What to expect from a Life Insurance exam

Life Insurance
The process to get a life insurance policy isn’t that different from what you’re used to: Find a company you trust and work with a trusted...

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by Alex Buczynski on August 28, 2020

While you’ve likely shopped around to find the best auto, home or renters insurance, there might still be one lingering item on your insurance to-do list: get a life insurance policy.

The process to get a life insurance policy isn’t that different from what you’re used to: Find a company you trust and work with a trusted professional to determine how much coverage you need.

However, with some life policies, there’s one main difference: you have to get a life insurance medical exam. Keep reading to find out how it works and what to expect.


A life insurance medical exam, more commonly referred to as a “paramedical exam” by insurance professionals, is an opportunity for your life insurance company to review your medical history and collect information for your life insurance application.

There are typically two stages to this exam: a verbal questionnaire and an examination done by a health professional, usually a paramedical professional or a nurse.


Just like an insurance agent asks you questions about your vehicle and driving habits when you’re quoting for an auto policy, your life insurance company wants to learn more about you before issuing you a life policy. An exam helps them to:

  1. Verify the information you originally gave when applying for a life insurance policy.
  2. Get a more complete medical history. The questionnaire goes into more detail about your family’s medical history.
  3. Identify any underlying conditions. A more in-depth view of your medical history and results from your bloodwork may reveal a condition you were unaware you are at risk for, or might already have – for example, diabetes.

However, not all life policies require you to get a life insurance medical exam. Life policies below $100,000 typically require you to only complete an application and answer several questions before it is reviewed by an underwriter.1 Your agent will assist you in completing the application, you will sign it and your agent submit it for underwriting review.

If you’re looking for a quicker way to get life coverage, another option is Erie Insurance’s new ERIExpress Life product. If you’re 55 or younger, you can get an instant-issue term or whole life policy with up to $500,000 in coverage by answering several application questions without having to complete a life insurance medical exam.


A life insurance medical exam goes a little more in-depth than an ordinary wellness check with your primary care physician. In addition to taking your height, weight, blood pressure and temperature, expect to have blood drawn and a urinalysis test completed.

This exam is often done at home. After you and your agent submit your application, you’ll be contacted by a paramedical examination professional who will schedule a time that works for you to conduct your exam.

The exam will likely take between 30 minutes to an hour. If you need to follow any steps in preparation, like not eating for 12 hours prior to your exam, it’s best to do so. The results of your life insurance medical exam will be used to determine your final eligibility and premium.


You protect your car and your home with insurance. Don’t forget to cover one of your most important assets – your life.

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