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ALS

ALS and finding Money in permanent Life Insurance

By | ALS | No Comments

ALS is commonly called Lou Gehrig’s disease because of the Yankees Hall of Fame baseball player who passed away from the debilitating illness.

Gehrig was 36 years old when he was diagnosed with ALS—upon diagnosis, he abruptly retired from baseball.

His nickname was the “Iron Horse” because of his durability—as a testament to his durability, he played 2,130 consecutive baseball games, a record only surpassed by Cal Ripken, Jr. in 1995.

Upon retiring from baseball, the Yankees held an event at Yankee stadium to pay respect to Gehrig.

At this event, Gehrig delivered his famous “luckiest man on the face of the earth” speech. You can go here to listen to the speech.

Two years after retiring from professional baseball, at the age of 38, Lou Gehrig died from ALS, an ironic and sad-ending for a man known for his durability with such a nickname like the “Iron Horse.”

During the 1920’s and 1930’s when Gehrig played professional baseball, players didn’t make as much money as they do now.

However, if Gehrig needed money to pay for his illness, he would not have had a problem acquiring it.

Not all of us have star power like Lou Gehrig.

Money to combat ALS is a huge and real problem for many ALS sufferers.

In this article, I will discuss how ALS patients who have a permanent life insurance policy in force prior to ALS diagnosis can get money from their whole or universal life insurance policy.

These are the three ways that ALS patients can get money from their permanent life insurance policy:

  • Taking out a LOAN against the cash value of their permanent life insurance policy
  • Making a WITHDRAWAL from the cash value of their permanent life insurance policy
  • SURRENDERING (i.e. cancelling) their permanent life insurance policy.

Before launching into the meat-and-potatoes of this article, if you would like to help find a cure for ALS, donate to the ALS Association here.

Taking out a Loan against the cash value of your permanent life insurance policy (i.e. your whole or universal life insurance policy) is one way to get money from your permanent life insurance policy if you have ALS and need the funds to combat your disease.

According to this source, “If you’ve built up a sizable cash value, you may also choose to take out a loan against your policy. Life insurance companies often offer these cash-value loans at interest rates lower than a traditional bank loan. Of course, you’re not obligated to pay back the loan since you’re essentially borrowing your own money. However, it’s important to note that any money you borrow, plus interest, will be deducted from the death benefit when you die.”

Making a withdrawal against the cash value of your whole or universal life insurance policy is another method for people diagnosed with ALS to get much needed money from their permanent life insurance policy.

According to this source, “If you’re low on funds or simply want to make a large purchase, you have the option to withdraw some or all of your cash value. Depending on your policy and the size of your cash value, such a withdrawal could chip away at your death benefit or even wipe it out altogether. While some policies are reduced on a dollar-for-dollar basis with each withdrawal, others (such as some traditional whole life policies) actually reduce the death benefit by an amount greater than what you withdraw.”

And the final way to get money from your permanent life insurance policy is by surrendering (i.e. cancelling) your permanent life insurance policy. When you surrender a permanent life insurance policy, you are cancelling it, which entitles you to all the accrued cash value of the whole or universal life insurance policy. According to this source, “you always have the option to surrender your policy and receive the accrued cash value. Before taking this route, it’s important to consider many factors. First and foremost, you’re relinquishing the death benefit when you surrender a life insurance policy, which means your heirs will receive nothing from the policy when you die. In most cases, you’ll also be charged surrender fees which could greatly reduce your cash value. Additionally, the cash you receive through the surrender is subject to income tax. If you have an outstanding loan balance against the policy, you could incur even more taxes.”

In addition to tapping into the cash value of your permanent life insurance policy to acquire the much-needed funds to fight your ALS, many life insurance policies also contain the accelerated death benefit rider which allows those who have a terminal illness with less than two years to live to tap into the death benefit of their policies. The accelerated death benefit rider is not in all life insurance policies so I have not discussed the rider in depth in this article. To learn more about ALS and the accelerated death benefit rider, read this article.

Conclusion:

ALS is an expensive illness. It is estimated that fighting ALS costs around $65,000 year—I think this is on the low-end. The illness probably cost somewhere in the neighborhood of $100,000 year to fight.

Therefore, if you have ALS, you are going to need money.

Getting money from your already existing permanent life insurance policy (i.e. whole or universal life insurance policy) is one way you can get money to fight ALS.

