Best Life Insurance Companies for Marijuana Users

November 4, 2019
Jonathan Fritz &
John Holloway
marijuana symbol

Finding the best life insurance company as a marijuana user can be challenging. Marijuana use remains a controversial issue in the country even today, especially in the insurance industry. Some companies have very strict underwriting policies with respect to marijuana use while others are more lenient in their approach.

In this guide, we discuss how marijuana use affects insurability, how marijuana users can get the best rates, and the five best life insurance companies for marijuana users.

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Can Marijuana Users Qualify for Life Insurance?

This is one of the questions that often come up while discussing the topic of marijuana use. The short answer is – yes, you absolutely can get life insurance if you use marijuana – either for medical reasons or for recreational purposes.

This question often comes up when marijuana users start thinking about the long-term financial stability of their loved ones. The short answer is, yes. Marijuana users can absolutely get life insurance, whether their marijuana use is for medical or recreational purposes. However, many marijuana users do not apply for life insurance because they mistakenly believe they might not qualify or if think if they do qualify, the rate will be outrageous due to their marijuana use. These assumptions are just not true at all.

Below are some facts about marijuana and how it affects life insurance policies.

  • Marijuana use does not automatically disqualify an applicant from getting approval for life insurance. There are many insurance providers who accept marijuana users and issue policies for them.
  • Marijuana use does have an impact on the cost of an insurance policy. At the same time, it does not mean all marijuana users have to pay ridiculous rates for an insurance policy.

How Does Marijuana Use Affect Your Insurability?

Insurance companies generally consider the following factors while determining the insurability of a marijuana user:

Frequency of Use

How often a smoker uses marijuana is an important factor in the determination of coverage rates. Everyday marijuana users are typically treated like a smoker and are charged a higher rate. However, occasional smokers might classify as a non-smoker and enjoy a lower rate. The breakdown of the impact of the regularity of marijuana use on life insurance rates is shown below.

A marijuana consumer who uses marijuana...

  • ...only once per month can qualify for a Preferred Best rating (the highest possible rating and usually reserved for non-smokers in excellent health)
  • ...twice per month can qualify for a Preferred Non-Tobacco rating (the second highest rating offered by insurance companies)
  • ...three or four times a month can qualify for a Standard Non-Tobacco rating (the rates go up at these levels, but premiums are still significantly lower than those offered to a smoker)
  • ...regularly, defined as more than three or four times per week up to every day (applicants are unlikely to receive a quote for non-smoker rates)

Medical vs. Recreational

The reason for using marijuana is perhaps the most important factor insurance companies use to determine insurability of a marijuana user. Insurance companies generally have lenient underwriting guidelines for medical marijuana users compared to recreational users. Individuals who use marijuana as treatment for a disease or condition might be able to qualify for non-smoker rates even if they happen to smoke on a fairly a regular basis.

At the same time, insurance companies also consider the disease or condition the medicinal marijuana is prescribed for. If it is a minor problem such as a sleep disorder, anxiety, or eating disorder, it is not likely to affect insurability to a great extent. If, on the other hand, the applicant suffers from a serious disease like multiple sclerosis or cancer, he or she is likely to be classified as a high-risk individual, regardless of how often they use marijuana. A medical marijuana card can help an individual qualify for non-smoker rates with most insurance companies, if there are not any serious underlying health problems.

Method of Use

Some insurance companies also take into consideration the method of consumption when determining the insurability of marijuana users. They tend to have a less favorable view of smoking compared to other forms of consumption like vaporizers, edibles, CBD oils, sprays, drinks, topical creams, and patches.

Other Risk Factors

Other factors may influence even an insurance company with lenient underwriting policies when it comes to marijuana consumption. Smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol, psychiatric conditions, and DUIs or DWIs will often sway the final decision for classification of applicants. In the presence of such additional risk factors, marijuana use is viewed by insurance companies in a completely different light.

Best Life Insurance Companies for Marijuana Users

Apart from each company’s policy regarding marijuana use, the financial ratings of each company are also noted. Financial stability is the one factor that trumps most other factors when it comes to choosing an insurance provider, so it is always an important factor when determining the best insurers to recommend. Buying life insurance from a financially unstable company just because they offer low rates is not a good idea, as there is no guarantee the company will be able to honor its claims in the future. Here is a list of five insurance companies that are not only known for their lenient underwriting guidelines for marijuana users but are also financially stable and well-established in the industry.

minnesota life

1. Minnesota Life (Securian)

  • Founded In: 1880
  • Financial Ratings
  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: Aa3
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA–
  • Fitch: AA
  • Read Full Review

Marijuana smokers who use marijuana only twice a month can qualify for Preferred Non-Tobacco rates. They will, however, need to test negative for THC at the time of application. If the results come back positive, the insurance company may charge a higher rate. Applicants who smoke marijuana daily are likely to be turned down.

lincoln financial

2. Lincoln Financial

  • Founded In: 1905
  • Financial Ratings
  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA–
  • Fitch: A+
  • Read Full Review

Marijuana smokers who smoke only once a month can qualify for Preferred Best Non-Tobacco rates, which is the best possible rating. Smokers who use marijuana up to two times a week can qualify for Preferred Non-Tobacco rates. Smoking three or four times a week will put applicants who qualify in the Standard Non-Tobacco category. Daily users are likely to get rejected in most cases.

