Keep your lifestyle going even if your income stops.

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Whether you're a full-time retail worker or a contracted plumber who's weekly hours are never the same, we can all agree: not being able to work can do more harm than good.

This is why income protection exists. It can keep up to 85% of your income coming in if you do get injured or fall ill and are forced to stop working. Then, you can manage your expenses (e.g rent, mortgage, bills) while you recover.

Compare Australian income protection brands

Tip: If you want to compare policies side-by-side, simply click the 'Compare' tickbox that's just underneath the green buttons!
Name Product Short Description Maximum Monthly Benefit Maximum % of Income Covered Maximum Benefit Period Waiting Period
Cover up to 85% of your Income (up to $10,000 per month) if you can’t work due to sickness or injury. Cover for 1,000 job types - full-time, part-time and self-employed.

5 years
14, 28, 60, or 90 days
Cover up to 75% of your monthly income if you can’t work due to illness or injury, up to a maximum of $10,000 a month.
5 years
30 or 90 days
Go into the draw to win (1 of 10) $1,000 eftpos gift cards when you get a quote for Medibank Income Protection. T’s and C’s apply.
5 years
30 or 90 days
Cover up to 75% (to a maximum of $30,000) of your monthly income with NobleOak Income Protection. Plus, pay no premium for 2 months with combined cover. T&C's apply.
2 years or to the age of 65
30 or 90 days
Receive up to 30% off in your premiums if you’re in good health and meet BMI qualification tests. T’s and C’s apply.
24 months
14 or 28 days
Cover up to 75% (to a maximum of $10,000) of your monthly income with Guardian Income Protection.
5 years
30 or 90 days
Receive up to 75% of your income (up to $10,000 per month) if you're unable to work due to serious illness or injury.
5 years
30 or 90 days
Cover up to 85% (to a maximum of $42,000) of your monthly income with Aspect Income Protection.
5 years
14, 30, 60 or 90 days
Join Qantas Income Protection and earn up to 150,000 Qantas points. T&CS apply including minimum premium and policy hold periods apply to earn points.
5 years
2, 4, 13 weeks or 2 years

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Income Protection Insurance Finder™ is a free, Australian-owned comparison service made for Australians. Use our tools and guides to find suitable cover for your occupation.

Income protection: Common questions our users have

  • Buying cover

  • Benefits and waiting periods

  • Payout eligibility and disability definitions

What's next?

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Life insurance pays out a benefit to your loved ones if you die. This payment can be used to pay off the mortgage and for any ongoing expenses your family has.

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What is income protection insurance?

What is income protection insurance?

Income protection insurance is a product that replaces some of your income if you're unable to work due to serious illness or injury.

  • Most policies in Australia will provide you with a monthly payment up to 75% (with some up to 85%) of your total income to keep you afloat during recovery.
  • Your income can include any commissions, bonuses or fringe benefits that you are eligible to receive.
  • Some policies can cover you for period of up to two years

What can income protection cover while you recover?

The monthly benefit can cover your everyday expenses as well as any long-term debt repayments. This can include the following:

Your food

With or without work, you still need to eat to survive.

Your bills

Think utilities, rent, internet, insurance and all those things that are usually taken care of by your income.

Mortgage payments

This is a big one. If you stop working you'll still need to cover your mortgage.


Some income protection policies offer a Child Care Benefit which can cover the cost of child care while you are unable to.

Cost of a carer

Some income protection policies offer a Special Carer Benefit if you require a nurse.

Family care

Some income protection policies offer a Family Member Benefit to reimburse a family member if they need to stop work to look after you.

Will income protection cover redundancy?

Some brands will combine two policies together: Regular income protection insurance and redundancy cover.

Case study: A sudden need for income protection spoke to Germaine, who shared her story of when income protection was able to help her in a time of need.

1. Diagnosed with cancer

At 56, the legal professional was diagnosed with breast cancer forcing her out of her job and was left to treat cancer without any income.

2. Income protection at a difficult time

Fortunately, Germaine had an income protection insurance policy that could provide a monthly benefit of up to 75% of her income. Thanks to this, she was able to take time off, recover and still pay for her ongoing living expenses.

3. Eventually able to return part-time to work

After steady recovery, Germaine was able to return to work in a part time arrangement. A feature of her income protection insurance allowed her to switch to a 'partial benefit' to cover the days where could no longer work.

Note: We interviewed a real policyholder for this case study however we changed their name to 'Germaine' to allow the user to remain anonymous.

What are the different types of income insurance in Australia?

Cover facts

How is income protection different to WorkCover?


