When someone is expected to live longer than other unimpaired people of the same age, they are said to be a preferred risk. Some factors that influence risk are physical condition, family or personal history of disease, occupation, lifestyle, participation in risky past-times, hobbies or sports, and other factors that my decrease the life-span of the proposed insured.
Some risk categories used by insurers include Preferred Plus (exceptional), Preferred (excellent), regular plus or standard plus (above average), and regular or standard (average), whereas Preferred Plus would have the best rates and represent the least risk to the insurance company and Regular or Standard would represent the most risk to the insurer and have the highest risk.
What many people don’t realize is that even though they may qualify under a less desirable risk category when they first purchase a policy, they may be able to qualify for a more desirable category and therefore lower their rates at some time in the future. An example of this would be a smoker who quits smoking.