Are you considering purchasing a guaranteed issue life insurance policy?

Maybe it was recommended by a friend, maybe you are attracted to the idea of not having to answer health questions, or maybe you think it’s your only option.

Regardless of why you are researching this type of life insurance, there is much to know before you sign on the dotted line.

Here’s a little spoiler alert: Most people should not be buying a guaranteed acceptance policy. The majority of applicants can get a lower price and avoid a waiting period by answering some health questions.

This article is meant to serve as a truly impartial resource to bring clarity to this subject. We will lay out all the facts, and let you decide for yourself.

So here’s what we will cover in this piece…

We’ll thoroughly explain what guaranteed life insurance is, discuss the pros and cons, talk about when it’s a good & bad idea to purchase it, show you real prices from all the companies that offer this coverage, and reveal a secret about this kind of insurance most websites won’t share with you.


What Is Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance?

Simply put, guaranteed issue life insurance is a life insurance policy that has no underwriting whatsoever. The insurance company blindly issues the policy without knowing a single detail about your health.

They do not ask health questions, and they do not check your prescription or medical history.


You could have any number of dire illnesses or chronic diseases, and it simply will not matter. Acceptance is always guaranteed which is why they include the word “guaranteed” in the name.


There are many labels for no questions life insurance policies

Most industries develop clever marketing terms as a way to give their potential buyers better insight regarding their product or service. The insurance companies kind of ran away with this concept. At the end of the day, the term “guaranteed issue life insurance” is a marketing characterization. It’s not a title that was created by some regulatory body such as the department of insurance.

In fact, guaranteed acceptance life insurance for seniors has many other similar marketing terms you will encounter.

Thankfully, all these terms refer to the same exact thing. ABC Insurance Company may prefer to use the label “guaranteed life insurance no health questions”, and XYZ Insurance Company might prefer to call it “guaranteed life insurance”.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

In the end, it’s the choice of the insurance company, and their marketing agencies regarding which label they choose. It’s very similar to the words “lawyer” and “attorney”. They both mean the same exact thing.

Here are all the possible synonyms for kind of policy:

  • Guaranteed life insurance
  • Guaranteed whole life insurance
  • Guaranteed issue burial insurance
  • Guaranteed issue funeral insurance
  • Guaranteed acceptance life insurance
  • Guaranteed issue final expense insurance
  • Guaranteed issue final expense life insurance
  • No questions life insurance
  • No questions burial insurance
  • No questions funeral insurance
  • No questions final expense insurance


It’s Always A Guaranteed Whole Life Insurance Policy

There are many different insurance companies that offer guaranteed acceptance life insurance for seniors. It does not matter which company you buy from. A guaranteed life insurance policy is always whole life insurance. We’ve checked, and every single company that offers this guaranteed coverage does so in the form of whole life insurance.

You will not find a guaranteed issue term life insurance plan. They simply do not exist.

A rare exception is group term life insurance, although the group owns the policy rather than you.

Insider Tip: A term life insurance policy is one that expires after a certain number of years. You are basically renting the coverage for a period of time. A term life policy will typically last until the age of 80. Once it expires, you cannot get a new one, and you don’t get any money back. Your coverage is simply over with. At the age of 80, your only option would be to take out a whole life insurance plan which is still available at this age. However, due to your age, it’s quite expensive.

Because these policies are guaranteed whole life insurance, the following will always be true. Please note that this rule applies regardless of which company you buy your policy from.

  • The monthly payments cannot increase
  • The death benefits cannot decrease
  • The policy cannot expire at any age
  • The policy will accrue cash value which you can borrow from


The Mandatory Waiting Period

You might be thinking that it’s a bit odd that a life insurance company would offer a policy without inquiring about your health. Just know they aren’t going to offer a product or service that is destined to lose them money.

So here’s the deal

Every single no-questions life insurance policy will always impose a death benefit restriction during the first 2-3 years of the policy (it’s 2 years with most companies).

