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Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer in Canada

Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer in Canada
Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer in Canada

Receiving an ovarian cancer diagnosis can be devastating. However, with careful planning, it is possible to obtain adequate life insurance with ovarian cancer in Canada.

This guide provides ovarian cancer patients and survivors with in-depth, expert-level insights on qualifying for and purchasing life insurance.

Ovarian Cancer Rates and Survival in Canada

Ovarian cancer impacts thousands of Canadian women. Every year, there are more than 2800 cases diagnosed with ovarian cancer, and approximately 1800 women die from ovarian cancer each year, making it one of the deadliest female cancers.


The 5-year net survival rate is only 45%, demonstrating the high mortality risk. (

Survival is highly dependent on the stage at diagnosis. Patients diagnosed in the early stages I and II have significantly better chances of long-term survival compared to those diagnosed in late stages III and IV when the cancer has advanced.

These statistics help explain why insurers view ovarian cancer patients as having higher mortality risks versus healthy applicants. However, with proper planning, obtaining life insurance coverage remains very possible.

Types of Ovarian Cancer

There are over 30 different types of ovarian cancer, each with a varied prognosis. The three main categories are:

  • Epithelial Tumors Represent the majority of cases. Tend to be more aggressive with higher mortality. Diagnosed more in older women.
  • Germ Cell Tumors: These account for a small percentage of cases. The prognosis is better with lower mortality. Affects younger women more.
  • Stromal Tumors: Make up around 7% of ovarian cancers. Often detected early and treated successfully with surgery. (source:

People with germ cell or stromal ovarian tumours generally have an easier time securing life insurance thanks to more optimistic prognoses. Those with aggressive epithelial cancers face greater obstacles.

Qualifying for Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer at Different Stages

The stage of cancer at diagnosis significantly influences life insurance eligibility and policy terms:

Stage I: Highly curable if caught early. Surgery alone may eradicate localized tumours confined to the ovaries. Wait at least one year after finishing treatment before applying for life insurance.

Stage II: Cancer has spread to other pelvic structures, but the prognosis can still be good with aggressive treatment. Wait at least two years after treatment to apply for standard policies.

Stage III: Cancer has spread more extensively through the abdomen. Wait a minimum of 3 years after treatment before seeking life insurance. Later stage III’s carry higher risk.

Stage IV: Cancer has metastasized to distant sites like the liver or lungs. A 5-year wait after treatment is advisable before applying for individually underwritten coverage. Guaranteed issue policies may be required.

The longer you demonstrate stability and remission after treatment, the better your chances of qualifying for affordable life insurance at any stage.

Why Insurers View Ovarian Cancer as High-Risk

Insurers often classify ovarian cancer as high-risk when evaluating life insurance applicants. Some of the factors that contribute to the increased perceived risk include:

  • Lack of accurate early screening tests equivalent to mammograms for detecting ovarian tumours. This can contribute to later diagnosis when the prognosis is poorer.
  • Vague early symptoms of ovarian cancer like abdominal bloating, pelvic pain, and feeling full quickly can be easy to miss and dismiss. This again leads to many cases being caught at later stages.
  • The mortality rate for ovarian cancer is higher than many other common cancers. As mentioned earlier, the 5-year relative survival rate is only 45% for all stages combined.
  • There is a risk of recurrence even after initial treatment, which negatively impacts the overall prognosis.
  • In many cases, ovarian cancer is not diagnosed until it has already metastasized outside the ovaries when treatment is more difficult. Catching it early is crucial.
  • A small percentage of ovarian cancer cases are tied to inherited genetic mutations like BRCA1 and BRCA2 that substantially increase lifetime risk.

The elevated mortality risk explains why insurers impose higher premiums and more stringent application requirements. However, it should not deter patients from applying.

Shopping For Life Insurance With Ovarian Cancer

Shopping for Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer
Shopping for Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer

As an ovarian cancer survivor, you have multiple life insurance policy options:

Term Life Insurance

Provides pure death benefit protection for a set period, usually 10, 20 or 30 years. Lower premiums but no cash accumulation. Good for budget coverage. Be sure to carefully weigh the Pros and Cons of Term Life Insurance to ensure it aligns with your needs.

Whole Life Insurance

Offers lifelong protection as long as premiums are paid. Cash value builds up, which you can access via loans or withdrawals. More expensive but permanent. It’s important to fully understand the Pros and Cons of Whole Life Insurance when considering it.

