Are you wondering if you received the best life insurance rate possible because you were table rated?
Life insurance underwriting raises many questions for consumers…This guide answers those questions and much more.
This life insurance table rating guide covers:
- What are life insurance table ratings and how do they work?
- Will other companies offer me a better rate?
- Which life insurer is best for my health issue?
- Should I accept a table rated offer?
- Are table ratings negotiable?
- Life Insurance Table Ratings Chart
What are life insurance table ratings and how do they work?
Life insurance table ratings are used in underwriting when you have a health issue, adverse driving record, drug and alcohol abuse history or occupation/avocation that increases your risk above a standard risk to the insurer.
Table ratings are numbered (1-16) or lettered (A-P) with each grade adding 25% to a standard rate. The exception to the 25% rating system is Prudential which uses its own proprietary rating system.
Click Here for Prudential’s Table Rating Chart
|Table 1 = Table “A”||Add 33% to Standard Rate|
|Table 2 = Table “B”||Add 56% to Standard Rate|
|Table 3 = Table “C”||Add 80% to Standard Rate|
|Table 4 = Table “D”||Add 113% to Standard Rate|
|Table 5 = Table “E”||Add 161% to Standard Rate|
|Table 6 = Table “F”||Add 208% to Standard Rate|
|Table 7 = Table “G”||Add 256% to |
|Table 8 = Table “H”||Add 327% to Standard Rate|
With underwriting, many companies assign the same table rating to you based on your underwriting concern, but what you need to know is that there are typically 1-2 life insurers that are better than the rest, and that’s where we help you get the best life insurance rates possible.
Why pay more for life insurance if you don’t have to?
Our life insurance underwriting section covers far more detail about the underwriting process, and our life insurance definitions section provides additional details.
Life Insurance Table Ratings Chart
|Table 1 = Table “A”||Add 25% to Standard Rate|
|Table 2 = Table “B”||Add 50% to Standard Rate|
|Table 3 = Table “C”||Add 75% to Standard Rate|
|Table 4 = Table “D”||Add 100% to Standard Rate|
|Table 5 = Table “E”||Add 125% to Standard Rate|
|Table 6 = Table “F”||Add 150% to Standard Rate|
|Table 7 = Table “G”||Add 175% to Standard Rate|
|Table 8 = Table “H”||Add 200% to Standard Rate|
|Table 9 = Table “I”||Add 225% to Standard Rate|
|Table 10 = Table “J”||Add 250% to Standard Rate|
|Table 11 = Table “K”||Add 275% to Standard Rate|
|Table 12 = Table “L”||Add 300% to Standard Rate|
|Table 13 = Table “M”||Add 325% to Standard Rate|
|Table 14 = Table “N”||Add 350% to Standard Rate|
|Table 15 = Table “O”||Add 375% to Standard Rate|
|Table 16 = Table “P”||Add 400% to Standard Rate|
Insurance companies use numbers (1-16) or letters (A-P) when table ratings are added to your rate. The numbers and letters are interchangeable.
On the surface, it would seem that Prudential is at a disadvantage due to their table ratings being more than others, but the
Life Insurance Rate Tables
Most companies with a couple of exceptions use a rating of 25% per table.
Will other companies offer me a better rate?
If you started with the wrong company from the beginning, there’s a better rate out there. Even if you already bought life insurance, we provide a no risk, no obligation service and will tell what the best rate should be for you.
The following factors may help with your life insurance:
- Table Ratings Vary – Table ratings add 25% per table, but underwriting varies by insurer.
- Health Conditions – Life insurance companies view health issues differently which may result in better rates at one company vs. another.
- Standard vs Standard Plus – Some carriers base table ratings off a “standard” rate while other companies use a more favorable “standard plus” rate to determine your price.
- It Pays to Reevaluate – Even if you just paid for a policy. We can shop for a better rate and replace the existing coverage with a new policy.
- Most companies refund the unused portion of your premium paid so it’s generally not a problem to get your money back from the old company.
- Table Ratings are Negotiable – Positive factors, favorable medical checkups, the passage of time, etc. may help you get a better rate.
Which life insurer is best for my health issue?
The life insurer that is best for your health issue will depend on the condition itself, your control of that condition and your current health.
We’ll help you narrow down the life insurance companies down to the best carriers that understand your history.
Some examples of health conditions that may be rated include:
- Getting Life Insurance with Heart Conditions
- Endocrine Disorders Life Insurance
- Can I Get Life Insurance with GI Problems?
- MS, strokes, epilepsy
- Mental Health Life Insurance
- Respiratory Diseases Life Insurance
- HIV Life Insurance
Other factors that may impact underwriting include any family history of a similar health issue that you have.
John Hancock recently released the Aspire life insurance for diabetes program that may eliminate or reduce table ratings if you qualify.
What about cancer histories?
Most cancer histories when rated will receive a flat extra expense rather than a table rating.