Basically, if you pass away during the waiting period, the insurance company will not pay out any death benefit. Instead, they will refund all the premiums you put into the policy. In addition, they will also tack on some interest as a nice little benefit. Usually, the interest they grant is 10%.

After the waiting period has passed, you are fully protected forever. At this point, the insurance company will pay the full death benefit if you pass away for any reason.

Many people are looking for guaranteed acceptance life insurance with no waiting period. Sadly, no such product exists.


Accidents Are The One Exception

Every guaranteed acceptance life policy will immediately pay out the full face value of the policy if death is due to an accident. This is a true statement even during the waiting period.

The only guaranteed acceptance policy that doesn’t pay out for accidental death is the VALife program through the Veterans Administration.


Beware Of Misleading Information

There are some articles online that suggest these policies might not pay a death benefit during the first two years if death is non-accidental. It’s truly puzzling why some authors use verbiage that would suggest there is a possibility your policy won’t pay out during the waiting period.

Here’s the honest truth

No guaranteed life policy with any company will ever pay out any portion of a death benefit if you die (non-accidental) during the first two years. There is no grey area, no chance, no possibility, or any scenario where your beneficiary will receive a death benefit if you die from natural causes during the first two years.

If anyone tells you a guaranteed issue policy will pay out any death benefits (for non accidental death) during the first 2 years, run because you are being lied to.

You Can’t Buy Very Much Coverage

Due to the fact that these kinds of policies attract people in poor health, they become a very risky proposition for the insurance companies even though they have the two year waiting period. Ultimately, this high level of risk must be mitigated in various ways.

One of the main ways the insurers mitigate their risk with these policies is they limit the amount of coverage they offer to relatively small amounts. In general, most guaranteed issue companies won’t allow you to buy more than $25,000 in coverage.


There are only 3 requirements

Quite honestly, these requirements are standard with any form of life insurance with any company. Guaranteed whole life insurance is no exception to this rule 🙂

If you wish to purchase a guaranteed policy, you will need to abide by the follow three requirements.


State Availability

Not every insurance company will have all their products licensed in every state. If you are going to take out a guaranteed acceptance life policy, make sure the company has it available in your state.

Age Limitations

In regards to age, every company will have their own age availability restrictions. This simply refers to the ages where they accept new applicants. In general, guaranteed issue life insurance companies don’t make their products available to anyone under the age of 50. There are some that do, but they are rather uncommon.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, many insurance companies will stop taking applicants who are older than 80. This is not to say that there aren’t still some guaranteed issue options for folks in their 80’s because there certainly are. There just aren’t many of them.

Ability To Enter Into A Legal Contract

Last but not least, you must have the mental capacity to enter into a legal contract. For example, if you have Alzheimer’s and are no longer able to legally consent to an agreement, they will not accept you.


Here’s The Hidden Truth About Guaranteed Life Insurance

When you see ads online, through the mail, and on TV, they all make it seem as if these policies are the best thing since sliced bread.

While these policies do have their place, they are not for everyone.

So here’s the truth that no advertisement will tell you

The overwhelming majority of people should not be purchasing a guaranteed acceptance policy.

Ouch that is pretty harsh, but it’s 100% the truth.

Here’s why we say that…

If you are in search of a policy to ensure your end of life costs are all taken care of, there is about a 90% chance you can qualify for a burial expense policy that has underwriting.¹

Qualifying for a plan with underwriting will result in two HUGE benefits.

  1. You obtain a policy that fully protects you starting on day one of your policy. That’s right; no 2-3 year waiting period before your policy will pay benefits!
  2. Your monthly payments will be substantially less. Because you are qualifying with your health, the insurance company is taking on less risk which means they can charge less for the insurance.

A final expense life insurance policy that has underwriting is merely one where the insurance company assesses your health. They don’t require physical or medical exams. What they will do is ask you some questions about your health, and check your medication history.

So here’s the question to ask yourself: Would you rather willingly and unnecessarily pay a substantially higher premium and endure a two year waiting period when you don’t have to?

We have found that most folks are more than happy to answer a few health questions if it means paying less, and having coverage that actually protects them immediately.

