No Exam Life Insurance for Smokers: 5 Essential Facts, Sample Quotes, & How to Apply

You’re not alone if you use tobacco.

15.1% of all adults (36.5 million people) are current tobacco users. – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

It’s no secret that health risks, and consequently, your life insurance premiums, increase with tobacco use.

However – Whether you use cigarettes, e-cigarettes, chewing tobacco, marijuana, vape, cigars, or pipes, you can qualify for no exam life insurance at often affordable rates.

Let’s evaluate everything you need to know about purchasing no exam life insurance when you smoke.


Table Of Contents

  1. What is No Exam Life Insurance?
  2. 5 Essential Facts About No Exam Life Insurance for Smokers
  3. How Much Does No Exam Life Insurance for Smokers Cost?
  4. How to Apply for No Exam Life Insurance as a Smoker

What is No Exam Life Insurance?

First, let’s define no exam life insurance (also known as non-med, or no physical). Simply put, it’s life insurance issued without the medical examination of the applicant.

That means you skip:

  • Needles
  • Nurses
  • Liquid samples

A large percentage of us have no interest in being poked with a needle and have even put off purchasing life insurance as a result.

There’s good news – No exam life insurance is becoming increasingly available at affordable rates.


5 Essential Facts About No Exam Life Insurance for Smokers

Let’s review the 5 key facts you need to know about life insurance with no exam for smokers.

5 essential facts about no exam life insurance for smokers
*Subject to change

Let’s take a look at each of those facts in more detail.

1. There is No Medical Exam Required

Tobacco users’ options for no exam life insurance have increased. In fact, most no exam life insurance products include a tobacco health class.

More options mean you have the ability to shop around, with the help of an independent agent, for the best policy at the best price (that you qualify for).

2. Affordable Coverage is Available for Smokers

Tobacco users will pay more for life insurance than those who are non-tobacco. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t secure affordable life insurance coverage while skipping the needles, nurses, and liquid samples.

To put things into perspective, let’s compare some tobacco quotes that are no exam with some that are medically underwritten.

Here, we have the same healthy, tobacco-using applicants for the same policy amount:

No exam life insurance quote for a 30 year old male smoker
No exam life insurance quote for a 30 year old female smoker

For many, paying a little more every month for the convenience of skipping the medical exam is worth it.

NoteJohn Hancock offers a quit smoking incentive. You can qualify for non-tobacco rates if you demonstrate that you have stopped using tobacco products.

3. The Type of Tobacco Use Can Affect Policy Choices

Life insurance underwriters will want to know what type of tobacco product you use.

Specifically, they will ask you about:

  • Cigarettes
  • Cigars
  • Marijuana
  • Pipe
  • Smokeless tobacco
  • E-cigarette
  • Vape
  • Nicotine patch
  • Nicotine gum

Tobacco products are not viewed equally by life insurance companies.

*For example: Cigar smokers, smokeless tobacco users, and marijuana users can earn non-tobacco status by some medically-underwritten carriers.

In other words, you could be classified as non-tobacco, and save significantly on your premiums, if you’re willing to go through a medical exam (under a few specific situations – your tobacco use must be limited).

4. When Did You Last Use a Tobacco Product?

Expect to be asked about when you last smoked a cigarette.

For some carriers, if you have smoked cigarettes within the last 2 years, you will be classified as tobacco.

For many carriers, if you have smoked cigarettes within the last 12 months, you will be classified as tobacco.

So, it will have to be at least one year since your last cigarette to be classified as non-tobacco.

Important – Honesty is crucial. If you are not truthful about your tobacco use, and you pass away from a tobacco-related illness, it can put your policy’s death benefit in jeopardy.

Also important – Do not wait until you’ve quit smoking to purchase life insurance coverage. Not to sound dark, but no one is guaranteed tomorrow.

If down the road, you successfully quit smoking, you can apply for new non-tobacco rates.

5. Other Health Complications Can Increase Rates

Your health is a major factor in determining the life insurance rate you qualify for.

Smoking increases your risk of health complications. If you experience adverse health effects as a result of smoking (or for any reason, for that matter) life insurance carriers may charge you more for life insurance.

Common health conditions related to smoking include:

Important – People with health complications are able to secure life insurance without a physical all the time.


