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Michigan is the heart of the US auto industry, hence Detroit’s nickname, the Motor City. So, it makes sense that the modern assembly line, street lights, and road striping all came from Michigan too. Surprisingly, Kellogg’s cereal, Gerber baby food and ginger ale also hail from Michigan. But, high rates of America’s #1 killer, heart disease, as well as high obesity and diabetes rates may play a role in the cost of life insurance in Michigan.
With the leading cause of death in Michigan being heart disease, closely followed by cancer, it can be almost impossible for the state’s residents to find cheap life insurance.
Thankfully, QuoteWizard is here to make the impossible possible. Fill out our easy online form and you’ll quickly learn which insurance company and policy are right for you.
Below are the major factors that affect life insurance rates.
Age - Age is one of the largest factors affecting life insurance rates. The younger you are when you purchase a life policy, the less likely it is that it will pay out, so the lower your rates will be, other things being equal.
Life expectancy at birth in Michigan is 78.2 years, slightly lower than the life expectancy at birth for the US overall, which is 78.9 years. So, if you purchased a 30-year term life policy in Michigan at age 52, you would be more likely than not to pass away before 82 years of age, the end of the term.
On the other hand, if you were 32 years old and purchased a 30-year term life policy, you would be well under Michigan’s life expectancy of 78.2 years old when the policy term ended. 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 - This might seem like a confusing inclusion, as this page is about life insurance, not auto insurance, but 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 Michigan, the death rate from injury due to firearms is 12.0 per 100,000 deaths, the #22 highest rate in the country. Nationwide, the average firearm death rate is 10.4 per 100,000.
Gender - Since women live longer than men on average, they pay less for insurance than a similar man would, other things being equal. In Michigan, the percentage of the population that’s female is 50.9%, and the percentage that’s male is 49.1%. In the US as a whole, women are 50.8% of the population, and men are 49.2% of the population.
Health History - While most of us have one or two minor health issues, if you have been diagnosed with a serious illness, or if you have a family history of such illnesses, this can have a significant impact your rates.
There are certain conditions, such as heart disease or certain kinds of cancers, which can make your insurance premiums much higher if you have them or a family history of them. In some cases, a pre-existing condition can make you ineligible altogether, which is 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, other things being equal, than those who don’t. This is especially relevant in Michigan, where skiing and hunting are common recreational activities.
Marital Status - Research shows that on average, 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. According to the most recent data available from the US Census, in Michigan in 2009, the rate of marriage for people over 15 was 32.1 per 1,000 people, the rate of divorce was 18.5 per 1,000 people, and the rate of widowhood was 11.3 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, other things being equal. The most common job in Michigan, proportionally, is a foundry caster.
Tobacco Use - Because tobacco users don’t live as long as non-tobacco users (other things being equal) tobacco users pay substantially more for life insurance than an identical non-tobacco user would pay for the same policy. Tobacco use is associated with a number of health complications, such as heart disease, stroke, and COPD, any of which may cause higher rates and an earlier death.
As of 2013, the national average rate of smoking was 19%. To compare to the most recent data available, in 2014, approximately 21.4% of Michigan adults smoked cigarettes – about 1,639,000 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 - It shouldn’t come as a huge surprise that one of the largest, if not the largest contributing factor, to a policy’s rates 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. Like tobacco use, obese or seriously overweight people have a lower life expectancy, which means an increased probability of their policy being paid out. Because obesity increases the likelihood of health problems such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and some cancers, overweight and obese individuals can expect to pay higher rates than similar individuals who are not obese.
As of 2013, the adult obesity rate in Michigan was 31.5%. This makes Michigan the #11 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||5,539||46.7||21st||42.1|
|*Death Rate calculated as: (deaths from that cause / total population) / 100,000|
|Rank||Company||Direct Premiums Written (in thousands)||Market Share|
|1||Jackson National Life Group||$1,211,025||7.5%|
|3||Prudential Financial Inc.||$912,629||5.6%|
|5||Lincoln National Corp.||$786,159||4.9%|
|6||Principal Financial Group Inc.||$735,921||4.5%|
|7||TIAA - CREF||$727,872||4.5%|
|8||Manulife Financial Corp.||$671,562||4.2%|
|9||Guggenheim Capital LLC||$588,025||3.6%|
|10||American International Group||$578,505||3.6%|
Source: A.M. Best (Ratings as of 9/1/2015)
Insurance in Michigan is governed by the laws defined by Act 218 of 1956 of the Insurance Code of Michigan, as outlined by the Michigan State Legislature.
This legislation is used to regulate claims and provide certain protections to Michigan consumers, for example:
Grace Period: Any life insurance policyholder in Michigan is entitled to a 30-day “grace period” to make up a missed payment without punishment or file a death claim after the missed payment. 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.
No Free Look Period: A “free look period” is a time period between 7 and 30 days, in which consumers can test out their insurance policy after purchasing it. During this time, an individual can cancel the policy for any reason for a full refund. Michigan is one of only a few states that does not require this by state law. That said, many insurance companies still provide a free look period on most insurance policies.
These regulations don’t just protect consumers; they also protect insurance companies from fraud. For example, Michigan insurer 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 insurance carrier, you should contact the MLHIGA. Their contact info is below:
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