Can you get life insurance with drug addiction [updated guide 2019]

Written by Zhaneta Gechev


Have you applied for life insurance only to be turned out due to addition? Or, have you ever wondered what exactly companies are looking for and what is the best option out there for life insurance with drug addiction?

This is exactly what we would go over in this guide. We would outline what information they need, provide sample rates and discuss options.

Before we take it any further, we would like to point out that this guide applies if you are over 18 years old. We’ve dedicated a separate article on how to obtain life insurance for children with drug addiction.

Also, we have published a separate guide for alcohol addiction.

Before we start, let’s look at the numbers:

Drug addiction is a growing problem. People are becoming more and more dependent on opiods, prescription drugs, synthetic drugs and etc. Unfortunately, breaking the cycle could be very difficult. If you or someone else is battling addiction, please know that there is help. There are many health organizations and centers that are geared towards helping people with addiction.

Addiction is a chronic condition, it is not an issue of willpower. It changes the way the brain works, making it very difficult to overcome. Addiction cannot be cured, it is only manageable, just like diabetes, asthma, arthritis and etc.

Did you know that in a published study over 21 million people in the US are struggling with addiction?

Young adults aged 18-25:

About one out of every six American young adults (between the ages of 18 and 25) battled a substance use disorder in 2014, NSDUH This represents the highest percentage out of any age group at 16.3 percent.

Heroin addiction among young adults between 18 and 25 years old has doubled in the past 10 years,(….)

Over age 25:

Approximately 14.5 million adults aged 26 or older struggled with a substance use disorder in 2014, NSUDH

With that being said, you are not alone!

So what information will companies need to determine options for life insurance with drug addiction:

Every company has its own questionnaire that they would need completed, when underwriting your application for life insurance. However, typically they would need to know:

  • History of Condition:
    • Type of drugs used by client?
    • Amount?
    • Frequency of use?
    • How long client has been clean?
    • Any relapses?
    • History of drug overdose?

  • Treatment:
    • Rehab program?
    • In/out patient?
    • Duration of stay?

  • Related Issues:
    • Use or abuse of alcohol?
    • Suffer from depression?
    • Stable job and home life?
    • Any other medical problems?
    • Traffic violations or legal problems caused by drug use?

We need to point out that not every drug is treated the same. There are instances of prescribed opioids or highly addictive medications like Suboxone. Suboxone is a prescription medication that combines buprenorphine and naloxone. Doctors often prescribe it as a treatment for opioid addiction.

Good news:

We were able to get approval for a client with current use of Suboxone for coverage with NO medical exam. While the policy is rated as a higher risk, the client was very pleased that he is able to secure a piece of mind for his family.

Life Insurance

Keep in mind that not every case could be approved. There are many case-specific factors carriers are looking for when making a determination to offer coverage.


Another type of drug that falls into a separate category is Marijuana

Recreational Marijuana is now fully legal in about 11 states across the US for recreational and medical use. Life insurance carriers are acknowledging the shift and are approving coverage with disclosed Marijuana use. Companies could approve you for the policy without even taking a medical exam (reach out to us to ask how).

Thing to consider:

Not all carriers treat Marijuana same. While most carriers would approve a policy with Marijuana use, they would offer tobacco rates. This makes the policy a bit more expensive. There are also insurance companies that could also over Non-tobacco rates with current marijuana use.

Life insurance for current drug use or within the past

Past use:

Carriers are looking for no drug use or treatment for addiction in 5 years back. That means that if you had just completed your treatment, it may be best to postpone your application for traditional life insurance or look into different options. Companies would like to see stability and control of the condition. In many instances, we can apply a personalized letter to the underwriter along with your application. Every story and every case is different. Sometimes there is more to an application and situation listed in the medical records.

Current use:

If you or friend or family member is currently using drugs, there would be only 1 available option: Guaranteed issue life insurance policy.

What is a guaranteed issue life policy is how does it work? We’ve dedicated an entire article about this type of policy. In a nutshell, is a type of insurance that would not ask a single health or lifestyle question. Everyone is covered.

The biggest downside is how this policy is structured for the first 2 years. Please reach out to and we would ensure that the product is available in your state.

In conclusion:

The options you have to secure life insurance with drug addiction vary based on whether you are currently using, what type of drugs, how long since past usage and overall health. Please reach out us by sending us a message or completing the quote form on this page. We are looking forward to to working with you on finding you the best possible coverage for you.

Thank you

About Zhaneta Gechev
About Zhaneta Gechev

Zhaneta Gechev is the founder of One Stop Life Insurance. She works with individuals across the nation to secure the best life insurance rates.

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