mutual of omaha

3. Mutual of Omaha

  • Founded In: 1909
  • Financial Ratings
  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA–
  • Read Full Review

Smokers who use marijuana up to three times a month can qualify for Standard Non-Tobacco rates. Smokers who use marijuana more frequently can qualify for Standard Tobacco rates. Everyday smokers are not likely to qualify at all.

prudential life insurance

4. Prudential

  • Founded In: 1875
  • Financial Ratings
  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA–
  • Fitch: AA–

Applicants who indicate they smoke marijuana up to three times a week will classify as Preferred Non-Tobacco or Standard Non-Tobacco. Medical marijuana users who do not use any other narcotics and do not have any serious health problems can even quality for Preferred Best Non-Tobacco rates. What separates Prudential from most other companies is that the company does not downgrade a member’s rating even if they happen to test positive for THC at the time of application. Aside from the lenient view on marijuana use, Prudential is also known for offering competitively priced policies for high-risk consumers with less than perfect health and driving records. So, it is one of the best choices available for recreational users, as well as medical marijuana users.

metlife life insurance

5. MetLife

  • Founded In: 1868
  • Financial Ratings
  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: Aa3
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA–
  • Fitch: AA–
  • Read Full Review

Smokers who use marijuana once a month can qualify for Preferred Best Non-Tobacco rates. Smoking less than three times a week will qualify an applicant for Preferred Non-Tobacco rates. Applicants who use marijuana up to four times a week can qualify for Standard Non-Tobacco rates. Similarly, if an applicant consumes marijuana only in the form of edibles within a reasonable limit, he or she might qualify for Preferred Best Non-Tobacco rates as well. MetLife does not generally test for THC. So, the rates are determined based on an applicant’s admission of usage. The company’s underwriting policies with respect to marijuana use are very liberal compared to most other companies in the industry today. It is why MetLife remains one of the preferred choices of avid marijuana users.

How to Get the Best Rates as a Marijuana User

Get Multiple Quotes

It goes without saying applicants should get customized quotes from multiple insurance providers before zeroing in on one. This is particularly important for marijuana users, as they have a greater chance of a high-risk classification compared to someone who does not use any narcotics.

Be Upfront about Sharing Information

Do not lie or try to hide any information while applying for a life insurance policy.

Applicants who lie about drug usage or frequency and test positive for THC are not only likely to get rejected but are also likely to get reported to the Medical Information Bureau by the insurance company. It can have an adverse impact on insurability across the board and affect the chances of getting insured in the future. Most companies offer reasonably priced policies for applicants who use marijuana up to four times a week. Thus, applicants who are honest about the kind of narcotics they use and the frequency of usage should not be afraid to admit to doing so.

Change Mode of Consumption

As mentioned above, some companies tend to evaluate people who smoke marijuana more harshly than people who consume it in the form of edibles, oils, or patches. If it is an option, applicants should change their mode of consumption to get a more favorable rating from the company.

Reduce Other Risk Factors

There are several other risk factors that affect insurability when seen in conjunction with marijuana use. For instance, having a DUI or DWI conviction will likely cause the insurance company to view marijuana usage less favorably, since a history of irresponsible behavior accompanies it. Similarly, the combination of regular alcohol consumption and marijuana use is likely to affect the chances of an individual from qualifying for non-smoker rates. Moreover, most insurance companies, even those with lenient underwriting policies, require applicants to test negative for THC at the time of application. Since THC can stay in the system for a period of 30 days, reducing the frequency of use before applying for life insurance is imperative.

The best way to improve insurability in such cases is to reduce additional risk factors to a considerable extent if possible. For example, avoid traveling to countries with high crime rates. Give up smoking and drinking. Give up extreme sports and hobbies that can increase the risk of mortality. Individuals who are overweight or obese should try to reduce weight. In the absence of other risk factors, many insurance companies do not view marijuana use (within a reasonable limit) as an automatic denial of coverage when determining insurability.

FAQ About Marijuana and Life Insurance

How NoExam.Com Can Help You Find the Right Life Insurance Company

Do life insurance companies test for THC?

Yes. Most life insurance companies test for THC in the physical exam portion of the application process. Thus, it is best if marijuana users disclose their use and frequency on the application. This will prevent any disputes in the event family has to make a life insurance claim down the road.

Can marijuana users get a life insurance policy?

Yes, but most companies classify marijuana smokers in the same category as tobacco smokers, so they will have to pay higher rates. Getting multiple quotes from different companies to determine who can offer the best rates for an individual marijuana smoker's situation is recommended. Marijuana users looking for a life insurance policy will likely find one of the insurance companies listed above offers the best rate. At the same time, the company that offers the lowest rates for marijuana users need not always be the right choice, as other factors are important as well. In some cases, a company's premiums might not meet the budget or financial needs of the applicant. In which case, widening the search to get quotes from additional companies can help life insurance shoppers find products that better match their needs.

NoExam.com can make the job easier by delivering customized quotes from several insurance providers known for their lenient views on marijuana usage. We can also assist in comparing offers from different companies, as well as the pros and cons of a company's coverage options to find the best deal in terms of rates, coverage, flexibility, and several other factors.

John Holloway
John Holloway is a licensed life insurance agent and co-founder at NoExam.com
Disclaimer: We make every attempt to make sure our information is up to date, but since things change often it is best to double check the data. This review is an opinion. Clicking on links may result in NoExam.com being compensated.