Health Insurance Marijuana
Health Insurance Marijuana

Will Your Health Insurance Cover Medical Marijuana?

Buying Health Insurance For Weed Coverage

Posted by:
DanaSmith on Monday Jun 20, 2016

The Impact Of Marijuana On Insurance

When Will Health Insurance Cover Medical Marijuana? from CannabisNet on Vimeo.


Although legalization may be upon us, be a smart stoner by understanding how smoking marijuana can affect your insurance.


When it comes to marijuana use, insurance companies are still pretty much on the conservative side. Although medical marijuana is already legal in nearly half the states, a staggering majority of insurance companies still do not cover prescriptions for medical marijuana. It isn’t rocket science: at the end of the day, insurance companies still have to comply with the federal government. And for as long as the federal government still considers marijuana on the same level as other deadly drugs such as meth or heroin, their business operations shouldn’t be in conflict with that of the federal government.


Your Legal Rights And Privacy Issues


Let’s be honest, it actually isn’t easy admitting to a stranger who is selling you life or health insurance that you use marijuana. You might be afraid that they would inform the authorities (if it isn’t legal in your state), or that your employer might find out. Keep in mind that you have a legal right that is covered by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 which guarantees you with “privacy of individually identifiable health information”. This means that anything you tell a health service provider or insurance agent is strictly confidential, including the results of any medical exams that you may be asked to take. Marijuana usage and any otherinformation cannot be shared with anyone, not even your spouse.


Depending on the kind of coverage you are looking for and the price you are willing to pay, you may or may not have to take a medical exam. However, certain policies that provide the lowest rates may require you to take a drug test.


If you are asked about marijuana usage, it is never recommended to lie about it since lying to insurance classifies as fraud. If you do lie, you will risk the possibility that the death benefits that come with life insurance won’t be paid out. In fact it is actually recommended that you are upfront about marijuana usage to your insurance agent so that they can tell you how it will affect the policies you choose to invest in.

health insurance premiums rising

Will My Marijuana Use Equate To A Higher Insurance Premium?


One of the biggest misconceptions regarding marijuana use and insurance is that just because you toke up, you will have to pay much more. This is not necessarily true because it will depend on the insurance company that you are working with. Regardless of which state you live in and the laws in your area, marijuana use is not always an issue with insurance companies.


Each insurance company has their own conditions and specific criteria, so different premiums will be applied. Some companies are more conservative, while others are more lenient with marijuana use. Insurance agents will give you a different rating depending on the frequency of your use; a chronic smoker may have to pay a higher premium, than, say, someone who just smokes once a month, and whether or not they already have an existing medical condition. But even if you are a medical marijuana user, there is still a chance that you can be rated as a smoker.


It is also good to keep in mind that although many studies prove that cannabis use is less harmful than cigarettes, many  insurance companies still lump it in with the same category as cigarette smoking. But even if you are a licensed medical marijuana user, there is still a chance that you can be rated as a smoker.


Again, medical marijuana is also used to treat many debilitating conditions, so the severity of your condition or the need for medical marijuana is still up to debate, and it is not yet clear how it will affect your insurance premium.


The Bottom Line


Insurance companies are not the cops nor are they the narcs. The reason why they need to understand your marijuana usage is simply because they need to know how much you should be charged.


I’ll say this again: don’t ever lie to your insurance company about marijuana use. Remember that if you are caught lying by one company, there is a good chance that not only will that company reject you, but all other insurance companies will as well. They can report you to the Medical Information Bureau, which means that other insurance companies can easily find out about it.


The best way to get the best insurance rates whether or not you smoke marijuana is to always work with a licensed broker. The job of brokers is to ensure you are getting the coverage you need for your budget.


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