Could your lifestyle make you uninsurable?

Could your lifestyle make you uninsurable?

When you start thinking about life insurance, you've no doubt considered that your current lifestyle could have an effect on the products available to you and the premiums you can secure for them. After all, a smoker's insurance policy is expected to be different from a non-smoker's, simply due to the added risk factors involved with the habit and the known negative health effects. The same goes for pre-existing health conditions or anything that might increase your risk in the eyes of your insurance provider.

Some of these things are avoidable, while others aren't. But understanding that there are a number of things that can affect your insurance policy and premium payments is a good start to figuring out how to secure the best insurance product possible. Anything that could prematurely end your life or cause injury in some way will be taken into account and added into your policy. But what about your current employment status? 

Lo and behold, this can also be counted and considered when applying for an insurance policy. In some cases even your hobbies can be put under scrutiny, so it's important to know where your stand in the long run. Sitting down and discussing the options with an insurance professional will give you some personalised insight into your own situation. Here are some basics to get you started. 

How risky is your lifestyle?

Applying for life insurance is great to have for your future. After all, it's one of those things that you won't need until it's too late, so take steps to protect yourself and your family prematurely. However, the basics of life insurance is an assessment of your lifestyle and how much risk of injury or death there is on a day-to-day basis. For most people, this tends to rate fairly low and covers things like freak accidents or an unfortunate turn of events.

Naturally, this increases the more "danger" you find yourself in on a daily basis. This is why some employment options can carry a higher element of risk and, therefore, can make insurance more expensive or harder to achieve. 

For example, if you find yourself handling hazardous materials on a regular basis, this could count you as at a higher risk than an office worker, leading to a higher annual insurance expense that needs to be paid for your coverage. Furthermore, this extends to hobbies as well. Private pilots and helicopter operators are often considered high risk, regardless of how many hours you have under your belt and how experienced you are.

Some other employment options that can carry a high risk element include underground miners, those involved with forestry, certain types of construction workers and off-shore commercial fisherman. This could be especially pertinent to those living and working in the mining industry in Queensland or Western Australia, and could be something to discuss further with your insurance provider. 

Are there ways to mitigate this? 

Some insurers offer the option of having an exclusion list, which means that any claims made for something on this list aren't considered. You can still seek insurance for most elements of your life, but if you enjoy flying your private plane on the weekend, you can simply remove this from your policy, reducing your risk at the same time. 

Of course, this in itself can be a risky move to make. The specifics of each policy should be discussed when applying for insurance, as it could be possible to come to an agreement over the types of risks you're regularly exposed to and how those will affect your policy and premium payments.

Image credit: csizijo

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