Universal Life Insurance

A flexible permanent policy with adjustable premiums and death benefits. Also builds tax-deferred cash value to tap into if needed. Take time to thoroughly assess the Pros and Cons of Universal Life Insurance to determine if it aligns with your goals.

Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance

Simplified policies with limited underwriting and capped death benefits. Maximums often around $25,000. Higher premiums but guaranteed approval.

Group Life Insurance

Provided through employers and associations. Offers minimal medical underwriting for members. Check availability through your professional group.

Critical Illness Insurance

Pays a lump sum benefit if diagnosed with a covered illness like cancer. It can be used for treatment and household costs. It’s not pure life insurance.

Consult an experienced broker to explore your best options based on budget, desired coverage length and cash value needs.

Cost of Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer

The cost of life insurance for ovarian cancer patients and survivors is significantly higher compared to healthy applicants. This is due to the increased mortality risk associated with the disease.

Several factors impact pricing:

  • Stage at Diagnosis – Later-stage cancers are costlier to insure. Stage I is the cheapest, and Stage IV is the most expensive.
  • Time in Remission – The longer cancer-free, the lower the premiums. 2 years minimum remission is recommended.
  • Type of Cancer – Epithelial tumours drive higher costs than germ cell or stromal versions.
  • Age – Younger ovarian cancer survivors get lower rates more easily. Costs rise with age.
  • Recurrence – New tumours or metastases increase risk and life insurance rates.
  • Treatment Response – Poor response to surgery, chemo, and radiation equals higher premiums.

To illustrate potential pricing impacts, here are sample monthly premiums for a $500,000 policy for a 40-year-old:

Healthy Female Non-Smoker:

  • 20-Year Term: $50
  • Whole Life: $150

Ovarian Cancer Survivor, 2 Years Remission:

  • 20-Year Term: $210
  • Whole Life: $550
  • Guaranteed Issue: $400

Ovarian Cancer Survivor, 10 Years Remission:

  • 20-Year Term: $110
  • Whole Life: $325

Specific rates depend on personal health history. A 20-year survival has better pricing options than a recent 2-year remission. Get quotes from high-risk life insurance specialists to find the most affordable option for your unique situation.

Related : What Factors Determine Your Life Insurance Premiums ?

Strategies to Obtain Affordable Life Insurance With Ovarian Cancer

Here are some tips to secure more affordable life insurance coverage after an ovarian cancer diagnosis:

  • Wait Several Years After Treatment – Applying too soon increases risk perception. Wait until well established in remission.
  • Consult High-Risk Specialists – Insurers like the Canada Protection Plan underwrite higher-risk cases. Avoid generalists.
  • Leverage Group or Simplified Issue Policies – These minimize medical underwriting requirements.
  • Opt for Longer Policy Terms – Lower rates are locked in for more years versus short terms.
  • Reduce Other Risk Factors – Improve diet, exercise, weight and cholesterol. Don’t smoke or vape.
  • Add a Return of Premium Rider – Get premiums back if you outlive the term if cost is a concern.
  • Appeal Declined Applications – Present new evidence of health stability and optimized prognosis.
  • Be Persistent – You may need to apply to multiple providers before being approved.

The key is demonstrating to underwriters that you have responsibly managed your health long-term after cancer treatment and remain committed to doing so. This gradually reduces perceived risk.

Questions to Expect During the Application Process of Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer

When applying for life insurance after ovarian cancer, you’ll be asked detailed questions about your diagnosis and treatment. Common questions include:

  • What type of ovarian cancer were you diagnosed with? (epithelial, stromal, germ cell)
  • What stage was the cancer identified at? (Stage I to IV)
  • When was your initial diagnosis date? How long have you been in remission?
  • What treatments have you undergone? (surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, etc.)
  • What was the response to treatment? Did cancer markers normalize?
  • Has there been any recurrence or metastases? Any additional treatments?
  • How often do you receive follow-up scans, tests and exams? What do they show?
  • Do you have any genetic predispositions like BRCA1/BRCA2 mutations?
  • How would your oncologist describe your long-term prognosis?

Having all your medical records handy will help provide accurate details to underwriters. Disclose your full history honestly to avoid issues later.

Exploring Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer

Exploring Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer
life buzz quote in canada new 8 1
Exploring Guaranteed Issue Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer

For late-stage or recurring ovarian cancer patients who cannot qualify for traditional underwritten policies, guaranteed issue life insurance can provide a basic coverage safety net.

Here are some options:

No Medical Exam Required

These simplified policies only ask basic health questions. Many providers now offer guaranteed Issue plans online with minimal paperwork.

