Chelsey Tucker graduated with a Bachelor of History degree from Metropolitan State University in 2019. She now writes about insurance with her specialty being life insurance and has been quoted on Help Smart Phone and MEL Magazine.

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years. He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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Life Insurance TombstoneIf you, or a loved one, have received the terrible news that you are about to die and are wondering if you can get a life insurance policy now, the short answer is no.

You will not be able to get a traditional life insurance policy that you pay premiums for month to month.

In fact, you may not be able to purchase any type of life insurance, depending on how long you have to live. There are some things that you can try for, however, before you give up on the idea of life insurance completely.

Read on to learn more and remember that the most important thing you can do is to shop around as different insurance companies have different life insurance underwriting guidelines. Just enter your zip code above to begin comparing free online insurance quotes!

Non Traditional Options for Life Insurance

First of all, if you have no specific length of time set by your doctor before you die, you may be able to purchase a whole life insurance policy called a graded policy. In this instance you would pay your monthly premiums and if you died within a predetermined period of time, which would be determined by your insurance company, then your beneficiary would get a small percentage of the death benefit plus the premiums that you paid to the insurance company.

For example, if you purchased a $100,000 policy, your beneficiary would get back $3,000 plus the premiums. The insurance company may also stipulate that you can only purchase up to a certain amount of coverage, such as $10,000.

Another option is to purchase limited payment life insurance. Instead of paying premiums over the course of 40 or 50 years, you pay for the insurance in very large monthly payments so that the total premiums are paid off in a short period of time. You can arrange with an insurance company the months that you would pay the premiums; however, this option is not going to be worth much if you are, or a loved one is, going to die in a few short weeks.

Lastly is a single premium policy. This type of policy is paid in a single installment. Although costs will vary, you can expect to pay $20,000 for every $100,000 of coverage. Many insurance companies will make a provision for a terminally ill person to benefit the beneficiary with the majority of the policy if death occurs in the first year.

If you are concerned about a mortgage payment that your family can’t afford, you can also attempt to get a mortgage life insurance policy. The beneficiary is the bank, but they will be paid the balance of your mortgage when you die. Mortgage insurance is easy to purchase as most insurers don’t require you to have a physical to qualify.

There is no guarantee, however, that an insurance company will allow you purchase any of these policy types. It depends on what the person is dying from and what the prognosis is. For example, a doctor may determine you have two weeks to live in your current condition but if you follow treatment protocols you may live for five more years. The problem is that every case is different and you will have to discuss your options with your agent.

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NOTE: It is very important that you be honest when answering questions on a life insurance policy. If you lie and say you aren’t ill and you die from a pre-existing illness, there is a good chance that your family will not receive a penny of your life insurance policy.

Another options that many people find works for them is purchasing life insurance through the company they work for. While you won’t be able to purchase the extra large policies that you can buy directly from an agent, most companies do offer up to two times your annual salary.

In addition, you don’t have to get a physical and they won’t ask you any questions about your health; it is similar to buying group health insurance. If you were thinking about quitting your job because you were diagnosed with a terminal illness, consider taking a leave of absence and paying your insurance premiums out of pocket so that you can continue your life insurance coverage.

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When You Don’t Qualify for Anything

If you try to purchase insurance and you don’t qualify for anything, then you need to consider your other options. If you have a large amount of money, consider starting a trust so that you can avoid burdening your family with taxes from their inheritance. In addition, you can set aside some money for inheritance and then invest other money for their future so that they always have some form of income coming in.

In addition, ensure that you get your estate in order. Pay off any bills that you can, especially those that have another person’s name attached to it, such as a joint account or something that is cosigned. This ensures that they aren’t responsible for your debt when you die. You should also gather any important papers, put them in one place and then ensure that someone important knows where they are. Don’t leave your family guessing at the worst possible time.

The Best Thing to do is be Prepared

The bottom line is that the best way to avoid this situation is to not be in the situation in the first place. The second you have someone relying on you for financial support, you should purchase an insurance policy. The younger you are the more affordable it will be.

You have plenty of options and we can help you narrow down your choices. Use our free quote tool, which is at the top of this page. Once you answer all of the questions you will be giving instant quotes for life insurance. Click on the one that suits you the most and answer the insurance companies additional questions and you will have the coverage that you need.

Give the free quote tool on this page a try; you won’t be sorry you did!