Gastric Bypass Increased My Life Insurance Rates

Here’s a side effect to gastric bypass you may not have thought of.

So DH and I are getting life insurance. Most of it is on him. But for my portion, I was surprised at how they treated the fact that I’d had gastric bypass surgery.

To put this in context, DH is still very overweight. He’s thought about having surgery himself, but part of the approval process with our health insurance company involves providing medical records from 5 separate years that show your weight. You have to prove you’ve been obese for that long.

It wasn’t a problem for me, I had multiple entries from each year to choose from. But being a typical male who’s otherwise healthy, DH never goes to the doctor. He has all of 1 visit to show for our entire married life of 14 years.

So the lady comes to our house – very nice lady, this is nothing against her – and fills out all the paperwork. She gets our height and weight, and brief medical history. I tell her about my gastric bypass, and that I’m still in the weight loss stage. She takes it all down and says that due to DH’s weight, they’ll likely have to give him a brief physical.

When all is said and done, his premium goes up $20/ month. We weren’t shocked, but weren’t thrilled, either. What did surprise was that my premium also went up by $1.17/ month.

The agent and I laughed about the small amount – obviously $1.17 isn’t a deal breaker – but it did get me to thinking later. Especially when I found out what she had told my husband.

Seems his premium will go down if he loses weight (of course) BUT – only if he loses it “naturally.” If HE has a gastric bypass or other weight loss surgery, it won’t affect his premium nearly as much.

What’s up with that? I mean, I could point to countless studies that show gastric bypass surgery reduces diabetes, cancer, all kinds of issues. Seems to me they’d be happy he lost the weight no matter how he did it.

DH reminds me that life insurance is a matter of odds. They’re just taking a calculated risk, and playing the numbers. But I would think that with all the evidence out there that they’d see him having a gastric bypass as improving the odds in their favor.

But I guess that would be logical, and we all know you can’t apply logic to insurance companies.

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