Here are the three methods you can use to get tap into the cash value of your permanent life insurance policy:

  • taking a loan against the cash value built up in your policy
  • withdrawing from the cash value of your policy
  • cancelling (i.e. surrendering) your policy.

I hope this has been a helpful, overview article on how to get money from your permanent life insurance policy to fight ALS.

If you have ALS and want to discuss life insurance, please email me at robert@weigelinsurance.com or contact me here.

If you would like to help find a cure for ALS, please donate to the ALS Association here.

 

Until next time and until next life insurance article,

 

Robert Weigel

Life Insurance Agent for Generation X

www.weigelinsurance.com

robert@weigelinsurance.com

 

 

Top Life Insurance Company for ALS

By | ALS | No Comments

My life insurance focus is Generation X, which consists of people in their mid to late 30’s, 40’s, and early 50’s born between 1965 and 1984.

I focus on Generation X because I’m a Gen Xer myself (I’m in my late 30’s).

Since the average age of diagnosis for ALS is between the ages of 40 to 55, ALS is an important topic for me as well as many of the Gen Xers who read my life insurance articles.

ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord.

According to this source, the symptoms of ALS include the following:

  • “muscle cramps and muscle twitching,
  • weakness in hands, legs, feet or ankles, and finally
  • difficulty speaking or swallowing”.

The median life expectancy for ALS is 2 to 5 years.

Because the life expectancy for ALS is only 2 to 5 years, ALS patients are not eligible for a traditional life insurance policy or even a simplified issue life insurance policy.

If you have ALS and need life insurance, applying for a traditionally-underwritten life insurance policy or a simplified issue life insurance policy is a waste of your time.

Therefore, the best option for you would be to apply for a guaranteed issue life insurance policy.

Guaranteed issue life insurance is just how it sounds—if you apply for the policy, you get the policy as long as you pay the premiums.

Although there are numerous companies that offer guaranteed issue life insurance, the number one guaranteed issue life insurance company for ALS is the following:

  • United Home Life Insurance Company.

Therefore, the purpose of this article is to detail United Home Life’s Guaranteed issue life insurance product.

Before launching into the meat-and potatoes of this article, if you would like to help find a cure for ALS, donate to the ALS Association here.

So, what about United Home Life Insurance Company?

Just a little about United Home Life Insurance Company. According to their website,

  • They’ve been around for more than 70 years,
  • they offer whole life, term life, and accidental benefit coverage,
  • they specialize in life insurance up to about $50,000, and
  • they are an A- rated carrier.

What about United Home Life’s Guaranteed Issue life insurance policy?

United Home Life offers guaranteed issue life insurance that people with ALS are eligible for.

Here are some features of their guaranteed issue life insurance policy according to United Home Life:

  • graded death benefit life insurance product with guaranteed cash values up to age 100 (a graded death benefit policy means that if the named insured dies within the first few years of the policy being in force, the beneficiaries get a return of the premium paid in as the death benefit; after that time period, the beneficiaries get the full death benefit).
  • The product is ideally suited for those individuals who are deemed uninsurable and unable to secure needed life insurance.
  • The product is guaranteed issue.
  • There are no health questions, no medical exams, and no physical examinations.
  • Premiums are level and guaranteed.
  • People between the ages of 45 to 75 are eligible for the policy.
  • The minimum face amount for the guaranteed issue life insurance policy is $5,000; the maximum face amount is $10,000.

Some of the pros of United Home Life’s guaranteed issue life insurance policy include the following:

  • It is life insurance—if you have ALS and have been turned down for life insurance previously, you know how frustrating that can be. This guaranteed issue life insurance policy from United Home Life is a policy you can qualify for.
  • Easy and Straightforward Application with no health questions, no medical exams, and no physical examinations
  • Quick turnaround time—from the time the application is submitted to the time in which the policy is issued typically takes less than a week.

Some of the cons of United Home Life’s guaranteed issue life insurance policy include the following:

  • Maximum face amount of $10,000—that’s basically a burial insurance policy.
  • A little Pricey—your rate will be two to three times the rate of the same level of coverage in a traditional life insurance policy.

Conclusion:

All in all, I hope this been a helpful, overview article on United Home Life Insurance, and their guaranteed issue life insurance product which people with ALS qualify for.

I’ve detailed the features, pros, and cons of their guaranteed issue life insurance product above.

