August 13, 2021

Would Bariatric surgery affect a life insurance premium?

Bariatric Surgery

Over 6000 bariatric surgeries are performed in the UK each year. Source: NHS Digital Statistics on obesity, physical activity, and diet – England, 2015.

It can lead to significant weight loss and help improve many obesity-related conditions, such as type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure.

There are several types of weight loss surgery.

The most common types are:

  • gastric band – a band is placed around your stomach, so you do not need to eat as much to feel full
  • gastric bypass – the top part of your stomach is joined to the small intestine, so you feel fuller sooner and do not absorb as many calories from food
  • sleeve gastrectomy – some of your stomach is removed, so you cannot eat as much as you could before and you’ll feel full sooner

All these operations can lead to significant weight loss within a few years, but each has advantages and disadvantages.

They are major operations.

Our client

Our client approached us during a COVID lockdown. His job is running a martial arts gym and he has a partner and three young children. After discussing his life and family situation, our Adviser advised that he needed mortgage and family protection should he pass away unexpectedly.

 After running through a full in-depth fact find, we presented our advice:

Joint Decreasing Term assurance a cost effective way to cover his mortgage. The amount insured would reduce in line with his mortgage. If he should pass away, his family would continue to be able to live in the family home. (his outstanding mortgage was £164,000 over a term of 30 years).  

Family cover would help pay for any bills and living expenses should either he or his partner pass away.  We suggested an Increasing Term policy of £125,000 over a term of 30 years that would keep up with inflation.

Medical Condition

Our client had bariatric surgery in August 2020 at the age of 38.

He had undergone a sleeve gastrectomy where 70-80% of his stomach was removed. Luckily, there were no complications and the weight started to drop off him very quickly, and in three weeks he had lost 10lbs.

Our Process and advice

At Future Proof, we have access to specialist insurance companies that don’t deal directly with the public. These companies offer more specialised policies, designed to provide cover where other major providers can’t.

Our research process involves us contacting many insurers to find out the best possible outcome for our clients. Which avoids any nasty shocks later on during the underwriting process.

Would the insurer add a ‘loading’ to their standard premium? (this is an additional sum charged on top of their standard monthly premium to reflect their additional risk). Or, exclude a condition?

Might they decline the application? We want to avoid wasting time by making applications that may be declined.

We have up to date knowledge of the ever-changing landscape of underwriting for all providers in the UK. Future Proof is committed to thorough research so that you don’t have to. What’s more, our advice comes at no obligation and with no hidden costs.  You don’t pay us directly but we get paid by the insurer if you decide to start a policy with them.

Our research

At the time of his applying for cover, there was a COVID lockdown. During our pre-underwriting research of the marketplace where we asked insurers their view on bariatric surgery, we were getting indications of loadings of anything between 125-150%.

Many insurers wanted to postpone his life application due to the Covid restrictions. All insurers were saying that they wouldn’t offer cover for critical illness or income protection at that time.

As such, we could only consider life cover.

The outcome

Many insurers wanted a GP report or to postpone his application until lockdown had ended.  However, one insurer stood out from the rest and said that they would offer him cover based on the information on the detail of his bariatric surgery in his application only. They even offered him standard rates with no increase in premium!

We agreed to revisit critical illness and income protection once restrictions ease.

The final outcome:

Joint mortgage cover at a monthly premium of £13.57

Joint family cover at a monthly premium of £15.37

Our client is happy to have the peace of mind that should anything happen to him or his partner the family won’t struggle financially.

Please note that any premiums mentioned are indicative only and based on this specific case study/ example, which is shown for information purposes only. Your own circumstances will determine whether the amount payable is more or less than the figure quoted.

Client ID: 165743645

Next steps

Whilst you are welcome to get a quote online, we would recommend you speak to one of our advisers.

Any quote that your adviser provides you with will take into account your circumstances and medical history, as well as your budget!

An online quote is just that – a quote – it isn’t a definite offer of cover. What really matters is the premium you are offered, after your application has been assessed.

Call Freephone 0800 644 4468 – Monday to Thursday from 09.00 to 19.00 and on Friday between 09.00 and 17.00.

Please feel free to read our Independent client reviews, or read about the team at Future Proof

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Take a look at our handy guides ‘What Cover is Right for me?’

Do you suffer from a medical condition and concerned you can’t secure Life Insurance?  Please view our ‘Medical Guides’ for further information.

Whilst we will make every endeavour to help someone to arrange insurance, there is no guarantee of success.  All applications are subject to underwriting.

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