But the real question is…

Which option do you prefer?

It’s a free country, so it’s up to you. As we said from the beginning, we just bring you the truth. It’s your job to decide 🙂


Don’t Assume Your Health Will Prevent You From Securing Coverage That Asks About Your Health

To be perfectly blunt, the life insurance industry is darn competitive. There are literally thousands of insurance companies in the USA, and they are all fighting for business.


The key thing to understand about life insurance companies is they all have their own unique underwriting. They all accept and decline different health conditions.

It’s important to understand that life insurance companies compete in two main ways.

  • Price
  • Underwriting

An insurance company can either charge less money to gain an edge, or devise their product to absorb higher levels of risk in order to capture a larger portion of the market.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

Here’s an example to illustrate how this happens.

Let’s say ABC Insurance Company does not want diabetic applicants. Truthfully, many life insurance companies don’t. At the same time, XYZ Insurance Company is trying to figure out how to stand out in the market, and acquire more clients. This causes them to look for gaps in the market.

When they see that ABC Insurance Company turns away diabetics, they see this as an opportunity. This results in XYZ Insurance Company designing their underwriting to gladly accept diabetics. This gives them an edge in the market because they can capture a client that ABC Insurance Company could not.

It’s a huge win for diabetics too because now they have an insurance company that will insure them!

That kind of scenario above plays out all the time for all sorts of risk factors.

The competitive environment among all the insurance companies has resulted in pretty much every risk (outside of some very very high risk conditions) possible being insurable by some company(s).

The question really isn’t- Will they accept your health conditions?

Rather the question is usually- How many insurance company(s) will accept the conditions you deal with?

Our statistics show that over 90% of folks looking for a final expense policy easily qualify for a plan that asks health questions.¹

Guaranteed Issue Life InsuranceBottom line?

Don’t assume that you don’t qualify for an underwritten plan because you probably do!



When Is Guaranteed Life Insurance No Health Questions A Good Buy?

You already know that most people should not be defaulting to this kind of policy because they can likely qualify for one that has underwriting. However, there are indeed some circumstances where a guaranteed acceptance life policy is appropriate.

Essentially, a no health question life plan is a good buy in one of three circumstances.

  1. It is your only option due to your health
  2. It is your cheapest option due to your health
  3. Despite the drawbacks, you have a personal preference

Each situation is unique, and we will explore the circumstances for each one, so that you have the knowledge to make the best decision for you and your family.


It’s Your Only Option

As you are no doubt aware, life insurance companies manage their risk by assessing the health of an applicant. They hire actuaries who study mortality tables, so they can fully understand the average life expectancy for every health issue imaginable.

In the end, all carriers know, based on the numbers, which afflictions are so high risk that they are uninsurable. Basically, they can’t insure these health issues because doing so would constitute an inevitable financial loss.

If you have any of the following health conditions, you are considered uninsurable. There is no life insurance company that would accept you given these conditions. These are called knockout conditions. The first set of health questions on any life insurance application will be the knockout questions.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

It’s for that reason that a guaranteed issue life policy would be your only option. Remember, there is no medical underwriting with a guarantee issue life policy, so even these ultra high risk conditions won’t matter.

  • Terminal illness and have been given a life expectancy of 24 months or less
  • Ever had or been recommended to have any kind of organ or tissue transplant
  • Currently on dialysis
  • Diagnosed with or been treated for Alzheimer’s or Dementia
  • In a nursing home
  • Receiving hospice care or in any kind of nursing facility
  • Confined to a wheelchair due to a chronic illness or disease
  • Currently have cancer (except basal cell or squamous cell skin cancer)
  • AIDS or HIV
  • Oxygen to assist with breathing (if so sleep apnea, that does not count)


It Is Your Cheapest Option Due To Your Health

There are some health scenarios that are very high risk, but not so high risk that they are uninsurable.

