[This is a guest post from contributor Karl.]
When it comes to something as complicated as life insurance, there are always a few questions to be answered. One of the most common questions involves the life insurance eligibility of those with dangerous professions. If you have a dangerous profession, can you get approved for life insurance?
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The list of most dangerous professions varies according to country. In the United States, the Bureau of Labor Statistics lists the ten most dangerous jobs by fatality rate, starting with fishermen, logging workers, pilots and flight engineers, iron and steel workers, farmers and ranchers, roofers, electric power line workers, drivers, recyclable material collectors, police officers.
Other professions are thought of as high risk when workers are high off the ground (window cleaners or painters), underground (miners), when they are working with explosives or around dangerous chemicals, or when they work with firearms.
Members of the armed forces are generally considered to have a dangerous profession, as are journalists and photographers who work in war and combat zones.
Can you get coverage?
Just because you have a dangerous profession does not mean you are uninsurable. Even those in high risk jobs can get life insurance coverage with certain providers; it’s just a matter of finding the right provider and dealing with the paperwork.
If you have a high risk profession, you may have to answer a range of detailed questions regarding your job and its risks. This is to help the insurer gauge the risk associated with insuring you.
If you are approved for life insurance, you may have to pay a higher premium than those in standard professions, and you may only be eligible for a lower payout.
However, you may be able to get your premiums, your payout and your policy reassessed if you switch to a safer profession in the future (bear in mind, not all insurers will allow for this).
If you have a specific profession or you are in a specific set of circumstances, you may face automatic rejection for life insurance. If you have active engagement in war, for example, if you are a soldier, or if you take part in acts of terrorism, strikes, riots or insurrections, you will usually face automatic rejection from insurers.
If you have a safe job but a dangerous pastime, you may find it difficult to get life insurance. If you are involved in motor sports, hunting, racing, bungee jumping, hang gliding, sky diving or rock climbing on a regular basis, it could make life insurance more expensive. The same applies for dangerous sports, especially the more violent varieties.
Getting the Best Deal
While you may have to pay more for life insurance if you have a dangerous job or a high risk hobby, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try and get the best deal possible. Be sure to compare all your options by going online, doing some research and checking out comparison sites.
If you have any questions, don’t be afraid to ask the insurer, and always read the small print. Most importantly, always tell the truth. If you are found out to have lied to your insurance provider, your policy could be voided, and your claim will mean diddly-squat.
[Photo credit: Flickr user John Starnes]