I will update this blog article when I find other companies that offer guaranteed issue life insurance to people with ALS that have comparable or better policies than United Home Life.

If you have ALS and need life insurance, email me at robert@weigelinsurance.com or contact me here.

If you would like to help find a cure for ALS, please make a donation to the ALS Association here.

 

Until next time and until next life insurance article,

 

Robert Weigel

Life Insurance Agent for Generation X

www.weigelinsurance.com

robert@weigelinsurance.com

 

3 Ways ALS patients can get Money from their Life Insurance policy

By | ALS | No Comments

The ALS ice bucket challenge, which was initiated in 2016, is now an annual event.

It raised upwards of $40 million dollars in 2016 for ALS research to find a cure for the disease—the event continues to raise money today.

However, just as this annual event raises money to find a cure for ALS, each individual sufferer has to raise their own money to fight the disease.

Coming up with enough money to fight ALS is a battle in-and-of-itself for each individual ALS patient.

According to this source, the cost of combating ALS costs an average ALS sufferer $63,692 year.

That breaks down to $31,121 for medical costs; $17,889 non-medical costs; and $14,682 lost income.

I’d say these figures are on the low-end.

If you have been diagnosed with ALS, you should anticipate paying upwards of $100,000 year to fight your disease (maybe more).

In this article, I’m going to discuss 3 ways ALS sufferers can use life insurance to help fight the financial battle.

These three ways are the following:

  • Accelerate your Death Benefits
  • Tap into the Cash Value of your Permanent Life Insurance policy
  • Sell your policy to a Life Insurance Settlement Company.

Before launching into this article, if you would like to help find a cure for ALS, please donate to the ALS Association here.

How can ALS patients make Money from their life insurance policy using the Accelerated Death Benefit Rider?

I’ve gone into detail about the Accelerated Death Benefit Rider in this article—please read it for a thorough understanding of the accelerated death benefit rider.

I’ll give a synopsis of the accelerated death benefit rider in this article.

If you already have a life insurance policy in force at the time you are diagnosed with ALS, you may have the option of accelerating the death benefits in your life insurance policy using the accelerated death benefit rider.

This rider is included free of charge in many standalone life insurance policies—this rider has to be purchased separately as an add-on in other life insurance policies with other companies.

It really does depend on the company so you need to read the fine print on your life insurance policy.

With this life insurance rider, you can accelerate all or some of your death benefit (i.e. take a cash advance in a lump sum) of your life insurance policy if

  • you have a terminal illness
  • with less than 2 years to live.

ALS is a terminal illness and the average life expectancy of an ALS sufferer is 2 to 5 years so ALS patients should qualify for accelerating their death benefits under this rider, that is if the rider was in their life insurance policy in the first place.

How can ALS patients make Money from their life insurance policy using Cash Value?

Permanent life insurance policies (not term life insurance policies) build up cash value.

Cash value is money that the policyholder can tap into for a rainy day. Cash Value is basically part of the insurance premium that you’ve been paying over the years set aside into a different account.

ALS patients with permanent life insurance policies (i.e. whole or universal life insurance) can get money from the “cash value” that has built up in their permanent life insurance policy 3 ways:

  • Taking a loan against the cash value of their permanent life insurance policy,
  • Withdrawing money from the cash value of their permanent life insurance policy, and
  • Surrendering (i.e. cancelling) their permanent life insurance policy which entitles the ALS patient to the entire cash value in one lump sum from the life insurance company.

How can ALS patients make Money from their life insurance policy by selling their policy to a Life Settlement Company?

Life Settlement companies are companies that buy existing life insurance policies from people for more than the cash surrender value of the policy but less than the death benefit.

The transaction for the purchase of the life insurance policy by the company is called a life settlement.

Whereas life settlements are frowned upon by many people, there are some legitimate life settlement companies out there.

Do your research and check reviews if you are considering selling your life insurance policy to a life insurance settlement company.

Conclusion:

ALS is a very expensive disease to combat. The source I’ve cited above claims that it takes around $64,000 year to fight ALS—I believe this is a low-ball figure.

Expect to pay $100,000 (and more) to fight ALS.

Therefore, ALS patients need to find ways to make money to combat the finances of their illness.

Life Insurance can offer three ways for ALS patients to do this.

These three ways are the following:

  • Accelerating the Death Benefits of your life insurance policy
  • Taping into the Cash Value of your permanent life insurance policy
  • Selling your policy to a Life Insurance Settlement Company.