The following health issues would cause life insurance companies to react in two ways:

  1. They will charge you a lot more (anywhere from 50-150% more)
  2. They will at minimum impose a waiting period

Basically, you would apply like normal, and answer all their health questions. There would either be one or many questions that you would say yes to. Because you said yes to some of their questions (non knockout ones), the insurer places you into a higher risk category that warrants a much higher price and a waiting period.

They key thing to understand is the waiting period is static if these health issues apply to you. Whether you answer health questions or go with a guaranteed issue policy, you will endure a waiting period. Given this, why not pay less?

Ultimately, if any of the health situations apply to you, you stand to save money by purchasing a guaranteed issue life policy from either Gerber Life, Mutual of Omaha, or AIG.Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

Disclaimer: The conditions marked with a ** are eligible for some (not full) partial protection during the first two years with some companies. However, the premiums would be much higher than that of a GI policy from one of the aforementioned insurance companies. You have to decide if it’s worth the extra money to have a policy that pays out a percentage of your death benefit during the first two years.

  • You have congestive heart failure**
  • You had a heart attack within the last 12 months
  • You had a full blown stroke (mini strokes/TIA attacks are accepted) within the last 12 months
  • You had a heart or circulatory surgery within the last 12 months
  • You had or have been treated for internal cancer or melanoma (the cancer must be gone) within the last 24 months
  • You use oxygen to assist with breathing (excluding use for sleep apnea)**
  • You’ve had or been treated for chest pains (angina) within the last 12 months


It’s A Personal Preference

Honestly, there are some people who are in love with the convenience of getting coverage without having to answer a single question about their health. Then there are some people who love the idea that they are guaranteed to be accepted.

While we urge you to pursue other options before you pull the trigger on a guaranteed issue policy, the choice is yours.

Here’s the thing

We live in a free country. You are free to make choices as you see fit, and thank God we can do that. It’s one of the many things that makes this the greatest nation in the history of time.


If for whatever reason you would prefer to just default to a guaranteed acceptance no health question policy, go for it!

We certainly don’t recommend it, but if that’s what you truly want- go for it.


When Is Guaranteed Acceptance Life Insurance Not A Good Buy?

In general, you don’t want to buy a guarantee issue life policy if you are able to qualify for a life insurance policy that has underwriting.

It’s not debatable. Guaranteed acceptance whole life insurance is by far the most expensive life insurance.

Not to beat a dead horse here, but this is the truth. The reality is that most people can, and do qualify for whole life policies that assess your health. Doing so means immediate coverage, and a much lower monthly premium.

Guaranteed acceptance life insurance for seniors should only be used as a last resort. If you want to make it super simple, call us at 1-800-644-2926, and we will quickly let you know if you are eligible for a plan that has underwriting.


The Top 10 Most Well Known Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance Companies

Right now there are easily over 15 different insurance companies that offer these no medical underwriting policies. Strangely, some insurance companies offer only guaranteed acceptance such as Metlife, and Physicians Mutual. None of them have burial plans that offer first-day coverage.

And you know what?

As time goes on, more and more insurance companies will enter this market.

Here’s the key thing to understand

Every single guaranteed life policy with every company is virtually identical. The only measurable difference is the monthly rate.

Below you will find the 10 most popular burial insurance companies that offer this guaranteed coverage.

We’ve taken the liberty of outlining the following for each company:

  1. Sample rates for various ages
  2. State availability
  3. Age availability
  4. Face amount options
  5. Length of the waiting period
  6. Interest granted if non-accidental death occurs during the waiting period
  7. Background information about the insurer


Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

In business since: 1909

A.M. Best Rating: A+

Age availability: 45-85

States not available: CT, MT, NY, OR

Face amounts: $2,000- $25,000

Waiting period: 24 months

Interest granted: 10%

Mutual of Omaha Guaranteed Issue- Male


Mutual Of Omaha Guaranteed Issue- Female



Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

In business since: 1967

A.M. Best Rating: A

Age availability: 50-80

States not available: MT

Face amounts: $5,000- $25,000

Waiting period: 24 months

Interest granted: 10%

Gerber Life Guaranteed Issue- Male


Gerber Life Guaranteed Issue- Female



In business since: 1967 A.M. Best Rating: A Age availability: 50-80 States not available: MT Waiting period: 24 months Interest granted: 10%