How Much Does No Exam Life Insurance for Smokers Cost?

Keep in mind – quotes are samples only. They reflect limited input and are for healthy individuals. Your personal quote may vary.

Samples are for $250,000 of term life insurance for a healthy individual.

No Exam Life Insurance For Smokers - Male

 10 year term15 year term20 year term30 year term
20 year old$32.11$35.69$39.72$58.28
30 year old$38.20$38.75$43.65$67.40
40 year old$48.81$55.59$69.90$117.50
50 year old$101.75$184.76$169.43$347.81
60 year old$266.40$309.11$613.80NA
$250,000 of term life insurance. Samples only.

No Exam Life Insurance For Smokers - Female

 10 year term15 year term20 year term30 year term
20 year old$24.68$32.09$31.19$43.43
30 year old$28.93$33.94$37.53$53.19
40 year old$43.94$49.47$57.00$89.50
50 year old$82.93$103.28$124.15$341.33
60 year old$192.74$217.24$456.30NA
$250,000 of term life insurance. Samples only.

Coverage Amounts Depend on Your Financial Needs

If you have loved ones who depend on you financially, it’s almost certain you need life insurance.

Just how much life insurance coverage you need is dependent on the financial needs of you and your beneficiaries. Consider the following:

  • Living expenses – food, utilities, bills
  • Tuition
  • Mortgage or rent
  • Loans or debt (student loans, credit card)
  • Charitable giving

No exam life insurance is often an excellent fit for smokers:

  1. Skip the needles, nurses, and liquid samples.
  2. Purchase life insurance quickly (no exam life insurance can shave weeks off of the application turnaround time).

How to Apply for No Exam Life Insurance as a Smoker

What does the process of applying for life insurance without a medical exam look like? We cover each step below in detail.

No Exam life insurance application process
*Underwriting and life insurance features subject to change

1. Work with an Independent Life Insurance Agent

You will want to collaborate with an independent life insurance agent.

Here’s why: Independent agents are not held captive to a particular life insurance company. They have your best interest at heart.

No two life insurance companies are the same. That means your unique needs will determine which company is the best to purchase a policy from.

Avoid applying directly with a life insurance company. Let’s say a medical condition shows up on your application. That information could then be available to other life insurance companies, via the Medical Information Bureau, and potentially affect future applications.

2. Electronic Applications Speed Up the Process

Almost always, your life insurance application will be submitted electronically. No exam life insurance carriers are interested in streamlining the process for you.

An electronic application means you skip tedious paperwork and snail mail.

3. Be Prepared for Your Phone Interview

After your application has been submitted, expect a phone interview.

Your conversation will last about 20 – 30 minutes.

Important – Be prepared and upfront during the interview. Any discrepancies during the phone interview could delay or hinder your ability to secure life insurance quickly.

Expect to be asked about:

  1. The basics: gender, birthdate, height/weight
  2. Your tobacco use:
    • What type(s) of tobacco product you use
    • How often you use a tobacco product(s)
    • How many years you have used tobacco products
  3. Health complications associated with tobacco use:
  4. General health history
  5. Health history of close blood-related family members
  6. Lifestyle
  7. Hobbies
  8. Occupation
  9. Military status
  10. Credit history (e.g. bankruptcy)

4. Database Checks are Utilized

Next, your underwriter (that’s who evaluates your application) will review databases.

Generally, the following are checked:

  • Motor Vehicle Report (MVR) – your driving record
  • Pharmacy – a history of your prescriptions
  • Medical Information Bureau (MIB) – a database of previous insurance applications

5. Life Insurance Application Decision is Made

Based on your application, phone interview, and database checks, you will receive a decision on your application – often quickly.

Expect one of three decisions:

  1. Approved as applied – Think of this as a best-case scenario. You are approved for the life insurance policy you applied for.
  2. More information needed – Depending on the carrier, sometimes your underwriter will need more information. Let’s say, for example, you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure. You could be asked to provide information on when you were diagnosed, what medications you may be taking to treat your high blood pressure, and if you are experiencing health complications as a result of your high blood pressure.
  3. Declined as applied – Sometimes, you are not approved for the life insurance policy you applied for. Take heart. There are plenty of life insurance options to explore.

Bottom Line – Anticipate an uncomplicated application process.

Simply fill out our instant quote today to get started.