All insurance companies have different criteria to qualify for their different rate classifications (i.e. preferred plus, preferred, regular plus, regular, table 2, table 4, etc.) and most insurance companies have 12 or more rate classifications for which any one person could qualify. 

Since no two life insurance companies underwrite exactly the same, explaining life insurance rates and ratings can be a complicated topic.

Besides for your overall health, which includes but is not limited to your cholesterol levels, blood sugar, blood pressure, height and weight, recent or present tobacco use, the most competitive life insurance companies are also going to look at your family history, your driving record, your mental health history, any potentially hazardous future travel, any hazardous avocations (like scuba diving, hang gliding) and other non health related issues.

So if you have no issues with any of the above, then you may be able to qualify for Preferred Plus or Preferred rates.

If you do have some minor health or other underwriting issues mentioned above, then you may only qualify for a Regular Plus or Regular rate. 

If You Don’t qualify for Regular Rates or better, you’ll be “Rated”

If you don’t qualify for “Regular” also known as “Standard” or better rates, then you could be “rated” for life insurance or offered a substandard rate.

While there are a few insurance companies that have a special rating structure, the norm is that most insurance companies will “rate” and charge an extra premium in addition to their “Regular” rate.

So most insurance companies ratings will start at the Regular rate plus 50% also called Table 2 or Table B, then Regular rate plus 75% (Table 3 or C), then Regular rate plus 100% (Table 4 or D) and go all the way up to Regular rate plus 250% (Table 10 or J) and sometimes even higher, depending on the company.

Below is an example of some sample ratings.  For simplicity, assume that a “Regular” or Standard rate would be $100.    If this were the case, then a Table 2, 4, 6, 8 or 10 rating would have an approximate cost as follows:

  Table 2:  $150
  Table 4:  $200
  Table 6:  $250
  Table 8:  $300
Table 10:  $350

As I mentioned, there are a few insurance companies that have a better rating structure than most.   With these companies, sometimes a Table 2 rate can be almost the same or better than many other companies Regular rates. 

Or a Table 4 rate with these companies that offer a better rating structure could be close to most other companies Table 2 rates.

So How Do I Figure Out the Cost for Being Rated?

To understand better what the table ratings mentioned above would equate to as far as price goes for you, just run a quote request using the quoting tool to the right. For “Health Class”, choose “Regular” and then multiply the Regular rate by the following.

  • Table 2 is Regular rate multiplied by 1.5
  • Table 3 is Regular rate multiplied by 1.75
  • Table 4 is Regular rate multiplied by 2
  • Table 5 is Regular rate multiplied by 2.25
  • Table 6 is Regular rate multiplied by 2.5
  • Table 7 is Regular rate multiplied by 2.75
  • Table 8 is Regular rate multiplied by 3

Doing this will provide you with a rough estimate, but remember that there are some insurance companies that have an unusual rating structure that could be more favorable for you.

What is a Flat Extra Life Insurance Premium

For many recent cancers and for hazardous avocations, instead of or in addition to table ratings, the insurance companies can charge a flat extra premium. 

This “flat extra” could be a $1.50 per $1,000, $2.50 per $1,000, $5.00 per $1,000 or any higher extra premium amount.   

Flat extra’s are only usually charged for a certain # of years and then they’re automatically removed from your policy. 

Again, for simplicity, let’s assume you were going to buy a $100,000 policy and the annual cost is $100 per year…but the underwriter puts a $2.50 flat extra per $1,000 on your premium for the first 3 policy years.

This would equate to an additional cost of $250 per year ($2.50 multiplied by 100) on top of the $100 annual premium for a total cost of $350 per year for the first 3 policy years.  Starting in year 4, your annual cost would reduce back to $100 since the flat extra was only being charged for first 3 policy years. 

All Life Insurance Companies Underwrite Differently!

All insurance companies “rate” ailments differently and we’ll find the insurance company that will offer you the best price depending on your particular criteria.

Whether you have diabetes, heart disease, are overweight, if you’re involved in motorized racing or another potentially hazardous activity, there will be one life insurance company that is best for you…  

Whether you’ll be charged with a table rating or a flat extra, we’ll find the best option for you.

For example, right now there are a couple insurance companies that are offering late age onset, very well controlled diabetics who are in otherwise excellent health “Preferred” or Regular Plus rates, whereas many insurance companies are only offering these same people a Regular rate or a Table 2 rating.

So make a quote request to the above right and provide us with at least your email address, or call us toll free at 1-800-380-3533 or email us and we’ll contact you with information and best rates for you. 

If you email, just let us know your preferred method of contact (i.e. phone, email, fax, etc) and that’s how we’ll contact you.


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