In business since: 1919

A.M. Best Rating: A

Age availability: 50-80

States not available: NY

Face amounts: $5,000- $25,000

Waiting period: 24 months

Interest granted: 10%

AIG Guaranteed Issue- Male


AIG Guaranteed Issue- Female



Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

In business since: 1902

A.M. Best Rating: A

Age availability: 50-80

States not available: AR, KS, MN, MO, NJ, NY, PA, WA

Face amounts: $3,000- $10,000

Waiting period: 24 months

Interest granted: 10%

Physicians Mutual Guaranteed Issue- Male


Physician's Mutual Guaranteed Issue- Female



Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

In business since: 1969

A.M. Best Rating: A-

Age availability: 45-85

States not available: NY

Face amounts: $5,000- $25,000

Waiting period: 24 months

Interest granted: 30%

AAA Guaranteed Issue- Male


AAA Guaranteed Issue- Female



Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

In business since: 1851

A.M. Best Rating: A++

Age availability: 50-75

States not available: AK, DC, HI, MT, ND, WY

Face amounts: $2,000- $25,000

Waiting period: 24 months

Interest granted: 10%

MassMutual Guaranteed Issue- Male


MassMutual Guaranteed Issue- Female


Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

In business since: 1845

A.M. Best Rating: A++

Age availability: 50-80

States not available: NJ, WA

Face amounts: $5,000- $25,000

Waiting period: 24 months

Interest granted: 10%

AARP New York Life Guaranteed Issue- Male


AARP New York Life Guaranteed Issue- Female



Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

In business since: 1942

A.M. Best Rating: A-

Age availability: 50-80

States not available: MT, NY, WA

Face amounts: $5,000- $20,000

Waiting period: 24 months

Interest granted: 10%

Vantis Life Guaranteed Issue- Male


Vantis Life Guaranteed Issue- Female



Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

In business since: 1968

A.M. Best Rating: B+

Age availability: 50-85

States not available: NY

Face amounts: $418- $16,664

Waiting period: 24 months

Interest granted: 7%

Colonial Penn has a very strange way of pricing their insurance. They use a “unit” system. A unit will represent a certain amount of insurance coverage. Rather than the price of coverage increasing with age, they just make it so that a unit provides less and less coverage. The older you are, the less coverage a unit provides. A single unit costs $9.95 regardless of your age. With Colonial Penn, you can’t buy a static amount of coverage such as $10,000. Instead, you purchase however many units it will take for you to get the total amount of coverage you are looking for. Honestly, it’s a very odd method for the pricing of insurance.

Colonial Penn Guaranteed Issue- Male

AGE2 Units= $19.904 Units= $39.806 Units= $59.708 Units= $79.60
50$3,572 in coverage$7,144 in coverage$10,716 in coverage$14,288 in coverage
55$3,012 in coverage$6,024 in coverage$9,036 in coverage$12,048 in coverage
60$2,428 in coverage$4,856 in coverage$7,284 in coverage$9,712 in coverage
65$1,864 in coverage$3,728 in coverage$5,592 in coverage$7,456 in coverage
70$1,434 in coverage$2,868 in coverage$4,302 in coverage$5,736 in coverage
75$1,120 in coverage$2,240 in coverage$3,360 in coverage$4,480 in coverage
80$852 in coverage$1,704 in coverage$2,556 in coverage$3,408 in coverage
85$836 in coverage$1,672 in coverage$2,508 in coverage$3,344 in coverage

