Life Insurance with Depression


Can you get Life Insurance if you have Depression?


Anxiety and depression related illness has become very common in Ireland over the last decade and even more so in times of challenging economics, high unemployment, as we have experienced since 2008. Not only is it quite common, but depression is present in several forms and levels of severity.

We all get depressed from time to time, due to life events or hormonal swings. How can you tell if your mood changes are normal or if you require treatment for depression?  Even though we all like to self-diagnose, only a physician can determine if someone suffers from clinical depression.

What is depression?

According to they describe depression as ‘a mental health condition which affects a person’s thinking, energy, feelings and behaviour. It’s not just having a bad day. If you have symptoms of depression you may not want to talk about it. However, talking about how you feel to your GP or family is a positive first step in learning how to manage Depression’.

Of course, there are different types of depression ranging from mild depression, which has some impact on daily life, to Moderate depression which has a significant impact on daily life and severe depression makes the activities of daily life nearly impossible.


In this article I will answer a few questions that I hope will make things more clearer for you.
Can I apply for Life Insurance with a history of depression?
What do the Insurance Companies look for?
What is the likely outcome?

Can I apply for Life Insurance if I have depression?

Yes, of course you can. The good news about applying for term life insurance when you have a history of depression is — yes, you can qualify for coverage! Your outcome and resulting premium cost will depend greatly on a number of factors, including the type of depression, your treatment history, the level of control, follow up, your medical history and more. While you can control the outcome to some extent through good follow up and lifestyle habits, other uncontrollable factors will come into play when the life insurance company reviews your application

What do they look for?

Life insurance companies want to see that people with a history of depression
(1) have received or are receiving treatment, and
(2) have completed regular follow up visits per doctor’s orders. Also important is the presence of necessary lifestyle changes, such as exercise, weight control, no tobacco use, etc.
The life insurance company you apply with will be looking specifically at:

  • Your age at diagnosis
  • The amount of time since diagnosis
  • The duration and severity
  • The number of episodes per year and their severity
  • Medication used and compliance with medication
  • If you require frequent changes in medication (significant because the life insurance company must be sure the disorder is well controlled)
  • Any suicide attempts or thoughts of suicide
  • Any hospitalisations/emergency room visits for depression
  • Concurring disorders (such as anxiety or PTSD)
  • Current alcohol or substance abuse, or history of such
  • If you are disabled due to depression
  • Any other major health problems



What is the likely outcome?

We’ve helped hundreds of people apply for term life insurance and many of those people had a history of depression. Here are a few things we’ve learned:

Well controlled mild/moderate cases of depression will often be approved at a Standard rating class.

Very mild cases of depression, or those that were situational and have since recovered, may be approved at a standard rating class. However, loadings will get worse, and the premium will be higher, along with the severity of the depression.

The life insurance company will usually decline applicants if there have been suicide attempts or thoughts of suicide.

Very mild cases of depression, or those that were situational and have since recovered, may be approved at a Preferred rating class. However, this is case by case.

What to do now?

As always, please discuss your situation with your life insurance broker, and provide as much information as you can.

At One Life Insure, we are here to help direct you to the best life insurance company based on your individual circumstances.  We are specialist life insurance advisors who know where to apply to get the most appropriate  plan and the cheapest cover for you.

We at have plenty of experience in dealing with insurers and from years of advising people with depression we know which insurer will be most lenient to your condition.

If you would like some more information or advice on this matter, please gives us a call on 01-5390410  or email me on and I will be happy to help.

Contact us via this contact form and we will respond as soon as we can.