You may wonder if you can get Life Insurance if you have been an alcoholic or dependant on alcohol in the past. Alcohol abuse and Life Insurance applications will usually result in the insurer wishing to speak with your GP to establish if your alcoholism affected your general health. The insurer will be looking for any information regarding professional advice to reduce your alcohol consumption, lasting liver damage, length of time that you were alcohol dependent, time since the dependency stopped and if there is any related mental health concerns e.g. depression, suicidal thoughts or attempts.
If you have been teetotal for a number of years and have had no serious side effects as a result of alcohol consumption then Life Insurance should be available at standard terms.
If you have liver damage and/or mental health concerns you may find that you policy premiums are rated heavily, or in some circumstances declined. If you are currently alcohol dependent then it is very unlikely that you will be able to secure Life Insurance.
It is important that you are truthful as to the amount of alcohol you consume as excess alcohol consumption is now detailed on death certificates, which could lead to any claim on your policy being turned down.
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Critical Illness Cover
Alcoholism and Critical Illness Cover applications will be viewed in a similar way to Life Insurance. Insurers will likely want to write to your GP to be fully satisfied that they have a full understanding of your health before they offer cover. If you have had any mental health concerns in relation to your alcohol dependency then you may find that any prices offered will be loaded due to the combination of conditions. If somebody suffered depression and are still drinking it is unlikely than Critical Illness Cover will be available.
If you are currently an alcoholic or have significant lasting implications from alcohol use, then your Critical Illness application may be declined.
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Income Protection Cover for a past history of alcohol dependency or abuse is likely to result in an insurer wanting to contact your GP for background information. The insurer asks for this so that they can establish the extent at which your alcohol use has affected your general health, and how any lasting concerns could impact upon you being able to perform your job.
If the alcoholism is well in the past then cover may be acceptable at standard terms so long as you are now teetotal. If there had been recent depression or mental health problems then insurance companies will definitely need to see you having been teetotal for some years and will likely place a mental health exclusion on a policy.
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As an alternative you may wish to consider Accident, Sickness and Unemployment Cover that provides a short-term monthly income replacement if you are unable to work due to illness, injury or unemployment. The policy will pay for between 12 and 24 months should you make a successful claim and is not medically underwritten, meaning that past or current alcoholism does not need to be disclosed. This will mean that the policy should be accepted at standard rates. However you must be aware that any pre-existing condition is not covered for a claim, so you will not be able to place a claim for any lost earnings due to anything related to your alcoholism.
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Some potential problems experienced by individuals who have Alcoholism include:
- Inability to drive
- Low self-esteem
- Acamprosate calcium
- Disulfiram (Antabuse)