Will my life insurance premium be reduced if I cut down or give up smoking?
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How long do I need to cut down or give up? And, how much can I expect to save?
Most life assurance companies ask the question about smoking and to qualify for a non smoker rates you must NOT have smoked for a minimum of 12 months - failure to do this will result in the contract being void for non disclosure and they will not pay out.
Life assurance companies do not set premiums on the amount you smoke only the fact that you smoke.
Yes, a lot. But as Paul above says you need to have given up a minimum of 12 months, sometimes 24. This is real 'given up' not becoming a 'social smoker'.
Also you need to make sure your Dr knows you have given up - they will be asked if there is a claim whether they think you smoked or not, and if they have treated you for a smokers cough they will assume you never quit unless they know otherwise.
The savings will be significant, typically a smoker will pay 50% more.
John Stirling has said it all really. The basic principle is that insurers take on the risk that you present when you first apply. Thus a smoker will always pay smoker rates. However a non smoking taxi driver (the roads being considered a relatively risky place to be) who subsequently gives up smoking and starts a desk bound job is very likely to benefit from reduced rates if they reapply. In this respect also be aware that, in general, life asurance rates have been falling as medical advances are keeping people alive for longer and there is lower administration cost and greater competition in the market thanks to computers and the internet. The basic message has to be that it is always worth shopping around and re-checking the market every few years.
the key with smoker status is that its not just smoking cigarettes that counts. also pipe smokers , cigar smokers and users of snuff or tobacco products all count as smokers.
some life companies will reduce a premium mid policy but this is rare. again its best to wait the 12 months clear (ie from when you tell the GP you are giving up then you need to be clear 12 months).
there is no point asking your GP to confirm non smoker status by a test as life companies will often ask declarants of non-smoker status to submit to a cotinine test (saliva test) to look for the trace chemicals of smoke.
Quitting smoking can lower premiums by around 50% but you must have been smoke free for at least 12 months. Very few insurers will switch you to non-smoking status for an existing plan but it is definitely worth checking the rates to see if it is worthwhile applying for a new replacement plan.
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