Colonial Penn Guaranteed Issue- Female

AGE2 Units= $19.904 Units= $39.806 Units= $59.708 Units= $79.60
50$4,166 in coverage$8,332 in coverage$12,498 in coverage$16,664 in coverage
55$3,768 in coverage$7,536 in coverage$11,304 in coverage$15,072 in coverage
60$3,242 in coverage$6,484 in coverage$9,726 in coverage$12,968 in coverage
65$2,666 in coverage$5,332 in coverage$7,998 in coverage$10,664 in coverage
70$2,086 in coverage$4,172 in coverage$6,258 in coverage$8,344 in coverage
75$1,584 in coverage$3,168 in coverage$4,752 in coverage$6,336 in coverage
80$1,240 in coverage$2,480 in coverage$3,720 in coverage$4,960 in coverage
85$954 in coverage$1,908 in coverage$2,862 in coverage$3,816 in coverage

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

In business since: 1990

A.M. Best Rating: A-

Age availability: 40-80

States not available:

Face amounts: $2,000- $25,000

Waiting period: 24 months

Interest granted: 20%

Kemper Guaranteed Issue- Male


Kemper Guaranteed Issue- Female

50$ 28.13$ 51.88$ 75.65$ 99.40
55$ 31.31$ 58.24$ 85.18$112.11
60$ 36.14$ 67.84$ 99.54$131.26
65$ 44.78$ 84.94$125.09$165.25
70$ 60.96$117.08$173.21$229.33
75$ 79.13$153.25$227.38$301.50


What To Do Before You Buy A Guarantee Issue Life Insurance Policy

The advice in this section is really meant for those who are interested in the following benefits:

  1. You would prefer to get more coverage for each dollar spent
  2. You would prefer to get coverage that protects you sooner than later

If that kind of value is of interest to you read on. If not, just pull the trigger on a guarantee issue life policy and call it a day.

For those still reading, the most important thing you can do is make an exhaustive attempt at securing a policy that has underwriting. We’ve been over this, so we won’t go into great detail how this benefits you.

In short, you’ll get far more coverage for each dollar spent, and your coverage will not come with a 2-3 year waiting period.

Whether you are looking life insurance for a parent or yourself, this gameplan will help you find the best deal possible.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

So here’s what you need to do

Consult with an independent life insurance agency that represents at least 15 different insurance companies (the more the better). Let them shop your case among all the various insurance carriers they represent to see if any of them will accept the health issues you deal with.

Please note that it’s incredibly important that you work with an independent agency. Do not work with a captive insurance company. This is especially true if you deal with some high risk health conditions.

Insider Tip: A captive insurance company is any insurance company that does not allow their agents to sell insurance for any other company but them.

For example, State Farm and Farmers insurance are two very well known captive insurance companies. If you talk to a State Farm agent, they can only sell you insurance from State Farm. They cannot see if another life insurance company can approve you and offer you a better deal.

Lots of life insurance companies design their underwriting to excel at covering certain health risks. This is why working with an independent agency is so detrimental to your success. Whatever health issues you deal with, your agency must be free to shop around to find the insurers that cater to your specific health profile.

If you give an independent agency an earnest opportunity to get you into an underwritten policy, they very likely will be successful in doing so.


Here’s What You Do If You Can’t Qualify For An Underwritten Plan (Very Rare)

At this point, a GI policy is appropriate. The only thing you must figure out is which company will offer you the lowest price.

Remember, virtually all other factors are identical. The only meaningful difference is the monthly rate.

You can scroll back up and compare rates from those 10 guaranteed issue life insurance companies. Your cheapest plan will be with one of them. More specifically, it will either be Mutual of Omaha, Gerber Life, or AIG.

We’ve checked the numbers and they are all the lowest priced for various ages. Once you identify which company will offer you the lowest price, sign up asap so you can start working through the inevitable waiting period.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

Choice Mutual is an independent life insurance agency that focuses on helping folks find affordable permanent coverage to ensure end of life costs are all taken care of. We work with over 15 companies, so that we can compare rates to find you the best deal.

Over 90% of our clients are approved for coverage that has underwriting which means no waiting periods. If you are considering guaranteed life insurance, please call us first. We will work hard to try to secure you coverage that offers an immediate death benefit and costs substantially less.

In the event you want or need guaranteed acceptance coverage, we can still help you set that up with whichever carrier is cheapest for you.


¹Based off internal annual statistics