Should I Take a Life Insurance Exam?

by @Brad_Cummins

There are advantages and drawbacks of undergoing a life insurance medical exam, as required by certain life insurance companies a physical may be needed when buying life insurance.  The physical exam consists of a blood test and urine test that may reveal health issues you may not be aware of – it can act as an early warning system for a life insurance company – and the results may determine whether an insurer declines to issue you coverage or if they will possibly issue you a substandard rating for a particular policy.  If you want to skip the physical exam we have carriers that offer up to $400,000 in coverage without a physical. Let us, therefore, address the details about these exams and some life insurance exam tips.

Pros and Cons of Taking a Life Insurance Medical Exam.


The advantages of undergoing a life insurance medical exam can result in paying a lower price for a Preferred or a Preferred Plus rate class. In fact, most people do not know that, even without taking an exam, they can still possibly purchase coverage at a Preferred rate class. By choosing to have an exam, however, you can quickly prove (to an insurer) why you should receive the best rate class at the best possible price.


The negatives far outweigh the positives regarding a medical exam because a blood test and/or urine test can reveal an extensive list of potential health risks such as: Protein in your urine, high PSA levels, use of nicotine and tobacco (as well as use of prescription and/or illicit drugs), high A1C levels, and high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Just to name a few. So, undergoing a life insurance blood test and urine test can revel most ailments to a life insurance company.

Taking The Exam.

If you choose to take an exam, a member of a professional paramedical exam company will perform this procedure. The exam is free as the life insurance company will cover the cost; and the paramedical representative will come to your home or office.

Depending on the individual life insurance company, and based on the product you seek to purchase, the exam may play a critical part in this process. You can expect the examiner to perform several things, take a blood test, request a urine sample, measure your height and weight, take your blood pressure, calculate your pulse and possibly even perform an electrocardiogram (EKG).

This life insurance physical exam will also include questions about your medical history. The entire exam, which does not require you to undress, often lasts no more than 20 to 30 minutes.

Please note: Until you complete this exam, your application will not be ready for review.

Paramedical Exam Companies.

We use several paramedical exam companies when we order exams on behalf of diverse clientele. These companies include: EMSI, Superior Mobile Medics, APPS and Exam One.

These businesses are third-party organizations that life insurance companies hire to gather the necessary information for the underwriting process. The insurance companies often pays for the paramedical exam, so an applicant does not have to absorb the cost of this procedure.

Scheduling the exam is for the convenience of the life insurance applicant, as the paramedical professional will usually come to your home or office to perform the exam.

The exam may be brief or lengthier, as a result of the questions you must answer for the Part A section of a life insurance application. If your medical history is extensive, it will take more time to finish the application.

life insurance exam

What Is the Difference in Cost Without an Exam?

Through our exclusive Quote Engine, we can show you the different costs of a life insurance policy where you choose to take an life insurance exam versus declining to do so. For example: Our entry for a 20-year Term life insurance quote, for a 37-year-old male with a $150,000 death benefit, yields a variety of results. The outcomes, which you can view below, vary based on the age of the applicant and the face amount of the policy.

Best of all, our Quote Engine is the only platform of its kind that will show you the prices for all rate classes from every life insurance company, including the costs for a No Exam policy.

life insurance blood test
life insurance exam prep tips

Life Insurance Exam Prep Tips.

The following life insurance exam tips will help you better prepare for your exam.

1. Take the exam early in the morning. You need to fast for this procedure, and it is best to do so starting in evening and finishing as quickly the next day.

2. Do not drink coffee or any other caffeinated beverages before your exam. The caffeine will raise your blood pressure.

3. Stay hydrated, and drink plenty of water. Avoid diuretics like soda and other fluids with a high sugar content.

4. Do not bing eat the night before or the morning of the exam. Doing so may negatively impact your blood pressure and cholesterol.

5. Do not exercise the night before or the morning of the exam. Doing so can elevate your liver enzymes.

6. Lay off that junk food or fast food the night before an exam. It may effect your blood pressure and cholesterol..

7. Get enough sleep the night before the same, so you may feel less anxious about the exam.

8. And finally, remember to relax. The exam is neither long nor complicated.

When an Exam Goes Wrong.

Taking an life insurance medical exam to qualify for the best rate class can occasionally backfire. For example: If you know you are not in the best physical shape, and you have not recently had a doctor’s visit (to check your blood pressure, cholesterol, A1C levels, and creatine and protein levels, among other things), taking an exam may be the last thing you should do.

Important: You should never try to hide or withhold any relevant information when completing an application for life insurance. There are times, however, when a client may be unaware that he or she has a specific medical condition where it would be best to forgo an exam.

Take, for instance, the life insurance application for a male who believes he could easily pass an exam and qualify for a Preferred Best rate class. And yet, upon completion of the exam – with the results revealing high PSA levels – the client has a hard time accepting this news. Further testing reveals the onset of prostate cancer, with a decline in coverage.

So, yes, taking an exam can be risky – one that becomes even more risky as you age.

“The life insurance exam typically lasts up to 20 minutes.”