Please look into all three options before making a decision on which option is the best for you.

If you have ALS and want to discuss life insurance, email me at robert@weigelinsurance.com, contact me through Linkedin, or message me here.

 

Until next time and until next life insurance article,

 

Robert Weigel

Life Insurance Agent for Generation X

www.weigelinsurance.com

robert@weigelinsurance.com

 

A Life Insurance Rider that can help ALS patients

By | ALS | No Comments

ALS is a debilitating disease that robs the sufferer of all physical function by drastically weakening muscles.

The average life expectancy of ALS patients is within 2 to 5 years, and the average age of initial diagnosis is between 40 years old to 55 years old.

My life insurance focus is on Generation X which is comprised of people in their mid to late 30’s, 40’s, and early 50’s—since many ALS patients receive their initial diagnosis during this age range, ALS is an important disease that I write about.

In this article, I will discuss the Accelerated Death Benefit Rider, and how it can help ALS patients.

Before launching into the substance of this article, if you would like to donate to the ALS Association to further research to find a cure for ALS, go to this link.

If you have been diagnosed with ALS and currently do not have life insurance, your best option would be to get a guaranteed issue life insurance policy. You can read more about getting a guaranteed issue life insurance policy at this article.

In this article, I am not writing about applying for life insurance if you suffer from ALS.

In this article, I am writing about how a rider in a life insurance policy—the accelerated death benefit rider—can help ALS patients if you had a life insurance policy in force when you were diagnosed with ALS.

First things, first.

What is a Life Insurance Rider?

A life insurance rider is an add-on or endorsement to a life insurance policy that customizes the coverage for the particular policyholder.

While most riders must be purchased in addition to the standalone policy, some riders are built into the life insurance policies themselves.

Now that you understand what a life insurance rider is….

What is the Accelerated Death Benefit Rider?

According to this source, “An accelerated death benefit (ADB) is a benefit that can be attached to a life insurance policy that enables the policyholder to receive cash advances against the death benefit in the case of being diagnosed with a terminal illness.”

The accelerated death benefit rider came to the forefront during the AID’s epidemic of the 1980’s.

The two components of the accelerated death benefit rider are as follows:

  • you have a terminal illness, and
  • you are expected to die within two years.

So, how does the accelerated death benefit rider apply to ALS patients?

The accelerated death benefit rider is built into the life insurance contract with many life insurance companies—this rider must be purchased in addition to the standalone policy with other life insurance companies.

It just depends on the company—you need to read your life insurance policy to see if this rider is in your policy.

If you have a life insurance policy in force with the accelerated death benefit rider within it, and then you get diagnosed with ALS, you are eligible to accelerate your death benefits because

  • ALS is a terminal illness, and
  • you are expected to die within two years since the average life expectancy of an ALS patient is two to five years.

When invoking the rider, you must make a claim to accelerate all or just a part of the death benefit.

Here’s how the accelerated death benefit rider works:

You have a $500,000 life insurance policy with the accelerated death benefit rider added onto the policy. You get diagnosed with ALS.

You make a claim to accelerate $250,000 of your death benefits using the rider to pay for your medical expenses.. The life insurance company approves your claim.

You receive $250,000 from the life insurance company, and the remaining $250,000 life insurance policy stays in force. Your premium is adjusted based on the lower face amount of the policy.

The accelerated death benefit rider can be very helpful to ALS patients who face mounting medical fees.

Conclusion:

I hope this has been a helpful article on how the accelerated death benefit life rider can help ALS patients.

Again, this article is intended for ALS patients who already have a life insurance policy in force at the time of diagnosis, not for ALS patients seeking life insurance after diagnosis.

If you have ALS and already have life insurance in force at the time of your diagnosis, please read the fine print in your life insurance policy to see if the accelerated death benefit rider is included in your life insurance policy.

While this rider may not be the miracle in curing your illness, it certainly can be the financial impetus in prolonging your life.

If you have been diagnosed with ALS and would like to discuss life insurance, please email me at robert@weigelinsurance.com or contact me here.

Furthermore, if you would like to help find a cure for ALS, please donate to the ALS Association here.

 

Until next time and until next life insurance article,

 

Robert Weigel

Life Insurance for Generation X

www.weigelinsurance.com

robert@weigelinsurance.com

 

ALS and Burial Insurance

By | ALS | No Comments

ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, is a neurodegenerative disease that effects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord.

