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About this Handbook

This Handbook is an important tool that can help you, particularly when you’re reviewing your client’s medical history. It is designed to give you a basic overview of the more common medical conditions and diseases seen in disability insurance underwriting.

You will find brief descriptions of common impairments, along with the risk factors that influence an underwriter’s final assessment and the likely underwriting ratings. The Handbook also gives you the background you need to gather details an underwriter will need to assess a specific condition. By providing this information upfront, you’ll give your underwriter a head start in developing a tentative assessment and you’ll help Manulife provide you with the best possible offer, as quickly as possible.

It’s important to understand that the Handbook provides a preliminary rating estimate only, because it’s difficult to assess the risk without the complete picture. This means that the final offer from underwriting may differ, depending on all the facts. The Handbook will also help you prepare your client for a possible medical rating, which should result in better outcomes when you deliver the policy to your client.

Understanding Disability Insurance Underwriting

Disability insurance is more comprehensively evaluated than life insurance. Many ailments are not life threatening but may increase the likelihood of disability. In a number of circumstances, health conditions may be accommodated through contractual modifications such as: premium ratings, contractual exclusions and limited benefit periods.

A disability underwriter assesses risk through a unique lens: Is a condition likely to lead to an increased risk of a disability or limitation?