Life Insurance Companies & the Medical Information Bureau (MIB)

What is MIB?

Did you know that virtually every time you apply for life insurance, you are agreeing to submit the contents of your application to the Medical Information Bureau?

You are also agreeing to let the company check your health record against information already on file about you.

It' all in the paperwork you sign when you apply for it.

This means that the data it collects will not only affect the rates you qualify for at the time of application, but possibly the rates you will qualify for in the future.

For this reason, it is important to plan very carefully before applying for life coverage.

That said, without an agency like MIB, it might not be possible for life coverage to exist as a product, and certainly not as an affordable product.

It is kind of like a credit score for health. Life insurance companies are always seeking to understand and quantify risk and the Bureau allows them to do this effectively.

Can I review the information that MIB has on file about me?

Yes, you can, and this is never a bad idea in fact since it is estimated that 3% of all medical records contain errors of one kind or another.

You can visit the website online at: and you can call them at: (617) 426-3660. You can also write them at:

MIB P.O. Box 105, Essex Station Boston, MA 02112

Can I dispute anything on record about me?

Yes, it is possible to do this.

How long are the records kept for?

Records are kept for a period of 7 years.

How long does it take after making an official request?

Most requests are processed within about 30 days.

Does MIB have a record of everyone's health?

No. The Bureau does not have details on everyone. They are essentially an organization that various life and health insurance companies subscribe to. In other words, they are a clearing house of medical information.

Not every company necessarily subscribes to it.

The Bureau is likely to have some information about your health history and profile if you have completed an application for individual/family health coverage (which is not through one's place of employment), or life insurance within the last 7 years.