WorkCover is a nationwide initiative where all employers pay the government a premium in case one of their employees is injured at work. The employer can then make a claim and WorkCover will pay out compensation and other benefits, but only if the injury occurred at work.

You should view WorkCover as the minimum amount of insurance cover you need

While all Australian employees are covered under WorkCover, that doesn't make income protection insurance obsolete. You should view WorkCover as the minimum amount of insurance cover you need. Potential benefits are not always guaranteed by WorkCover. The table below outlines the differences:

Income Protection Workcover
Cover for injuries and illnesses that occur during work
  • Yes
  • Yes
Cover for injuries and illnesses that occur outside of work
  • Yes
  • No
Cover for rehabilitation expenses
  • Yes*
  • Yes
Cover for elective surgery
  • Yes*
  • No
Cover for your spouses accommodation expenses (if they need be with you away from home)
  • Yes*
  • No

*Make sure you check with your provider. This may be an included feature or an additional option.

Is income protection the same as life insurance?


Income protection and life insurance are not the same products as both forms of insurance serve different cover needs.

How do I actually compare policies?

Follow these steps to compare income protection cover.

1. Understand your basic preferences

Does your income change or is it fixed?

How long can you go without income?

How long do you want cover for?

2. Compare the following policy benefits

We feel like it's important to consider these benefits when looking for an income protection insurance policy:

  • A long enough benefit period
  • A shorter waiting period
  • Cover for your pre-existing medical condition
  • Fully underwritten to consider your personal circumstances
  • A total disablement benefit
  • A specified disability benefit
  • Rehabilitation expenses cover
  • Day one accident cover
  • Child care benefit if you have kids
  • The right disability definition for your circumstance
  • Agreed value cover if you want to set your benefit amount
  • Guaranteed future insurability so you can increase your cover without another medical test

Compare income protection benefits

3. Compare price

Although we don't believe price is the most important thing to consider, once you understand what cover you need it's good to see who offers competitive premiums. Here's an idea of how much it costs to get income protection for an annual salary of $45,000.

Policy Monthly quote* Weekly quote*
Clearview LifeSolutions $36.69 $9.17
TAL Accelerated Protection $40.54 $10.14
MLC Insurance $44.76 $11.19
Asteron Life Complete $45.20 $11.30
Zurich Wealth Protection $48.14 $12.04

*Prices quoted above were taken from finder's quote engine. The quote was based on a 35-year-old, non-smoking male office worker. Quotes are accurate for March 2018 and are subject to change. Any weekly premium mentioned is for reference only as most providers offer yearly, monthly and fortnightly payments.

Cost of income protection insurance

Frequently asked questions

What situations does income protection cover ?

One of the most important steps when comparing policies is to find out when you will actually be covered. Providers will class disabilities as either partial or total and permanent. The exact definition of total disablement will vary among insurance providers but most will use the following characteristics to approve a benefit payment:

  • You suffer a serious accident or illness.
  • You are unable to work due to suffering a serious accident or illness.
  • You experience a decrease in income following a serious accident or illness.
  • Total and permanent disabilities (this is where TPD insurance comes in)
  • Death (this is the job of life insurance)
  • Redundancy (unless policy is combined with a redundancy plan)

What's considered 'unable to work'? Three disabilities to understand

This is where it can get confusing. In this definition of "unable to work" or "disablement", life insurance companies use these different definitions of disability;

Duties-based disability

  • You are unable to perform one or more important duties in your role at work because you have suffered an illness or injury.
  • Such duties may include manual work, supervision, desk work, meeting with clients or presentations.

Income-based disability

  • You have suffered a reduction in your income of 20% or greater because of an accident or illness.

Hours-based disability

  • This means you are unable to perform the duties of your own occupation a certain number of hours per week (usually 10 hours) after suffering a serious accident or illness.

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How much will I be paid if I'm unable to work?

You will receive up to 75% of your total monthly income. Your total monthly income is based on either your income when you apply or your income when you make a claim.

A key factor that you must consider when taking out income cover is whether to take out an agreed-value or an indemnity-value income protection policy. This will help determine how much you will receive.

What do insurance companies recognise as income?

  • Pre-tax remuneration paid by your employer, including salary, fees and fringe benefits of the previous financial year.
  • Superannuation contributions made by your employer.
  • Commissions and bonuses paid by your employer.
  • Income generated due to the worker's own exertion minus expenses that have occurred during the previous financial year.

Read the full guide to income protection for self-employed workers.

