COVID-19 has had an effect on many industries this year, and life insurance is no exception.
A big change we have seen is in the application process. Applications used to be completed in-person with a physical application. Since COVID-19, almost all life insurance applications have been filled using e-signature software. The software available now makes it easier to apply and gather the information needed by the insurance company to underwrite the application.
One of the main steps for life insurance approval is a paramedic exam. Typically, a paramedic exam is done by a nurse in the applicants’ home, or place of work. Some states have restricted any paramedic exams from being completed. Because of these restrictions, insurance companies are exploring more advanced underwriting techniques. For instance, allowing for acceleration for those that qualify in the standard risk class by waiving the collection of certain underwriting data. Insurance companies are implementing solutions that will provide alternate sources of underwriting data in lieu of labs, exams and medical records. If acceleration is not possible, and alternative sources of data are insufficient, the insurance companies will also consider client-provided personal health records and exam results that have been completed within the past 12 months.
Health records are also an important part of life insurance underwriting. The process of getting the medical records can be a long and complicated one. Due to COVID-19, doctor’s offices are less frequented than in years past, so the collection of medical records has less of a delay.
A pandemic can have a negative effect on rates. Luckily, life insurance rates have not increased due to COVID-19 as of right now. The death rate of COVID-19 is not expected to change the life insurance rates any time soon, but this could possibly change in the future.
The life insurance industry still has plenty of financially strong A-rated carriers, and rates are as low now as they have ever been. Especially with the threat of COVID-19, now is the time to apply for the life insurance that you need to protect your family.