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Question:

From Vancouver, Washington, USA:

I purchased a whole life insurance policy for my child when she was one and a half years old. She is now three and a half years old and has been recently diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Do I need to let my insurance company know about her change in health? Is the policy still valid now that she has diabetes? The insurance coverage is through State Farm.

Answer:

Insurance policies are contracts. Like all contracts, the rights and responsibilities of each party (e.g., the insurance company and the policy holder) are spelled out in the terms of the policy. Most states require that a copy of the policy containing the policy terms be given to you within a set period after the first premium is paid (often 30 to 60 days). In the policy, you should look for any requirement of notifications to the insurance company. Generally, if a medical condition was not present at the time of policy origination, there is no requirement that the insurer be notified of the onset of the medical condition years later. In addition, many states have enacted laws to protect consumers who purchase life insurance policies from discovery of medical issues long after the origination of the policy. These incontestability clauses prevent the company from canceling policies when the insured has an event that would impact the life expectancy of the person who took out the insurance. In short, if you have a question about insurance you have purchased, read the policy.

DSH

DTQ-20070527144901
Original posting 30 May 2007
Posted to Insurance/Costs

  
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:10:12
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