy early if you are diagnosed with a terminal illness, such as cancer.

If you are diagnosed with cancer whilst covered by life insurance, your insurer should still honour your policy. However, this depends on whether you were honest about your health and family medical history. Failure to disclose the relevant information at the time of application could result in the policy being void and a claim getting declined.

A good rule of thumb is to answer the questions as openly, honestly and accurately as possible.

Getting life insurance after cancer diagnosis

If you have been diagnosed with cancer, you may find getting life insurance harder than usual. This is because insurers are more likely decline or postpone your application if you've ever had cancer.

They do this based on information they receive from your doctors. So, if you have been told that you have cancer, the insurer may decide to reject your application.

The reason why insurers make such decisions is simple: they want to protect themselves against potential claims. And since people with cancer often die prematurely, the insurers consider it a higher risk.

If you had quite a mild form of cancer though, or it has been many years since your treatment ceased, you may find it easier to find cover, though you might end up paying an increased monthly premium for it.

You can apply for life insurance even if you have cancer. But you'll need to make sure that you're covered under your existing policy.

Talk to a life insurance expert today...

Which type of life insurance should I buy?

Term life insurance

Term life insurance is a standard type of life insurance which covers you for a set period of time. The policy pays out if you die within the policy term, if not, the policy expires and you won't receive anything. There are 3 levels of term life cover:

  • Level term - the lowest level of cover available. This will only pay out if you die during the term. Your premiums are also fixed, meaning you'll still be covered even after you're diagnosed with some form of cancer.
  • Increasing term - Unlike level term, the payout value of the policy increases over time. This intends to protect the value from inflation, so your loved ones receive the same amount of money in line with inflation. It’s important to note that your premium will also increase to reflect inflation and the new level of cover.
  • Decreasing term - This level of cover is also known as mortgage life insurance. The payout of the policy decreases over time as you make repayments on your current mortgage.

Whole life insurance

Unlike a term policy, whole life insurance covers you permanently, as opposed to a set number of years. This means the policy pays out regardless of when you die. Throughout the policy, the guaranteed death benefit of the policy remains fixed, as well as the cost of your premiums.

Premiums for whole life insurance are often more expensive than other forms of cover, however you are protected indefinitely. As your premiums are fixed, you won't have to worry about them increasing if you are ever diagnosed with cancer.

Depending on the level of cover, the total premiums you pay may exceed the cover amount, which is why it’s important you speak to an adviser about your options beforehand.

To get a quote for whole life insurance, please call our advised team on

01392 436 193

Critical illness insurance

Critical illness cover is designed to pay out if you are diagnosed with a critical illness, disease or disability. It pays out a lump sum, acting as a replacement of your income, helping you and your family cover various finances.

  • Certain types of cancer

  • Heart conditions, including heart attacks

  • Strokes

  • Organ failure

  • Multiple sclerosis

  • Parkinson's disease

  • Blindness

Not all illnesses are covered by all providers. Make sure you check what is covered before buying.

Family income benefit

Whereas most types of cover provide a one-time payout, family income benefit pays out a regular income over a certain period of time. This helps your family cope with any financial difficulties caused by your diagnosis.

The amount of cover you require should reflect your monthly income, which your family would be without in the event of death. This can depend on your family's financial commitments, such as a mortgage.

Do I need to tell my insurance provider about cancer?

You must inform your insurer about any pre-existing medical condition when applying for a policy. Failure to do so could lead to your application being rejected. If you don't disclose your cancer history, it may affect your claim.

Most insurers will require you to answer some questions regarding your health. These include:

  • Have you had a recent check up?
  • Does your family have a history of cancer?
  • Are you taking medication?
  • What was your last blood test result?
  • If you've been diagnosed with cancer, you must let your insurer know. They may ask for further information, such as scans and reports.

You may also be required to undergo a health exam in order to determine if you are insurable. If you're unsure about your options or have any medical conditions, speak to one of our expert life insurance advisors. They can help you choose the right policy based on your circumstances.

Speak to the experts...

Give our advisers a call today.

Our team of friendly and professional advisers are on hand to help with any questions you may have regarding Life Insurance.

The advisers can also make recommendations tailored to your current situation and will research the market on your behalf, ensuring you secure the cover you need and supporting you every step of the way. 

01392 43 61 93(Monday to Friday, 9am - 5.30pm)

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