New VA Regulations Take Effect Now
On November 1, 2012, VA published a final regulation doubling the period of time veterans may apply for coverage under Veterans Group Life Insurance (VGLI) without having to answer health questions in order to obtain coverage. The new exemption period is 240 days from separation from active duty.
What is VGLI?
VGLI is simple term life insurance available to all veterans upon discharge from the military. Veterans have one year and 120 days from the date of discharge to apply. Key features included in VGLI are:
- Premium rates are the same regardless of gender or smokers/non-smokers
- Veterans with service connected disabilities, including PTSD or TBI, are not excluded from coverage
- No enrollment or membership fees, and payments can be automatically deducted from military retirement or VA disability payment
- No “war” clause: most insurance policies specifically exclude death which is direct or indirectly as a result of war or wartime service. VGLI includes no such exclusion.
What is the “No Health Questions” Period?
Veterans who apply for VGLI upon discharge do not have to answer any questions or undergo any investigation into their health history in order to get coverage, if they apply during the first 240 days after separation. Previously, this period was 120 days from separation.
Who is Impacted by VA’s New Regulation?
All veterans released from military service on or after November 1, 2012.
What’s the Bottom Line?
Here’s the bottom line: This is fantastic news for veterans who often face denials or higher premiums when buying commercial life insurance. VGLI is an earned benefit for veterans. If you have questions about your current VGLI or VA’s proposed changes, contact VA.