Should obese people be required to pay higher insurance?

Discussion in 'News / Current Events' started by abcgrad94, Oct 24, 2009.

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  1. abcgrad94

    abcgrad94
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    Yesterday, our Charleston Gazette reported our WV state politicians want obese people to either get fit, or pay more for insurance. (Sorry I do not know how to post links.) I think this is discrimination. Smokers in WV who have state insurance must pay extra every month, now they want people to pay their insurance based on their BMI (Body Mass Index.)

    My question is, where do we draw the line? Why not punish people who engage in risky behaviors like sleeping around, sky diving, or talking on cell phones while driving, too? Why not make gays pay more since they might get AIDS? What about minorities?

    Seems to me this is a slippery slope.
     
  2. KenH

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    The government shouldn't do this. Private insurance companies should be allowed to charge based on whatever criteria they decide.
     
  3. tinytim

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  4. Robert Snow

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    I believe this is not only a slippery slope, but one that is sure to be disastrous in the long run.
     
  5. annsni

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    We just received the car insurance bill for my daughter. She is 19 years old. Because of this, her car insurance is $1115.09 for 6 months driving a 2003 Honda Accord. However, her premium has had the following adjustments:

    having antilock brakes: - $55.05
    Steer Clear Safe Driver (a program she did as a new driver): - $189.28
    Multicar: - $97.81
    Driver training: - $119.94
    Antitheft: - $6.52
    Vehicle Safety: - $24.18
    Good Driving: - $114.66

    So, because of doing a program that she didn't have to do, she saves almost $400 a year. For having taken Driver's Ed, she saves $240 a year. For being a good driver, she gets $230 a year and if she would pull up her grades, that would be an additional $300 off her insurance. She is rewarded for doing well and she is penalized for doing poorly. There is a good incentive there, don't you think?

    Obesity is proven to lead to medical problems from diabetes to heart disease to increased risk of injury from falls. Why should someone who runs 25 miles a week, eats a healthy diet, stays away from drugs and cigarettes and makes sure they live in a healthy environment pay the same amount as someone who abuses their body and will use more insurance dollars? I think it makes a ton of sense and since insurance companies are still private companies, they have a right to do this. Of course my husband and I would be penalized since he's considered "obese" and I'm "overweight", so it's not like I wouldn't be affected.
     
  6. targus

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    This seems to me to fly in the face of the whole "pre-existing conditions" thing.

    So politicians think that a person should pay more for medical insurance if they are fat or smoke but not if a person has heart disease or cancer which are caused by bad diet and smoking?
     
    #6 targus, Oct 24, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 24, 2009
  7. Salty

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    According to Army Regulation 600-9 I am 80 pounds overweight ( actually I am 14 inches too short! :smilewinkgrin:).

    And yes, I should have to pay more for life/health insurance.

    I think Ann gave an excellent presentation.

    and I hate to admit it, but I agree with Ken H - Keep the govt out of it - let the insurance companies make the decision.
     
  8. abcgrad94

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    I have a major problem with our governor telling our state employee's insurance company how they should do business. This is not the same scenario as what Ann pointed out, because the government is trying to call the shots.
     
  9. KenH

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    You'll live through it. :smilewinkgrin:
     
  10. BigBossman

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    I think companies should do what they feel is necessary. I don't believe the government should tax people based on their weight, height, or their eating habits. The private companies should be allowed to charge whatever they feel is fair for someone who may be classified as "high risk". I was turned down for term life insurance because of my weight. The man I spoke with tried entering my weight significantly less than what it actually was. When I corrected him on the form he filled out, I got a notice in the mail declining me.
     
  11. Winman

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    This is a difficult thing, because you simply can't go by weight. Some people are very stocky and weigh a lot. And some people are thin. I used to work with a fellow that was around 6'7" and built like an offensive lineman for professional football. If he got down to 250 lbs. all his ribs would have showing.

    So, you would need a physical to determine how much body fat you have. You can't simply go by a height to weight factor.
     
  12. gb93433

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    Nobody has a right to insurance. It is a for profit business and it is doing very well the past few years. One who engages in risky activities often cannot get life insurance.
     
  13. targus

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    When you are talking about the government all bets are off where it comes to logic or fairness.
     
  14. Salty

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    Actually this is the currently the case. An insurance company will ask you how many miles you drive each year. A salesman who drives a hundred miles a day will pay much more than the man who only drives 3 miles to work each day.
    Many life insurance policies have a "war clause" which gives the company an "out" if you die in a war.
    Actually, when it comes to seat belts, I contend an insurance company should be able to redo rates, so that a person injured or killed while wearing seat belts would receive double indemnity - which in essence would make non-seat belt occupants pay more for insurance.
    When it comes to [email protected] - well, to be politically correct they have discrimination laws about that.

    But I would agree to a BMI or"pinch test". So instead of being 80 pounds overweight, I would only be about 50 pounds over the adjusted limit.
    I wouldn't mind if the Govt made recommendations, but the bottom line - keep the government out of making this policy a law.
     
  15. Spinach

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    Weight doesn't necessarily indicate health (or lack of). I am a little overweight (like 10lbs) and am pretty healthy. My FIL is thin and is a brittle diabetic. The man who used to read our electric meter each month was lean and muscular but last week fell down dead from heart disease.
     
  16. Salty

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    Necessarily is the key word - but it often is a good indication. There are people who have never had a traffic ticket in their life - but it doesn't mean they are a good driver either.

    We just need to look at the entire picture.
     
  17. ray Marshall

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    I was oese by my own doing, however if one has problems that is not caused by obesity, what can thet do?
    Some people with health problems are obese because of medicine they must take. Many people takr steroids, not by choice and some have thyorid problems thereforth they cannot lose weight. These people are not doing any criminal activity. There is too much control stripping our citizens where the government should keep their nose out of the health business. There are only a few Doctors in Congress. Ron Paul is a medical doctor. I don't know how many congressmen has a profession of a health physican.
    The Congress should just go home and we pay them a salart anyway. Our country would get along fine if thet were to stay home. All Washington won't is to be able to put citizens under control.
     
  18. faithgirl46

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    :thumbs::thumbs:It sure is Robert
    Faithgirl
     
  19. Amy.G

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    I don't recall God ever saying "love your neighbor unless he's fat".
    Every life if precious to God and should be to us whether a person is too fat or too skinny or eats too much sugar. I don't mind one bit paying extra for those who don't take care of themselves (including myself) because I know they are just as important to God as the person who is obsessed with their health.

    If we as Christians buy into the belief that some are more worthy than others, then we must also concede to the idea that it's ok to abort a deformed fetus.
     
    #19 Amy.G, Oct 25, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 25, 2009
  20. Spinach

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    And, many times obesity is a direct result of depression. So if it is caused by depression, should people with mental/emotional disorders have to pay more because it could lead to obesity?
     
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