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  • Writer's pictureAhsan Malyk

How Can Life Insurance Coverage Be Affected By Foreign Travel?

When you're trying to get life insurance at the same time you're going across the globe, things might become complicated. The majority of firms that provide life insurance regard tourism in some regions of the globe as a danger.

If you have travel plans that include going to specified countries, your application for life insurance will be denied. It is possible that your application for life insurance may not be denied but you will be subject to a surcharge, which translates to a higher premium.

Alternatively, a life insurance company can decide to postpone making a judgment on your application until you get back. Some insurance companies divide nations into categories and then make price selections based on the category as well as the duration of stay.

Underwriting process

During the application process for life insurance, you may expect to be questioned about any recent and upcoming travel outside of the United States and Canada. It could be about the following:

● Purpose of the trip

● Duration of the trip

● If it’s a recurrent travel

● Frequency of visits to this location

Underwriters use a holistic approach when considering travel on a life insurance application. Therefore, so just because you're going to a location that can be rated riskier than others does not always indicate that you will immediately earn a lower health classification.

There are certainly other factors that underwriters might consider before rejecting or accepting your application.

Why is travel evaluated during underwriting?

When an underwriter for life insurance looks over your application, one of the things they are looking for is anything that could make you a risky candidate. This could be anything from a family history of a disease to a preexisting medical condition to a potentially hazardous line of work such as being a pilot.

During the underwriting process, the two most important elements that are taken into consideration are those relating to safety and health.

If you go to a place that is currently engaged in a war, is experiencing political unrest, has an epidemic sickness, or does not have hospitals that are widely accessible, there is a greater chance that something will go wrong.

During the underwriting process, a greater amount of scrutiny will be applied to a nation that has a higher mortality rate, just as this scrutiny would be applied to every other element that contributes to high mortality rates.

How the distance impacts your application for life insurance?

If you travel for a longer period of time, this means that you are putting yourself in a position where you are more likely to be exposed to possible dangers. Any increase in risk will result in a change in the way that insurance firms underwrite their customers.

You should expect to deal with more stringent limitations on how long you can spend traveling to a country that is regarded as dangerous and yet maintain your life insurance coverage than you would when traveling to a nation that is seen as safe for tourists.

In addition, traveling outside the country for an extended period of time might be an indicator that your residence may really be located outside of the United States. In this case, the underwriter may view your claim with some degree of suspicion.

In this scenario, you would most likely be treated as a non-citizen by the insurance company.

There are a lot of life insurance companies that will insure applicants who are going to be traveling for more than three months as foreign nationals or non-U.S. residents. This would imply that you would be subject to various underwriting standards if you went with one of these firms.

As is the case with everything else, the length of time this process takes varies from one life insurance company to the next. For certain life insurance companies, the amount of time spent outside the country may be as long as six months.

How the place or location impacts your application for life insurance?

When it comes to acquiring life insurance, the most common problem area is one that involves potentially hazardous travel. It is possible that the amount of coverage you are able to get will be restricted if you plan to go to a nation that is rated as having a moderate to high risk.

Underwriters could look at this in a negative light and consider it more of a precaution for your trips. Hence, getting a policy within a shorter term immediately before you go on a vacation, for example, five years is not a good idea.

Your final life insurance policy will have more restricted terms if the life insurance provider believes that your trip plans include hazardous environments or activities.

On the other hand, owing to COVID-19, travel is being evaluated on an individual basis. Even though the State Department advises against most foreign travel because of COVID-19, many insurance companies will still provide coverage.

The following nations are now under a "Level 4: Do Not Travel" alert:

● Afghanistan

● Argentina

● Brazil

● Burkina Faso

● Central African Republic

● Cuba

● Bhutan

● French Guinea

● French West Indies

● Haiti

● India

● Indonesia

● Iran

● Iraq

● Kosova

● Libya

● Georgia

● Mali

● North Korea

● Oman

● Russia

● Somalia

● South Sudan

● Syria

● The Kyrgyz Republic

● Turkmenistan

● Venezuela

● Yemen

How do the jobs impact your application for life insurance?

Diplomats, embassy staff, and missionaries deployed to nations with a moderate to a high degree of risk will likely be refused life insurance coverage.

Other professions that do not need long-term travel but do include some amount of dangerous travel, would acquire coverage on a case-by-case basis. It would be up to the discretion of the insurer to decide whether or not to provide it.

If one of the vocations listed below requires you to travel to high-risk nations, you may be required to pay higher premiums or be denied coverage altogether:

● Diplomat

● Embassy staff

● Missionary

● Pilot

Take Away

When it comes to ensuring that your life insurance policy will pay out, being honest is really essential. As long as you were honest in your application, the benefits from your insurance policy should still be paid out to your loved ones if you die.

The insurance company is unable to challenge the death benefit if it has already accepted your application. You are protected no matter where you go or what you do!

The statistics provided by the U.S. Department of State indicate that just 650 of those tourists passed away while traveling internationally. This means that your odds of surviving a journey overseas are 99.999%.

Under these conditions, additional paperwork may be requested for the sake of verification. However, the procedure of filing a claim on behalf of your loved ones ought to go off without a hitch.

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