In this case your income and in turn your benefit amount, are assessed at the time you make a claim. Therefore, when you make a claim you will also need to provide financial documents, so if you income has reduced since you applied for the policy, your benefit will also be reduced, however, if your income has increased, your benefit will too. An indemnity policy can also often be around 20% cheaper in premiums than an agreed value policy, and can be ideal if you are in a steady job, where you receive regular pay raises and b

Back to topBack to top

Some more questions you might have about income cover

Your policy

Your benefit
Your premium
Ready to compare policies? Get quotes from Australian life insurance brands


1 AIHW (2008) Cancer in Australia: an overview 2008, Cancer series no. 46, Cat. no. CAN 42, Canberra

2 Income protection gaps: a rising global challenge, Zurich/Smith School, University of Oxford, November 2015.

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10 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    MustafeOctober 30, 2018

    I live in Ethiopia i want sponsor

    • finder Customer Care
      JohnOctober 31, 2018Staff

      Hi Mustafe,

      Thank you for your question.

      I understand you are looking for a sponsor to enter Australia. You can find a sponsor yourself, or you can put in an expression of interest using SkillSelect. Lodging an expression of interest in SkillSelect allows Australian employers to see your qualifications and employment history. Employers can then contact you if they are interested in offering you a position. Hope this helps!


  2. Default Gravatar
    RahulOctober 23, 2018

    main isake lie aavedan kaise kar sakata hoon…

    • finder Customer Care
      JohnOctober 23, 2018Staff

      haay raahun

      ek prashn chhodane ke lie dhanyavaad.

      aap us pradaata ke painal se chun sakate hain jis par ham aay suraksha beema ke lie hain.

      upalabdh pradaataon ko pradarshit karane vaalee taalika par krpaya apane vikalpon kee sameeksha karen aur tulana karen. ek baar jab aap kisee vishesh pradaata ko chun lete hain, to aap “sait par jaen” batan par klik kar sakate hain aur aapako pradaata kee vebasait par reedaayarekt kiya jaega jahaan aap aavedan ke saath aage badh sakate hain ya aage ke poochhataachh ke lie apane pratinidhiyon ke sampark mein rah sakate hain.

      aavedan karane se pahale, krpaya sunishchit karen ki aap sabhee yogyata maanadandon ko poora karate hain aur aavashyak aavashyakataon ke vivaran ke saath-saath sambandhit utpaad prakateekaran vaktavy / niyam aur sharton ke maadhyam se apane vikalpon kee tulana karate samay yah nirnay lene se pahale ki yah aapake lie sahee hai ya nahin. ummeed hai kee yah madad karega!


  3. Default Gravatar
    GregOctober 2, 2018

    Self employed, I took out income protection and Trauma policies in 1994 due to the arrival of first child. The cover was indexed and I accepted the indexation increase upon every policy anniversary.

    In 2000, I suffered a mild MCI from which I fully recovered without needing a stent or subsequent surgery. The Trauma lump Sum benefit was paid immediately.

    The insurer then advised that my future premiums for the remaining income protection cover would be subject to a 200% loading. On independent advice I continued to accept indexed cover.

    In July 2009, I was diagnosed with early onset Parkinson’s Disease at age 51. Medically, I was able to continue running my business for another 5 years whereupon my overall condition had deteriorated to the point where a claim on the policy was approved and I accordingly ceased working and retired in August 2014.

    The last annual premium exceeded $13000.00 which prompts my enquiry:

    1.Would I have been charged an increase in trailer commission to the agent, and
    2.Would I have paid commission on the loading component of the increased premium?

    Your response appreciated.

    • finder Customer Care
      MauriceOctober 5, 2018Staff

      Hi Greg,

      Thanks for your question. Although I can’t speak for your specific situation, generally, if you are to use an agent to manage your insurance there is potential for ongoing premiums to be paid as percentage of premium. So if a premium is to increase, there’s a chance the commission increases as well.

      Get in touch with your adviser or agent who may be able to disclose their commission structure with you.

      I hope this helps,


  4. Default Gravatar
    LornaApril 11, 2017

    If a person has been treated for cancer more than 5 years ago will this affect pay out.

    • finder Customer Care
      ZubairApril 12, 2017Staff

      Hi Lorna,

      Thank you for your question. is a comparison and information service and we are not permitted to provide our users with personalised financial advice or product recommendations.

      For clarification on whether you are eligible to receive a full claim or not, please refer to your product disclosure statement or contact your insurer.

      All the best,

  5. Default Gravatar
    jamesSeptember 14, 2016

    I want to have my income protected in case of illness of family members (my parents) in the UK

    • finder Customer Care
      MauriceSeptember 14, 2016Staff

      Hi James,

      Thanks for your question. Unfortunately income protection in Australia will only protects the income in the case of an injury or illness to the person who’s income is insured.

      I hope this helps,


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