As the disease progresses, people with ALS “lose the ability to initiate and control muscle movement” as this source suggests.

Eventually, people with ALS lose the ability to move, to eat, to speak, and to breathe.

It’s a terribly sad disease with a 2 to 5 year life expectancy from the date of diagnosis. Stephen Hawking, renowned theoretical physicist, is an exception to the average life expectancy—he lived close to 50 years with ALS. So, there is hope for ALS sufferers.

ALS has a significant impact on Generation X, which is comprised of people in their mid to late 30’s, 40’s, and early 50’s, and the age demographic with which I pinpoint my articles.

The average ALS sufferer is diagnosed between the ages of 40 to 55—this places the average ALS sufferer smack dab in the Generation X population.

The following article will discuss the following:

  • what burial insurance is,
  • what life insurance companies ALS sufferers should look to in getting burial insurance.

If you have ALS and need burial insurance, please email me at robert@weigelinsurance or contact me here.

So, what is burial insurance?

Burial insurance is a small life insurance policy with a death benefit from $5,000 to $25,000.

Burial insurance is typically a whole life insurance policy.

People buy burial insurance to pay for their funeral (i.e. burial or cremation) and final expenses.

Burial insurance is straightforward and easy to understand.

So, what companies should ALS sufferers look to in getting burial insurance?

ALS sufferers are not eligible for traditionally-underwritten life insurance policies.

ALS sufferers are also not eligible for simplified issue life insurance policies which offer limited underwriting.

If you suffer from ALS, please do not waste your time applying for these types of life insurance policies.

The reason why ALS sufferers are not eligible for these types of life insurance policies is because the life expectancy for ALS is 2 to 5 years from the date of diagnosis.

Therefore, if you suffer from ALS, you need to apply for guaranteed issue life insurance which will pay for burial and final expenses.

Guaranteed issue life insurance is exactly how it sounds—if you apply for the guaranteed issue life insurance policy, you are guaranteed to get it with very few exceptions.

Guaranteed issue life insurance has the following characteristics:

  • death benefit between $5,000 to $25,000 (some go up to $50,000) which will pay for your funeral and final expenses,
  • typically, a whole life insurance policy as opposed to a term life insurance policy,
  • available to applicants between the ages of 50 to 80 although some companies offer guaranteed issue life insurance to younger applicants,
  • no medical exam and no health questions—to reiterate, if you apply for a guaranteed issue life insurance policy, you get the policy as long as you make the premium payments.
  • graded death benefit which means that if you die within the first two years of your guaranteed issue life insurance policy being in force, your beneficiaries will only receive the amount of money you paid into the policy as a death benefit; after that two year period, your beneficiaries (i.e. your family typically) will receive the full death benefit.
  • expensive in that guaranteed issue life insurance policies are typically three times as pricey as a traditional life insurance policy would be for the same amount of coverage.

The life insurance companies that do a good job with guaranteed issue life insurance are the following:

  • United Home Life
  • Gerber Life
  • Mutual of Omaha.

If you suffer from ALS and need burial insurance, you should start your search by looking into getting guaranteed issue life insurance from one of these three companies. These companies are all A-rated companies.

I hope this has been a helpful overview article on ALS, burial insurance for ALS sufferers, and what companies to go to in getting burial insurance.

If you suffer from ALS and need burial insurance, email me at robert@weigelinsurance.com or contact me here.

If you would like to help further research to find a cure for ALS, make a donation to the ALS Association here.

“We are all different, but we share the same human spirit. Perhaps it’s human nature that we adapt and survive.”—Stephen Hawking.

 

Until next time and until next life insurance article,

 

Robert Weigel

Life Insurance Agent for Generation X (people in their mid to late 30’s, 40’s, and early 50’s).

Weigel Insurance Agency

www.weigelinsurance.com

robert@weigelinsurance.com

 

ALS and Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

By | ALS | No Comments

Stephen Hawking (pictured above) is likely the most famous person stricken with ALS, next to Lou Gehrig, of course.

Mr. Hawking lived roughly fifty years with ALS, a feat which is unrivaled.

Most people who are diagnosed with ALS live 2 to 5 years after the initial diagnosis.

Because the life expectancy after ALS diagnosis is limited, traditional life insurance companies do not insure ALS patients.

Therefore, ALS sufferers must get guaranteed issue life insurance if they decide to get life insurance at all.