The condition you have, the control over that condition, the completeness of your medical records and follow-ups are all factors that may help or hurt your underwriting.
Table Rating Expectations
Many times, the first contact we have with you is after you just received an unexpected table rating for life insurance.
If you had an existing health issue, your prior agent most likely quoted the wrong rates from the beginning that you were never going to qualify for. If it was an unexpected lab result, for example, we’ll tell you the options available to you.
We use a Quick Quote process that allows us to receive underwriting feedback from multiple life insurers upfront…BEFORE you complete an application.
The reason why our approach works are that we take the time upfront to understand your medical history.
The benefit to you is that you receive accurate quotes upfront from companies that are competing for your health issues, and don’t receive unpleasant table rating surprises later.
If you’re in the middle of a divorce and trying to either obtain life insurance or show the judge that you truly are un-insurable, we can help you with that as well.
Should I accept a table rated offer?
If you received a table rated offer, what should you do?
Some of your options include:
- Decline the Offer – You may decline the policy.
- Accepting the Offer – You may accept the offer as received.
- Accept the offer temporarily – You may need the coverage now, but think there are better rates elsewhere. In this case, you may accept a policy on a monthly or quarterly basis while we re-shop for you. If we succeed, you simply switch to the new company.
- Reduce the Coverage/ Change the Terms – Once approved, we can usually reduce the face amount, or change the term length in order to reduce the premium.
We’ll walk you through those choices, even if we weren’t your original agent. In most cases, it is usually best to accept the offer now and let us get to work on finding you a better life insurance rate.
Another insurance option to consider is accidental death insurance. You may use an accidental policy to supplement your life insurance.
If the rating is for a temporary issue such as being overweight, it may make sense to change the term length for a shorter term, work on addressing the issue and then reapply at a later date once we can get you a better offer.
As an example, if you originally applied for a 40-year term life insurance policy and were approved with a table rating, the first thing we should do is to discuss the reason for the evaluation. If it is a temporary issue, it may be better to accept a 20-year term life policy for now and replace it later.
If you ever receive a table rated offer from a life insurer with the indication that they will consider a better rate if you repeat testing, don’t do it until you accept and activate that policy first.
An excellent example of temporarily accepting a rated policy is for elevated liver enzymes. Many times when liver enzymes are elevated, it will be due to a temporary issue, exercise or medications.
The problem occurs when your physician wants to complete a test such as a biopsy or a sonogram. If those results are favorable, great but if the results show a problem, the life insurer will rescind their original offer.
That’s why it’s a good idea to accept a policy and then address the health issue.
Are table ratings negotiable?
Life insurance underwriting programs called table shave programs may be a great deal for you even if you want term life insurance.
Life insurance companies are always looking to sell more universal life insurance policies…and in some cases, you could end up with a better price on universal life than on term life insurance.
A table shave program reduces the table rating assessed if you buy universal life insurance rather than term life insurance.
While we are big believers in term life insurance, there are times when a table shave program may end up costing you less money than a term life insurance policy.
Here’s a typical table rating example:
Imagine that you apply for term life insurance and receive a Standard Table 3 rating.
Table 3 rating adds 75% to the standard life insurance rates but this same company is willing to issue a universal life insurance policy to you at their “standard” rate.
When you compare prices between the term life insurance vs. universal life insurance at a standard life insurance rate, the universal life insurance may end up being similar in price to a term life policy, while providing a longer death benefit guarantee to you.
Table Shave Programs Available
Healthy Credits Program – This company has 16 healthy credit factors available.
If you meet any 4 of the 16 health credits, this company will improve your rate class by one rate class. Applies to term life insurance and universal life insurance policies.
Good Health Credit Program – This company has a program available for both term life insurance and universal life insurance programs.
Proposed insureds rated up to a Table “D” (100% markup) may qualify for standard life insurance rates.
HealthStyle Program – This company will give you a standard life insurance rate if you are table rated up to a Table “C” (75% markup).
They will do this for their universal life insurance policies only.
Fit Underwriting Credit Program – This company will consider term life insurance or universal life insurance insureds rated up to Table 4 for their standard life insurance rates.
There are a number of life insurance companies available with slight variations to the above that will consider table rated insureds for their standard rates.
We’ll show which life insurance company is best for you based on your specific health.
What Do We Know About Life Insurance Table Ratings?
Our expertise is life insurance underwriting, having the experience and knowledge to provide accurate quotes to you based on your unique health history.
We spend the time with you upfront asking you underwriting questions and gathering accurate information so that you get an accurate life insurance quote the first time!
We will then shop out to companies for feedback and will provide that to you so that you can make an informed decision about your life insurance choices available.
Our database contains the underwriting information, guidelines, manuals, case histories and more that allow us to provide you with quotes from the correct life insurance companies so that you receive your best rate.
We look forward to working with you.