Guaranteed Acceptance

As the name implies, coverage is guaranteed regardless of health, with no physical exam or records required. Quick approvals even for the terminally ill.

Graded Death Benefit

The policy only pays out the accumulated premiums if death occurs in the first 2 policy years. It is ideal for rapidly declining health when the full payout is uncertain.

Cash Value Options

Some guaranteed issue policies build limited cash value that you can borrow against in times of need.

Capped Coverage Amounts

Given the lack of underwriting, guaranteed issue policy death benefits are capped, typically in the $10,000 – $25,000 range. Still helpful for final expenses.

While benefits are restricted, guaranteed issue life insurance still provides value after an ovarian cancer diagnosis.

Pros and Cons of Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer

Purchasing life insurance after an ovarian cancer diagnosis has both advantages and potential drawbacks to consider:


  • Is it still possible to get covered despite a serious diagnosis
  • Lock in insurability if health later deteriorates
  • Peace of mind family will be financially secure
  • Fund final expenses like medical bills and funeral costs
  • Allow loved ones to maintain their lifestyle
  • Support favourite charities through the death benefit


  • Much higher premiums than standard policies
  • Lower maximum coverage amounts may be capped
  • Delays qualifying for coverage until sufficiently in remission
  • Applications may be declined by some insurers
  • Pre-existing condition exclusions related to cancer
  • Need to make proactive health improvements to get approved
  • Require persistence and patience during the application process

Carefully weigh the pros and cons based on your health status, financial needs and future outlook. For most ovarian cancer survivors, the benefits outweigh the limitations.

Related: How Pre-existing Conditions Affect Life Insurance ?

Where To Buy Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer History in Canada

Where To Buy Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer History
Where To Buy Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer History

Here are some of the best options for where to purchase life insurance after being diagnosed with ovarian cancer:

  • Specialized High-Risk Insurers – Companies like Canada Protection Plan underwrite higher-risk conditions like cancer.
  • Direct Insurance Providers – PolicyMe, Dialogue Life and others offer simplified online applications.
  • Independent Brokers in Canada – Full-service brokers shop multiple providers to find you the best deal.
  • Personal Insurance Advisors – Dedicated advisors at companies like Sun Life provide expert guidance.
  • Group and Association Plans – May provide access to coverage with minimal health screening.
  • Banks and Credit Unions – Many financial institutions offer life insurance, often with streamlined underwriting.

Consult an expert broker or advisor to compare quotes across multiple providers and identify your best option. Consider both regular and guaranteed issue life insurers. With persistence, you can secure necessary coverage.

Related : 20 Largest Life Insurance Companies in Canada

Claiming Benefits for Policyholders of Life Insurance with Ovarian Cancer

To receive life insurance benefits after an ovarian cancer death, beneficiaries must:

  • Submit a certified copy of the death certificate.
  • Provide the original policy documentation.
  • Submit a fully completed claim form.
  • Allow the insurer to obtain medical records confirming the health history disclosed when applying for coverage was accurate.

As long as all medical history was truthfully represented, the claim should be paid out without issues. Honesty about pre-existing conditions like ovarian cancer is crucial.

The funds received tax-free can help cover final medical bills and funeral costs and provide ongoing financial support to loved ones to maintain their standard of living.

Securing Coverage of Life Insurance With Ovarian Cancer Is Attainable 

The extensive information presented illustrates that with proper planning, Canadian patients and survivors can obtain adequate life insurance with ovarian cancer at reasonable rates. Working with an experienced broker to navigate the underwriting intricacies is key. Be patient and do not get discouraged if your initial application is declined – insurers take different approaches and having options will enable you to ultimately secure a policy at an affordable premium. Do not delay – plan early to protect your loved ones.

Aside from Ovarian Cancer, other health conditions such as Hepatitis, Bipolar Disorder, Thyroid Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Breast Cancer… can also impact life insurance approval and premium rates. Check out these helpful articles:

Get Expert Guidance on Life Insurance After Ovarian Cancer

To receive specialized advice and customized quotes from Canada’s top life insurance providers for those with pre-existing conditions like ovarian cancer, visit today. Our compassionate experts will demystify the application process and match you with the ideal coverage solution for your needs, health status and budget. Take control of your financial future.


A diagnosis of ovarian cancer significantly impacts your life insurance options but does not eliminate your ability to get covered. By understanding insurers’ perspectives, taking proactive steps to manage your health responsibly, and working with specialized brokers, adequate life insurance with ovarian cancer is attainable. With proper planning, you can secure valuable coverage that will provide long-term financial security to your loved ones when they need it most.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Life Insurance With Ovarian Cancer

What is the most accessible life insurance with ovarian cancer to qualify for?