The following article will discuss the following:

  • What guaranteed issue life insurance is, as well as its pros and cons, and
  • Which life insurance companies offer guaranteed issue life insurance.

If you have ALS and would like quotes for guaranteed issue life insurance, you can contact me here.

So, what is guaranteed issue life insurance, and what are some pros and cons of guaranteed issue life insurance?

I write specifically for the Gen X population (people in their mid to late 30’s, 40’s, and early 50’s born between 1965 and 1984).

The majority of ALS patients are diagnosed between the ages of 40 and 55 which is the Gen X demographic I focus on—therefore, the ALS articles on life insurance that I write can be particularly useful to any Gen Xers reading this or anyone stricken with ALS, in general.

So what is guaranteed issue life insurance?

Guaranteed issue life insurance is exactly how it sounds.

With guaranteed issue life insurance, if you apply for the policy, you are guaranteed to get the policy as long as you pay the premiums.

Here are some of the pros of guaranteed issue life insurance:

  • No Medical Exam and No Health Questions—there is no requirement to take a medical exam in order to get a guaranteed issue life insurance policy. Furthermore, there are no health questions on a guaranteed issue life insurance policy application. As aforementioned, if you apply for a guaranteed issue life insurance policy, you get the policy as long as you pay the premiums.
  • You can get life insurance—most of the people who apply for guaranteed issue life insurance have been turned down for life insurance elsewhere. Being denied life insurance and then going through the application process again can be very disheartening. With guaranteed issue life insurance, you will not be turned down for coverage—yes, anyone, regardless of health conditions, can receive guaranteed issue life insurance, albeit there are some rare exceptions.

Here are some of the cons of guaranteed issue life insurance:

  • 50 to 80 Age Limit—Guaranteed issue life insurance is typically only available to people between the ages of 50 and 80. Guaranteed issue life insurance is not available to people younger than this.
  • Limited Coverage—Most guaranteed issue life insurance policies max out at around $25,000 so they are not large policies. Guaranteed issue life insurance policies typically go toward burial and final expenses.
  • Graded Death Benefit—A graded death benefit means the following: if you die within the first two years of your guaranteed issue life insurance policy being issued, your family (i.e. your beneficiaries) will only receive the amount of premium you paid in as life insurance money. After that two year period, your beneficiaries will receive the entire death benefit.
  • Expensive—Guaranteed issue life insurance policies are not cheap. They are typically three times the amount that a traditional life insurance policy would cost for the same amount of coverage.

So, which life insurance companies offer Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance?

There are a number of companies that offer guaranteed issue life insurance.

Here are three life insurance companies that do a good job in providing people with guaranteed issue life insurance:

  • United Home Life Insurance Company
  • Gerber Life Insurance Company
  • Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company

If you have ALS and need guaranteed issue life insurance, I would recommend starting your life insurance search with these companies.

Bottom Line on Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance and ALS:

The bottom line for ALS sufferers is that guaranteed issue life insurance is the only option available to you for life insurance. Do not waste your time trying to get a traditionally-underwritten life insurance policy or even a life insurance policy with simplified underwriting—go straight to the guaranteed issue route.

Guaranteed issue life insurance policies are limited to around $25,000 in coverage, are relatively expensive, have an age limit of 50 to 80, and have a graded death benefit.

However, guaranteed issue life insurance is a life insurance policy that can help your family bear the financial burden of a funeral and final expenses when you die so your family can grieve your loss.

I hope this has been a helpful article on guaranteed issue life insurance and ALS.

If you have ALS and need guaranteed issue life insurance, email me at robert@weigelinsurance.com or contact me here.

 

Until next time and until next life insurance article,

 

Robert Weigel

Life Insurance Agent for Generation X

Weigel Insurance Agency

www.weigelinsurance.com

robert@weigelinsurance.com

 

ALS and Life Insurance

By | ALS | No Comments

In the summer of 2014, social media was ablaze with the ALS ice bucket challenge which raised upwards of $41 million for ALS research.

There are google pictures of Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Barack Obama, (and yours truly to top the list), dumping a bucket of ice and water atop their heads to help raise money and awareness for the most worthy ALS charity.

It is now an annual event.

But most people who competed in the ALS ice bucket challenge, just thought it was fun—they didn’t really know much about ALS and still don’t.

Therefore, the purpose of this life insurance article on ALS is the following:

  • to give a summary of ALS, types of ALS, and ALS symptoms, and
  • to discuss how ALS impacts life insurance.

