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Daniel W. Gerber Quoted in "What Genetic Testing Means for Life Insurers," LifeHealthPro August 30, 2013

As voluntary genetic testing for disease has become more popular, notes LifeHealthPro, so too have the laws aimed at preventing discrimination based on the results of such tests.

Daniel W. Gerber, Co-Chair of Goldberg Segalla’s Global Insurance Services Practice Group and Chair of the Defense Research Institute’s (DRI) Life, Health, and Disability Committee, was interviewed for this article on genetic testing’s legal and regulatory implications for life insurers.

“Most regulators are going to reach landing ground that says this cannot be used as a sole bar to qualification for life insurance,” Dan told LifeHealthPro. “As genetic testing refines and says, ‘Listen, we can tell this person is going to have this disease and die within 10 years,’ that may act as a bar to insurability and the regulators may permit that. But if it is just a coding that says the person is predisposed [to a certain disease], I think regulators will eventually preclude insurance companies from just discarding that person.”

As the article notes, life insurance agents can legally set a higher premium for a policy if their client is, for example, a smoker or overweight or a racecar driver by trade. “You can decide to stop smoking, you can decide to change some life habits that alter cholesterol, but you can’t change your genetics,” Dan said.

Read the article here: