Can I Still Get Life Insurance if I've Been Denied? 5 Steps to Take if Your Application is Rejected

 If you’ve been denied life insurance—don’t give up! There are still ways for you to get coverage

If you’ve decided to start applying for a life insurance policy, you’re on the right track. Life insurance is important for anyone who has a dependent person in their life or has outstanding debts like a mortgage or a college loan. However, sometimes—for a variety of reasons we’re going to go get into—your life insurance application could get denied. If your application gets denied, it can definitely be discouraging. But, you shouldn’t give up on getting life insurance coverage!

In this article, we’re going to be walking you through the steps you need to take if your life insurance application is denied. So, if you are searching for more options to get a life insurance coverage after getting a rejection letter, keep reading! 

1.  Find Out Why You’ve Been Denied

Get as much information as you can about why you were denied a life insurance policy

The first step to getting coverage is finding out why you were denied and working from there.

If you sent in your application after filling out a questionnaire or undergoing a medical exam, then the information you provided will have something to do with why you were denied coverage. The key here is to find out what part of your application was the cause for denial. In most cases, insurance companies don’t want to take on too much of a risk, so they will deny policies to people that pose a high risk. If you are deemed high risk and denied coverage it is most likely due to chronic health problems, a dangerous job, criminal record, or risky lifestyle choices. The insurance company should make it clear in your rejection message why you were denied. But, in the case that they do not, you can call the insurance company and ask for more information. It may be possible that you aren’t eligible for whole life insurance, but you are eligible for a term life insurance policy or a different type of policy. Once you know the reason that you were unable to get life insurance, you can move on to the next step.

2.  Review Your Case and Your Application

Once you’ve discovered why you were rejected, you need to verify all of the information submitted is correct

Sometimes out of date information can cause a rejection from an insurance company.

The next step you need to take once you’ve confirmed the reason for rejection is to review your case. The first thing you need to do is to verify that all of the information that you submitted is correct. You never know, it is very possible to check the wrong box and be denied based on an incorrect input. It is also important to make sure that all of the information sent over by your physician is correct as well. If the documents sent over were out of date or included incorrect information, it is in your best interest to get in touch with the insurance company to submit an appeal. If there is out-of-date or incorrect information found, you can ask your doctor to submit the correct documents. There are also nonmedical factors that can lead to you getting rejected like out-of-date information about outstanding debts or a previous high-risk job.

If there aren’t any inconsistencies in the information you submitted, then it is time to move on to the next step.

3.  Try to Get a Different Type of Life Insurance

While you may be unable to get the life insurance plan you applied for, there could be other options available to you

Explore all avenues for getting life insurance coverage.

Even if your application is rejected due to one of your health or lifestyle factors, there still could be plans offered that are available to you. For example, if you were rejected for a whole life insurance plan, see if there are options for you to get a term life insurance policy. Often, insurance companies are more willing to take on someone at higher risk for a term life insurance policy than a whole life insurance policy. In general, term life insurance policies are lower risk for insurance companies since there is always a chance the policyholder outlives the term and there is no payout necessary.

Beyond trying to apply for term life insurance over whole life insurance, there is also the option to forgo the medical exam as a way to get life insurance. If you were previously denied life insurance based on a health condition or choices that affect your health—like smoking—then no medical exam life insurance could be the right option for you.

Getting life insurance with no medical exam is pretty easy. All you have to do is submit your application without disclosing any medical information through a physical or a questionnaire. No medical exam life insurance is considered the easiest possible way to get life insurance—but it comes with a catch. Without your medical information, the insurance company won’t be able to accurately assess the risk of taking you on as a policyholder. Because of this, the cost of your monthly premium will be significantly higher than if you underwent a medical exam. However, if you have already been denied coverage, then no medical exam life insurance could be the best option to get the coverage you need to protect your family in the event of your passing.

4.  Try to Get Life Insurance Through Your Employer

If you aren’t able to get insurance from your initial application, you may be able to get some coverage through your employer

Life insurance through your employer is usually the minimal amount.

Just because your application was denied doesn’t mean you are completely ineligible for life insurance. Many people are able to get some life insurance coverage from their employer. Unfortunately, life insurance coverage through an employer is often far from the recommended coverage amount. On average, we recommend that individuals take out a life insurance policy that is anywhere between 10 to 12 times their yearly income. If you want to get life insurance through your employer, the payout will likely be somewhere between $50,000 to $100,000. For most people, this isn’t nearly enough coverage—but it is better than nothing.

Another advantage of getting your life insurance through your employer is that you will not have to undergo a medical exam or submit a questionnaire. For people who have chronic illnesses, this is a great way to get some protection. Since the plan is purchased in bulk by your employer and standard coverage is relatively little, policyholders pose a little financial risk. Because of the low-risk level, they do not need your medical information.

If you want to get coverage through your employer, it is highly recommended that you supplement your policy. Supplementing your policy can get expensive and the money will be taken out of your income and automatically put toward expanded coverage. Just like with no medical exam insurance, getting the coverage amount you want could be more expensive than you thought. Though it can be expensive, it is ultimately better to have peace of mind and life insurance coverage than it is to go uninsured.

If coverage isn’t offered by your employer or you are outside of traditional employment, then you should move on to the next step.

5.  Get Help From an Expert

If you’re having trouble getting any form of coverage, it’s time to call an insurance agent

An insurance agent can give you a behind-the-scenes perspective on life insurance.

Sometimes the best advice you can get is from someone who works in the field. If you’ve tried all of the previous strategies we’ve listed with no results, then we recommend seeking out the help of an insurance agent. Insurance agents have an internal look in the industry and can help you prepare an application and establish a strategy to get you coverage.

By giving your information over to an insurance agent, they can give you greater insight as to why your application is being rejected. From there, they can offer ways to address or work around the factors preventing you from getting coverage. They also may suggest different insurance companies that you can apply to that will give you a better chance of getting approved. They may also suggest lifestyle changes you can make in an effort to make your application more appealing to insurance companies. For example, they may suggest you quit tobacco use, which is a major factor in most life insurance applications.

Once you and your insurance agent have come up with a game plan, you can submit your revised application for a better chance of approval.


Getting insurance isn’t always straightforward, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. If you are having trouble getting coverage, then there are several avenues you can take to secure your family’s financial future. Ultimately, it is always to be covered rather than to go uninsured. If you’ve been denied, know that there is a solution out there that will get you the coverage you need.


Read also our other finance articles.

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