While you are considering which type of life insurance to purchase, you may come across the phrase simplified issue. This type of life insurance offers quick approval, competitive rates, and is usually a good fit for individuals who prefer to skip a medical exam and secure a policy quickly and easily. Read on to learn how simplified issue life insurance works, and if it’s right for you. 

What is simplified issue life insurance?

Simplified issue life insurance is a type of policy that you can purchase without undergoing a medical exam. Typically, getting this coverage involves answering a series of medical questions within an insurance application.

Most people choose simplified issue insurance because they want coverage fast, they do not need a complex type of policy, or they prefer to skip the process of going to the doctor for a medical exam. With simplified issue insurance, you will still need to answer a set of questions about your health and lifestyle on your application, but you will not need to undergo an exam.

Insurance companies might gather additional information from third-party sources if necessary, such as a driving record, but they will usually follow up with a phone call if any further information is needed. In most cases, insurers will make an instant decision to qualify or reject applicants.

Pros of simplified issue life insurance

Most people choose simplified issue insurance because it does not require a medical exam. This means that your application for life insurance won’t be as long and you won’t have to go to a doctor’s office for a blood or urine sample. According to LIMRA’s 2020 Insurance Barometer study, many consumers prefer simplified underwriting for its simplicity and objective results.

Reasons why consumers prefer simplified underwriting: 

  • Fast and easy application
  • Unbiased and objective
  • Provides transparent explanations of risks and pricing
  • Avoids medical exams, blood and urine samples
  • Avoids the need to see a doctor 

Another benefit of simplified issue life insurance is that your coverage will start immediately after the insurance company approves your application. This could be a good fit for someone who needs coverage immediately, such as if their financial institution accepts life insurance as collateral for a loan.

Cons of simplified issue life insurance

While most people find that they get their most affordable rate with simplified issue, some people find that this policy ends up being slightly less affordable than other types of life insurance. A simplified issue policy requires less information from the applicant, making it harder for insurers to accurately group an applicant into a health class.

However, if you are hesitant to take a medical exam or you have health issues that could prevent you from qualifying for a lower rate through traditional underwriting, simplified issue would be an accessible way to get coverage.

Common questions on a life insurance application

Life insurance applications vary by the insurance company, but there are a few common questions that you can expect when you apply for coverage. Depending on the coverage you choose, you may come across a few of these frequently asked questions in your application.

Common questions/requirements on a life insurance application:  

  • Your tobacco use – most insurance carriers will want to know if you have used or are currently using nicotine products
  • Your driving record – some applications will request recent information on license suspensions, violations under the influence, moving violations, etc.
  • Your medical history – some insurance companies request information on diagnoses or medical treatment for cancer, heart attack, stroke, alcohol, or drug abuse
  • Your health condition (current or past), including diagnoses for Alzheimer’s, dementia, emphysema, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Your lifestyle – if you participate in risky activities such as scuba diving or skydiving 


Simplified issue is designed for individuals who want to get life insurance in a quick and simple fashion. Most people who apply for simplified issue can expect to have a policy in place as soon as the insurance company approves their application.

How to get started with simplified issue life insurance

If you are considering simplified issue life insurance, then you are off to a great start! Our online application for term life insurance takes less than 10 minutes to complete, offering you quick and affordable coverage.

If you would like to speak with an expert, our advisors are available via chat or video message to help you find the ideal policy for your budget and goals.

Let’s Get Started

If you are ready to get coverage now, our online application takes less than ten minutes.

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Calie Brummer
Head of Digital Communications
Calie Brummer is a staff writer and Head of Digital Communications at Quility Insurance with a focus on financial well-being and life insurance solutions.