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Ask the Life Insurance Expert

Will I get a smoking rate for life insurance if I only use e-cigarettes?

Yes, because it all delivers nicotine.

During the life insurance application process, one is typically asked about tobacco use and then the answer is verified with a urine or blood test that picks up nicotine.  Because those using nicotine have higher mortality rates, three times higher according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, life insurance providers rate those who smoke as a higher risk, thus, charging higher life insurance rates.

Since the long-term risks of e-cigarettes and vaping are unknown, life insurance companies are hesitant to give a lower rate than someone who smokes traditional cigarettes. 

There is research that suggests that health risks are lower for e-cigarettes than with traditional cigarettes since one doesn’t inhale toxic smoke that results from regular cigarettes. However, e-cigarettes can deliver higher doses of nicotine than traditional cigarettes.

Only time will tell if e-cigarettes prove to be less of a risk as regular cigarettes and life insurers will lower its risk assessment for those who use them.

Last updated: Jun. 10, 2014