If you would like to proceed with getting life insurance quotes instead of reading the remainder of this article on ALS and life insurance, you can generate your own life insurance quotes from up to 20 A-rated companies right here.

So, what is ALS?

ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease because of the famous Yankee baseball player who was stricken with the ailment, “is a specific disease which causes the death of neurons controlling voluntary muscles. ALS is characterized by stiff muscles, muscle twitching, and gradually worsening weakness due to muscles decreasing in size. This results in difficulty speaking, swallowing, and eventually breathing.” (credits here).

Most people develop ALS between the ages of 40 and 55 which is the age group I write about, Generation X.

The average life expectancy for someone stricken with ALS is 2 to 5 years.

It is estimated that only around 30,000 Americans currently have ALS.

There is no known cure for ALS—there are treatments that slow down the progression of the disease, albeit slightly, however.

Famous people who died from or currently have ALS include Lou Gehrig (Yankee baseball great), theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking, and former NFL professional football players Steve Gleason and Tim Shaw.

It is a ghastly disease, and you can make donations to the ALS Association to further research and to find a cure for ALS right here.

According to this source, there are primarily two types of ALS:

  • “Sporadic ALS is the most common form. It affects up to 95% of people with the disease. Sporadic means it happens sometimes without a clear cause.
  • Familial ALS (FALS) runs in families. About 5% to 10% of people with ALS have this type. FALS is caused by changes to a gene. Parents pass the faulty gene to their children. If one parent has the gene for ALS, each of their children will have a 50% chance of getting the gene and having the disease.”

It is still unknown what exactly causes ALS—that’s why donations to further ALS research are so important.

The early symptoms of ALS include the following:

  • “Difficulty walking or doing your normal daily activities
  • Tripping and falling
  • Weakness in your leg, feet or ankles
  • Hand weakness or clumsiness
  • Slurred speech or trouble swallowing
  • Muscle cramps and twitching in your arms, shoulders and tongue
  • Difficulty holding your head up or keeping good posture” (credits here).

As the disease progresses, ALS sufferers will experience the following:

  • “Breathing problems—Over time, ALS paralyzes the muscles you use to breathe. Some people with advanced ALS choose to have a tracheostomy — a surgically created hole at the front of the neck leading to the windpipe (trachea) — for full-time use of a respirator that inflates and deflates their lungs.
  • Eating problems—People with ALS can develop malnutrition and dehydration from damage to the muscles that control swallowing. They are also at higher risk of getting food, liquids or saliva into the lungs, which can cause pneumonia. A feeding tube can reduce these risks and ensure proper hydration and nutrition.
  • Dementia—Some people with ALS experience problems with memory and making decisions, and some are eventually diagnosed with a form of dementia called frontotemporal dementia.” (credits here).

The fatality rate for ALS is 100% as a result of the disease itself or a condition caused by the disease.

So, what about ALS and Life Insurance?

Because the life expectancy of someone with ALS is just two to five years, a traditional life insurance policy is not possible.

The only option available for life insurance for someone diagnosed with ALS is a guaranteed issue life insurance policy.

With guaranteed issue life insurance, you are guaranteed to get the life insurance policy as long as you submit the application and make the life insurance premium payments. There are no health questions in guaranteed issue life insurance applications.

Guaranteed issue life insurance policies max out typically at about $25,000 so they are small life insurance policies designed to pay for burial and final expenses.

You can learn more specifically about guaranteed issue life insurance at the article here.

The three companies that I believe do a good job with guaranteed issue life insurance are the following:

  • United Home Life
  • Gerber Life
  • Mutual of Omaha.

If you have ALS and need life insurance, I suggest that you start and end your search for life insurance with the three companies listed above.

I hope this has been a helpful article on what ALS is, and how ALS impacts life insurance.

As discussed above, the only option for life insurance for ALS sufferers currently is guaranteed issue life insurance.

If you have ALS and would like quotes for guaranteed issue life insurance, call me at (615) 525-6165, email me at robert@weigelinsurance.com, or message me through linkedin.com.

If you would like to help find a cure for ALS, please make a donation to the ALS Association here.

 

Until next time and until next life insurance article,

 

Robert Weigel

Life Insurance Agent for Generation X

Weigel Insurance Agency

www.weigelinsurance.com

robert@weigelinsurance.com