Life Insurance and the MIB

MIB does not stand for Men in Black in the insurance business. Instead, it’s an acronym for the Medical Information Bureau, but they are rumoured to be just as secretive as the guys with black suits and sunglasses from the movies. They also could have a substantial impact on your insurance application.

The Medical Information Bureau (now known as The MIB Group Inc.) is a cooperative data exchange formed by the North American Life Insurance Industry in 1909.

MIB is the only insurance consumer reporting agency in North America, and it operates a database of medical information on individuals who have previously applied for health insurance, life insurance, disability insurance, critical illness insurance, and long-term care insurance.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, MIB member companies account for 99% of individual life insurance policies and 80% of all health and disability insurance policies issued in the United States and Canada.  

However, MIB has been the subject of an ongoing controversy since the 1970s. At the root of the concern is the organization’s penchant for secrecy. For many years, insurance agencies consulted MIB without telling applicants about files.

In fact, consumers were largely unaware of MIB’s existence until 1974, when the Pennsylvania Insurance Commission threatened that all MIB member companies in the state must either disclose their use of MIB consumer files or lose their license to operate in the state of Pennsylvania.

For more details on life insurance, underwriting, and the insurance industry’s use of the Medical Information Bureau, please contact us at 1-866-899-4849.

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  • Colleen
    May 4, 2016 at 9:41 pm

    Hello, I am a Canadian resident. I am not sure I understand MIB’s role? I am looking to find out any information on any insurance policies that have been obtained on me. How would one find out if someone has obtained one on them? I have already found two policies that I was named in without my knowledge or consent. Please advise.

    Thank you!

    • LSM Insurance
      May 5, 2016 at 9:39 am

      Thanks Colleen. When you apply for a life insurance policy there is usually some type of authorization when completing the application allowing the insurance companies to obtain and share the information with MIB.

      you could contact MIB directly to see what information they have. Good luck with things. LSM Insurance

  • Juliet
    November 22, 2012 at 10:50 pm

    How do I obtain a copy of my medical report?
    Thank you