Insurance Issues

Once an individual has been diagnosed as a Lynch Syndrome carrier, they will probably have difficulty obtaining certain types of insurance.

Health Insurance

The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2007 (GINA) prohibits insurers from using genetic diseases in determining the insurability for patients with Lynch. However, once a person develops a cancer, their insurance rates can go up considerably or they may not qualify for insurance.

As of September 23, 2010, the new Health Care Reform act prevents insurers from excluding children with preexisting conditions from being covered by their family policy. However insurers have until January 1, 2014 to rescind preexisting-condition exclusions on adults. For this reason, it is very important for patients with Lynch Syndrome to have a good health care policy, and to maintain their policy. For, if there is a lapse of coverage the next time they need to get insured there would be pre-existing conditions that would not be covered

Disability Insurance

The GINA act does not prevent insurance companies from using Lynch Syndrome in their underwriting for disability insurance. This may prevent a person from obtaining reasonably priced disability insurance once the diagnosis is made. For this reason, you may want to advise patients to buy a disability policy before any genetic testing for Lynch Syndrome is undertaken.

An insurance rider can also be purchased that would allow future increases in the policy based on future income without having to go through underwriting again. Also, a Cost of Living or COLA rider is another option for patients to consider.

Life Insurance

The GINA act does not prevent insurance companies from using Lynch Syndrome in their underwriting for life insurance. This may prevent a person from obtaining reasonably priced life insurance once the diagnosis is made. For this reason, you should advise patients to purchase a life insurance policy before any genetic testing for Lynch Syndrome is undertaken.

Long Term Care

The GINA act does not prevent insurance companies from using Lynch Syndrome in their underwriting for long term care insurance. This may prevent a person from obtaining reasonably priced long term care insurance once the diagnosis is made. For this reason, you should advise patients to consider purchasing a long term care insurance policy before any genetic testing for Lynch Syndrome is undertaken.