Can felons get life insurance

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Life insurance is a financial tool that provides protection and financial security to individuals and their families in the event of death. However, for individuals with a criminal record, particularly felons, obtaining life insurance can be a challenging process. This article will explore the question of whether felons can get life insurance and delve into the factors that insurers consider when evaluating applications from individuals with a criminal history.

Factors Affecting Life Insurance Eligibility for Felons

Background Checks: When applying for life insurance, insurance companies typically conduct background checks on applicants. These checks aim to evaluate the risk associated with insuring an individual. Felony convictions can have a significant impact on an applicant’s eligibility for life insurance. Insurers may consider the nature of the felony, the severity of the offense, and the time elapsed since the conviction.

Type of Felony: The type of felony committed can influence an applicant’s chances of obtaining life insurance. Certain offenses, such as violent crimes or drug-related offenses, may raise concerns for insurers due to the potential risk they pose. On the other hand, non-violent offenses or convictions that occurred many years ago may be viewed differently by insurers.

Severity of the Offense: The severity of the offense committed is another crucial factor that insurers take into account. Felonies involving serious crimes, such as murder or sexual assault, may significantly impact an individual’s ability to secure life insurance coverage. Less severe offenses, such as non-violent property crimes, may have a lesser impact on eligibility.

Time Elapsed since Conviction: Insurance companies often consider the time that has passed since the felony conviction. The longer the period since the offense, the more likely an individual may be eligible for life insurance. However, the specific time frame varies among insurance providers, and some may have stricter policies regarding recent convictions.

Options for Felons to Obtain Life Insurance

Group Life Insurance: One option for felons to secure life insurance coverage is through group life insurance policies. These policies are typically offered by employers or organizations to their employees or members. Group life insurance often does not require medical underwriting or background checks, making it more accessible for individuals with a criminal record.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance: Another option for felons is guaranteed issue life insurance. This type of policy does not require medical exams or background checks. However, guaranteed issue policies often have lower coverage amounts and higher premiums compared to traditional life insurance policies.

Working with Specialized Insurers: Some insurance companies specialize in providing coverage to individuals with a criminal history. These specialized insurers may have more lenient underwriting guidelines and be more willing to provide coverage to felons. However, it’s important to note that premiums for such policies may be higher than those for individuals without a criminal record.


While obtaining life insurance as a felon can be challenging, it is not impossible. Factors such as the type of felony, severity of the offense, and time elapsed since the conviction play a crucial role in determining eligibility. Group life insurance, guaranteed issue policies, and specialized insurers are potential avenues for felons to secure coverage. It is advisable to consult with insurance professionals or brokers who can guide individuals with a criminal record through the process of finding suitable life insurance options.