Simplified issue and guaranteed issue policies require minimal to no medical underwriting, making approval much more accessible. However, coverage amounts are capped, usually around $25,000.

Is it difficult to find life insurance with ovarian cancer?

It can be more challenging than finding standard coverage, but with persistence and an experienced broker guiding you, available options can be found for most ovarian cancer survivors.

How long after I finish ovarian cancer treatment can I apply for life insurance with ovarian cancer?

Wait a minimum of 1-5 years after completing treatment before applying, depending on your stage at diagnosis. This demonstrates stability and reduces perceived risk.

Can I get life insurance with ovarian cancer without a medical exam?

Yes, simplified Issue and guaranteed issue policies don't require medical exams, just basic health questionnaires. These streamline the process.

What questions will I be asked when applying for life insurance with ovarian cancer?

Expect detailed questions on your diagnosis, cancer type, treatments undergone, response to treatment, remission time, follow-up care, prognosis and more.

If I have a recurrence of ovarian cancer, can I still qualify for life insurance with ovarian cancer?

A recurrence makes approval very difficult. You'd likely need to wait and demonstrate a period of stability before reapplying after additional treatment.

How do I find the best life insurance with ovarian cancer?

Work with an independent broker who can compare quotes from multiple high-risk life insurance specialists to get you the optimal rate for your situation.

What are my life insurance with ovarian cancer options if I have advanced stage III or IV disease?

For late-stage cancers, guaranteed or simplified issue policies will likely be required, given the high mortality risk.

If my ovarian cancer has spread to other organs, can I still get life insurance with ovarian cancer?

At stage IV, when cancer has metastasized, guaranteed Issue is often the only option due to the high risk. Individual underwriting becomes very difficult.

Will insurers access all of my medical records when I apply for life insurance with ovarian cancer?

Yes, you will need to provide consent for insurers to review all pathology reports, treatment records, scans, test results, doctor's assessments and more during underwriting.

Can I still qualify for life insurance with ovarian cancer if I have the BRCA gene mutation?

The mutation must be disclosed but doesn't outright preclude approval. It raises lifetime ovarian cancer risk, so insurers will factor that into underwriting.

Will life insurance with ovarian cancer cover my policy if I die specifically from ovarian cancer?

Yes, as long as no medical history was misrepresented in your application. The cause of death does not impact the death benefit payment.

What if I'm still undergoing ovarian cancer treatment? Can I get life insurance with ovarian cancer?

Approval will be very difficult if the patient is still in active treatment. Until treatment is finished and a period of stability is achieved, only guaranteed issue policies are available as options.

If I already have life insurance but am now diagnosed with ovarian cancer, how does it impact my policy?

Existing coverage is not impacted as long as you truthfully disclose your medical history when first applying. Ovarian cancer death will lead to full death benefit payment.

What is the best way to save money on life insurance with ovarian cancer?

Choosing a longer policy term, minimizing other health risks, and shopping quotes through an experienced broker helps lower rates. Guaranteed issue policies cost more.

How long will it take to get life insurance with ovarian cancer?

The underwriting process typically takes 2-6 weeks. Waiting periods to apply after cancer treatment and potential application denials initially can prolong the process further.

Can I get life insurance with ovarian cancer to help pay for medical treatment costs?

Critical illness insurance provides funds upon diagnosis to help cover treatment costs. However, life insurance only pays out after death, not for initial diagnosis and care.

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Written by Ben Nguyen

Ben Nguyen is an award-winning insurance expert and industry veteran with over 20 years of experience. He is the chairman and director of IDC Insurance Direct Canada Inc., one of Canada's leading online insurance brokerages.

Ben is renowned for his extensive knowledge of life, health, disability, and travel insurance products. He is the prolific author of over 1,000 educational articles published on LifeBuzz, BestInsuranceOnline, and InsuranceDirectCanada. His articles provide Canadians with advice on making smart insurance decisions.

With a Bachelor's degree in Actuarial Science and a Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries (FCIA) designation, Ben is frequently interviewed by media as an insurance industry spokesperson.

He has received numerous honors including the Insurance Council of Canada’s Pivotal Leadership Award, the Canadian Insurance Hall of Fame induction, and the President’s Medal from the Canadian Institute of Actuaries.

Ben continues to shape the vision and strategy of IDC Insurance Direct as chairman. He is dedicated to advancing the insurance industry through his insightful leadership.

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