Burial Insurance For Cigar Smokers

Jake Irving

Jake Irving is the Founder of Policy and has contributed to articles for Synchrony Financial, GoBankingRates, Yahoo News, UpCity, Zapier, LegalZoom, and more.

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The same life insurance for cigar smokers is available to non-smokers. The biggest difference for final expense coverage is the rates you should expect to pay.

Since smoking, in general, can lead to some medical concerns, this plays a significant role in the monthly cost.

Final Expense Insurance For Cigar Smokers

The majority of final expense insurance companies will charge smoking rates to a cigar smoker. This includes seniors who only smoke a cigar few and far between.

The good news is that select companies offer lower, non-smoking rates to the user of an occasional cigar.

With that said, the definition of the word “occasional” varies from carrier to carrier. Some even offer temporary low rates to entice seniors to quit smoking.

What Type of Insurance is Final Expense?

Final expense insurance is also commonly referred to as burial insurance and funeral insurance. It was built to provide an affordable option for seniors to plan for their end-of-life expenses. The fact that policies come in smaller face amount options makes final expense insurance a good idea for seniors with restricted budgets.

This coverage is a type of whole life insurance, meaning that it comes with some basic and permanent features.

Benefits of Whole Life Final Expense Insurance

  • No Expiration
  • Coverage Lock
  • Price Lock
  • Builds Cash Value
  • No Exam
  • No Waiting Period Options

three mature men golfing with cigars

Underwriting Life Insurance For Cigar Smokers

The decision-making process of accepting applicants is referred to as underwriting.

These decisions are based largely on the health of the applicant. The standards are predetermined and vary between plans and insurance carriers.

The senior final expense insurance underwriting process is fast, with coverage usually issued within days.

Does Smoking Cigars Affect Life Insurance?

The majority of funeral insurance companies place cigar smokers into the same category as cigarette smokers. They do this by asking about tobacco use rather than specifying how tobacco is used.

Most final expense insurance companies will consider you a smoker if you have used tobacco within the last 12 months.

Cigar smoking is considered tobacco use since it is made primarily from the tobacco plant.

With this viewpoint, it does not matter how much tobacco you use or how you use it. A pipe, chewing tobacco, cigars, cigarettes, and all nicotine & tobacco use is considered.

Even if you have only had a couple of cigars throughout the last year, you will be held to smoker rates.

Some cigar-friendly life insurance companies ask about tobacco use in the form of cigarettes only.

This is great news for cigar smokers. This tobacco policy allows you to have an occasional celebratory cigar and not be tied to higher smoking rates.

Some companies do not limit the amount of non-cigarette use while others limit applicants to a specific amount of cigars a year. This standard varies by company. If you believe you fall into this category contact an agent to find the cheapest life insurance for cigar smokers.

Why Do Cigars Matter?

Whether you are a frequent or occasional cigar smoker, tobacco use will predispose you to some health concerns.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), cigars increase the risk of developing the following health issues.

  • Cancer
  • Coronary heart disease
  • Gum disease
  • Lung disease
  • Tooth loss

Since some of these conditions are life-threatening, life insurance companies charge more to offset the increased risk of premature death due to disease.

How Much Does Final Expense Insurance for Cigar Smokers Cost?

Most companies charge cigar smokers about 40% more than non-tobacco users for the same burial life insurance plan. However, some carriers are considered cigar friendly and do not charge this rate increase.

The biggest things that will affect funeral insurance quotes are age, coverage amount, and health status. Since tobacco use plays into the health of its users, smoking cigars usually increases life insurance rates.

What Happens If You Lie About Smoking?

Lying about smoking on life insurance applications to get the cheapest life insurance rates is highly discouraged. There are a few things that could happen with this.

An insurance policy is a contract that you are entering into. Lying on the application constitutes insurance fraud.

Life insurance companies could assess the higher smoking rates when they find out about your misrepresentation, or even worse, cancel the policy or not pay out the claim when filed.

When you apply, you sign your name, acknowledging that the information provided is true and current to the best of your knowledge. Of course, you are going to know best if you have smoked within the last 12 months. Be truthful.

cigars on top of cigar box

Finding The Best Burial Insurance For Cigar Smokers

The best burial insurance for someone is very specific to the individual. All pre-existing conditions play a role in qualifying for coverage.

Sentinel Security Life and Americo offer non-tobacco rates on life insurance for cigar smokers. Ask about these detail before applying.

Regardless of your health or smoking status, there are three things that you want to look for in a burial insurance policy.

Cost: Of course, everyone wants a deal. Finding the lowest cost policy is of high importance for most. Most companies will charge more for those who smoke cigars, even if only on occasion.

Coverage Start Date: Getting coverage that starts immediately is important to get whenever possible. A waiting period is unavoidable with certain health conditions, but cigar smoking alone is no reason to accept a delay in coverage.

Financial Rating: Obtaining coverage from an insurance provider that is highly rated is vital. This will give you and your family peace of mind knowing that the company will be around long-term and will have the financial resources to pay out the claim when due.

Plan Tiers

There are four different plan options within burial insurance, and all are available to cigar smokers.

Level: This plan is touted as the best because it is built for healthy seniors, and it is the only option with no waiting period. Level plans generally have the lowest prices. However, for tobacco users, this is not always the case.

Graded: These plans have a 2-year waiting period with partial coverage during this time. Monthly premiums are slightly higher than level plans due to the increased leniency of the qualifying standards. Not every provider offers this plan option.

Modified: Also, with a 2-year waiting period, modified has even less strict qualifying criteria. This plan is commonly called a “return of premium plan” because of its payout structure during the waiting period. Once the waiting period is complete, full coverage is available.

Guaranteed Issue: Everyone is accepted with this plan regardless of health. These plans usually do not have smoker vs. non-smoker rates, and everyone pays the same amount. Guaranteed acceptance plans have a 2-year waiting period and a return of paid premiums throughout the 2 years.

Captive vs. Independent

Seniors can purchase a final expense life insurance policy from any licensed agent in their state. The main thing that sets captive and independent agents apart is how they go about getting a policy.

Captive agents: These agents are contractually able to sell products from one insurance company only.

Having access to only one company becomes problematic for the consumer because of varying prices and qualifying guidelines. Since captive agents have access to limited policy options, they might not even be aware of other policies that could be a better fit for you. Possibly meaning the difference between a level plan and a guaranteed issue policy.

Independent agents: These agents have the freedom to represent multiple insurance companies.

Having access to multiple life insurance companies allows independent agents to shop around on behalf of their clients. Being able to compare funeral insurance quotes and underwriting standards is a huge benefit saving seniors time and money.

Final Thoughts

a. Final expense insurance for cigar smokers is possible to find at an affordable rate but keep in mind that companies will also consider the rest of your health.

b. There are a few companies that ask about tobacco use in the form of cigarettes only. In this case, a cigar smoker would not be considered for the higher rates.

c. Working with an independent agency will allow you to easily find a company that will offer non-smoking rates to the occasional tobacco user.