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Delaware’s attractive corporation laws have led a whopping 63% of the Fortune 500, or 315 companies to be incorporated there. And, the state’s no sales tax policy, and the beauty of Rehoboth Beach makes it a hot summer destination for East Coast residents. As for factors that impact life insurance rates, Delaware has above-average rates of accidents and obesity, but relatively low rates of Alzheimer’s Disease and diabetes.
Weight is one of the major deciding factors in life insurance rates. With Delaware's obesity rate at 31.3 percent, that makes the state one of America’s most obese. This statistic can make it hard for Delawareans to get affordable life insurance.
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Age - Age is one of the largest factors affecting life insurance rates. The younger you are when you purchase a policy, the less likely it is that it will pay out. So the lower your premiums will be, other things being equal. So, it’s best to get life insurance while you’re young.
Life expectancy at birth in Delaware is 78.4 years, slightly lower than the life expectancy at birth for the US overall, which is 78.9 years. What if you purchased a 30-year term life policy in Delaware at age 54? You'd be more likely than not to pass away before 84 years of age, the end of the term.
On the other hand, what if you were 35 years old and purchased a 30-year term life policy,? You'd be well under Delaware’s life expectancy of 78.4 years old when the policy term ended. And you’d be a much lower risk to insure and would therefore pay much lower rates than the person in the former example.
Driving Record - Car accidents are incredibly common; they kill more than 30,000 people per year. If someone has a driving record littered with moving violations, they are at an increased risk of a premature demise. The result is higher rates.
Firearm Deaths - Places that have higher rates of accidental or premature death generally have higher rates. A significant part of these untimely deaths comes from firearm injuries, which account for about 33,000 deaths in the US every year. In Delaware, the death rate from injury due to firearms is 10.3 per 100,000 deaths, the #20 lowest rate in the country. Nationwide, the average firearm death rate is 10.4 per 100,000.
Gender - Women live longer than men on average. So they pay less for insurance than a similar man would, other things being equal. In Delaware, the percentage of the population that’s male is 48.4%. The percentage that’s female is 51.6%. In the US as a whole, women are 50.8% of the population, and men are 49.2% of the population.
Health History - Most of us have one or two minor health issues. But if you have a serious illness or a family history of such illnesses, this can impact your rates.
There are conditions like heart disease or cancer which can make your premiums much higher. In some cases, a pre-existing condition can make you ineligible altogether,. That's why it’s important to get life insurance before something serious happens.
Lifestyle & Hobbies - People who engage in adventure sports or who have potentially dangerous hobbies will pay more for insurance. This is especially relevant in Delaware, where skiing and hunting are common recreational activities.
Marital Status - Married people live longer and are healthier than similar single people. So, if you’re married, you can get a modest discount on life insurance. In Delaware in 2009, the rate of marriage for people over 15 was 44 per 1,000 people. The rate of divorce was 17.6 per 1,000 people. And the rate of widowhood was 13.4 per 1,000 people.
Occupation - People with hazardous jobs like logging and fishing will pay more for insurance than someone with a less dangerous, mundane office job. The most common job in Delaware is a chemist.
Tobacco Use - Tobacco users don’t live as long as non-tobacco users. So smokers pay a lot more for life insurance than an identical non-tobacco user. Tobacco use is associated with a number of health complications likes heart disease, stroke, and COPD. Any of which may cause higher rates as well as an earlier death.
As of 2013, the national average rate of smoking was 19%. To compare to the most recent data available, in 2013, approximately 19.6% of Delaware adults smoked cigarettes – about 143,000 adults.
Travel - If you regularly travel to developing countries, particularly countries on the US State Department’s Warning List, you will pay more for insurance than a traveler who sticks to developed countries.
Value of Policy - One of the largest contributing factors to a policy’s premiums is the value of the policy. As with anything, you get what you pay for. The more protection that you purchase, the more you pay.
Weight - Obesity has surpassed smoking to become America’s largest public health cost and problem. Obese or seriously overweight people have a lower life expectancy. This means an increased probability of their policy being paid out. Obesity increases the likelihood of health problems such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and some cancers. So overweight and obese individuals can expect to pay higher rates.
As of 2013, the adult obesity rate in Delaware was 31.1%. This makes Delaware the #13 most obese state. Overall, the average obesity rate in the US is 34.9%.
While each of these factors plays a big role in the cost of your policy, some aspects of life insurance are entirely individual. Insurance companies calculate your rates based on your own health, habits, and lifestyle. That’s why shopping around and comparing quotes is so important–to make sure you’re getting the best rate possible.
|Rank||Cause of Death||Total Deaths||Death Rate||State Rank||US Death Rate*|
|3||Lower Respiratory Disease||482||43.5||28th||42.1|
|9||Kidney Disease||178||16.0||14th (tie)||13.2|
|*Death Rate calculated as: (deaths from that cause / total population) / 100,000|
|Rank||Company||Direct Premiums Written (in thousands)||Market Share|
|2||New York Life Insurance Group||$2,502,338||6.0%|
|3||Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance co.||$2,056,679||4.9|
|4||Prudential Financial Inc.||$1,496,319||3.6%|
|5||Lincoln National Corp.||$620,886||1.5%|
|6||Jackson National Life Group||$510,942||1.2%|
|7||Guggenheim Capital LLC||$433,562||1.0%|
|8||Liberty Life Assurance Co. of Boston||$381,617||0.9%|
|9||Nationwide Mutual Group||$236,135||0.6%|
|10||Manulife Financial Corp.||$158,822||0.4%|
Source: A.M. Best (Ratings as of 8/31/2015)
This legislature, which contains two parts and 84 chapters, is used to regulate claims and provide certain protections to Delaware consumers, for example:
Grace Period: Any life insurance policyholder in Delaware is entitled to a 30-day“grace period” to make up a missed payment without punishment. This is to prohibit the insurance company from withholding a claim or cancelling a policy because of a slightly late payment. If the insured individual passes away during the grace period, the insurance company is responsible for paying the claim.
Timely Payment of Claims: In Delaware, it is required that insurance companies pay out claims in a timely manner, meaning within two months. If unreasonable delay occurs, the state will fine, penalize, and/or sanction the insurance company and interest will accrue based on the length of the delay. The interest is later paid to the beneficiary as well.
These regulations don’t just protect consumers; they also protect insurance companies from fraud. For example, Delaware insurers may challenge any information in your insurance application for up to two years from the policy’s effective date. If they find any evidence of fraud, they can terminate your policy immediately.
This organization assists the customers of any insurance company that is found to be insolvent. If you have concerns about the financial well-being of your carrier, you should contact the DLHIGA. Their contact info is below:
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