Planning matters

Life insurance for Marijuana users

In the past, life insurance companies often denied marijuana users any coverage.  In addition, when people tried to increase their coverage after medical tests revealed marijuana use, some policies were canceled altogether. A lot has changed over the past several decades. Today, the life insurance landscape has become more relaxed in its position on marijuana use.

You can get approved for life insurance even if you smoke or use marijuana, and it’s important to find the right insurer to apply with. If you have a prescription for medical marijuana (medical marijuana card), you can still qualify for the best rates, but insurance companies will want to know what condition you are treating why you were prescribed marijuana.  If you are using marijuana to treat a terminal illness, you’ll likely be declined for coverage – because of the terminal illness – not the use of marijuana!

If you are a recreational user, you can still qualify but likely at more expensive rates.  It depends largely on how often you use marijuana.  A heavy recreational user is generally considered a smoker and could result in denial of coverage with some insurers. The key is to find a company that considers you a non-smoker and would help you qualify for lower premiums.

Things to remember when applying for life insurance if you use marijuana:

  • Disclose your usage – Be straightforward and truthful about your use.
  • Disclose how often you use – Be honest about the frequency of use. It will be discovered by a life insurance medical exam if it’s required by the insurance company.
  • Disclose your reason for using – Is your reason for using marijuana recreational or medicinal? If medicinal what is the underlying health condition being treated and what is the severity of the condition?

Even though many states have approved the use of marijuana for either medical or recreational purposes, virtually none have passed laws requiring life insurance companies to offer coverage to users. It is easy to see how current restrictions on obtaining life insurance for marijuana users will continue to evolve, eventually making it rather easy to qualify for coverage.

As part of an overall financial plan, it is important to insure yourself adequately against risk. If you have been hesitant to apply for life insurance because of your marijuana use, know that options are out there and we have the resources to help you find the right insurer and policy for your circumstances.


Interesting Facts about Marijuana…

  • George Washington grew marijuana on his farm, supposedly to deal with his toothaches.
  • In 1619 The Jamestown colony passed legislation forcing settlers to grow cannabis. Hemp was a mainstream cash crop used to make rope, fabric and ship sails. It was literally against the law not to grow it.
  • In Colorado, medical marijuana dispensaries currently outnumber Starbucks locations three to one.
  • Marijuana is the world’s third most popular recreational drug (after alcohol and tobacco).
  • According to new research, around 25 million Americans have used marijuana in the past year.
  • Twenty-five percent of the population is considered “sometimes users”.
  • Thirty states currently have legalized marijuana in some fashion, primarily for medical use. Just a handful (including Washington and Oregon) have legalized its recreational use.

Written By Jeri Boston