If you've applied for life insurance, you know just how nosy some of the questions can be, and how tempting it can be to lie, knowing that admitting certain things about yourself are sure to raise your rates.
But don't do it.
Most standard life insurance policies include a two year contestable period, meaning the insurance company can rip up your policy if they find out you lied on your application. Things like forgetting to mention you'd been treated for cancer, or that you've smoked for forty years. What this means is that if you die within that two year window, your family may not see one cent of that money.
Now there are some gray areas---not everybody remembers everything about their medical history, and failing to mention something may be due to forgetfulness, not fraud. As long as there is no intent to deceive, the policy is likely still in place.
The good news is that positive changes in your health situation could mean lower rates. Say you finally quit smoking, or get your blood pressure under control. Let your carrier know. They may have a provision that allows for your rates to drop if you can prove that the change is sustained over a period of time—six months to a year, in many cases.
Same goes if you've given up a hobby that your insurance company considers dangerous—like scuba diving, or piloting your own plane.
So if you've had your life insurance policy for a few years, read back through it, and see if the information needs to be updated.